It was 20 years ago that ChutingStar came into existence, originally as just a skydiving rigger inspecting, assembling, repairing and packing reserve parachutes on nights, weekends and in-between my "real job" of the time of being a newspaper reporter and editor.
My first year rigging grew quickly as I became the main rigger on the drop zone, and was a skydive instructor as well as a rigger, fun jumper, swooper and 4-way competitor. My wife Stephanie pushed me over the edge into giving ChutingStar my full-time attention as I was running out of time to get everything done each day between my newspaper job, skydiving/rigging and still trying to play drums in local bands. I had to choose between one of those three to fully pursue...and ChutingStar it was.
For those next 5 years, I rigged, skydived and was able to keep my writing skills alive through my online blog The Rigger Rant & Rave as well as writing articles for skydiving magazines. ChutingStar grew to the point where I trained and hired riggers to help with the volume of rigging work we had coming in daily.
In 2005, with the birth of our twin boys, I needed to find a way to keep ChutingStar running and surviving...even when I couldn't physically be there everyday. That led to creation of the online skydiving gear sales shop that most of you know us for today.
With the help of Georgia Tech student Ben Lee, we morphed The Rigger Rant & Rave blog into what was at the time for the skydiving world a bleeding edge e-commerce site. Combining our education blog resource with all the most sought-after gear online topped with our trusted reputation in the industry skyrockted ChutingStar.com to the number one online skydiving equipment store within a few years.
By 2009 we had added an off-DZ warehouse and offices for fulfilling online orders in Dallas, Georgia, and then added the largest walk-in shop in skydiving in DeLand, Florida. In 2012, we started consolidating everything to one location in Marietta GA, which has been our sole SuperStore location since 2015.
Now in 2019, on our 20-Year Anniversary, the 7-member ChutingStar Skydiving SuperStore crew is looking forward to a celebratory year of helping and serving you with unbiased expert advice, the highest quality gear offerings and the best support on your purchase for years to come!
Come visit us 9-5, Monday-Friday, at 1349 Old 41 Hwy NW, Suite 105, Marietta, GA, USA. You'll get to see the 8,000 square feet of the ChutingStar Skydiving SuperStore, which includes a walk-in skydiving shop, parachute rigging loft, custom gear measuring room, crew offices and the online warehouse. See more info on our location at this link.
Plans for the 20th Anniversary include:
- Monthly coupon codes. The first one is 20YEARS for $20 off your next order of $200 or more at ChutingStar.com through Jan. 31!
- ChutingStar crew, goods and booth at PIA Symposium 2019 Feb. 4-8 in Dallas, Texas.
- ChutingStar Boogie Tour! 2019 dates/locations TBA at this link.
- New skydiving gear comparison articles and videos coming to our Learn More blog at this link.
- Additional ChutingStar Parachute Rigging School dates throughout the year, which will be listed at this link, as they are set.
- And much, much more! Stay tuned to ChutingStar.com, our Newsletter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter!
Thank you all for all your support! 20 Years Baby!!!