Here What Local Leaders Have To Say
Senior citizens in the Sun City and Sun City West can get information on a wide range of resources in a fun and entertaining way during the Celebrating Community Festival & Expo this spring.
In addition to vendors and other resources, visitors can also win prizes and enjoy complimentary coffee and treats in the morning. The event is free to attend.
The Sun City West event is on Tuesday, March 29 at 13459 W. Stardust Blvd (W. Stardust at 135th Ave.), and the Sun City event is on Wednesday, April 20 at 15630 N. Dell Webb Blvd (Sunland Drive at N. Dell Webb Blvd). Both events will be using parking lots donated by local churches.
Desert Palms Presbyterian Church (Sun City West) and Fountain of Life Lutheran Church (Sun City) are teaming up with the Chamber to host the community festival and expo.
Partnering with the Faith-Based Community
“Chambers of commerce typically do not partner with a faith-based organization on program delivery,” said Mr. Sada, CEO, and president of the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce. “However, implementing this community program through faith-based organizations has many shared and mutually beneficial advantages,” he said
Rev. James Crelin of Desert Palms Presbyterian Church, and the host site of the first event in Sun City West, said, “churches are located and involved in our communities just like a chamber of commerce. Plus, we have resources like a very large parking lot which can be used as a positive influence for our community."
"The Chamber also gives the church members some extra perks when they attend the event. Churches that host this event are given the opportunity to showcase the many programs we offer to help address community needs. It’s a win-win for both the Church and the Chamber. We are pleased to partner with the Chamber.”
A Successful Pilot Event
Dr. Dennis Tyner, the Chair of the board of the Surprise Regional Chamber, said “the Chamber piloted the first event in the fall of 2021 on the campus of Ottawa University (a private Christian university located in Surprise, Arizona), and because of its success, the Chamber is now expanding the community event to other cities in the NW Valley.”
Good Fit for the Chamber of Commerce
Dr. Tyner, also president of Ottawa University, said, “the event is refreshingly different! Our local Chamber of Commerce planned the event, an organization whose brand is very well recognized by consumers and businesses alike. It’s a natural fit for a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to build stronger communities.”
A Refreshingly Different Format
Secondly, said Dr. Tyner, “the event is an open-air, fun, family-friendly festival that attracts more customers and keeps visitors at the event for a longer amount of time! The event, unlike other expos, is produced by the Chamber, a not-for-profit organization, and was designed primarily to help residents more effectively connect with businesses.”
Not Your Old-Style Expo
Raoul Sada, president and CEO of the Chamber, said, “having the Celebrating Community as an open-air event allows visitors a different experience compared to old-style indoor expos, which are usually too compact and limit a vendors sales space to a small table."
Why is the Chamber of Commerce Doing the Events?
“The Celebrating Community Festival is planned across the NW Valley and supports the mission and purpose of a Chamber. The events reflect the Chamber’s fervently-held belief that the health of the business community and the health of the larger community in which it lives are inseparable," said Mr. Sada
"This event supports the mission of the Chamber, which is to build a stronger community, champion economic prosperity, foster a pro-business climate, and improve the quality of life in our region. We connect residents and businesses in a fun way that is good for the local economy,” said Sada.
Because of the availability of over 100,000 square feet of outdoor space for each event, the church venue allows for food trucks, strolling entertainers like stilt walkers, and live entertainment. The events will feature Chris Yak, a well-known Valley acoustic guitarist who plays a variety of popular country, rock, and pop covers.