Nathan Fielder donating $150,000 to Holocaust education, staging Summit Ice pop-up store
Nathan Fielder is still aiming to raise awareness of the Holocaust through a jacket.
In a fall 2015 episode of Nathan For You — a Comedy Central series in which Fielder brainstorms unconventional strategies to help small businesses — he started an outdoor apparel company named Summit Ice to “openly promote the true story of the Holocaust” after his jacket company of choice, Taiga, let him down by paying tribute to one of its catalogue writers who was a Holocaust denier. Although his marketing ideas did not fare well on the show, Fielder launched a website with Summit Ice Apparel, namely the signature black shell with plenty of zippers, and pledged to give the profits from Summit Ice sales to the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre. Celebrities including Jack Black, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Rogen, Rob Lowe, Ellie Kemper, and John Mayer supported the cause via these totally natural photos, and Fielder said that the first eight weeks of operation generated more than $300,000 in sales.
Fielder announced on Thursday that he would be donating $150,000 of Summit Ice profits to the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre, which is based in his hometown and promotes “social justice, human rights, and genocide awareness.” (Given the current climate, his cause seems more relevant than ever.) He also will open a Summit Ice retail pop-up store on Sunday in “Vancouver’s historic outdoor apparel district.” People are invited to “trade in any Taiga jacket they have in exchange for a free Summit Ice soft-shell jacket and ‘Deny Nothing’ pin.” Those who donate money can receive other Summit Ice clothing. The press release also notes that “any Taiga jackets collected will be disposed of in a manner deemed appropriate by Mr. Fielder,” and gives an email address in case “the mayor wants to give Mr. Fielder the Key to the City.”
“It’s amazing,” VHEC executive director Nina Krieger told EW back when she first learned of Fielder’s plan. “The absurdity of a clothing company expressing sympathies for a Holocaust denier has been reframed by Nathan as an opportunity to promote awareness, and we would hope further learning about the events and lessons of the Holocaust.”