By Suzy Wiesenhart

How often, while shopping, do we find ourselves reading the labels before we buy in hopes that “Made in USA” will be embroidered or stamped on the inside label?  Most of the time, of course, it is not what we find.  Dennis Frey, owner of Manatee Apparel and Graphics and an ex-Marine, wants to be part of a growing trend to change that.

Frey, who moved to Florida from The Bronx, New York in 1983, after being in the corporate world, is excited to be able to carry a couple of dozen clothing lines that are currently made in the USA.  When you walk into his display room in the Riverview office, you will see a special section devoted to those items as you can see in the picture.  Salesman, Darrell Green, is also proud to show the special display and take you on a tour of the other areas of the office as well.

“One of the reasons, of course, that there are so few clothing items made here anymore is that they cost so much more to manufacture in the States”, said Frey, who added, “that is why we will give a higher volume-based discount on any of those items purchased.”  The quality is comparable, but as we all know, it’s become so much less expensive over the years to send manufacturing overseas.

After a recent phone call from my husband in a panic over shirts for a tradeshow that were never ordered, I jumped on the phone to Manatee Apparel and within a couple of hours, the shirts were ordered, the logo digitized and the shirts would make it in time for the tradeshow.  It’s excellent services, along with it’s wide variety of items that can be personalized, make them a “go-to” store.   In addition, it carries all types of shirts, t-shirts, koozies, bags, hats, and just about anything else that can be personalized. Manatee Apparel Graphics has two locations; 1130 9th St. W in Bradenton and 6520 U.S. Hwy 301S #102 in Riverview.  You can call either (941) 746-6353 or 677-1500 for more information.


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Suzy is one of the Advertising Representatives for the Riverview area. She started with the Osprey as an advertising assistant in 2008 and has various positions since then. She is also on the Board of Directors of the Riverview Chamber of Commerce. She has lived in Bloomingdale with her husband, Tom for the last 22 years.