Save the date for the Chamber & MAST annual meeting
The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce and Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier will hold a joint Annual Meeting on Friday, January 22, 2021, featuring Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul as keynote speaker.
This event marks some milestones for both organizations. The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce will wrap up its 20th anniversary at the end of 2020, while the Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier celebrates the completion of its 120th year of service! In the year 2000, a countywide Chamber was formed, merging the North Chautauqua Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Jamestown Area Chamber of Commerce. Today this merged structure includes six community Chambers in Dunkirk, Fredonia, Hanover, Jamestown, Mayville-Chautauqua, and Westfield-Barcelona that focus on local events that drive traffic to local businesses in their communities. The alignment of the County Chamber with the Community Chambers provides a streamlined business operating model that supports the needs of our main street business communities and enables the development of programs and services for the broader county-wide business community. While local community chambers can focus on unique qualities and opportunities of their communities, the County Chamber has been able to strengthen a broad base of services for all investing businesses. Examples include human resources support and compliance products, health and ancillary insurance products, and the new ShopLocalCHQ website that provides a crucial platform for small local businesses to sell products and services online. The Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier (MAST), originally formed as the Manufacturers Association of the Jamestown Area has grown into a regional organization with a focus on supporting manufacturers. MAST offers a variety of manufacturing focused programs and services. MAST has worked methodically on the issue of workforce, working with JCC to create the Manufacturing Technology Institute in the early 2000’s and then creating a regional campaign called Dream It Do It that encourages students to explore career opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math in preparation for jobs in advanced manufacturing. Since 2008 the Chamber of Commerce and Manufacturers Association have operated under a single operational structure, sharing resources and expanding programming to support businesses.
This joint annual meeting will celebrate these important milestones. The Lieutenant Governor, a proud Western New Yorker herself and long-time cheerleader for our region, will join us in the celebration.
The chamber will also present its Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award, named in memory of the first President of the County Chamber of Commerce who worked diligently to bring multiple organizations together. Representatives for both Boards of Directors will also be elected. More details will be announced in the weeks ahead.
This joint Annual Meeting will be held online via Zoom at 12:00 noon, January 22. You may register any time at www.chamberrsvp.org.
SHOP SAFE, SMALL, AND LOCAL WITH SHOPLOCALCHQ
Now you can buy online and still support small locally owned businesses! The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce recently launched ShopLocalCHQ – a new online marketplace that features more than 55 local businesses offering a wide variety of over 300 products and services. This new tool provides a safe and convenient way for shoppers to purchase unique and special gifts directly from small businesses.
New businesses and products are being added to the marketplace often, so we encourage shoppers to check for changes.
As part of the launch of ShopLocalCHQ, the Chamber of Commerce is giving away $500 in Chamber gift cards that can be used on the marketplace. Visit the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce Facebook page to enter the contest. No purchase is required.
Shop Safe. Shop Small. Shop Local. Visit ShopLocalCHQ.com. Please support our locally owned small businesses during the holiday gifting season and all year round.
KEEP LOCAL BUSINESSES OPEN BY PRACTICING SAFE ROUTINES
Chautauqua County continues to see an increase in Coronavirus cases, and as residents become more active indoors it is more important than ever that everyone follows health and safety guidelines in order to keep our local businesses functioning.
We have reminded all businesses, and will continue to remind the general public, that the increase in COVID spread could mean additional restrictions. No one wants that. New York State is monitoring data daily, identifying the areas of concern, and are now implementing a cluster zone approach in an effort to control the virus.
A strong economy requires a healthy workforce and healthy customers. We can easily take steps to help stop the spread of the virus by wearing a face covering in public to cover nose and mouth, stay socially distant from those who are not in your immediate household, and wash hands frequently and use hand sanitizer. The science is guiding us towards these simple steps.
Only by working together can we get through this challenging time and keep our families, schools, and businesses intact. A healthy economy requires a healthy workforce and healthy customers. Thank you for doing your part.