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From the Desk of the CEO Jill Raycroft

What a week!  Hometown Hockey was a smashing success with hundreds of people walking downtown both Saturday and Sunday! By all accounts, the soups from Savour the Chill were fantastic (congrats to member Earl & Angelo’s for their first place soup) and everyone was very happy with all the activities provided between the Hometown site and the Armouries (thank you Hasty Ps). We will continue trying to thank everyone involved – this was a massive exercise that involved multiple city departments & staff, business and land owners, sports teams, non-profit associations, volunteers and of course, the people that came downtown to support the event. I can attest to the work that Susan, Rosi and Matt put in from the Chamber side of things and they deserve a great deal of credit for coordinating the efforts of everyone else. My sole responsibility seems to be managing the weather; thankfully, we had two amazing days in a row that didn’t deter anyone from braving the chill in the air. Find some links below to some of the photos and articles posted about the event (in case you missed it).

And, on Monday morning, I was on a train with our Government Affairs Co-Chair, Greg Sudds to participate in the third annual “Advocacy Day” at Queen’s Park. This is a gathering of Ontario Chambers of Commerce (and Boards of Trade) where we have the opportunity to share the concerns of local business needs at a provincial level. I was assigned to a session with the Minister of Infrastructure and the PC critic where members from across Ontario lamented the ongoing issues with internet accessibility. We all know there is an issue in the north with connectivity, but it was interesting to hear that the pockets of underserviced areas (as we are just north of the city) are common across the province. Current technology (fibre) may not be the answer to this problem and the costs are enormous; here’s hoping some of the money allocated in the federal budget for research and technology is applied to seeking new approaches to accessing the information super-highway.

Advocacy Day was then followed by a two-day conference with the Chamber Executives of Ontario in Mississauga. This is a gathering of Chamber management staff and a great opportunity to hear of the successes and challenges experienced by other chambers. I attended this event last year (before I’d even started working for you) and it was great to return this year – aware of the role and able to contribute to the conversations around the table. We also had a couple of great speakers – Doug Griffiths, author of 13 Ways to Kill Your Community offered two engaging sessions which offered each of us renewed inspiration and of course, the obligation that change begins with the person who sees the need for change. I also had the honour of sitting on a panel to discuss “elections” and the role the Chambers play in informing voters through candidate debates and other forums. Finally, I wanted to give a quick shout out to Tyjondah Marshall Kerr – from OLG, a sponsor of the conference – who gets (and reads) our Chamber Chat weekly! It was great to meet you in person!

Chamber Members SAVE on products and services. Check out these Member 2 Member Offers.

OSM Website design - SAVE on services.
Shoppers Drug Mart - Save 20% on Thursdays
RBC - Save on Bank charges
Jesan Property Maintenance - SAVE 10%
Esso Chamber
Parsons Cleaners Member offer - 10% OFF
NRG Alternatives - 10% Discount
Superior Propane - Save 5% on fixed price propane
Quinte Siding - 10% OFF
Group Benefit Plan for Chamber Members
Belleville & District Shrine Club
Stirling Festival Theatre - Group Discounts available to members
Grand & Toy - Cost-saving solutions
Papa Johns Pizza Member Offer- 25% off
Constant Contact Chamber Member Offer
Dinkles & Paulos Restaurants - 10% OFF
Grand & Toy - Members can save up to 85%
Be Prepared First Aid Traning - 15% off
Allen Insurance - Exclusive Chamber Member Rates
St. John Ambulance - Discount on training
Cloud Bookkeeping Services - 10% OFF
Friendly Fires - 10% OFF
Body Systems Nutrition - 15% OFF purchases.
Friendly Fires - 10% OFF
Superior Propane - Save 5% on fixed price propane
Dinkles & Paulos Restaurants - 10% OFF
St. John Ambulance - Discount on training
Papa Johns Pizza Member Offer- 25% off
Be Prepared First Aid Traning - 15% off
Jesan Property Maintenance - SAVE 10%
Shoppers Drug Mart - Save 20% on Thursdays
RBC - Save on Bank charges
Allen Insurance - Exclusive Chamber Member Rates
Cloud Bookkeeping Services - 10% OFF
OSM Website design - SAVE on services.
Belleville & District Shrine Club
Body Systems Nutrition - 15% OFF purchases.
Stirling Festival Theatre - Group Discounts available to members
Quinte Siding - 10% OFF
Group Benefit Plan for Chamber Members
NRG Alternatives - 10% Discount
Grand & Toy - Cost-saving solutions
Parsons Cleaners Member offer - 10% OFF
Grand & Toy - Members can save up to 85%
Esso Chamber
Constant Contact Chamber Member Offer
St. John Ambulance - Discount on training
Parsons Cleaners Member offer - 10% OFF
Allen Insurance - Exclusive Chamber Member Rates
Superior Propane - Save 5% on fixed price propane
Constant Contact Chamber Member Offer
NRG Alternatives - 10% Discount
Quinte Siding - 10% OFF
Jesan Property Maintenance - SAVE 10%
Be Prepared First Aid Traning - 15% off
Grand & Toy - Members can save up to 85%
Esso Chamber
OSM Website design - SAVE on services.
Shoppers Drug Mart - Save 20% on Thursdays
Body Systems Nutrition - 15% OFF purchases.
Papa Johns Pizza Member Offer- 25% off
Belleville & District Shrine Club
Friendly Fires - 10% OFF
Grand & Toy - Cost-saving solutions
Group Benefit Plan for Chamber Members
Cloud Bookkeeping Services - 10% OFF
RBC - Save on Bank charges
Stirling Festival Theatre - Group Discounts available to members
Dinkles & Paulos Restaurants - 10% OFF