This newsletter is full of celebrations! Celebrate our community leaders. Celebrate our river. Celebrate our new and seasoned businesses. Celebrate our youth. Celebrate!
Chamber Gala

The 60th Anniversary Chamber Gala was a wonderful community celebration! Past and present Chamber Award Recipients were the guests of honor during the event which featured a new format including beautiful d├ęcor, musical entertainment, and an impressive selection of chef's delights. Thanks to our 2015 Signature Sponsors - Georgia Power, Pierce County Industrial Development Authority, Farmers & Builders, Crosby Cadillac-GMC, and ATC Broadband - for making it all possible. Congratulations, Brenda Waters, Blackshear Dairy Queen, Billy Thompson, Sycamore Tree, Richard Blythe, and Pamela Baker on your well-deserved awards!

Satilla River Water Trail

If you would like to help plan the Satilla River Water Trail, the next meeting is Wednesday, May 6 from 3-5 p.m. at the Chamber. Established trails have access points along the river and are suitable for day or overnight trips in canoes and kayaks. Water trails can be various lengths and are used by paddlers, anglers, hikers and picnickers of all ages and ability. The outdoor recreation industry provides 6.1 million American jobs, $646 billion in spending each year, $39.9 billion in federal tax revenue, and $39.7 billion in state/local tax revenue. In Georgia, approximately 1 million paddlers participate in the sport, and more than 23 billion dollars is spent in the state on outdoor recreation. Communities throughout Georgia are realizing the economic, recreation, and conservation benefits of highlighting their waterways. Water trails help diversify local economies by providing sustainable, eco-friendly tourism with relatively little investment. Let's celebrate our river!

Business After Hours

Tanner CPA Group is 40 years old! Let's help them celebrate this milestone during May's Business After Hours being held at the Tanner offices, 317 Main Street, Blackshear, from 5- p.m. on Thursday, May 7. 


 
Join us for catering by the wonderful Gina Chancey; drawings for an Apple IPad Air, 2 rounds of golf at Okefenokee, and a $50 gift certificate; and networking with other Chamber members. It's going to be a fantastic celebration!

Focusing on the Future

The Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education (GPEE) through the College Access Challenge Grant (GACG) program awarded the Pierce County Chamber of Commerce a $3,000 mini-grant. This grant is designed for local chambers of commerce to leverage their visibility, voice, and influence in efforts to recruit more high school graduates to enroll in college and more adults to return. The Chamber used these funds to take approximately 80 students from the current PCHS junior class to a "Day on Campus - Focus on the Future" event at South Georgia State's Waycross and Douglas campuses on April 17. The tour and information sessions gave students a holistic look at the college experience. We appreciate the staff on both SGSC campuses, Pierce County High School, PCHS Student Advisory Council, and the PC Chamber of Commerce Education Committee for providing our young people with this opportunity. We are focused on our future!

Ribbon Cuttings

Overhead Door: Join us for lunch, entertainment and prizes on May 1 at 12:30 during Overhead Door's Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting! Located at 1613 US Hwy. 84, Blackshear, Overhead Door looks forward to serving the Pierce and Ware County areas. You could win a Model 180 SOLID garage door ($1130) value) - installed, an Odyssey 100 motor ($488 value) - installed, or 50% off Lifestyle Garage Door Screen - ($1400 value) - installed! See you on May 1!

 

Rite Aid of Blackshear invites the community to a Grand Re-Opening and Ribbon Cutting at 10 a.m. on Thursday, May 14. Come meet the management team, see all the upgrades and changes, and enjoy some refreshments. Bring your friends and associates!

Academic Booster Club
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Congratulations to Joshua McDay, Caroline Walker, Brianna King, Bennett King, and Mary Benfield for earning scholarships during this year's Academic Booster Club Banquet. The Pierce County Academic Booster Club (PCABC) was organized by the residents of Pierce County to provide support for the achievement of academic objectives. 

 

PCABC's purpose is to raise funds to help support the academic programs in Pierce County. PCABC funds the Excel program to all Pierce County High School students maintaining all A's for the previous semester. This program grants students free admission to PCHS home varsity sporting events. In addition, PCABC purchases a letter jacket for the uprising junior with the highest GPA. The pinnacle of the year is the Honor Banquet where top academic students are treated to a wonderful dinner and numerous scholarships are awarded. The continued success of the PCABC depends on this community. For more information, contact Pamela Baker at pbaker@pierce.k12.ga.us

Wake Up, Pierce!

You are invited to the Chamber's upcoming Wake Up, Pierce! community forum being held June 9. In order to keep our members better informed concerning local and state issues, the Chamber Board has established this forum. Wake Up, Pierce! is a breakfast event held from 7:45 to 9:00 a.m. at Reeal BBQ, 3005 Hwy. 84, Blackshear. The Wake Up, Pierce! event scheduled for Tuesday, June 9 will have an education focus. The breakfast buffet opens at 7:45 if folks wish to purchase breakfast. The community updates will begin promptly at 8:00, and the meeting will conclude by 9:00.

 

Each representative asked to sit on the panel will have 5 minutes to update our membership on immediate and pressing issues affecting education as they relate to quality of life and economic development in Pierce County. This is a fast-paced, heads-up, here's some stuff you need to be involved with - look out for - speak up about or celebrate kind of event! Following the updates, participants will have approximately 20 minutes to meet one-on-one or in small groups to further discuss issues of particular interest.

Upcoming Events

Friday, May 1 - Ribbon Cutting/Grand Opening - Overhead Door - 12:30

Saturday, May 2 - Festival of Hope - 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Blackshear City Park

Tuesday, May 5 - SBDC Consultations by appointment - 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Wednesday, May 6 - Chamber Ambassador Meeting - 11 a.m.-1 p.m. - OCC

Wednesday, May 6 - Satilla River Paddling Trail Meeting - 3-5 p.m. - Chamber

Friday, May 8 - Pierce County's Got Talent - 7 p.m. - PCHS Auditorium

Thursday, May 7 - Business After Hours/40th Anniversary Celebration - 5-7 p.m.- Tanner CPA

Saturday, May 9 - Amris Jam meets Summer in the City - all day - Blackshear City Park

Saturday, May 9 - Downtown Community Market - 8 a.m.-until - Downtown Blackshear

Wednesday, May 13 - Chamber Board of Directors Mtg. - Noon - Chamber

Thursday, May 14 - Rite Aid Ribbon Cutting /Grand Re-Opening - 10 a.m. - Rite Aid Blackshear

Monday, May 18 - Education Committee Meeting - 1 p.m. - Chamber

Tuesday, May 19 - SBDC Consultations by appointment - 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Wednesday, June 3 - Chamber Ambassador Meeting - 10 a.m. - Chamber

Tuesday, June 9 - Wake Up, Pierce! Community Forum - 7:45-9:00 a.m. - Reeal BBQ