In distracted, divided and noisy times, urbanites around the world are rediscovering the restorative benefits of the world’s many sweat bathing traditions.
Sauna Society Outfitters was established in 2017 by John Pederson and Rodney Buhrsmith to bring the wellness benefits of sweat bathing to life throughout North America with sauna experiences, trainings, and product development.
Since building his first sauna in 2014, John Pederson has hosted thousands of guests at venues he has either created or managed throughout the Twin Cities.
He discovered his passion for sharing the mental, physical and social benefits of sauna in 2015 as the official host of Little Box Sauna and went on to found the nation’s first Sauna Co-op, the 612 Sauna Society, in 2016.
He co-founded Sauna Society Outfitters in 2017 to inspire and equip a Sauna Society renaissance beyond the Twin Cities.
John graduated from the UW-Madison School of Journalism with Honors in 2005 after internships with NPR’s “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me!” and “To the Best of Our Knowledge” programs. In 2006, he moved to Indonesia to start the country’s first student-run radio station as a Fulbright Scholar in Sumatra. He moved back to his home state of Minnesota in 2008 and served as the first Communications Strategist for Seed Savers Exchange from 2010 – 2012 before joining the Mighty Mo Design Co. as the Director of Operations in 2013.
He joined the Musicant Group in 2016 where he he oversaw placemaking and Community Management projects around the city before his passion for sharing sauna society became a full-time vocation.
Rodney Buhrsmith joined the build team for The Forge mobile sauna in 2016 after building many saunas of his own. In July 2017, Rod and John Pederson created and built an ambitious original mobile sauna design with AWH Architects for Omar Ansari, owner of Surly Brewing Company.
He co-founded Sauna Society Outfitters (SSO) later that year as a platform to build partnerships, programming, services and infrastructure to share the authentic Sauna experience.
As a business development professional for East View Companies, Rod’s work with SSO focuses on increasing the impact of programs and partnerships.
With formal education in International Business at Georgetown and Entrepreneurship at Louisville, SSO provides him an opportunity to contribute his passion for business growth in a way that aligns with his love of building and entrepreneurship.
Hot Box: How Minnesota Millennials Are Leading A Finnish Sauna Renaissance
Forbes – February 2018
Gaining Steam – John Pederson’s Mobile 612 Sauna Society takes the tradition on tour around the Twin Cities
Minnesota Monthly – December 2017
City Pages – April 2014