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P.E. & Recreation

about US

| our mission | our goals and values | our history and timeline |

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our MISSION

To enhance the quality of life for all people, with resources for physical activity, recreation, education, therapy, and the development and support of life skills.

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our goals and VALUES

FlagHouse strives to be the supplier of choice to professionals and consumers seeking resources for physical activity, recreation, education and special needs. Our goal is to satisfy your needs and exceed your expectations. To accomplish that, we live by these 5 essential principles:

    1. Your trust is the most valuable asset we can earn and enjoy.  We treat our customers with the utmost care, honesty and respect, as you deserve.
    2. We take pride in what we sell and offer products and services that embody the quality, innovation and value you expect.
    3. We commit to excellence in every facet of our business and every endeavor we undertake.
    4. We are a family-run company that recognizes it is wholly dependent on committed, dedicated employees and suppliers who are invested in our shared success.
    5. We embrace change to keep improving our company, our products and services, and ourselves.

By holding to these principles, we believe we can stand firmly behind our company promise: The Solutions You Need. The Source You Trust. 

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our history and TIMELINE

Over five decades ago, FlagHouse, Inc. opened its doors in New York City’s Greenwich Village to sell booster and fundraising items, including pennants and flags, giving rise to the company’s name. Today, we've grown to become a global supplier of resources for physical activity, recreation, education and special needs, with operations in the United States and Canada.  

Our story is one of continual change and experimentation. With each decade, customers' needs have changed, bringing new challenges and demands. The company's response to those challenges has fueled our growth.

1954 – FlagHouse is founded in New York City's Greenwich Village area to sell booster and fundraising items, including pennants and flags to schools, giving rise to our name. The company is an early adopter of mail order and direct marketing methods.

1962 – Monte Carmel becomes a partner and expands the company by adding sporting goods to the product line and marketing them to summer camps. The segment comes to dominate the company's business, and public schools become the largest customer base.

1970 – The company mails its first full-length catalog for sports and recreation to schools, youth organizations, recreation programs, camps, and other institution-based customers.

1972 – The company expands and moves to the Flatiron district (West 18th Street between 5th and 6th Avenues) in New York City.

1975 – The company responds to passage of the federal law (P.L. 94-142 "Education of the Handicapped Child Act"), requiring fair and appropriate education of children with disabilities. Recognizing the lack of resources needed to educate students with special needs, the company is the first to develop a catalog featuring products for their specific use. Entitled Exceptional Children & Adults, this is the precursor to the current Special Populations Catalog.

1978 – The company launches a second physical education catalog, entitled Sports & Play, specifically targeted toward the Kindergarten through 8th grade school market.

1985 – George Carmel, the son of Monte Carmel, joins the company.

1986 – The company relocates into a 50,000-square foot distribution center in Mount Vernon, NY, just north of New York City.

1992 – Representatives travel to the United Kingdom and discover the transformative impact of SNOEZELEN® multi-sensory environments in special-needs communities. ROMPA®, Ltd. appoints FlagHouse as the exclusive North American distributor for SNOEZELEN. This innovative product line further positions the company as North America's pre-eminent special-needs resource supplier.

The company establishes a Canadian division, FlagHouse Canada, located in Toronto, Ontario.

FlagHouse forms a strategic partnership with G&S Smirthwaite of Devon, England, and is appointed the exclusive North American distributor for the manufacturer's quality positioning and conductive education furniture for children and adults with special needs.

Further sales growth leads to the occupation of an additional 30,000-square foot warehouse in Yonkers, NY.

1996 – The company relocates to Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, expanding its operations into a modern 118,000-square foot facility. Monte Carmel's son, Douglas, joins the company.

1998 – The company obtains the marketing and distribution rights for CATCH® (Coordinated Approach to Child Health), the most thoroughly researched and tested program for promoting children's wellness through physical fitness, proper nutrition, and behavior modification. FlagHouse forms a strategic partnership with the University of Texas, one of the original CATCH research organizations, to continue research and program development through the University’s CATCH program office. CATCH quickly becomes the leading health initiative for children's wellness in the United States.

Monte Carmel retires. George and Douglas Carmel assume full leadership of the company.

1999 – The company launches a new catalog, Activities for Life, focused on recreational and therapeutic resources for older adults.

FlagHouse hosts the SNOEZELEN World Congress in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, bringing together therapists, educators, academics, physicians, and other professionals from around the world, for an exciting, informative, shared learning experience. In conjunction with highly respected educator, Eric Malmberg, the company develops KiDnastics™, a movement education program that provides PE professionals with an alternative to stunt gymnastics programs.

2002 – The company continues to strengthen its position in the PE and recreation community by forming a strategic partnership with Project Adventure®, the leader in cooperative and adventure-based experiential education.

2003 – FlagHouse partners with the American Association of AdaptedSports™ Programs (AAASP) to involve students with physical disabilities and visual impairments in extra-curricular, inter-scholastic school based sports through Project ASPIRE.

2005 – FlagHouse becomes the first company to be awarded a long-term contract to supply physical education equipment to the New York City Department of Education -the largest school system in the country.

2006 – The company presents the Sensory Solutions catalog, featuring a robust line of sensory-related products, including SNOEZELEN.

FlagHouse's CATCH program receives the 2006 Secretary's Innovation and Prevention Award from the United States Department of Health and Human Services.  

FlagHouse teams with Special Olympics to become the equipment supplier for their Young Athletes Program, aimed at helping children develop the fundamental skills for future participation in sports.

2007CATCHinfo.org is launched to support teachers, parents, school staff, children and the community in their efforts to build successful coordinated school health programs.

2008 –  FlagHouse produces CATCH Magazine, featuring the latest CATCH information, success stories, research, and products.  

SNOEZELENinfo.com is launched, providing a colorful and informative look at how the multi-sensory environment enhances therapy, learning and relaxation for those with special needs.

FlagHouse takes SNOEZELEN to the next level by partnering with GestureTek®, the pioneer, patent-holder and world leader in camera-enabled gesture-recognition technology. The product line expands to include more resources to assist those with cognitive and physical disabilities.

FlagHouse partners with The SPD Foundation, the only public charity dedicated to research, education and advocacy for those with Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD). The company creates The Foundation’s e-Store, where every purchase generates a donation to support SPD research.

2009 – The company launches Yellow Brick Road Shop.com, a vibrant website that taps into the magic of the classic Wizard of Oz story and features hundreds of special needs products for children of all ages and abilities.

FlagHouse partners with the Autism Society of America, the nation’s leading grassroots autism organization, to bring its resources for sensory integration and special needs to families affected by autism.

The company expands CATCH with the launch of the CATCH Early Childhood (CEC) Program, designed to establish a healthy foundation for children ages 3-5. 

2011 – FlagHouse.com and .ca are re-launched to give our customers a greatly enhanced shopping experience and a more intuitive way to find products from among our six core brands. The Jared Foundation (founded by Jared Fogle, the Subway Guy) endorses CATCH as its official wellness program to fight childhood obesity. Our Educational Services Program is launched, headed by John Smith, NASPE National Teacher of the Year - John and the "Jersey Boys" give physical education workshops and trainings in more than 40 states.

A strong push into the field of Sensory Integration, featuring new and exclusive products. Over one hundred innovative and safety driven products help make FlagHouse the premier supplier of sensory integration products.

Well into its sixth decade, this closely-knit, family-run company continues to reinvent itself to meet the needs of its customers. FlagHouse values the relationships that it has built throughout the years– with its dedicated and highly skilled staff members, esteemed partners, hundreds of suppliers, and tens of thousands of customers. The company’s commitment to making a difference in the lives of others, and to excel in all it does, will continue to drive its growth and success for many years to come.

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