Chamber’s Ambassadors Committee discusses possibility of county-wide chamber

W. Curt Vincent -

ELIZABETHTOWN — Making the Elizabethtown-White Lake Area Chamber of Commerce a county-wide chamber was one of the main topics discussed Tuesday when the Chamber’s new Ambassadors Committee met at the Cape Fear Farmer’s Market.

The discussion arose when Chairman Erin Smith presented a survey put together by the Chamber’s board of directors, and one of the questions, which centered around whether the Chamber should be re-branded to cover more of the county, had been deleted.

On the heels of Monday’s brainstorming session for small business, hosted by Bladen County Economic Development, where one of the topics was a county-wide chamber, the Ambassadors Committee agreed that the survey question should be included. The group voted 7-0 to send the survey back to the board with the urging to include the question.

Some of the advantages of a county-wide chamber that were pointed out included increased membership and coordinating a calendar of events throughout the county.

It was also stated during the discussion that it was disappointing that Chamber Executive Director Dawn Madden did not attend the brainstorming session on Monday.

The Ambassadors Committee also talked about recruiting new members for the committee prior to the annual March recruitment period. With a couple of ambassadors already either dropping off or foreseeing conflicts arising, the group voted 7-0 to recruit as needed. Two possible recruits — Jake Suggs and Jackson Green — were suggested and will be contacted.

Another lengthy discussing centered around potential fundraisers the group could plan, and the two most prominent events were a pancake breakfast at Goldston’s Restaurant and a Halloween costume party and trunk-or-treat at Cape Fear Vineyard & Winery. Both events received a 7-0 vote and will be looked into before passing the ideas to the Chamber’s board.

A number of other ideas were kicked around without any firm decisions being made, including the best way to get Chamber and community events to the public with a virtual and public site calendar; the possibility of holding a more in-depth Chamber meeting now and then in the evening so more members can attend; as well as a debate on whether the Ambassadors Committee’s main goal should be to help the Chamber get more people into its members’ business or plan fundraisers to help alleviate the monetary reliance on members to sponsor events.

The next meeting of the Ambassadors Committee will be Tuesday, Sept. 20, at 8 a.m. at the Farmer’s Market.

W. Curt Vincent can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.

W. Curt Vincent

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