I hope everyone was able to enjoy their Thanksgiving holiday last week, and that somewhere amongst the festivities and food you found a moment to give thanks for the things in your life that help make it special. I know I did. I found myself thinking of not only my home life, but also my work life, and want to share how incredibly thankful I am for our community and the many partnerships that have blossomed for the Chamber.
It was humbling to see how many of our local restaurants and cafes stepped up to the plate to offer Thanksgiving dinners for those in need. Whether a meal by donation at the Schooner Restaurant and Lounge, or a free meal at the Dutch Mill Diner, or to-go turkey care packages from Muddy Waters, everywhere you look we are making an effort to take care of each other. Thank you to those who went the extra mile and opened their businesses and churches so that no one had to be alone on Thanksgiving.
The Chamber mission is to enhance tourism, business, and economic viability in the greater Tillamook area. We strive to be a resource and an advocate for our members, and we find our success relies on partnerships and relationships. The same immeasurable sense of community that fills bellies during the holidays keeps us running all year long – supporting and challenging us to fulfill our mission in new and greater ways.
Reflecting on all of this, I found myself thankful for the Chamber’s recent partnership with the Manzanita Visitor’s Center and the Manzanita business community during the “Cash Mob” event earlier this month. They welcomed us with open arms and were appreciative of the energy and ideas we brought, and our partnership efforts really paid off. Customers turned out in droves; many Manzanita businesses had a huge day! I look forward to future opportunities in all of our coastal communities.
Small Business Saturday, this past weekend, is another testament to the power of partnership. Our team worked closely with the SBDC office planning the day, and together we built some great relationships with small businesses throughout the county, and drew many shoppers to multiple communities. We facilitated a series of activities in the downtown area of Tillamook that were a collaboration with many small business owners. It was so exciting to see shoppers shrugging off the weather to explore what stores have to offer, and early feedback seems to be that this was a record breaking Small Business Saturday for several of the businesses. The Tillamook Revitalization Association was also a partner in this event (donating funding to help with the advertising), as was Art Accelerated, a burgeoning non-profit who put together the Pop-up Art show many were able to enjoy.
Not all of our partnerships are as visible. We were recently invited to participate in the Tillamook Urban Renewal Agency’s effort to revamp their application process. TURA is housed in Tillamook City Hall, and is essentially tasked with investing in the revitalization of the district. They offer funding opportunities for certain types of projects within their district, and have included the Chamber in their process to weigh in on how to make their programs more approachable for potential applicants. We are excited to be invited to the table, and are optimistic in where the conversations are heading.
We also have a lot to look forward to. By the end of the year, the Chamber will be in our new location downtown. It’s been a great partnership with the Tillamook County Creamery Association to share their space and their visitors, and we know that our relocation is not the end of our relationship. They have reserved space for visitor information within the new facility, and made a generous financial contribution that was essential in securing the building that is currently Bells Office Supply. The owners of BOS, Scott and Mary were thrilled to sell their building and evolve their business, and the Chamber is equally thrilled to be returning to downtown Tillamook after a 30+ year absence.
Thank you Tillamook for the opportunity to serve you.