Join us for the Chamber Awards Banquet October 5

The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce will proudly recognize a number of organizations and individuals during its Annual Awards Banquet, Thursday, October 5. The Annual Awards Banquet is much more than just an awards presentation event. It is the largest single gathering of local businesspeople in Chautauqua County held each year. With anticipated attendance at 300, this event brings together county residents from across all economic sectors including retail, nonprofits, service industries, hospitality, manufacturing, education, government, and more. We specifically schedule a social hour in advance of the meal so there’s plenty of time for networking in the room. The event also pays tribute to our local beverage producers, featuring local wines and craft beers provided especially for the occasion.

The chamber’s Annual Awards Banquet will be held at the Williams Center at SUNY Fredonia October 5, with the social hour to begin at 6pm and a buffet dinner with carving station starting at 6:45. The carving station will include roasted breast of turkey and Virginia baked ham as well as penne pasta primavera with Alfredo sauce, seasonal grilled vegetables, garlic mashed potatoes, seasoned bread stuffing, a mixed green salad, and assorted desserts. The $65 price per person includes a complimentary bottle of wine on each table. There will also be a cash bar.

Many thanks to our sponsors for this event: Brooks-TLC Hospital System/Kaleida Health, County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency, DFT Communications, Jamestown Community College, LaBella Associates, Lake Shore Savings Bank, Media One Radio Group, OBSERVER, The Post-Journal, and the Small Business Development Center. Advance reservations are required by September 28 and registration is available at www.chamberrsvp.org.

Being honored as Person of the Year is Greg Peterson, an attorney with Phillips Lytle who has been actively involved in the community as one of the founders of the Robert H. Jackson Center and as a key member of Jamestown Community Baseball and founder of the Tarp Skunks.

The Economic Development Award will be presented to the Chautauqua County Partnership for Economic Growth. CCPEG brings together more than 65 partner organizations from throughout the county to focus on business development, placemaking, workforce development, housing development, and infrastructure.

Each of our six Community Chamber Committees has named a Community Impact Award recipient. In Dunkirk the award will go to Bridget Majka of Chautauqua County Rural Ministries; in Fredonia to DFT Communications, celebrating 125 years in business; in Hanover to Rick Klisiewicz, committee chair; in Jamestown to the Ralph C. Sheldon Foundation; in Mayville-Chautauqua to Sorena Gilkinson, committee chair; and in Westfield-Barcelona to Janese and Tom Berkhouse, who are actively involved in a number of local civic organizations.

Register now and help honor all our award recipients!


One critical value that members gain from joining the Chamber of Commerce is direct connection with other businesspeople in the area. After decades of networking experience, the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce has an outstanding track record of bringing people together in a room to help them get to know one another and to get to know each others businesses. Connecting businesses to businesses is important in so many ways: helping to build both a customer and a vendor base, learning more about what others offer in the community, and expanding our professional contact list.

Following a short hiatus during the summer months, the Chamber is back to providing its very well-attended Business After Hours networking events. These events are held throughout the county at a variety of venues, generally from 5:00 to 6:30pm. While there is plenty of time for attendees to mix and mingle, we also offer a direct opportunity for each local business in attendance to provide a little insight into what products or services they offer. We have grown to call it “30 second of fame” because it gives each organization a moment to shine.

Each Chamber member business can send two people free of charge to each Business After Hours event throughout the year. Any employees above the two-person limit – or non-members – pay just $10 to attend. Appetizers are provided by the venue and there is a cash bar.

With two scheduled Business After Hours events on our calendar now for this fall and another in the planning process, there are plenty of opportunities for your business to attend. It’s one of the perk’s of your membership and is truly a valuable event for all. We purposely schedule these Business After Hours events so they run early in the evening, giving people plenty of time to get on with their evenings afterwards. You can register now through the Chamber’s web calendar for Business After Hours at Grace & Abe’s in Westfield on September 21 and/or for Business After Hours at Southern Tier Brewing Company in Lakewood on November 14. We are working on a date and venue for October so stay tuned for more information.


After a summer hiatus, the Chamber of Commerce is pleased to get back into the business of creating direct business-to-business connections. Our first fall Business After Hours will be held Thursday, September 21 at Grace & Abe’s 14 North Portage Street, Westfield. Join us from 5-6:30pm for complimentary appetizers and a cash bar and remember to bring your business cards for networking. This Business After Hours event is sponsored by Grace & Abe’s, AHN Westfield Memorial Hospital, DFT Communications, Jamestown Community College, Media One Radio Group, OBSERVER, and The Post-Journal. Chamber member organizations are invited to bring two guests at no charge. Non-members or any guests above the complimentary limit pay just $10 each. Registration is not required but is appreciated for our planning purposes. You can sign up through the Chamber’s web calendar at www.chqchamber.org.


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