ShopLocalCHQ gift card sales already brisk

December is just getting started, and what we at the Chamber fondly call our “gift card season” is already well underway. The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce sells ShopLocalCHQ Gift Cards all year round, but there is no doubt that December is our busiest month for these sales.

The ShopLocalCHQ Gift Card makes a great gift for employees, clients, colleagues, family, or friends. It can be purchased in any amount from $5 to $500 and can be redeemed at over 170 local participating merchants for everything from dining to gift shopping to services.

When you give a ShopLocalCHQ Gift Card, you can be assured that the recipient will find a local business (or more than one) where they can use the card. Whether they choose to have an experience such as visiting a local museum, winery, or attraction, buying necessities at the grocery or hardware store, purchasing a gift for yourself or someone else, or a great meal at a local restaurant, this one card will be supporting our local economy. In 2022, consumers used over $50,000 in ShopLocalCHQ Gift Cards to make purchases right here in Chautauqua County. That number is already on track to increase this year.

The Chamber absorbs all costs associated with this program and received a grant this year from the Chautauqua County Partnership for Economic Growth to help improve all our Shop Small efforts including the gift card program. Because it costs the Chamber to operate the program, we do require that participating merchants be Chamber members to help cover our expenses. We run this program entirely for the benefit of local businesses, which falls perfectly in line with our mission: to build vital connections, provide professional resources, and champion our local businesses in Chautauqua County. If your company does not accept the ShopLocalCHQ Gift Card and you would like to know more, call the Chamber at (716) 484-1101 or visit us online.

To make it easier to purchase ShopLocalCHQ Gift Cards, the Chamber is staffing its Jamestown office at 300 North Main Street from 8am-4:30pm Monday-Friday, and its Dunkirk office at 10785 Bennett Road from 8:30am-4:30pm Tuesdays and Thursdays before Christmas. The Chamber will be closed December 22, so please be sure to get your gift cards in advance.

Processing orders for multiple cards does take some time, so we urge you to call in advance at (716) 484-1101 extension 201 or email Carrie Swanson at cswanson@chautauquachamber.org. A convenient order form, and more details, can be found on our website at www.shoplocalchqcard.com.

The ShopLocalCHQ Gift Card is issued by Pathward™, N.A., Member FDIC. Funds do not expire. Non-reloadable and no cash access. For Cardholder Agreement or Customer Service: www.getmybalance.com or 1-833-558-1088.

Thank You for Shopping Small!

It was heartwarming to see so many shoppers enjoying our small locally owned retailers on Small Business Saturday!

The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce incentivized consumers to support small businesses by offering up a prize drawing. The Chamber gave away $300 in ShopLocalCHQ Gift Cards to shoppers who visited small local businesses and checked in on Facebook or Instagram and tagged the Chamber. But more importantly, local businesses got some much-needed recognition and a marketing boost! In fact, a few local businesses posted at the end of the day that they enjoyed record sales days!

The numbers tell the story. When you shop at a small locally owned business, 67 cents of every dollar you spend stay right here in our local community. That’s compared to less than 45 cents on purchases at chain stores. We encourage you to support small local businesses throughout this holiday season and all year long, because it’s the small local businesses that reinvest in our local economy and make our communities the vibrant places they are to live, work, and play.

Chamber Annual Meeting to Feature State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli

Keynote Speaker for the Chamber’s Annual Meeting this coming Friday, December 8, will be New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. The Comptroller is just one of a small handful of offices elected statewide in New York State.

The fiscal oversight provided by the State Comptroller is vital for the health of our municipalities, which is crucial to the operation of our local economies. Businesses rely on government operations that run smoothly. We encourage all local businesspeople to attend this event to hear the Comptroller’s presentation.

The Chamber will also present the Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award to Bishop Leecroft Clarke, the part-time project director for the I. D. E. A. Coalition (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accesssibility) whose mission is to make Chautauqua County a place where everyone belongs and has opportunities to thrive.

In addition, a full slate of Chamber Board members and officers has been nominated and will come up for a vote. The Chamber’s Annual meeting will be held at noon, Friday, December 8 at Moon Brook Country Club. The cost is just $30 for lunch for Chamber members or $32 for non-members. The Annual Meeting is sponsored by Brooks-TLC Hospital System/Kaleida Health, Community Bank, County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency, Jamestown Community College, LaBella Associates, Media One Radio Group, Observer, The Post-Journal, and the Small Business Development Center. Registration is open now through the web calendar at www.chautauquachamber.org. Chamber members who are not able to attend can complete the proxy vote form available through the Chamber’s website.


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