Thirty Years after their World Series Win, the 1986 Mets Provide Creative Inspiration for New Reebok Sneaker
New “Dead End Kids” Sneaker Designed and Sold Exclusively by Renarts – a Long Island-Based Shoe Retailer
East Northport, New York – Regardless of whether your baseball allegiance lies in Flushing or the Bronx, every native New Yorker knows at least some of the heartbreak that comes with being a fan of the Metropolitans. Though the team has been on the field for more than 50 years, it is perhaps the 1986 New York Mets – and the seasons that followed – that are the embodiment of the rollercoaster on which fans ride. And, it is that 1986 squad which has inspired the creative team at Renarts, a shoe company based in East Northport, New York, to design the “Dead End Kids” Reebok sneaker.
With a royal blue, suede toe, this new sneakers appears to be every bit the cool, suave, sophisticated Met to which it is associated. But, a closer look reveals a darkness behind the façade – in this case, the sneaker’s black leather insoles, sides and back. Any Mets fan alive today, whether they’re old enough to have seen the ’86 team or not, can likely understand the reasoning.
Featuring All Star players like Dwight “Doc” Gooden, Darryl Strawberry, Lenny Dykstra, Mookie Wilson, Jesse Orosco, Gary Carter, Ron Darling and Wally Backman, the 1986 Mets were the dream team that took a 108-54 record for the season. Fresh off of back-to-back second-place finishes, the team’s manager, Davey Johnson, was determined to take the title that year – a fact he iterated to the players throughout Spring Training. And one that became reality, thanks in part perhaps, to the now fateful and infamous Game 6 “ball between the legs” blunder.
Though on the outside, the ’86 Mets were the shiny, glimmering symbol of hope for New York baseball – which was tormented by poor showings by the region’s beloved New York Yankees throughout the 1980s – in the locker room and on the road, the team was plagued with fighting, jealousy and egos that were further fueled by the drug and alcohol abuse common in major league sports at that time. It was this team that Sports Illustrated Magazine plastered on a cover in 1995, with a headline that read “The Dead End Kids,” from which the shoe name was derived.
Coinciding with the team’s 30th Anniversary, Mr. Darling, starting pitcher during Game 7, and Mr. Dykstra, who led the team with 31 stolen bases, each recently released a tell-all book that rehashed all of the nitty gritty, and then some, of the ’86 Mets. It’s from those stories that the Renarts team drew inspiration for the new “Dead End Kids” Reebok sneaker. Though younger than the team itself, the creative personalities associated with the shoe grew up with stories of the legendary “Miracle Mets,” including those from 1986. A staple on the North Shore of Long Island since 1981, Renarts has always set out to show its love for all things sports – past, present and future. It’s from this mantra that the company owners inspire their employees to focus their creative attention.
Working collaboratively with the designers at Reebok, the Renarts team went through several designs before ultimately landing on one that everyone loved. Though the ’86 Mets were specifically the inspiration for the blue toe and black back of the sneaker, a closer inspection reveals orange and blue piping indicative of the now long-gone, and adoringly remembered, neon signs of Shea Stadium – a true symbol that any “Mets Faithful” would be proud to wear.
A Renarts exclusive, the “Dead End Kids” Reebok sneaker will be available both in-store (2060 Jericho Turnpike, East Northport, New York 11731) and online at www.renarts.com beginning October 8, 2016. For more information, or to place a pre-order, call 631-493-2333.
Renarts has been a staple of the community on the North Shore of Long Island, New York for the past 30 years. Since opening its doors in 1981 as the neighborhood sneaker store, the company has prided itself on serving a loyal and diverse customer base in an era when big-box retail franchises have dominated the footwear and apparel industry. The company’s new storefront, on Jericho Turnpike in East Northport, is specifically designed to express the owners’ love for all things sports – past, present and future – as it is their belief that, in order to know where you’re headed, it is important to know where you’ve been. The character and atmosphere in the store speaks to a taste for both classic and vintage athletics, while the carefully selected product offerings reflect a well-rounded assortment that consist of the latest innovations in footwear and sportswear, cutting-edge street wear and a generous dose of retro-inspired products that harkens back to the owners’ roots. For more information, visit www.renarts.com or call 631-493-2333.