Aventura Retailer Spotlight: Ecology Sports

Ecology Sports

While the waters of Lake Michigan lap at the Sister Bay Marina, Alicia and her husband Joel Kersebet welcome a new day at Ecology Sports.

This retail store is, in essence, inspired by all things the Kersebets are passionate about: travel, outdoor adventure, hometown, and family. The store specializes in selling eco-friendly clothing, high-quality outdoor gear for travel and sports, and gifts for the home. The couple runs the store, like their predecessors, Alicia’s parents, did with a commitment to link people with nature. Since its 1972 founding in the basement of their family home, Ecology Sports has moved and grown, transformed, and condensed without losing heart. Now, with views of an endless lake, Alicia tells us the story of Ecology Sports...

Ecology Sports' owner Alicia Drury stands in front of the store.

“When my husband and I took over my parents’ Sister Bay location, we had a child about to enter kindergarten and I knew I had my hands full enough with the obligations of a small family and a small business,” explains Alicia. Her parents retired from their beloved shop, 29 years after erecting it in the family’s home. They started off by selling cross country skis off the dining room table, and when the basement was finished, they added clothing and camping equipment to their makeshift store.

“My parents' vision was always to provide quality clothing and gear to get people outside - self-propelled.”

The Drurys grew their homemade store to 3 locations across Wisconsin’s Door County: Manitowoc, Kohler, and Sister Bay. Door County encompasses a peninsula that separates Green Bay and Lake Michigan. This is a special place for Alicia. “First of all the landscape is incredibly beautiful,” she says, and along the 300 miles of shoreline, dotted with quaint villages, small towns, and public parks, that is evident.

Ecology Sports' owner Alicia Drury stands in front of the store.
Beautiful flowers are in bloom in front of the Ecology Sports store.

Part of the young couple’s motivation to move back home, however, was to enjoy the Wisconsin seasons - “not even kidding!” “I missed everything about the change of seasons,” she explains. “[Joel] said I would get very homesick especially in the fall. I can’t explain it but I love all weather and especially the diversity we get here on the peninsula!”

Upon their return, Alicia and Joel took over Ecology Sports’ Sister Bay location in 1999 which prompted the retirement of Alicia’s parents. Understanding the need to provide quality service and attention, the couple decided to condense Ecology Sports into one location.

Three interior views of Ecology Sports and it's products.

The Kersebets have made a happy life here, centered on family and the outdoors. “I could go on and on as you can see I am a big fan of this area,” Alicia jokes, but stepping into Ecology Sports her love is quite evident without explanation. Encouraged to enjoy the outdoors and get moving as a kid, alongside her four siblings, Alicia is still an active hiker, cross-country skier, and regularly swims in the bay, “basically anything outdoors up here!”

Alicia, husband Joel, and their two kids stand in front of the sunset overlooking the water.

With a passion for travel and outdoor adventure and a grounding in hometown and family, Ecology Sports aligns with Aventura. The Kersebets started selling Aventura because they “appreciated the attention to detail, the hands-on approach of the owners, and the sustainability effort that the company puts out,” explains Alicia. Her favorite piece from this fall is the Kinsley Jacket; “[it] is once again a top seller and a perfect change of seasons piece that feels so good and looks great on!”

Alicia gave us these parting words of kindness:

“Thanks again for the opportunity to be a part of your blog. I always enjoy seeing Tom at the buying show. It is rare these days to see the owner so present and it really shows the care that he has put into the brand.”