Run for Ray 2013, Behind The Seams with Queensboro


Run for Ray tees via QB Instagram @queensboroshirtco

Here at Queensboro, we regularly contribute to worthy causes. Whether it be canned food donations for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina, or a donation to the Wounded Warrior Project, Fred and the Queensboro team are known for donating their time and talent to make the world a better place.

The Run for Ray Trail Run in Leland, NC was no exception.

Making Screenprinted Tees for Run for Ray

Making Screenprinted Tees for Run for Ray, via QB Instagram @queensboroshirtco

Run for Ray, a fundraiser for the Ray Underhill Foundation, was started in 2009 to honor the late Ray Underhill. Underhill, a professional skateboarder and family man, lost a two year battle to a Chordoma brain tumor in 2008.

Since, his friends, family and skateboarding community gather every year to honor him and raise awareness for the Chordoma Cancer Foundation.

The Run for Ray, held at the Brunswick County Nature Park in Leland, NC, invited participants to run in a 3, 9 or 18 mile course. Runners donated in exchange for the opportunity to race, with awards for the top 3 male/female for each distance.

Run for Ray Tee being printed at Queensboro.

Run for Ray Tee being printed at Queensboro.

“We’ve really enjoyed working with John and the entire Run For Ray team. It’s a wonderful cause that our staff members were really excited to participate in,” said Fred. “Any time we are able to reach out to the community and help make events like Run for Ray a success, I can’t help but be proud of the work we do here at Queensboro.”

Banner for Race

Banner for Race, via QB Instagram @queensboroshirtco

Queensboro joined reputable sponsors such as Clif Energy Bars, Bike Cycles, and Go Time to support the cause. In addition to donating screen-printed t-shirts and custom hats, we also “donated” some of our team members. Mattias MacDowell, Sarah Newton, and Melissa Weidenborner  volunteered at the event.

“It was great to see so many volunteers, runners, and sponsors support such a great charity despite the cold and wet weather,” commented Mattias, who was taking photos. “I feel proud to be a part of such a great community of givers and thankful many of them are my co-workers.”

No exaggeration on the cold weather. Runners and volunteers dealt with brisk temperatures, heavy and light showers, and a lot of muddy trails. Still, in spite of the less than ideal conditions, participants put on brave faces.

Soggy Trails at Run for Ray, from the Run for Ray instagram

Soggy Trails at Run for Ray, from the Run for Ray Instagram

“I feel lucky to have been part of such an amazing event,” said Sarah from Merchandising, who distributed water to runners.  “Even through the cold and rain, the love, support and appreciation was overwhelming and contagious.  Definitely an event I will continue to support in the future.”

“It was really cool to follow this donation order from the sample process all the way to the event itself,” she added. ” When I told John I was from Queensboro, he couldn’t say enough good things about our operation, our support and our product.  Great job to all involved!”

From Queensboro Instagram at Run for Ray

At Run for Ray, via QB Instagram @queensboroshirtco

The Queensboro team members who participated in the run, Bob Jones, Mike Kelsey and Kyle Page, also had wonderful things to say about the run, despite the cold weather and sore muscles.

“Great to see so many people out supporting a good cause in less than favorable conditions.  I’m glad I was pushed to participate,” said Kyle, a logo specialist, who ran the 3 mile course.  “It was a fantastic event with lots of support from everyone involved.  Great to see our own co-workers out there braving the elements in both support and running.”

“My legs are still a bit sore,” he confessed.

Bob Jones crossing the finish line, Matt MacDowell looking on.

Bob Jones crossing the finish line, Matt MacDowell looking on.

“I’m typically a fair weather runner but this was for a great cause and more fun than I expected!” said Bob of QB Online Stores, who ran the 9 mile course.

“The course was exciting with great scenery even in the rain and amazing trails. I can’t wait to go back to Brunswick Nature Park in the future. I give credit to ALL the event volunteers who were standing in the rain cheering us on!”

Bob and Mike

Bob and Mike after the 9 mile run.

Mike Kelsey from the IT Department, finished the 9 mile course with a time of 1:18. Although he “signed up just to run”, he confessed that when he learned more about Ray Underhill and Chordoma, it  “changed the race” for him.

“Right before the race, his wife got up and gave us a heartfelt thanks, and a fellow Chordoma patient, who’s currently beating the disease, took the mic and talked about exactly how the event has raised several million dollars, and, as he put it, is moving the needle on the problem. It was strange, and sort-of amazing, to think that a couple hundred people shivering in the rain in middle of the woods in February were playing a part in fixing brain cancer.”

Run for Ray

Race Trophies, Run for Ray

Queensboro staff members who attended the event, Kyle Foster and Amber Sheets, were impressed with the upbeat nature of the participants and volunteers.

“I was very impressed with the level of support, despite the weather.” said Amber, a member of our Customer Service team. “It was inspiring to see so many runners and volunteers at the event supporting a good cause.”

“Great show of support, in less than ideal conditions, too.” added Kyle from Merchandising, who attended the event with his family.  “Thanks to everyone who helped make this another great event and for helping the Underhill family and their efforts to help fight Chordoma.”

Check out the pictures of the event on Instagram @queensboroshirtco and @runforray!

Win An Expandable Attache from QB Online Stores!

We Heart QB Online Store Administrators!

Since the entire month of February seems to be warm and fuzzy, we decided to hold a special contest just for our QBOS admins! For the entire month of February, every storefront with at least four orders will win one free expandable attache. This roomy, spacious custom attache works as a briefcase, laptop bag, or book bag.


Receive one of these lightweight yet durable expandable attaches, perfect for on-the-go professionals.  The 600-denier polyester bag with PVC backing will keep documents secure while easily storing your favorite pens, highlighters, notepads, and electronic devices. Use the attached handle or detachable shoulder strap while carrying.

Customize with an embroidered logo to enhance this sharp looking, yet relaxed briefcase. Regardless of where you go, your brand will be clearly displayed on our smart looking attache.  How will you customize your free attache?

50 New Marketing Products, Promo Items at

We’ve added 50 new marketing products to!  In addition to our wide selection of custom pens, mugs, to go cups, custom notebooks, key chains and so much more, we now have even more fun promotional items to choose from.

We chose seven of our favorite new hard goods to show off:

Soda Fountain Tumbler

Looking for a fun, retro-inspired custom to go cups? This transparent, single-wall tumbler and custom to go cup will bring you back to the days of poodle skirts and Elvis Presley. It has a twist-on lid and matching straw, perfect for insulating cold beverages. Made with BPA-Free AS Plastic, this funky cup comes has a Polypropylene straw. Choose from several translucent colors, including pink, purple, green, red, orange or clear. Add a name or brand with your logo to customize this to go cup. Your logo will pop with a stunning, clear single color imprint.

Try using for:

  • Branded restaurant or cafe to go cups
  • Employee or customer gifts
  • Keepsake cups for concerts, events and festivals

Custom Spiral Notebook -

Take notes in style! Supply your customers, clients or co-workers with a customized spiral notebook. Complete with plastic fold-over cover and elastic pen loop closure, this modern, casual look notebook includes 80 ruled pages and matching color ball point pen. Available in various vibrant colors. Brand with your logo or add a name with a single color imprint design.

Try using for:

  • Office supplies with your company logo
  • Facebook freebies or giveaways
  • Memorable items for conferences or trade shows

Deluxe ID Holder - 0972

Our new Deluxe ID custom Badge Holder is perfect for trade shows and conferences! Available in various bright colors, this Polyester Badge Holder with adjustable breakaway lanyard includes a secure Velcro closure, inside zippered pocket, and open front pocket. With 2 pen sleeves and an open pocket on back, this handy pouch is available for customization with a single color imprint.

Try using for:

  • Holding name tags or IDs for conferences or trade shows
  • Ticket holders for concerts or festivals
  • Employee or customer ID holders for every day use

Multi-Purpose Tool Kit

Combine function and ease with our Pocket Multi-Purpose Tool Kit! This handy little kit  includes a 2 flathead and 2 Phillips-head screwdriver with a magnetic base and single white LED light with push on/off power button. Give a promotional gift that your clients, customers and co-workers will use over and over again! With a built-in level and pocket clip, this custom pocket tool kit is definitely a handy-man favorite. Brand with your logo or add a name in a single color imprint.

Try using for:

  • Facebook freebies and giveaways
  • Promo items for a company or organization

Picnic Blanket

Ideal for company picnics, outdoor events, or fun Facebook giveaways, our customizable picnic blanket is one of our favorite new promotional items. Available in bold, traditional colors, this Polyester Fleece Blanket is sure to complete any 4th of July or Memorial Day BBQ. Includes foam lining and water-resistant PVC backing to protect against damp grass or sand. Complete with your single color imprint logo for a fun and functional marketing product your staff and customers are sure to remember.

Try using for:

  • Company picnics or events
  • Facebook freebies or giveaways
  • Promotional items for venues

custom ear buds

Equip your customers, clients and employees with branded ear buds for their favorite iPod or portable audio device. These retractable earphones can be used with any audio device, making them a highly functional marketing product. 3.5mm audio jack, 36″ retractable cord, available in various bold colors. Add your logo or unique design with a single color imprint.

Try using for:

  • Employee or customer gifts 
  • Promotional items for your company or organization
  • Facebook freebies or giveaways

Sticky Note Book

Brand this custom sticky notebook for branded office supplies, trade shows and conferences, or fun Facebook freebies. Includes sticky flags in 5 colors (25 flags per color) and 3″ x 1-3/4″ yellow sticky memo pad (70 pages). Choose from one of our vibrant colors, and brand with a single color imprint for a promotional item that can be used by anyone.

Try using for:

  • Office supplies with company or organization logo 
  • Holiday gifts for co-workers or clients
  • Tradeshow or conference freebies

Which new promotional item is your favorite?

Meet James: A Night Out With Queensboro at Projekte Gallery & Lounge

When you ask any Queensboro employee what their favorite part of working here is, don’t be surprised if every single employee says:

“My co-workers.”

Perhaps it’s because we’re located in Wilmington, one of the most southern points of coastal North Carolina. The staff at Queensboro lives and breathes southern hospitality.

It was the same respect and support for our fellow co-workers that brought many of us to Projekte Gallery & Lounge, an art gallery, lounge, and furniture store for an art exhibit.

Projekte in Downtown Wilmington

As the surprisingly large crowd formed at Projekte, many familiar faces from Queensboro emerged. Staff members from customer service, marketing and IT came out for one simple reason- to support James Stirling. James, a multi-talented logo specialist at QB, was one of the artists featured at the exhibit.

(From Left) Mike from IT, James, the featured artist, Melissa from Marketing, Claire from Customer Service and Jenn from Marketing enjoy the artwork at Projekte.

(From Left) Mike from IT, James, the featured artist, Melissa from Marketing, Claire from Customer Service and Jenn from Marketing enjoy the artwork at Projekte.

It’s embedded in our company culture that every employee is ambitious, hard-working, and incredibly creative. Queensboro consists of nearly 150 employees with various talents and experience.  For most of us, it’s another fantastic part of working here.

“I truly enjoyed seeing one of our artists’ really unleash his talents,” remarked Claire Becker, our Customer Service Manager.  “It is always surprising to me to see the gold mine of artistic creativity we have here at Queensboro.”

Custom Tees by James, our logo specialist.

Custom Tees by James, our logo specialist.

She’s right- all of our employees, especially our logo specialists, are exceptionally artistic. On this particular night, James was displaying (and selling) his personal line of custom t-shirts. The shirts feature incredibly detailed and imaginative portrayals of a tree, a man’s hand, and even a colorful squid.

“The shirts were so imaginative, and also, really very familiar,” commented Melissa Weidenborner from Marketing, “I realized it was because I’ve seen my co-workers wearing them around the office. I think that’s awesome.”

Custom Tree Tee

Custom Tree Tee

So what inspired these whimsical tees? According to James, the tees give his creations direction, noting that as an artist, he feels as if his illustrations need a purpose. James attributes the choice to use t-shirts to his fondness for concert tees.

“When you put on a t-shirt, you are making a statement about yourself,” James explains.

By James Stirling

By James Stirling

As for the actual process of drawing, James has a unique and compelling approach. The method James uses for sketching, cross-hatching,  is a technique using parallel and intersecting lines. It creates a shadowing effect that’s present in nearly all of his t-shirts.

Squid Tee

Squid Tee

Call Me ‘Lhu, the squid tee, is his favorite.

“I did this piece in a real interesting period in my life and it evokes a lot of negative and positive emotions for me,” James admits. “It took me the longest out of any of the designs, so I feel the closest connection to it.”

Close friend and co-worker Mike Kelsey, who was present at Projekte, calls his friend’s  creativity “enormous”.

“Gnarr by James Stirling”

“It pours out of him in these unique, captivating ways in each artistic endeavor I’ve seen him undertake, regardless of category,” said Mike, who’s also in a band (I, Like You) with James. “I almost feel like I’m as likely to find him making some fascinating sculpture with a chainsaw and a tree stump as I am to find him designing a thought-provoking t-shirt.”

Most attendees at the gallery would agree. In addition to having a large turnout at Projekte, James was pleased to also sell a good number of his custom shirts. Although James is in it for the art, he admits that it “feels good” when people take the time to appreciate it.

“I do art to keep from going insane, getting my stuff noticed is just a bonus. Now that I work at Queensboro, it just seemed silly to not try to do my prints on t-shirts.”

Want a James Stirling original?

Head on over to his online storefront! You can also ‘Like’ his work on Facebook.

Want to design your own custom tees?

Head on over to ZapTee to make it happen!