Supporting Local Businesses: Chamber of Commerce

Dori Wittrig May 21, 2021

Every year, thousands of entrepreneurs launch a new business that creates jobs and spurs innovation. These businesses are a significant driver of the U.S. economy. And many of these startups specifically serve their local community. Many of them find the education, networking, marketing, and business advocacy they need to succeed through a local Chamber of Commerce.
The Fountain Hills Chamber of Commerce provides its members with over 140 events, meetings, and networking opportunities each year. It offers ten different marketing resources that include a Business Directory available online and in the printed Community Guide. They provide members a platform for job posting, notary services, and three complimentary board rooms for meeting space. They also house Fountain Hills’ official Visitor’s Center.
“The pandemic has been extremely difficult for businesses, non-profits, and even for us,” said Betsy LaVoie, the President and CEO of the Fountain Hills Chamber of Commerce. “We accepted the challenge to pivot as much as possible to continue meeting the needs of our members. For example, the Thanksgiving Day Parade pivoted to a Parade of Thanksgiving Turkey Drive to support the Extended Hands Food Bank. The 2020 Annual Gala pivoted to a drive-thru dinner and virtual program. And we launched a Facebook ‘event’ during last year’s lockdown to allow local restaurants to post their menus and take-out procedures.”
The Survive Today, Thrive Tomorrow campaign helped market Chamber members through live Facebook “commercials” and reached thousands of residents. Members placed a Survive Today, Thrive Tomorrow cling in their window to indicate that they were “Open for Business.” These efforts resulted in tremendous support of our local businesses and have led to a rapid economic recovery in our community.
The Chamber hosts many community-minded events. These include Oktoberfest, Thanksgiving Day Parade, Stroll in the Glow, Mayor’s State-of-the-Town Address, mayoral debates, Meet the Candidates Forums, Fountain Hills Day, and the Non-Profit of the Month program. As residents and visitors participate in these events, they engage with one another and embrace the unique community spirit of Fountain Hills.
How is the Chamber, itself a non-profit, able to host all these events and offer the lowest member dues in the entire Metro area? They do this by hosting the two large art festivals each year. These events allow the Chamber to serve the community in such a valuable way. Many local non-profits use the Fountain Festival as their major fundraiser for the entire year. The events also increase our Tourism and Economic Development efforts, bringing in over 200,000 people during a single weekend. They support local restaurants, hoteliers, gas stations and grocery stores, while providing an economic opportunity for artisans and food vendors.
If you own a local business or want more information about Chamber events, visit FountainHillsChamber.

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