Moving ahead with an eye on strengthening businesses
By DANIEL J. HEITZENRATER
President and CEO of the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce
Wrapping up my second week as the new President & CEO of the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce, I could not be more thankful for the great members and team I have the opportunity to work with going forward.
The Chamber is an organization I’ve had the pleasure of working with on various projects. Earlier in my career I identified the Chamber as a place I would like to work if the right opportunity presented itself, and the experience so far does not disappoint. Despite staff and leadership transitions occurring in the first week, the team pulled off a major annual event with the Congressional Luncheon.
I have also begun to meet with our Community Chamber coordinators and members, the real heartbeat of the local business community and direct connection to many of our member businesses.
I’ve had the honor of working as Executive Assistant to our last three County Executives and possess a strong background in constituent and customer services. Working at the county allowed me the opportunity to get to know people and places across Chautauqua County, especially coordinating projects with municipal officials and community partners. The Chamber of Commerce is unique in that we are a county-wide organization, within which are Community Chamber committees which include coordinators and many enthusiastic volunteers. I look forward to introducing myself and continuing to work together to serve our members and grow our communities.
The past 18 months have been extremely challenging for all of us. Perhaps most of all, the pandemic and associated restrictions have strained and threatened local businesses, the backbone of our communities. As the situation improves and life normalizes, the story of local business is the same it always has been – resiliency. Rather than focusing on challenges I am excited for the opportunities ahead with a renewed public interest in shopping local and envisioning new ways to conduct business.
The Chamber of Commerce is positioned to facilitate this shift and help members build and improve their online presence. We’ve already started this work with the launch of shoplocalchq.com last fall, an online marketplace where member businesses can list their products and services for consumers to browse and purchase, showcasing items from across Chautauqua County in one coordinated venue. We can continue this work by finding ways to assist members with developing their social media, something of increasing importance as consumer habits and marketing trend toward these sites.
As our transition progresses, I want to express my congratulations to Todd Tranum for his leadership in growing the Chamber in numerous ways and assembling a great team over many years.
I thank our board of directors for the opportunity to lead and grow the Chamber going forward, and I look forward to personally meeting our members to discuss ways we can continue working together to meet their needs and help our local business community to flourish.
GET EARLY BIRD PRICING FOR THE CHAMBER GOLF TOURNAMENT THROUGH JULY 29
Once again this year the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce will present its annual Golf Tournament at Peek’n Peak Resort in Clymer. T
he event will begin with a shotgun start at 11 a.m. on August 19.
Space is limited. Golfers can register online now with early bird pricing through July 29th at www.chamberrsvp.org. The 2021 Chamber Golf Tournament is sponsored by: A Automotive, AES/Empire Solar, Bush Industries, Chautauqua Lake Dental, Chautauqua Patrons Insurance, Community Bank, Dahlstrom Roll Form, DFT Communications, Express Employment Professionals, Graf Realty, Jamestown Container, Jamestown Kitchen & Bath, Jamestown Mattress Company, Koester Associates, Lake Shore Savings Bank, Lawley Insurance, Nestle Purina PetCare, OBSERVER, The Post-Journal, and Shults Auto Group.
SILVER CREEK YARD SALE SIGN-UPS CLOSE MONDAY JULY 26
The Hanover Community Chamber of Commerce will once again hold its annual Silver Creek Yard Sales event on Saturday, July 31.
The sales are a fundraiser for the Hanover Community Chamber, assisting them with year-round events including scholarships for graduating high school seniors from the Silver Creek and Forestville School Districts. Residents may sign up to participate for $10 per sale. Registration is open now in person at Silver Creek Optical or online on the Chamber’s calendar at www.chautauquachamber.org.
All registrations must be in by Monday, July 26 in order to be included on the map.
JAMESTOWN CRUISE-IN IS AUGUST 6
The Jamestown Community Chamber of Commerce is proud to host the return of Jamestown Cruise-In Friday, August 6! Working in partnership with Der Kobblers Automobile Association, the Chamber of Commerce will host this fun annual event from 5-10pm along Third Street between Washington and Spring Streets.
Regional collectors of classic cars, hot rods and special vehicles will display their cars and trucks. The evening will also feature live music and the Babe Ruth World Series Committee will sell hamburgers, hotdogs, and Pepsi products.
Downtown businesses are encouraged to offer extended hours and specials for the evening. Jamestown Cruise-In is proudly sponsored by Ahlstrom Schaeffer Electric, Elegant Edibles, Lake Shore Paving, M & T Bank, and Media One Radio Group. Cars can be pre-registered online through the Chamber’s calendar of events at www.chautauquachamber.org or can register on site.
All vehicle registrations are $10. All are invited to stroll through downtown and enjoy this free, fun, family event!
HEAD TO WESTFIELD FOR FIRST FRIDAY AUGUST 6
First Friday happens on the first Friday of each month during the summer and the next one is August 6 in the Village of Westfield. These popular events are organized by the Westfield-Barcelona Community Chamber of Commerce and create a street fair each month on Main Street in Westfield, featuring live music, kid’s games, wine, food, vendors, and much more. The event runs from 5-8 p.m. All are welcome!