By Todd J. Tranum
President and CEO of the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce & Executive Director of the Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier
We congratulate and look forward to working with those who were elected to political office this past Tuesday, Nov. 5. The critical path to improving our Chautauqua County community is to work collaboratively. To that end we look forward to continuing our work with those with whom we have developed relationships over the past several years and developing relationships with those who are new to their respective elected positions.
At a time when we have seen bi-partisan politics at its worse in Washington, DC, we need to and can do better here in Chautauqua County. We are looking to our elected leaders to put party affiliation aside and forge partnerships to identify and implement solutions to the challenges before us and the challenges ahead.
The world is changing fast as technology alters our way of life at a rapid pace. Businesses are seeing rapid changes in markets and the competitive environment. Businesses need government that is pro-active, agile and willing to change to create an environment conducive for business retention and growth. Collaboration and bi-partisanship will be the key to creating an economic environment conducive to business growth.
Oktoberfest in November at Southern Tier Brewing Company
One of the Chamber's most popular Experience Chautauqua Networking Events is back! Join your friends for Oktoberfest at Southern Tier Brewing Company from 5-6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Nov.20.
Southern Tier Brewing Company offers unique, specialty beers in a beautiful setting! It's a relaxed evening, time for fun and prizes, a little learning about the making of delicious beers, and some networking with other Chamber members.
This event is sponsored by Affinity One Federal Credit Union, Blackstone NEY Ultrasonics, Buffamante Whipple Buttafaro, Casella Waste Services, DFT Communications, Jamestown Jammers Baseball, Jamestown Mattress Company, Jamestown Savings Bank Arena, Liazon Corporation, and UBS Financial Services.
You can register online now for this event at www.chautauquachamber.org or by calling the Chamber at 366-6200 or 484-1101.
Shop Local on Small Business Saturday to Qualify to Win $300 in Gift Checks
One of the Chamber's strategic objectives is to drive foot traffic into the door of our member businesses. To that end the Chamber invested in an improved web-based directory and referral system over a year ago. In the past year the Chamber has tracked 34,000 referrals via either direct referrals to our members or referrals through our website. In addition, the Chamber has implemented a variety of strategies to help support our members. For example, since its inception the Chamber's gift check program has had an over $2 million local economic impact. Through referrals, the Shoptauqua buy local initiative, the Chamber's gift check program, local events and promotional activities, the Chamber is helping our members increase their sales.
As we move closer to Thanksgiving, Chautauqua County residents start thinking more and more about holiday shopping. This year, the Chamber of Commerce encourages everyone to think about making purchases from local merchants.
We are encouraging Chautauqua County residents to get out there and support our member small businesses on Small Business Saturday, Nov. 30 and qualify to win $300 in gift checks through the Chamber of Commerce. Entry forms will be printed in local newspapers promoting Small Business Saturday. Shoppers can take that entry form to a Chamber member business and have it signed and dated, and then return the form in person or by mail to the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce office either at 10785 Bennett Road, Dunkirk or at 512 Falconer Street, Jamestown.
We will accept more than one entry as long as they are signed and dated by different Chamber member businesses. For a list of Chamber members visit the Business Directory section of the Chamber's web-site at www.chautauquachamber.org.
Studies show that between 50 and 60 percent of the dollars spent with local small businesses are reinvested locally in the goods and services required by those small businesses. In contrast, your purchase of products online sends 100 percent of that purchase outside of our local economy. Recirculating spending into our local economy helps sustain and create jobs and makes a stronger more viable local economy.
Support our local business, support local jobs and support our local economy, buy local this holiday season!
Chamber Gift Checks Make Great Gifts
If you are interested in purchasing Shoptauqua Chamber Gift Checks as part of your holiday season giving, we encourage you to call the Chamber to place an order. Calling in advance means that your order will be prepared at either Chamber office when you walk in the door. Because processing time is needed to complete Gift Check orders of any size, we strongly encourage advance phone calls. For corporations choosing Chamber Gift Checks to give employee bonuses or incentive gifts this season, a Corporate Order Form is available on the Shoptauqua Gift Checks page of the Chamber's web site.
For more information, or to place your order, call the Chamber at 366-6200 or 484-1101, or visit our web site at www.chautauquachamber.org.