In 1996, Anne Taylor and Roger Ossian launched A & R Marketing, a custom screen printing and embroidery company, located in Campustown. For the past 27 years, they have served the business and Iowa State community with apparel marketing needs.
Thinking back to those early days, Ossian said “the company took off immediately.” When they first incorporated back in 1996, they became a licensed vendor of Iowa State products within a few days and over the past three decades, have worked with nearly every college and hundreds of student organizations on campus.
Their original location was on Hayward Avenue, then in 2010 they moved to their current location on Welch Avenue. In between that time, they opened the retail store of the company, Dogtown University, where they specialize in Iowa State vintage logo apparel.
The name of the retail store has historic roots to campus. For many years, the Campustown area was popularly known as “Dogtown” by students and staff. The name was grounded in the lore that students were not allowed to bring cars to school, but rather had to walk or “dog-it” to get around. At the time, small economic centers sprouted up near college campuses to serve the needs of students, many of which were named “Dogtown.” For years, the name was popular with students before Campustown became the norm.
Custom screen printing and embroidery continue to be the number one driver of business for Taylor and Ossian, but the retail store full of ISU gear is how most people know their company. They have a wonderful relationship the Iowa State and love calling Campustown their home.
“One of the misconceptions of Campustown is that it is only for students,” said Taylor. “We encourage everyone to visit the shops and restaurants of Campustown and to embrace the energy that a university has.”
With the fall athletic season upon us, consider visiting Dogtown University and updating your ISU gear. Dogtown University is located at 217 Welch Avenue in Campustown.
In 2022, YSS, focused on creating hope and opportunity by putting kids first, launched its Ambassador Program with Gabe Kalscheur as their first-ever YSS Ambassador.
Kalscheur, a member of the Iowa State men’s basketball team at the time, engaged in volunteer activities such as helping at the local YSS youth shelter and residential treatment facilities, meeting with youth in YSS programs, and making appearances at YSS fundraisers and events.
“I’m excited to partner with YSS and use my platform to give back,” said Kalscheur in a 2022 press release. “I believe in YSS’s mission and the important work they do to empower youth in Ames and across the state.”
Headquartered in Ames, YSS is one of Iowa’s oldest and largest youth-serving nonprofits—ideally positioning the organization to collaborate with Iowa State student athletes such as Kalscheur.
The YSS Ambassador Program collaborates with the We Will Collective, which compensates ISU student-athletes with donated funds while helping the athletes use their name, image and likeness to benefit the community. “Working with YSS has been the perfect match for our mission of keeping the Cyclones thriving by doing great things in the central Iowa community,” said Brent Blum, executive director of the We Will Collective.
YSS creates opportunities for Ambassadors to get involved throughout the year, allowing them to use their influence to bring awareness to the organization’s mission and support local youth and families in need. In 2023, the Ambassador Program expanded to include three ISU athletes: Jaylin Noel (football), Nyamer Diew (women’s basketball), and Tamin Lipsey (men’s basketball).
“YSS has a strong history with Iowa State, with dozens of student athletes volunteering each year to help our youth and families. The YSS Ambassador Program is the perfect evolution of this partnership,” said Andrew Allen, President & CEO of YSS. “I was amazed by Gabe’s impact and how much our youth looked up to him. This year, we are building on that success and expanding the program with three new YSS Ambassadors who, like Gabe, are ready to get involved and give back,” Allen said.
304 Main St.
Ames, Iowa 50010
Phone: (515) 232-2310
About the Ames Chamber
Centrally and conveniently located in the heart of the Midwest and Iowa, Ames is known for its healthy, stable economy, flourishing cultural environment, and the world-renowned Iowa State University.
With over 700 members, the Ames Chamber of Commerce strives to make Ames a better place to live, work, and do business by strengthening the economic vitality and the quality of life in the Ames community.