Tag Archives: Tory Brown

Giving Back, The 203 Way

When it comes to state pride, Connecticut is not exactly Texas.

We don’t go around demanding, “Don’t mess with Connecticut.” There’s no special hand signal to cheer for UConn. We don’t look nostalgically back on the days when we were an independent republic.*

That was not news to Roscoe and Tory Brown. Back in 2014, when the siblings — both Staples High School graduates — launched 203, the apparel and accessories company celebrating the Zip Code area code — they knew there were not a lot of ways to celebrate “our state, our home.”

But as they traveled around Connecticut, selling their t-shirts, hoodies, hats and other gear through pop-up shops at community events, they realized Nutmeggers** were actually enthusiastic about this place.

Roscoe and Tory Brown, and some of their merchandise.

Roscoe and Tory also noticed at those events that people and organizations were continually giving back, to charities and local non-profits.

So they launched an annual “203 Community Day.” Each year, it’s held the week of February 3rd. (2/03 — get it?!)

This year, Roscoe and Tory are helping ease a post-holiday problem. Every January, donations to homeless shelters drop drastically. Socks and underwear are desperately needed, yet always in scarce supply.

So “The Two-Oh-Three” has teamed up with Half Full Brewery. This Friday (January 31, 4 to 10 p.m., 43 Homestead Avenue, Stamford), they’ll collect new, unopened packages of socks and underwear there. The goal is 600 pairs. They’ll present them to shelters on 2/03.

But it’s not just a drop-off. Roscoe and Tory invite donors to stick around at the brewery for food, beverages, music and fun.

As an added incentive, every donor gets a free, special edition “Two-Oh-Three” beer.

What? You didn’t know Connecticut had its own beer?

Take that, Texas!

(Can’t make it to Half Full Brewery in Stamford? You can drop off donations at Two-Oh-Three’s office: 1869 Post Road East, Westport. If they’re not there, just put them in the box by the door.)

*Because we weren’t.

**  Our official name. It’s not quite as crisp as “Texans.”

With shirts and windbreakers, Two Oh Three apparel says there’s no place like “home.”


The Two Oh Three Gives Back — On 2/03

Tory Brown grew up in Westport. But the 2009 Staples grad never appreciated her hometown until she headed to Ohio for college. She loved it there — but she longed for the water, and the flexibility of “living in the 203.”

She missed snowboarding in Vermont and the beaches of Cape Cod. She missed New York City, Compo, bagel shops and eating seafood caught the same day.

Her brother Roscoe graduated from Staples last spring. Talking with Tory, he realized he too had taken a lot for granted: paddle-boarding after school, cliff-jumping at Devil’s Den, apple-picking at Silverman’s, and feeling comfortable anywhere in town.

“Everything I’m passionate about, I owe to being raised here,” he says.

Over a year ago, the siblings had an idea. They’d create a lifestyle brand to unite all the towns that make up “the 203.” (That’s our area code. Duh.)

With shirts and windbreakers, Two Oh Three apparel says there's no place like "home."

Two Oh Three’s shirts and windbreakers say there’s no place like “home.”

Together, they created a cool-looking line of clothes — quarter zips, short- and long-sleeve tees, windbreakers and shirts — all with the “203” logo.

But that’s not what this “06880” post is about.

Part of Tory and Roscoe’s mission is to make this entire area “an even better place than it already is.” They planned beach cleanups and town beautification days during the summer.

Now, The Two Oh Three is gearing up for 2/03. (That’s February 3. Duh.)

At 6:30 p.m. they’ll gather on Jesup Green. Together with volunteers (that’s you!), they’ll deliver hand-knitted gloves to folks who need them. Afterward, they’ll walk over to the Gillespie Center to distribute donated food.

Two Oh Three’s 2/03 Community Day caps off a month of giving. Throughout January, Tory and Roscoe encouraged the brand’s fans to tag them on social media. Anyone who tweeted about picking up trash got $1 off their next order. Anyone posting 10 different acts of kindness won a limited-edition “203 Community Day” t-shirt.

Clearly, 203 is batting 1.000.

(For more information — or to get involved — click on the “203 Community Day” website.)

203 logo