By TIM KELLY
Vacationers and local residents no longer have to go to their computer or travel offshore to get their Cruise Control Gear on.
The high performance active wear for men and women is a favorite of great athletes, such as the Ocean City Nor’easters soccer team, and “weekend warriors” alike.
It was previously available at a number of exclusive non-local shops and online.
On Monday, Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian, local business and civic leaders and a gathering of customers and passersby were on hand to watch Cruise Control founder Candice Kolins and her sister and business partner Kristen Vogelbacher perform the ribbon-cutting duties on the brand’s new retail outlet in town.
The new store is inside the Shops at Stainton’s, 810 Asbury Ave. in Ocean City, and open daily during the summer season. They can be reached during business hours at 609-545-8688. Customers may still browse their offerings and shop 24/7 at www.cruisecontrolgear.com.
“We’re excited to be offering world class performance gear for golf, tennis, working out and other sports – and to make it available right here in our home town,” said Kolins, of Ocean City. “We’re honored the mayor took time from his busy schedule during the peak tourism season to help us officially open.”
Honored to have Mayor Jay Gillian & Michelle Gillian of OCNJ for our ribbon cutting at Staintons! Thank you OCNJ Chamber of Commerce!
Posted by Cruise Control Gear on Monday, July 22, 2019
Kolins was a four-year member of the varsity tennis team at Villanova University, where she held down the number one singles position.
Vogelbacher is a former varsity tennis captain at Princeton University.
After college, Kolins launched the company, and her sister soon joined in the effort.
“I wanted to combine two of my passions, athletics and fashion,” Kolins explained, “and to be my own boss.”
They got the name for the company when Kolins was watching a tennis match on TV.
The commentator mentioned how the winning player was unconsciously dominating the match.
“The announcer said (the player) ‘was operating on cruise control’ and we thought, what a great name for our company,” Kolins said. “That’s how we want athletes to feel when they are performing while wearing our products.”
The company, which began modestly, offering sports socks to just a handful of outlets, has grown to an ever-expanding range of offerings.
Kolins said she realized the company was on its way to success when she saw a woman wearing one of her shirts in the stands at the Australian Open.
The telecast showed “a lady cheering one of the points, and she was wearing a pink ‘Live For It’ shirt,” Kolins said, referring to her company’s slogan. “She looked good and I was really excited. I tried to take a picture of the TV screen.”
Cruise Control specializes in quality performance-wear sports apparel for the “chic competitor,” according to its catalog.
It also offers quality men’s wear for a market that cares more about comfort, durability and price.
However, the company’s motto of “Look good, play better” sums up Kolins’s philosophy.
Almost all of the company’s products are made from moisture-wicking fabric that is not only functional, she said, but also “extremely soft, comfortable and flattering.”