January 2021 News
Message from the Chamber Staff:

Dear Valued Members!

Happy 2021!
There's a lot of news this month - look below for lots of information. We are excited about working with all our valued members in 2021! Please continue to keep us updated on what is going on with your business so we can advertise your events/happenings to our members and the community!
Please continue to watch our website and Facebook for news and Events!
If we can ever be of any assistance, please reach out to us!

Chamber Staff -
Sarah Nelson - Director of Marketing and Membership

Krista Atkinson -Administrative Assistant

Susanne Oakey - Chamber Bookkeeper
Please note our current hours:

Monday - Wednesday
There are lots of way to join our Chamber team!!

The Chamber of Commerce of the Tonawandas is looking for a Treasurer to serve with our Board. This is a volunteer position. Financial experience and Quickbooks knowledge is preferred, but if you are willing to jump right in and help us stay on track, we want you! Please call the Chamber at 716-692-5120 or email director@the-tonawandas.com for more information.
Join a Committee!
  • Business Connections
  • Event Committee
  • Economic Committee
  • Gateway Cities Promotions
  • Business After Hours
  • G.L.O.W. (Growing Leadership Opportunities for Women)

Stop by for a tote bag, visitors guide, membership directory and more! We are following state guidelines and a mask and 6 feet away to protect all our valued members!

Welcome Bags – please let the office know if you would like any for your community friends, groups, new homeowners, etc.

Want Money??? Help a new member to join and we will give you MONEY off your renewal!

Celebrate! Are you a New Business? Celebrating a Anniversary? – Let’s do a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony!

Member-to-Member Discounts! Check out our website and Facebook for more information!
We want to Share YOUR BUSINESS!

Send us your events or specials! We'll share them on Facebook and our newsletter or website to help you get the information out!!
2021 Visitor's Guide is Coming!!
More information below!

  • Ads are available! Email Tammie Easson ASAP at teasson@metromediapublishers.com!
  • To add to the community calendar, use the form here and send it to director@the-tonawandas.com! DEADLINE: March 1, 2021
2021 Corporate Sponsorship Opportunities!
The Chamber of Commerce of the Tonawandas is excited to announce our 2021 events and our new SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES! Event dates are still TBA, but if your business would like to be a part of our ever-growing Chamber activities and community, please contact us at 716-692-5120!

The Chamber is offering our exclusive Diamond Sponsor along with our Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze sponsorships. Please join with us to help grow our community and business climate.

**Now offering $500 Patron and $250 Supporter Sponsorships as well!***

A PDF of our full sponsorship information can be found here, as well as on our website at www.the-tonawandas.com. We look forward to working with you in 2021.
Join our team, and together we will make it a great year for business!
Empire State Development Announces the
Raising the Bar Restaurant Fund

Opened January 11, 2021, this fund will make available grants of up to $5,000 to help small restaurants. Please share with your colleagues, clients and restaurant tenants.
  • ESD LINK : nysrestaurantrecovery.fluxx.io
  • Required documents:
  • 2019 Federal Business Tax Returns
  • 2020 Year to Date Income Statement
  • Copy of SLA License
  • List of eligible reimbursable Covid-response expenses incurred since 9/1/2020 (receipts if capital expenses - including equipment and/or construction) [Ray - Applicants will be able to input the list right on the application platform, but they can be pulling it together now and just upload it when the portal opens]
  • Current Government-issued photo ID for every owner of 20% or more
This grant funding has been made possible through financial donations led by Diageo North America and supported by Coastal Pacific Wine & Spirits (a division of Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits) and will be implemented by the non-profit National Development Council (NDC). The “Raising the Bar Restaurant Recovery Fund” will help eligible restaurants adjust their operations to the impacts of COVID-19 and adherence to New York State’s public health and safety measures during the winter months when outdoor dining is limited.
“Raising the Bar” grant funding can be used for COVID-19-related improvements and equipment that will allow the business to comply with social distancing guidelines, expand take-out/delivery operations, or accommodate outdoor dining such as plexiglass barriers/partitions, signage promoting social distancing and hygiene protocols, heaters, heat lamps, weatherization upgrades and insulated delivery bags; improvements that will allow the business to continue operating through the winter months such as filtration system upgrades and food heaters to maintain temperature for to-go orders and purchasing PPE and sanitation supplies necessitated by the pandemic; and COVID-19 related business improvements like patio heaters or contactless technology. Qualifying purchases and expenditures must be from September 1, 2020 onwards to be eligible.

Eligible businesses consist of New York State restaurants that have no more than $3 million in 2019 revenue and are engaged in providing food services and meals prepared on-premises to patrons who traditionally order and are served while seated, including certain on-premises food and drinking establishments licensed through the State Liquor Authority (SLA) and which need funding to adjust to COVID-related impacts and protocols. Establishments providing take out or grab and go food services due to COVID-19 restrictions are also eligible to receive the grant from NDC. Additionally, these establishments must have been in operation on or before March 1, 2019 and certify and demonstrate that they have experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19. All businesses must continue to comply with the New York Forward reopening guidance and Cluster Action Initiative guidance, as applicable. Restaurants can apply to the “Raising the Bar Restaurant Recovery Fund” starting Monday, January 11, 2021. For more information visit the ESD website at https://esd.ny.gov/raising-bar-restaurant-recovery-fund.
Spring Niagara Hospice Bouquets are Up for Ordering!
Only $10!
Order by February 24 - Delivery/Pickup March 2!

Please call the Chamber at 716-692-5120 to reserve. (Payment via cash or check made out to Niagara Hospice.)
Congratulations to our January Member of the Month:
World Showcase Travel Agency, LLC.!

Pictured Left to Right is Sarah Nelson – Director of the Chamber of Commerce of the Tonawandas, Jeff & Jennifer Cunningham (Owners), and Bob Pecoraro -Chamber Board President

My name is Jennifer Cunningham and I am the proud owner of World Showcase Travel Agency. My agency just celebrated it’s 8th birthday, though I have been a Travel Professional for nearly 15 years. My specialties include: Disney Destinations, Mexico and Caribbean resorts, Destination Weddings, Honeymoons, Cruises, Hawaii, River Cruises and European travel. With a dedication to providing the very best in customer service, year after year, my agency has received the prestigious title of “Authorized Disney Vacation Planner”. In addition, World Showcase Travel Agency is one of Apple Leisure Group’s Top 500 Agencies.

I provide top-notch, concierge-style services to all of my valuable clients! I take great care of each and every vacation that I plan. Part of the service that I provide is being available to my clients 24/7 during travel in case of emergency. When you book with World Showcase Travel Agency, you are not only supporting a small, local business, but you are getting personalized service and the attention to detail that you deserve!

World Showcase Travel Agency, LLC.
Business Connections meets every other Tuesday at 9:30am via Zoom

Upcoming Meetings:
Jan. 26 - Robert Charnock from The Greater Niagara Insurance Agency - Allstate will present. Register here!

Feb. 9: Jeremy Higgins from Higgins Agency Group. Register here!

Feb. 23: Laura Broady from The Buffalo News.

Check out the recordings of prior meetings on our website and Facebook page!

If you are interested in joining this group or presenting, please contact Board Member Robert Pecoraro at pecoraror@aol.com
Welcome to the Newest Members
of the Chamber Family!

Buffalo Hearing & Speech

Cornerstone Cabinets & Carpet

I'm the Guy

Jeremy Higgins, The Higgins Agency Group

Robert Charnock,
The Greater Niagara Insurance Agency - Allstate