Table of Contents:
Max’s Memo: Your Chamber in Action
Engage, Promote, Realize
Legislative Breakfast: Town & Country Resort at Stowe
Public Forum: Vermont Futures Project
Eggs and Issues: Anne Galloway of VTDigger.org
Mixer: 10 Railroad Street and Mo Vegas Fill Station
Business of the Month: Williams and Green, PC
Chamber Committee News and Notes
Become a Sustaining Member
Community and Chamber Member Events
More in and around than out and about this week as much of our time was spent on preparing for and participating in Committee meetings, i.e., Membership, Finance, and the monthly Board of Directors meeting. I will make a stop at the Trapp Family Lodge Brewery (Wednesday, March 16) for a Mixer hosted by the Stowe Area Association. Trapp Family Lodge is a member of this Chamber as well as the Stowe Area Association. And on the same Wednesday evening I will pay a visit to Rock Art Brewery also a Chamber member. Matt and Renee, owners of Rock Art, are hosting Bruce Lisman (gubernatorial candidate). An open invitation was emailed to Chamber membership earlier this week inviting them to the Rock Art Brewery/Bruce Lisman event.
The Chamber’s first mixer of the 2016 season was hosted by Michael and Marisa, dynamic owners of Pizza on Main in historic downtown Morrisville. It was an amazing evening with 50 guests attending and enjoying all the components that make up a hugely successful Mixer.
Door prizes were won by Caroline Ballard (beautiful sterling silver pendant donated by The Space (with a $20 bill included to cover admission for two for the upcoming March 25th Jewelry and Sip Event hosted by the Space) ; a gift certificate from Pizza on Main was among the door prizes; Dave Rogers, one of our newer members and owner (with his son Graham) of Down East Tile in Stowe Vermont won a “highly sought-after” Coca-Cola tee-shirt; Orah Moore (Haymaker Card and Gift and My Place Boutique) went home with a handsome bright orange tee-shirt advertising Pizza on Main; and the 50/50 pot was won by Gerald Smith of Over and Above Photography. The business of the month was won by Sharon Green, Esq., Williams and Green, Morrisville.
It was a delightful evening…enjoyed by all…and the hospitality of Michael, Marisa and the Pizza on Main staff was in a word … awesome! These folks are 100% plus community minded and it is reflected in the way they conduct business, build relationships, and engage in community/chamber activities.
The Membership Committee had a rousing meeting earlier this week. One of the things celebrated was the addition of nine new Chamber members since January (add three that came in the last week of December 2015 and we have the magic number of 12). The first of two New Member Breakfast programs is scheduled for April 29th at which time we will formally welcome these businesses to the Chamber team and present a Chamber 101 program. Stay tuned for details and plan to join in the program which is open to all Chamber members as well as the community. There will be a registration fee of $10.00 (except for new members). We plan to hold a Fall new member breakfast for those businesses joining between now and October.
Our new members are: Tradewind Aviation; Building Bright Futures; Down East Tile; Bay Colony Development; Horsley, Lajoie and Goldfine; Hobble Inn Bed and Breakfast; Philip Bongiorno; Modaja Communications; Celia Vine Marketing; Inspired Wellness by Rosie, Sandiwood Farms and Copley County Club…all of whom were recognized with write-ups in the Chamber’s E-news. And we are pleased to note that Charlmont Restaurant and Pub has re-joined.
Our total membership is a solid 225 – with the goal being 250 by year end. With our current prospect list this goal should be easily achievable and, in fact, it is entirely within our scope to reach beyond the 250 goal. Did you know that the Lamoille Region Chamber of Commerce represents 49 business categories in 22 communities?
The Finance Committee met on Wednesday, March 16 … it works diligently to keep the Chamber’s finances on track, on budget, and will make necessary adjustments to assure financial stability as the year progresses.
The Board of Directors meets on Thursday, March 17, 2016 at the Tegu Building beginning at 8:00 a.m. On its agenda will be filling the Executive Director position. We have received applications from qualified candidates. The process will be that the Executive Committee will review those applications, narrow the candidate pool down to two (no more than three) candidates; those candidates will be interviewed by the Board of Directors. It is anticipated that a decision will be made on or about May 1, 2016. Stay tuned for details.
- Serve on a Committee?
- Donate Raffle Items – Mixers?
- Sponsor an Event – details in this e-news; on the Chamber’s website; and was sent to all Chamber members via snail mail.
The third in the four-part series of Legislative Breakfasts will be hosted by Town and Country Resort, Mountain Road, Stowe, Vermont on March 21, 2016 beginning with registration and buffet breakfast at 7:30 followed by the program beginning at 8:00 a.m. Owners, Dick, Millie, and Rich Marron together with the staff at Town and Country Resort look forward to welcoming guests to the property.
Following brief comments from the Legislators, the floor will be open to questions and answers.” Guests are encouraged to email their questions/comments to Max by March 21st. Questions received before March 21st will be answered prior to questions from the floor. Here’s a suggestion to consider when framing one’s question “As you head back to Montpelier, it would be in the best interest of my organization if you would consider (fill in your question/comment).” All questions submitted will be answered during the breakfast or forwarded to Legislators following the program for individual follow-up.”
The morning program will adjourn at 9:00 a.m. The public is encouraged to attend. No fee for Chamber members; $10.00 donation from non-Chamber members. Reservations are appreciated and can be made by online by clicking here. If you are unable to register online, please email Jen or call (802) 888-7607.
NOTE: The April Legislative Breakfast WILL NOT be held at 158 Main in Jeffersonville. An unexpected turn of events has prevented this from happening and Jack Foley, owner of “158” sends his regrets for the last minute change. We are working on securing another venue so please stay tuned for details.
A summer session is tentatively scheduled for July 18.
March 31, 2016 – 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. – Stearns Student Center, Johnson State College
Sponsored by: Lamoille Economic Development Corporation; the Lamoille Region Chamber of Commerce, Lamoille County Planning Commission and Johnson State College
Our Vermont economy is one of our most crucial and the least understood systems. The Vermont Future Project was founded to conduct research and provide knowledge about the Vermont economy aimed at enhancing and sustaining a robust and growing economy. The Future Project believes that Vermonters need a shared vision about the economy we want – one that is as strong as the vision we share for our environment.
To help build this vision, the Vermont Future Project is sponsoring, in collaboration with regional entities, a series of discussions around the State. Johnson State College will host a meeting on March 31 for Lamoille Region businesses and residents. The forum will take place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Stearns Student Center at Johnsons College. The event will build off the economic indicators in the Vermont Future Project website focusing in three broad areas: economic performance, workforce and quality of place. The unique Vermont challenge is balancing our commitment to environmental responsibility, fairness to our people, and growth of opportunity.
The Vermont Futures Project, created by the Vermont Chamber Foundations, has already published a website of economic indicates at www.vtfuturesproject.org based on research funded by the foundation and performed by the UMass Center for Economic Development. The indicators provide a profile of the economy which the Foundation is committed to update annually for at least the next ten years.
The forum will be led by Jeffrey Lewis, one of the principal organizers of the Vermont Futures Project. Attendance is free; but we do encourage you to let us know you’re coming by contacting John Mandeville at 802-888-5640 or by emailing him or Max. Both John and I have heard the presentation…it is awesome, timely, important, and meaningful … we hope you will plan to join in the conversation.
Medicaid Expansion – Legalization of Marijuana – Gubernatorial Race
Anne Galloway, Executive Dirctor, VTDigger.org
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m., Location to be determined
Anne Galloway is the founder and editor of VTDigger and the executive director of the nonprofit Vermont Journalism Trust. She has worked as a reporter and editor for 20 years. She holds a BA from the University of Kentucky and moved to Vermont in 1988. For many years, Galloway was a contributing writer for Seven Days Newspaper and a visual arts reviewer for the Times Argus. She was the editor of the Sunday Rutland Herald and Barre Times Argus from 2004 to 2009. Her reporting has appeared in The New York Times (the Vows column), the New York Daily News, Vermont Life and City Pages (Minneapolis). She is a member of Investigative Reporters and Editors.
VTDigger.org is a statewide news website that publishes watchdog reports on state government, politics, consumer affairs, business and public policy.
Anne presentation will focus on Medicaid Expansion, Legalization of Marijuana and the Gubernatorial Race.
Do plan to join us! Bring your questions! No charge for Chamber members; $8.00 donation from non-Chamber members is appreciated. Hearty breakfast buffet. 7:30 a.m. registration, networking, breakfast with program beginning at 8:00 a.m. and adjournment at 9:00.
More Eggs and Issues… Mark your calendar!
May 17 Eggs: Edward Jones Investments, Rich Jacobs, Financial Advisor
June 15 Eggs: Betsy Bishop, Vermont State Chamber of Commerce
July 12 Eggs Michael Mosher (first in 3-part series) To be confirmed “Get to Know Lamoille County” – Key Demographics
August 22 Phil Scott – Gubernatorial Candidate
September 13 Michael Mosher–Part 2 – Accessing Demographic Data for Business Intelligence
October 12 Betsy Bishop, Vermont State Chamber of Commerce
November 14 Michael Mosher–Part 3 – The Date Process: A Step-by-Step Guide
December 13 Open .. or Merry Christmas!
We’re excited to announce that Kim and Jimmy, owners of #10 Railroad will host the April 12 Mixer from 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. It will, as always, be an evening filled with exceptional hospitality and excellence in networking. You can expect a hearty welcome, raffle surprises, 50/50 and business of the month drawings, tasty hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar.
There is no cost to Chamber members; $8.00 donation from non-Chamber members is appreciated. Mark your calendars and register here.
We look forward to welcoming you – bring a friend (or two)!
Meet the Business Owners – Kim and Jimmy
Kim K. and Jimmy G. have been restaurant owners for 15 years, starting with an old fashioned malt shop in NYC. They finished their tenure in NYC with a great little neighborhood bar known as the Blue Donkey Bar. They took the Blue Donkey and moved with it to Stowe, VT where they returned to the burgers and milkshakes theme.
Their new venture in Morrisville, 10 Railroad Street, is a blending of their earlier experiences with an upscale twist. The food is a little more serious than burgers, though the Blue Donkey burger is their best seller! Steak, prime rib, clams, fish, mac n’ cheese… all made in house. They are enjoying the Morrisville community and hope to bring culinary joy to its people.
In 2015, Kim and Jimmy introduced their retail brand, Mo Vegas Fill Station, which offers the best selection of micro-brew growler fills, wines, and ciders in around. The Fill Station also boasts the only walk-in humidor in the state, with fine cigars, tobaccos, and accessories. Also located at 10 Railroad Street, with a second store coming soon. Until then, however, come on out to 10 Railroad Street to enjoy Food and Drink for the Hungry Travel.
May 11: Pall Spera Company Realtors – Morrisville Office
June 23: Wack-a-Doo – Golf Event – Ryder Brook Golf Club
July 12: Shine Communications – Mary Collins – At Her HOme
August 16: Sandiwood Farms – at the beautiful farm property
September 23: Amazin’ Grazin’ – Hope Grows Community Farm (Ray and Carolyn Chauvin)
October 11: The Manor – Washington Highway, Morrisville
November 16: Pre-Holiday Reception – Chamber Office
December 13: McMahon Chevrolet Holiday Party – Morrisville
(Reservations are coming in for 2017 – Let Us Know If You Are Interested in Hosting a 2017 Mixer)
Business Card Drawn at March 15 Mixer
With offices located at 259 Upper Main Street in Morrisville, the law firm of Williams and Green has provided legal services to our community for a number of years. Mr. Williams has retired from the firm; however, Sharon Green continues to serve her clients in the area of real estate, wills, trusts, estates, family law, corporate law, litigation and civil and personal injury.
In addition to her professional life, Sharon is deeply involved in community life. She volunteers on several Boards and has served as Chairman of the Lamoille Region Chamber of Commerce (two terms – at least); served as immediate past Chair of the Board; volunteers on the Events Committee and is a major force in the Chamber’s Leadership Lamoille Program.
Market/Promote Your Business – Be Involved! Be Engaged!
Your participation in sponsorship options offered by the Chamber not only brings an increased visibility to your business, it helps to support the Chamber’s annual budget which allows the organization (Chamber) to continue to bring members interesting and meaningful programs throughout the year. Click here for sponsorship details.
Invitation to Join a Committee
WE NEED YOUR HELP – YOUR ENERGY – YOUR COMMITMENT – YOUR INSIGHT!
The Committees that support the Chamber and its programs are:
Events Committee * Membership Committee * Marketing and Branding Committee * Government Affairs Committee * Leadership Lamoille Steering Committee * Nominating Committee * Finance and Budget Committee (appointed) * Executive Committee (Officers and Member at Large)
2016 Committee Work Underway:
Leadership Lamoille Steering Committee
Program Will Roll Out on April 1 – Enroll One, or More, Employee(s)
On or about April 1, we will formally roll out the Leadership Lamoille Program. It is awesome.
Orientation will be held on September 14 with graduation in June 2017. Topics will include: Education; Communications and Media; Human Services; Health Care; Under the Dome (Government Day); Community Leadership; Law and Justice and presentation of student projects. The full schedule and details will be posted on the Chamber website soon.
On or about April 1, Requests for Project Proposals will be mailed to local not-for-profits requesting projects that have been placed on the “back burner” due, perhaps to limited time and resources, to be submitted to the Committee for consideration as a project for student teams to undertake and present at a special presentation evening being hosted by Johnson State College.
And, on or about, April 1, applications will be mailed to Chamber member businesses. The cost is $600.00 per participant (Chamber members) and $800.00 per participant (non-Chamber members). Watch for details in your snail mail box as well as on the Chamber’s website.
We have 5 participants committed to date … we need a minimum of 8 to go forward … 12 participants would be ideal!
Marketing and Branding Committee
Mary Collins – Dawn Archbold – March 28
The Committee meets March 28th at the Chamber office at noon (bring your own lunch). All Chamber members are welcome to attend and participate in this exciting initiative.
The Chamber’s Monthly Marketing Tip to Help Your Business Grow
Submitted by Mary Collins, Committee Member
Show us your expertise. You’re the expert at what you do. As a Chamber member, we encourage you to share that expertise with all our Chamber members; some of whom will be eager to take advantage of your generosity by utilizing your guidance and, perhaps, do business with you. How to do it? Here’ how:
- Write a short article for us. We’ll post it in an upcoming e-news. Keep it short, bullet important points for readers who like to scan before they read the entire post.
- Share a helpful tip about your business product or industry. Identify how it can be helpful to fellow Chamber members and the community.
- Say something nice about a colleague, co-worker, employee, or other Chamber business that you do business with.
- Post a picture of your business “in act”. Tell us something good, remarkable, and notable that your business was involved in and show it in pictures. We’ll share it with our membership and on our Facebook page, gladly, as a benefit to you for your membership in the Lamoille Region Chamber of Commerce”.
- Each month the Chamber will bring you another marketing tip to help you grow your business. Have a marketing tip or business success story that you want to share with us? Send it to our Chamber Marketing Committee via: Mary.
DID YOU KNOW? That the Chamber is posting each Chamber member on its Facebook Page? We’ve started with A in the alphabet; jumped to Z and will work toward the middle.
Marketing and Branding Committee
Tracy Baker, Chair
Next Meeting: March 21 – Chamber Office
The Wack-a-Doo fundraiser is the next event being planned by the Events Committee. Proceeds, in part, are dedicated to sponsorships offered to qualified high school seniors attending Lamoille County schools. It is without question a fun-filled, networking, entertaining, prize-winning event! The host property: Ryder Brook Golf Club, with catering by Vermont Harvest Catering – both Chamber members.
The date is June 23, 2016 and a rain date will be established. Last year we had a sell-out crowd registered for the Wack-a-Doo Event … it was awesome … and then the rains came and washed us out. We gathered under sunny skies the next day with a reduced number of players – but an awesome gathering of friends/collegues and Chamber members.
Interested in joining this Committee? We’d love to have a few extra hands to help with this fun-filled event. This event is then followed by organization of “Amazin’ Grazin’” to be held at Hope Grows Community Farm in Hyde Park on September 23rd. Contact email@example.com if interested.
With Chamber Ambassadors
This Committee met on March 15; the results are noted above in the Message from Max lead article.
This Committee looks at membership recruitment, retention, Chamber benefits, how better to serve our members, what businesses have come on board and what businesses have left the Chamber. Those coming on board exceed those who are leaving. Our prospect list is large, achievable Join us … your expertise, knowledge of the community and input as a current Chamber member would be most welcome. Give Max a call or email and you’ll be on the list to receive meeting notices.
This is an appointed Committee and will begin its work on March 16th which, of course, is to monitor the budget and give guidance relative to the Chamber’s financial status/sustainability.
Board of Directors
All Board meetings are open to any and all members of the Chamber who are in good standing (dues paid). The next meeting is March 17 at the Tegu Building, Morrisville. Let us know if you plan to attend.
Government Affairs Committee
Although nothing official, there has been some interest from Chamber members regarding serving on this Committee…stay tuned. We will continue to advocate for and work toward organizing a Government Affairs Committee. Part of its responsibility would be organization of Legislative Breakfasts, MC’ing the breakfasts; organization of the Vermont State Chamber programs (2 annually); organizing appearances/presentations by our political leaders, i.e., Governor of the State, Congressman Welch and Senator Leahy, etc. I would expect that this Committee would also work closely with the Vermont State Chamber and its lobbying efforts as well as survey Chamber membership seeking input on legislative issues that “keep our businesses awake at night”.
No meetings until October and it is an appointed Committee.
For additional information and meeting dates, call Max at 802-888-7607 or send her an email.
Becky Olson, Ed French and Rich Jacobs are all Chamber sustaining members. This level of membership was adopted by the Board of Directors in May 2015. To date we have three participating Chamber members and the goal is ten. Level of participation begins at $500 and goes up from there. One of our sustaining members is in at $1,000. Contact Max for details.
Long Term Care and Medicare Seminar
Sponsored by Edward Jones Investments, Rich Jacobs, Financial Advisor
March 22, 2016 – Morristown Centennial Library
Jewelry and Sip Event at The Space
March 25; 5 – 7 p.m. Reservations Required
Enjoy a night with the girls modeling jewelry! We are featuring Silver Stars, Sterling Silver jewelry, check them out here. Pick out something to suit your style! Catalogs will be provided along with live jewelry. Tickets to this event are $10 . The Event entitles you to 30% off your jewelry order for the event, one free beverage, a selection of finger foods, one entry for the door prize and a free gift! Click here to sign up now for a fun night!
Lamoille Economic Development Corporation Sponsors: Lamoille Region Business Assistance and Financing Forum
April 12, 2016 – 9:00 a.m. to noon – Green Mountain Technology and Career Center – Hyde Park
Open to Public – Free to All – Registration Is Required
If you are a local business owner or manager, chances are there are times when you need help, advice, mentoring, financing or just another person in the know with whom to bounce ideas around. And, chances are, you don’t know where to turn to seek out this sort of assistance. Never fear, help is on the way. The Lamoille Economic Development Corporation is sponsoring a business assistance forum on Tuesday, April 12th from 9:00 am to noon in the Community Room at the Green Mountain Technology and Career Center in Hyde Park. Representatives from the following organizations will be making short presentations on the nature of the assistance available to you:
- Small Business Administration – small business financing and technical assistance
- Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center – LEAN procedures used in all businesses, innovation and export training
- Vermont Training Program – financial assistance for employee training programs
- Vermont Global Trade Partnership – import/export and the EB-5 investment program
- Vermont Economic Development Authority – business financial services
- Vermont Employment Growth Incentive program – economic incentives for business recruitment, expansion and growth
- Vermont Procurement Technical Assistance program – selling to the government, federal, state and local
- Vermont Small Business Development Center – business planning assistance, coaching, training, advising for existing businesses and start-ups
USDA, Rural Development – loans, loan guarantees, technical assistance, grants for small businesses, municipalities and non-profits
- Fresh Tracks Capital – venture capital
- Community Capital of Vermont – small business alternative lender
- Vermont Community Loan Fund – small business alternative lender
- U.S. Export Assistance Center – export assistance for businesses of all sizes and in all industries
- VSJF Flexible Capital Fund – royalty financing
There will be an extended period for questions and answers and informational material will be available from every agency. Everyone will also be provided with information on how to make one-on-one appointments to meet with representatives from any and all agencies present. The Forum is free to all attendees but reservations must be made in advance. Please visit www.vtsbdc.org to register online or email Vicki Blanchard or 802-728-9101.
For more information call John Mandeville at 802-888-5640.
River Arts Winter/Spring Workshops
74 Pleasant Streets – Morrisville – RiverArtsVT.org – (802) 888-1261
The workshops offered by River Arts are numerous and we suggest you contact the organization directly for a complete schedule of upcoming workshops. Following is a sampling:
Galen Cheney Exhibit – To China and Back
March 3 – May 2, 1016 at The Gallery at River Arts, 74 Pleasant Street, Morrisville, VT
The Gallery at River Arts unveils brand new work from Galen Cheney in To China and Back, featuring paper constructions and paintings. The exhibit will run March 3 through May 2, 2016.
River Arts Paint and Sip Evenings
Thursday, February 23, March 15, April 26, and May 17, 6 – 8 p.m. – $35/session
A fun, relaxing evening of painting with Liz Kaufman. Create a featured work of art, step-by-step, while you enjoy a glass of wine or seltzer. Perfect for beginners and aficionados alike … get creative!
iPhone Photography – Seriously
Wednesday – March 16 through April 13 – 6 8 p.m. – $85.
Discover the strengths and limitations of iPhone photography in this interactive workshop with Nan Carle Beauregard. All levels of skill and experience welcome.
Easter Sunrise Service Benefits United Way
On Easter Sunday, March 27th, the 62th Sunrise Service of the Stowe Community Church will be held at the top of the Gondola on Mount Mansfield at 6:41am. Free gondola rides will start at 5:15am and stop at 6:15am. Be sure you get there early for your ride up the mountain. You have your choice to either ski or take the gondola down the mountain. There will be a goodwill offering taken which will be donated to the United Way of Lamoille County’s New Foundations program which helps single-parent families.
2016 VACEPlus Insurance Program: A Chamber Member Benefit
VACEPlus insurance programs are offered to all Chamber members in good standing (dues paid). Life Insurance, AD&D coverage, vision and dental are all options offered at favorable rates through the VACEPlus program. For additional information, call Max at the Chamber 802 888 7607; or email Max . We are having some activity from Chamber members interested in participating in this program. Please consider it as an option for your employees and your families.
The open enrollment for health insurance benefits ended January 31. Contact Max for information on special enrollment period or coverage under Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur. These options for coverage are not affected by the “Open Enrollment” period. If you, or your employees, do not have health insurance coverage, we encourage you to give Max, the Navigator, a call at (802) 888-7607 or send her an email to schedule an appointment to enroll and avoid year-end penalties. On average, an appointment takes about 1 ½ hours.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance
A Chamber benefit offered by Hickok and Boardman. Some Chamber members are participating in this option. Call Max at (802) 888-7607 or drop her an email for more information.
Simpson Sales Unlimited
Welcome to Simpson Sales . We are a family owned and operated business serving Lamoille County and beyond since 1991. Our longevity is due to the quality products we supply and the prompt, superior service we provide.
We have proven expertise in every phase of garage door selection, installation, maintenance, service and repair. We can guide you in finding exactly the right garage door to meet your needs. Getting the proper advice when buying a door is essential; after all, we buy one or at most two, garage doors throughout our lifetime.
Contact us today, our team will be happy to talk to you and assist you in evaluating your needs with the goal of finding the right solution for you. Or if you prefer, we also provide a free at-home estimates.
Simpson Sales Unlimited Inc. is a member of the Lamoille Regional Chamber of Commerce. Founding member of the International Door Association, and founding member of the Professional Door Association of New England.