Eagle Valley Chamber rebuilding stronger than ever
On behalf of the Eagle Valley Chamber of Commerce (EVCC) Board of Directors, we would like to extend our appreciation to current and past members for your support. We give sincere thanks to all the people and businesses that continue to support the chamber during these difficult economic times. In the past six weeks, the EVCC has been in the process of reorganizing to serve its members and the community better. While the EVCC Board of Directors continues to assess the status of the chamber, we would like to expound on the various reasons that the EVCC has faced financial challenges. They include the following: 1. The national recession: This sprung during our renewal campaign which runs October- December. Many businesses didnt renew due to financial difficulties and many have unfortunately gone out of business.2. Unintentional consequences from the Epic Pass: The merchant ski pass benefit was a reason many small businesses joined the chamber in the past. We lost a good portion of our membership due to this issue.3. America, itself, is in financial disarray: This chamber, like most chambers around the nation, is one of millions of non-profits feeling the pinch. Our Executive Director resigned in March due to lack of funding. 4. High-level investment partners: In the past, we have had various high-level corporate partners and governmental entities that contributed big dollars to our bottom line. They too have felt the economic pinch this past year and many did not re-invest.5. Our biggest fundraiser of the year, The Citizen of the Year Extravaganza, fell short of our financial expectations: Again, this annual event took place at the onset of the national recession and many people and companies struggled to produce the funds to attend. Thus our attendance was down.Several businesses have not yet been paid for services provided to the EVCC. We are deeply apologetic to those that did not receive clear communications from the chamber over the past months and to those that are still due money from the EVCC. We, as a volunteer board of directors, are working on a strategic plan to get solvent, communicate with unpaid creditors, pay our debts and move forward with a positive momentum. It is in this current economically challenging period that we are most in need of community support. Memberships and investment partners are key to the health and longevity of the EVCC. The chamber is supportive of local merchants associations like the newly formed One Eagle organization and the Gypsum Merchants Association, and our long-term plan may incorporate the chamber performing as an umbrella for such organizations helping to bridge communications between the two communities and local governments. We will remain instrumental in orchestrating larger regional events while offering a wealth of benefits that can be used immediately to promote our local businesses. Currently, we have over 200 members and are offering a six-month special membership rate of only $195 through October 2009. We also have varying levels of executive membership wherein EVCC Investment Partners receive numerous benefits, which are all packaged together. Call us today at (970) 328-5220. You will get a lot out of the chamber, but you must get involved and take advantage of all that we have to offer. We value your support! Just a few of many of EVCCs entry level benefits include:n Just being a part of the business community by supporting our organization and by taking advantage of the many networking and marketing opportunities that exist within.n Free e-blast: Be a part of and receive a weekly e-mail blast announcing special events and promotions. This goes out to over 500 businesses each week!n Free quarter-page ad in the Vail Daily as a renewing or new member valued at $400! And a free mention in Bizwatch, a mini editorial for your business.n Free half-page ad in the Vail Mountaineer as a new or returning member valued at almost $300! Plus, be a part of the weekly Eagle Valley Chamber of Commerce two page, four-color spread which comes out Thursdays. You receive a color ad for only $15 per week!n NRC Broadcasting: They will match advertising dollars for the first $500 spent to new and renewing membersn TV-8: Free interview to new and returning membersn PlumTV: Free spots on its morning show to new and returning membersn EVCC Web wite, http://www.eaglevalley.org: Free business listing and Web site link. The Web site will be updated this spring.n Free monthly mixers: Free way to network with other professionals in the community at area businesses or host a mixer at your business n Group health plan: The Roaring Fork Valley Community Health Plan offers plans for groups and is underwritten by Aetna and Sloans Lake and recognized at most of our area hospitals.n Workers Comp Insurance: EVCC members get a 5 percent discount on premiums and are able to share in annual rebates, depending on safety records.n And many more marketing benefits and opportunities!As a part of the EVCCs re-organizational effort, we have recently added new board members to our team. The following is a list of the Board of Directors: Steve Quiring, president; Computer Services of Eagle and Vail, (970) 328-7170.Rachael Overlease, secretary; Alpine Bank, (970) 748-5752.Randy Olin, treasurer; Gallegos Corporation, (970) 926-3737.Jeff Boyer; Eagle Ranch Golf Club,(970) 328-2882 ext.404.Dillon DeMore; American National Bank, (970) 328-3615.Joan Lorton; Vail Resorts, (970) 754-2519.Michelle Morgan; Alpine Self Storage & Office Warehouses, (970) 328-6311.Peter Struve; Macs Liquors, (970) 524-6227Jan Rosenthal Townsend; Shadey Deals/Alpine Ambiance, Inc., (970) 328-7888.A number of exciting events are being planned for our members and the community at large. The Lane Frost Challenge (Eagle Valley Bull Stomp) has been in the works for the past nine months and came to a successful completion on Saturday, April 1, at the Eagle River Center. Over 1,000 attendees enjoyed this event! And we are planning our ever-popular and successful 13th annual Screaming Eagle Golf Tournament at Eagle Ranch Friday, May 8. In summary, The Eagle Valley Chamber of Commerce has been operating for over 70 years and it is our goal as the current Board of Directors to continue to attract events and provide an array of services to our member businesses that will promote our local economy and preserve our western heritage. Again, we appreciate those supporting the EVCC now and into the future. We welcome your comments and your membership and we welcome your continued support.Thank you and regards, The Board of Directors- Eagle Valley Chamber of CommerceAs JFK might have said, Ask not what your chamber can do for you, but what you can do for your chamber.