A monthly newsletter from the
Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce January 2017
Western New York Momentum There are many good and positive things happening all across Western New York. From Buffalo to Dunkirk to Jamestown to Olean we are all getting a sense of momentum. We are witnessing a manufacturing rebound, growing tourism, a reinvented agriculture sector and significant investments in the health care sector. In addition, restaurants and retailers are providing and growing a diverse array of services to our regions consumers. A renewed focus on the Upstate, Western New York Economy from Governor Cuomo’s office has brought ‘wind to the sails’ of this region. The leadership of Howard Zemsky at Empire State Development and his great team of colleagues, and the strategic guidance of the Regional Economic Development Council have been critically important to developing this Western New York momentum. As we start this New Year there are many things to be excited about in terms of economic development and job creation in Chautauqua County. In the Dunkirk area, the Athenex development and the renewed opportunity to repower NRG will be catalysts to additional growth for our community. In Jamestown, continued progress on the National Comedy Center, and the $10 million New York State investment through the Downtown Revitalization Initiative have the potential to be game changers for Chautauqua County. Quietly in the background our private sector along with the Industrial Development Agency, local economic development professionals and foundations continue their hard work of maintaining and growing job opportunities. We are enthused about the investments that have been made by New York State through the leadership of Governor Cuomo, which have encouraged private sector participation. We also appreciate the Governor’s efforts to continue to build on the momentum with additional investments being proposed in 2017. Particularly the Governor has proposed $5 million in funding to help the National Comedy Center close the projects funding gap. He is proposing a competitive grant funding process for place-making strategies to Journey Gunderson, Executive Director of the National revitalize small cities, villages and towns. This is a Comedy Center, Announced Jim Gaffigan will headline great opportunity for our unique villages and towns the 2017 Lucille Ball comedy Festival in August to look at ways of bringing new life to our communities. The Governor has also proposed $2.5 million to help the City of Jamestown regain is financial footing. Our hope is that these funds will be structured in a meaningful way that strengthens the long term financial health of the City of Jamestown. Other encouraging initiatives from the Governor include investments in road and water infrastructure and continued emphasis on lowering property taxes which are the highest in the United States as a percentage of home values and passing State legislation that will allow for ridesharing improving accessibility to transportation and lowering costs in our region. We appreciate to Governor’s continued focus on the Western New York economy.
Calendar of Chamber and Chamber Member Events
1/10 - 4:30pm, Welcome Reception for new Chautauqua Institution President Michael Hill, Robert H. Jackson Center, Jamestown 1/13 - 7pm, Jamestown Jackals basketball, JCC Phys Ed Complex, Jamestown 1/14 - Grapes & Hops Festival, Northwest Arena 1/19 - DIDIWNY and Jamestown Young Professionals Made in Jamestown Networking Event, Artone 1/19 - Video Marketing course series begins, JCC Continuing Education, Call 338-1339 1/20 - Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting, Shorewood Country Club, Dunkirk 1/21 - Doors Open Jamestown, a FREE day at local attractions and museums, 10am-4:30pm 2/2 - 7pm, Sassy Bags & Beyond Blingo, The Resource Center, Dunham Avenue, Celoron Through 2/7 - Sleigh rides at Chautauqua Institution, 1-3pm Saturdays and Sundays 2/16 - Experience Chautauqua Networking Event, Roger Tory Peterson Institute 2/17-19 - President's Day Weekend Winter Festival, Lakeside Park, Mayville For a year-round list of festivals and events, check the Chautauqua County Visitors Bureau Calendar For a complete list of courses through JCC Continuing Ed in Jamestown and Dunkirk, check the online course catalog
Chamber Focused on Member Value in 2017 Business Associations are called on by their membership to do a lot of things. With a diverse array of businesses in our county, we work to develop programs and initiatives that are most essential to the majority of our members. In order to identify those needs, we conduct surveys and talk with our members to be sure we are hearing the voices of our customers. Information gathered from our members this past year has helped us set our priorities for 2017 and beyond. What we have learned from you is that workforce development, increasing sales, leveraging marketing resources and advocacy toward an improved business climate, are your priorities. In addition, many of our members continue to access health insurance through our services. We have aligned our five point focus with actionable objectives to be consistent with what you expect from us. Point 1: Driving foot traffic and internet traffic into local businesses, fostering member business to customer connections. In partnership with six community chambers we produce events at the local community level, co-present events with our strategic partners to provide value to our members and bring consumers into our local communities. We coordinate a variety of promotional and advertising opportunities for our members to help them connect with consumers, and help our members improve their internet presence and maximize their search engine optimization. Point 2: Increasing business to business connections for our members through services, events and seminars, fostering stronger ties among member businesses. The Chamber provides programs such as sponsorship and marketing/advertising opportunities members promote their business to other businesses, and produces networking events and a variety of opportunities to help foster connectivity between members. Point 3: Containing health insurance costs through pro-active solutions. We offer health insurance coverage through the Bright Choices insurance exchange, the New York State of Health public exchange and access to a wide variety of ancillary benefits such as dental and vision coverage. We also partner with Lawley Benefits Group to provide insurance coverage and services to medium to large size employers. Point 4: Advocating for positive change with a focus on reducing taxes. We advocate for our members whether it is in Washington, D.C., Albany, or the local level, in an effort to reduce the cost of government, encourage governmental efficiencies, achieve tax reductions and eliminate the structural barriers to economic development.
Point 5: Supporting Economic, Workforce and Tourism Development. We provide organizational support and structure for the Chautauqua County Education Coalition and the Dream It Do It Western New York manufacturing career campaign. We also support local economic development and tourism development projects. To learn more about what the Chamber of Commerce and Manufacturers Association are doing to help support local businesses visit us at chautauquachamber.org or call 716-484-1101 or 716-366-6200.
Manufacturing Right Here in Our Backyard The Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier (MAST), and Dream It Do It Western New York (DIDIWNY) have developed a local manufacturing video titled “In Your Backyard,” designed to excite, inspire and engage the future generation workforce to pursue manufacturing careers. The Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier is a strong advocate for manufacturing and manufacturing careers. The strength of our economy depends, in large part, on manufacturing products here that can be sold worldwide. Across the southern tier our manufacturers are making the products of the future and are responsible for creating the jobs of today and tomorrow. MAST and DIDIWNY are educating students, educators and the public about the importance of manufacturing, the future of manufacturing and the great career opportunities available in manufacturing. It is important for students, educators and parents to see the advancements in manufacturing such as 3D printing, photonics, robotics and nanotechnology. When the technological advancements occurring in manufacturing are brought into site of students they begin to generate excitement about the future. MAST and DIDI work diligently with students and educators to ‘connect the dots’ between attending school, doing well in school, participating in STEM courses, completing school, going on to technical training or college and ultimately starting a career in manufacturing. There are a significant number of local career opportunities available in manufacturing. “In Your Backyard” is a short video that provides a quick glimpse into local manufacturing opportunities. This video is meant to be a resource for educators and parents to excite, inspire and engage students about what manufacturing entails. Manufacturing often has the misperception of being a dark, dirty and dangerous career field but as you can see from this video that could not be farther from the truth. You can view the video on our Dream It Do It WNY Facebook Page or YouTube Page. Thank you to Justin Hanft, DIDI Chautauqua Coordinator, and Evelyn Sabina, DIDI Cattaraugus Coordinator, for initiating this project. We also thank the local videographers at Kranky Plate Productions for their creativity, high quality craftsmanship and easy to work with disposition during this project. And finally, we send our appreciation to the manufacturers who opened up their facilities for the filming of footage for this video.
www.chautauquachamber.org 10785 Bennett Road, Dunkirk, NY 14048 (716) 366-6200 512 Falconer Street, Jamestown, NY 14701 (716) 484-1101
Chamber Networking at RTPI February 16 Take a fresh look at the Roger Tory Peterson Institute, and get to know some of your fellow Chamber members as well! The next Experience Chautauqua Networking Event by the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce will be held on Thursday, February 16 at RTPI, 311 Curtis Street, Jamestown. You will be networking with other Chamber members and see the Focus on Nature XIV exhibit, organized by the New York State Museum. The event will include complimentary appetizers, a cash bar, and an optional tour of the building. It is sponsored by Bellevue University, OBSERVER, The Post-Journal, and WJTN/WWSE/WKSN/WHUG/WQFX. The cost is $11 per person for pre-registered Chamber members or $13 for walk -in members. To register, call the Chamber at 366-6200 or 484-1101, or sign up online at www.chautauquachamber.org/events.
30th Annual Presidents Day Weekend Winter Festival Plans Underway The 2017 Presidents Day Weekend Winter Festival will take place the weekend of February 17 – 19, 2017, at Lakeside Park, Mayville NY, along the shores of scenic Chautauqua Lake. This annual winter event has been taking place since the first one was organized in 1987. This upcoming festival will mark the 30th anniversary of this longheld event and will feature many winter events and activities for the entire family, contests for children and adults, as well as food and craft vendors. Some of the events and activities again featured will be the snowball distance throwing contest, children’s snowman/animal building contest, children’s golf ball race, Lego building contest, “Candy” Fishing Pond, Kids Corner Edible Crafts, Rainbow the Clown, horse drawn rides by Magic Moments Carriages, snowmobile rides (weather permitting), the Polar Plunge benefit organized by Family Health Medical Services (call 716-753-7107, Ext. 100 for
information), fireworks, flare parade (weather permitting), as well as other events. A new event is in the planning stages to replace the Medallion Treasure Hunt for 2017. This new event will be similar to a scavenger hunt involving our retail chamber member businesses and will be easier for more people to participate in. Details will be announced as the planning progresses. If you are interested in volunteering to help with the festival preparations or at the festival itself, please call Chamber Coordinator Debby Marsala at (716) 753-3113. We would like to thank our festival sponsors to date: Major sponsors Town of Chautauqua, Village of Mayville, and International Union of Operating Engineers Local 17; Platinum sponsor Northwest Savings Bank; Gold sponsor Kwik Fill/Red Apple; and Silver Sponsors Howard Plumbing &
Heating and Chautauqua Abstract Company. Thank you for your support of this annual winter festival. If anyone would like to donate to the festival to help cover the many expenses of an event this size, please call Debby Marsala at the Chamber Office (716-753-3113) and we’ll let you know what sponsorship opportunities are available. Mark your calendars for February 17 – 19, 2017 and make plans to come to the 2017 Presidents Day Weekend Winter Festival.
Doors Open Jamestown is January 21 The very popular Doors Open Jamestown will be back again on Saturday, January 21. Doors Open offers free admission for the day to our local attractions, demonstrating the extraordinary tourism opportunities that are right here in our own backyard. Sponsored by the Jamestown Community Chamber of Commerce and the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation, Doors Open has grown substantially since it first began. Participating venues are Jamestown Audubon Nature Center, Roger Toy Peterson Institute, Robert H. Jackson Center, Northwest Arena, Lucille
Ball Desi Arnaz Museum & Center for Comedy, Fenton History Center, Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame, Reg Lenna Center for the Arts, James Prendergast Public Library, Infinity Performing Arts Center, Lucille Ball Little Theatre, Busti Grist Mill, and Lucille M. Wright Air Museum. The hours are 10am â€“ 4:30pm for this FREE day at our local museums and attractions.
JCC Marketing Certificate Spring Programs Three non-credit marketing certificate programs are being offered in the Spring Semester by the Small Business Development Center and JCC's Continuing Education, with the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce cosponsoring. Did you know that your website is 53 times more likely show up first on Google if you have a video embedded on your website? The Video Marketing Certificate is a 12-hour course where students will learn to plan, create and edit videos and photographs that enhance the company's website and social media presence. The six week series of classes begin January 19. Email is consistently ranked the most profitable and effective marketing channel in today's digital world. The Email Marketing Certificate is a 10-hour course where students will develop an email marketing strategy, gain subscribers, design effective emails, and create sequential campaigns that generate revenue. Class meets weekly for 5 weeks beginning March 2. The Social Media Marketing Certificate program combines classroom instruction, discussion, hands-on labs and one-on-one guidance in proven strategies to effectively market your business using social media. The class will meet weekly beginning March 24. These courses were developed with a grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission to assist manufacturers in growing their in-house digital marketing expertise. See the Continuing Education website for full details and registration information or call Kate Moody at (716) 338-1339. Chamber member discounts apply for these classes through JCC Continuing Education.
CHQ250 Working to Prevent Heart Disease The Chautauqua Community Health Action Team (CHAT) is working to build a heart-healthier community. The Chautauqua County Health Network notes that Chautauqua County has some of the highest disease burden in the state around heart disease and strokes. The Community Health Action Team is a coalition that is working to change that trend, and has established a goal of preventing 250 heart attacks, strokes, and related deaths in Chautauqua County in the coming year. 250 lives is the CHAT goal toward helping the Million Hearts Initiative to prevent a million heart attacks and strokes nationwide. Businesses and local organizations are encouraged to sign the CHQ250 pledge and commit to taking at least one action in the year ahead to promote heart health in Chautauqua County. You can learn more through their Facbook page at www.facebook.com/chq250 where you can also find a link to the pledge form.
www.chautauquachamber.org 10785 Bennett Road Dunkirk, NY 14048 (716) 366-6200 512 Falconer Street Jamestown, NY 14701 (716) 484-1101