As I considered what to bring to this month's article, I realize that the Minden-South Webster Chamber is blessed with more to talk about than space allows.
I would like to welcome new members Loye's Pharmacy, Friends of Germantown Colony, Bloxom's Patio Homes, McDonald's Restaurant, and the Law Office of Christopher M. Stahl. I want to thank MAR-C Industries for hosting our March "Alive After Five."
They are doing wonderful things at MAR-C for citizens with disabilities. You should really check out their handmade Wood Duck boxes and Purple Martin houses. We were thrilled to give away one of each as door prizes. Please keep in mind that "Alive After Five" is open to the public. I encourage you to attend and enjoy good food and fellowship as well as the opportunity to see a new side of some of our local businesses. The next "Alive After Five" will be on April 18th at TG Garden & Gifts from 5-7. Make plans to come out and enjoy the beautiful spring flowers and gift items that TG's has to offer. And remember, there are always door prizes!!!
I spent a good portion of March on the road. The annual CC (Chambers of Commerce) to DC (that's Washington) trip was a wonderful learning experience for me. The Greater Shreveport Chamber does an excellent job coordinating that trip. We met with both Senators Vitter and Landrieu as well as Congressman Fleming. Also included in meetings were Congressmen Alexander, Boustany, Cassidy, Scalise as well as several from South Arkansas and East Texas.
We discussed issues that are of concern to our area businesses and actually enlightened our elected officials as to some proposed legislation. I plan to include Camp Minden and funding for Phase II & III in the next trip. Even though we didn't get the snow we'd been promised, it was a great trip. The week after Washington Pattie Odom, Economic Development Director for the City of Minden, and I made a flying trip to Birmingham with propaganda and information sheets dealing with all things "Minden." We attended a trade show of sorts that allows cities to meet with companies looking to expand. We planted a few seeds and hope that exposing our city to developers from all over the south will bear fruit. My heart is jobs and growth for Minden and all of Webster Parish. I will continue to do all I can to encourage industry to our area.
The next BIG project we are undertaking at the Chamber is a "Total Resource Campaign" (TRC). The theme of our 2013 Campaign is "Cruisin' to New Heights." We have six teams that will have a complete package of every event scheduled from May 2013-April 2014. Team members will go out into the community and sell the listed sponsorships for each event. At the end of the five-week campaign, we will have all of our sponsorships sold and you will not be approached to sponsor any other event for the rest of the year.
This is a new concept for small chambers that we are VERY excited about. There are sponsorship opportunities for every size business. Our inventory includes events with levels from $50 to $5000. There is no excuse not to be involved. The campaign is going to be fun with a little bit of competition added in! I want to thank our six team captains and the businesses they represent. They are Jeri Bloxom, Minden Press-Herald; Terry Gardner, TG Companies; Pam Hillidge, GBT; Mahala Hutto, Unimin; Bennie Lewis, B&G Courier Service; and Jim Williams, Minden Medical Center. No TRC is complete without a dynamic, engaged chairman.
We are thrilled to have George E French III as the fearless leader of our inaugural TRC. George brings his enthusiasm and motivational skills to the campaign, and we can hardly wait to see the results. Get ready, Minden. The Total Resource Campaign kicks off April 16. Don't miss out on your chance to be a part of the incredible things your Minden-South Webster Chamber of Commerce is doing.
Jerri de Pingre' is the President of the Minden-South Webster Chamber of Commerce. Her column runs monthly in the Minden Press-Herald.