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Viking Players Step Up to Bat for Small Businesses

By Salem News, 04/23/20, 2:00PM EDT

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Local & Loyal

Author: Matt Williams of the Salem News

 

It's understandable that small businesses feel a little bit alone in light of the coronavirus shutdowns. That's why local business owners Marc and Greg Crovo decided to apply some of the lessons they learned in sports.

On the diamond as a standout baseball player at Salem State, Marc always thrived when he knew he had the support of his teammates. When Greg was winning championships in ice hockey at St. Anselm College, he had the same feeling of being willing to give a teammate the shirt off his back.

This time, though, the brothers from Melrose are focused on putting shirts onto backs. They've launched a "Local & Loyal" t-shirt campaign through their Northmen Outfitters to benefit small businesses all over the state.

The shirts feature the state of Massachusetts with the phrase "Local & Loyal" and #SupportSmallBusinesses. For $25, customers can support any small business of their choice. The campaign specifies that $11 goes to the business of their choice (filled in on the order form) with $10 covering the cost of the shirt and $4 going to shipping.

With so many businesses forced to close or have their productivity drastically reduced as we social distance to contain the pandemic, the concept of being able to directly support a favorite place in a tough time had great appeal.

"During all the craziness, we're doing our best to be creative and help support small businesses. They're what make up our communities' economies and they're the engine for our national economy," said Marc Crovo. "It's a small way for us to band together to drive funds to the beloved companies and businesses that we cherish so when all this clears up they can be operational again."

Crovo also runs Vikings Baseball, where he's had a big impact on youth baseball players from all over the North Shore. Kids from a variety of schools like Beverly High, St. John's Prep, Saint's Academy, Beverly Middle School and beyond have chipped in to the "Local & Loyal" effort while learning about the importance of supporting local companies and lending a hand in tough times.

For example, 11-year old Viking baseball player Riley Tachuk donated his $11 "Local & Loyal" share to the Nowhere Fast skateboard store in Beverly.

"We all know a small business owner or an employee of one, and they're all hoping and praying their doors will open again when its over. We're all trying to do our part of make sure that happens," said Crovo. "It's one way that our customers can have our backs."

Northmen Outfitters recently got a new logo as well, designed by cousin and Barstool Sports artist Nick Tringale. To learn more about the "Local & Loyal" t-shirt campaign, visit their Web site at Northmenoutfitters.com or search for "Northmen Outfitters" on Facebook to get to their page.

Local & Loyal Starting Lineup

  • Riley Tachuk 11u
  • Matt Ploszay 18u
  • The McCay Brothers - Griff 16u and Cal 13u
  • Noah Guanci 15u
  • The Gavin Brothers - Graham 13u and Cooper 16u
  • Nick McIntyre 18u
  • The Bellew Brothers - Jonah 13u and Casey 16u
  • The Mastroianni Brothers - Ant 15u and Jack Vikes Alumni
  • Nick Beurekjian 13u