Chamber Connections
Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce February Newsletter

The Fairhope Arts & Crafts Festival Celebrates 65 Years
Fairhope Arts _ Crafts Festival


The Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce expects another incredible year for the 65th Annual Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival. This annual tradition attracts crowds of visitors to the Eastern Shore year after year. It's a wonderful opportunity for our business community to shine in the spotlight. We've heard from many tourists that they originally visited for the festival, then came back at other times of the year just to enjoy our shops, trails and natural beauty. Who can resist those sunsets? 






65th Annual Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival
Downtown Fairhope
March 17, 18 & 19
Friday & Saturday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sunday: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Free to the public

Festival Fun Facts:
Fairhope Courier, February 12, 1953
  • The Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival is one of the oldest art festivals in the country, starting in 1953 as an Arts and Crafts Tour. Artists set up displays in store windows. One of the first newspaper articles urges "Fairhopians to invite their fellow workers and friends in Mobile and surrounding towns to visit during the week."
  • The Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival is ranked in the top 50 art festivals in the U.S. by Sunshine Artists Magazine.
  • The 2017 festival will feature more than 230 exhibitors with everything from fine-art paintings, one-of-a-kind handcrafted jewelry and pottery that's almost too beautiful to use.






The 65 th Annual Arts and Crafts Festival Foundation and Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce would like to thank the 2017 festival sponsors who make this event possible: Wind Creek, Pepsi, Coastal Alabama Community College, Thomas Hospital-Infirmary Health, Riviera Utilities, Merchants & Marine Bank, Coldwell Banker Reehl Properties, Carell Corporation, Trustmark Bank, Bay Mortgage, Grand Hotel, Chick-Fil-A, Regions Bank, Alabama Public Radio, Gulf Coast News, Alabama Media Group, WKRG, WPMI/UTV44, WABD.

For more information go to: www.facebook.com/artsandcraftsfairhope
2017 Artwork Unveiling

Arts & Crafts Festival Artwork Unveiling
Arts & Crafts Festival Artwork Unveiling

The Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival Foundation proudly unveiled the poster art for  the 2017 festival, Friday night, February 3 at Andree's in Fairhope. This artwork will be used to promote  the 65th Annual Arts and Crafts Festival throughout the Gulf Coast.

This year's poster art by Ardith Goodwin features sailboats on the bay in bright coastal colors.

"We knew when we started the search for the artwork that we were looking for something special. We  were at the Fairhope First Friday Art Walk and in the Lyons Share window was a beautiful abstract  painting with vibrant colors that had so much life, we knew we had found our artist," said Festival  Chairman Laura English, "This is the perfect selection to represent our 65th year because it is vibrant,  active, fresh and expresses all the joys of living on the bay in such a wonderful coastal community."  Read more


How you can help




Help us spread the word about the 65th Annual  Fairhope Arts and Crafts Festival. Below are 3 simple ways you can help.

  • Invite your out-of-town friends to come visit the weekend of March 17, 18 & 19.
  • Welcome guests that weekend with southern hospitality.








Greetings! It's hard to believe that February is here... what happened to January? Last night, I was thinking about some work I needed to do on my 2017 resolutions. How are yours coming? I hope that one of your business resolutions was to get the most out of your Chamber membership. Just like when I join a gym, if I don't go, I don't magically lose those extra pounds. By being active in the Chamber through networking events, marketing meetings and partnering with our business community, your membership really becomes an investment! Please take a moment to look over our upcoming events and make plans to attend - you will be glad you did! See you there!




  
    
Chamber Events
Click here for a printable version of the Chamber Calendar of Events.

Morning Marketing Meeting
Dickey's BBQ
6882 Highway 90, Suite G2
Daphne
Thursday, February 16
8 a.m.



Ala. Dept. of Revenue
State Tax Seminar
Thursday, February 16
1-3 p.m.
Mobile Taxpayer Service Center
Bel Air Tower
851 E. I-65 Service Road S.
Mobile, AL

No Charge for seminar
RSVP by calling
Jerlean Hudson
251-344-4737, ext. 539


Young Professionals Social
Jason Will Real Estate
154 N. Section Street
Fairhope
Thursday, February 16
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.


Gulf Coast Procurement Opportunities Conference & Matchmaker
February 22 & 23
Mobile Marriott
3101 Airport Blvd.

Workshops: Free
Matchmaker Fee: $50
Register online: 

Chamber Office Open House
During First Friday Art Walk
Friday, March 3
6-8 p.m.
327 Fairhope Ave.
Fairhope

Add to calendar

Baldwin Co. Job Fair
March 7, 2017
Noon - 5 p.m.
Daphne Civic Center
2603 US-98
Daphne, AL

Chamber members receive a vendor discount when registering.

Register online:


Eggs N' Issues: 
"Preparing Your Workplace for a Hurricane"
Speaker: EMA Director Reggie Chitwood
Wednesday, March 8
7:30 a.m. - 9 a.m.
Daphne United Methodist Church
2401 Main Street
Daphne



65th Annual Arts & Crafts Festival
Downtown Fairhope
March 17, 18 & 19
Fri. & Sat. - 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sunday: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Free to the public


Like us on Facebook
Click here and click the subscribe button to receive notifications about Chamber events on your Facebook account.

Click here to see the community calendar and the many events our members and partners are hosting along the Eastern Shore. You also have an opportunity to submit a community event.
Eggs N' Issues: Preparing Your Workplace for a Hurricane


Hurricane season starts June 1 and living on the Gulf Coast, we all know the importance of having a plan. That goes for your business as well. If a storm were to make landfall here, how would you get in touch with your employees afterward? How will you ensure important documents are safe? These are all important questions to ask yourself now. If you don't have an actionable plan in place, you will want to hear our guest speaker, Baldwin County EMA Director Reggie Chitwood. Join us for Eggs N' Issues March 8 at Daphne United Methodist Church. Leave with the tools you'll need to create a disaster preparedness plan for your business. Breakfast is included.
 
Eggs N' Issues: 
"Preparing Your Workplace for a Hurricane"
Speaker: EMA Director Reggie Chitwood
Wednesday, March 8
7:30 a.m. - 9 a.m.
Daphne United Methodist Church
2401 Main Street
Daphne

$10 for Members
$15 for Guests

Call (251) 928-6387 
by Friday, March 8 to RSVP

Add to Calendar 



Sponsor:



Resources and Opportunities
"In a time of drastic change, it is the learners who inherit the future. The learned find themselves equipped to live in a world that no longer exists."
- Eric Hoffer

Emerging Leaders Initiative

Step it up!
Join the entrepreneurs shaping the future of the Eastern Shore through the Emerging Leaders Initiative. You'll learn targeted business strategies to accelerate growth, explore financing, diversify markets and expand networking.

What:
  • Intensive executive level training series
  • Focused on accelerating the growth of high potential small businesses
  • Developed by the U.S. Small Business Administration & draws on the experience of business leaders in our community.
Who:
Open to small business executives that:
  • Have annual revenues of at least $400,000
  • Have been in business for at least 3 years (not geared for startups)
  • Limited to 20 participants
When:
  • Classes forming now to start in April.
  • Continues every other Tuesday through October
Cost:
  • The only cost is your time commitment to complete the curriculum. All other costs are assumed by SBA and local partners.
Register:


More Information:

Call Brent McMahan at (251) 544-7401
Gulf Coast Procurement Opportunities Conference & Matchmaker



Gulf Coast Procurement Opportunities Conference & Matchmaker at the Mobile Marriott will provide FREE "how to sell to the Government" seminars on February 22 (9 a.m. until 5 p.m.) and for $50 required pre-registration on February 23 (9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.) will provide lunch and one-on-one networking with buyers from various government agencies and large prime contractors along the Alabama, Florida and Mississippi Gulf Coast.  

Click here for more information.

Click here to register.

Free Business Essentials for State Taxpayers Seminar


State tax obligations can sometimes confuse business owners. Licenses, sales tax, property tax, etc. - business owners are responsible for many details. To make that task easier, the Alabama Department of Revenue (ADOR) invites business owners to come learn the "B.E.S.T." ways to handle state taxes at ADOR's free Business Essentials for State Taxpayers Seminar on Thursday, Feb. 16, at 10 a.m. or 3 p.m. in Mobile.
 
The seminar will be held at the Mobile Taxpayer Service Center in its NEW location - Bel Air Tower, 851 E. I-65 Service Road South.

Click here to learn more.


Baldwin County Job Fair

BCEDA Job Fair 

The Annual Baldwin County Job Fair, hosted by the Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance and the five Baldwin County Chambers of Commerce, provides Baldwin County employers an opportunity to seek out well-qualified job seekers in the area.

Chamber members receive a discounted rate to exhibit.

Companies interested in being exhibitors at the 2017 Baldwin County Job Fair can get more information and register online,  by clicking here and filling out the form .

ACT Work Ready Communities
ACT Work Ready Communities
Your business needs work ready employees. Sign up to support the program and attract potential employees.  The Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce will be bringing you much more information on Work Ready Communities very soon.


Mardi Gras 2017 Schedule
Eastern Shore Chamber Foundation




The Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce Workforce Development has been hard at work addressing the need for quality career programming for Eastern Shore High School students. The Chamber strives to bridge education and businesses through leadership and career pathway exploration. 
 
Youth Leadership
Our Youth Leadership class is in its home stretch. Students just completed their final program with Business Smarts Day. The day was spent learning the expectations of the business world and how to prepare and present themselves as a professional.  Adrienne Golden, Executive Director of the Fuse Project spoke about philanthropy, the importance of giving back and how it translates to success. She also shared how the Fuse Project Story is influencing our community.  While our monthly meetings are over, students are still finishing their graduation requirements as they finalize their community group projects. Those projects will be presented later this month at their graduation ceremony.
 
Student Training & Exploration Program
The Student Training and Exploration Program has kicked off for the year. Gia Wiggins with Morale Resource LLC spoke with the 10 th graders about first impressions and communication.  Students were able to take away 5 things that can make them appear smarter to an adult; shake hands, speak first, make eye contact, ask questions and give a simple compliment.

We held roundtable discussions with the 12th grade students as they finalize their plans for life after high school. Some of those students are planning to go to college while others are going straight into the workforce. We are proud of their accomplishments.

The 9th graders will meet for a day of team building and learning how choices can impact their future. Later this month, the 11 th graders will tour Segers AeroCorp and Chris Meyers automotive. 

We have a lot of great days planned for our students as we open doors and create opportunities for our high school participants. 

If you are interested in sponsoring our Eastern Shore Chamber Foundation youth programs, call Christina Hellmich at (251) 928-6387.

StoryCorps

StoryCorps, a renowned nonprofit organization celebrating the stories of everyday Americans, will record interviews in Mobile from February 9 to March 10 as part of its cross-country MobileBooth tour. 

Since 2003, StoryCorps has collected and archived more than 50,000 interviews with some 90,000 participants. Each conversation is recorded on a free CD to share, and is preserved at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. 

StoryCorps' MobileBooth-an Airstream trailer outfitted with a recording studio-will be parked at Cooper River Side Park in Mobile for four weeks. 

Reservations can now be made by calling StoryCorps' 24-hour, toll-free reservation line at 1-800-850-4406 or visiting storycorps.org. Reservations are available as of January 26. Additional spots will be made available on February 10.

Click here to learn more.

Click here to hear examples.
Young Professionals Third Thursday Social

Meet some great people at this month's Young Professionals Third Thursday Social! We'll be at Jason Will Real Estate, Thursday, March 16 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. There will be traditional Mardi Gras fare with food and drinks provided. Young Professionals Socials are free to attend.

This is the perfect opportunity to invite a friend to join you.

Young Professionals Social
Jason Will Real Estate
154 N. Section Street
Fairhope
Thursday, February 16
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.



Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce Open House



The Eastern Shore Chamber office in downtown Fairhope has gotten a facelift and we'd love for you to help us celebrate. We're holding an open house for you to stop by and check it out and enjoy a few refreshments during the March First Friday Art Walk.  
Chamber Office Open House
During First Friday Art Walk
Friday, March 3
6-8 p.m.
327 Fairhope Ave.
Fairhope


Photo Gallery
Click on the photos below to open more pictures from each event.

Eggs N_ Issues

Business After Hours


YP - Fairways


December Ambassador of the Month: Brenda Carpenter


Congratulations to Brenda Carpenter for being named the December 
Ambassador of the Month. 

Brenda Carpenter
Family Security Credit Union
28651 US Highway 98
Daphne AL  36526
(251) 621-0365


Website Link

Family Security Credit Union


Ribbon Cuttings

Click the image for each ribbon cutting below to enlarge and learn more. 

Bay Flooring _ Design

Steinway Piano Gallery


Bay Flooring & Design at 399 N. Section Street in Fairhope is proud to show off its newly expanded showroom space. The Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce helped celebrate with a ribbon cutting Tuesday, January 17.    Read more


Steinway Piano Gallery

The Steinway Piano Gallery is now open at 11247 U.S. Highway 31 in Spanish Fort. This family owned business sells and services Steinway Pianos, which they say are considered the best quality pianos in the world.    Read more



Hilton Garden Inn Mobile Downtown is now open at  15 North Conception Street, in downtown Mobile. This upscale, boutique hotel offers  93 rooms to travelers seeking updated and generous accommodations in a relaxed atmosphere.  Read more

The Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce would like to welcome one of our newest members, Edward Jones Financial Advisor Chase Smith. His office is located at 7096 Stone Drive, Suite B in Daphne.


Is your business moving to a new location or do you know of a new business opening their doors? We'd love to help celebrate with a ribbon cutting.

Contact Frank Shepard at  fshepard@eschamber.com  or (251) 263-1866
January New Members