We welcomed the following new members:
Bear Arms CrossFit
Rowland, Kitchen, and Associates
Sammie and Linda Graham
Harriett and John Rucker
Sandy and Joanne Fretwell
DJ Trav Mobile Services
Allstate Insurance / Eric Zingmark
Lawrimore Law Firm, PC
Illusions Hair Studio
Heanue Well Drilling, Inc.
The Corner Scoop
Newberry County Humane Society
Highly Flavored Catering
Newberry Animal Hospital
Clayton Memorial Unitarian Universalist Church
Natural Balance Integrative Massage
Southern Roots Massage Therapy
Black Grove Farm
Robbie and Mary Alex Kopp
Do-Si-Jo’s Corn Maze/Hendrix Farm
Drinkall Chiropractic Life Center, Inc.
Civil Engineering of Columbia
Kiss It Goodbye Boutique
Higher Ground Church
We kicked off the year with our Annual Banquet. We honored outgoing board members; recognized Ambassadors Mike Meadow, retired firefighter, and Kimberly Kitchens, Servpro of Newberry and Laurens Counties; and heard a history of the Chamber from Jimmie Coggins, WKDK.
We held several Ribbon Cuttings throughout the year. The Newberry Observer covers each event with a complementary article. We held nine Business After Hours networking events during the year.
Although awhile in the making, the Newberry County Young Professionals are beginning their second year of official establishment. Their Coat Drive service project held in the fall, along with the Rotary Club of Newberry, Newberry County Literacy Council and Newberry College’s Muller Center, resulted in 250 coats, sweaters and blazers along with hats, gloves, and scarves that went to the community, with a priority of benefiting local high school students. Thank you to Country Clean for cleaning the coats; it was quite the undertaking! The NYPs will hold their Annual Meeting on January 10 from 5:30 until 7:30 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites. If you are between the ages of 21 and 40 living or working in Newberry County, drop in and see what they have to offer.
We introduced the Leadership Newberry County program with 20 attendees in the 2017-2018 class. Bill Bohl, Micah Decker, Julia Eckhardt, Rick Farmer, Molly Fortune, George Franklin, Leann Hutto, Chris Kemper, Kimberly Kitchens, Laura Kneece, Mary Alex Kopp, Kenneth McBride, Angela Reid, Debra Shaw, Collin Shealy, Jack Shields, Caroline Smith, Samie Truong, Cynthia Vannerson and Brenda Williams make up the first class. This program is designed for the leader who is dedicated to making a difference in the community. It is an immersive learning experience that focuses each month on topics including Agriculture, Arts, Communities, Economic Development, Education, Government, Infrastructure, Law Enforcement, Health and Human Services, Recreation, and Tourism. This is an experience-based program and is designed to help participants understand the assets and challenges of Newberry County, elevate their leadership, and further engage in the community. The intensive examination of these issues gives the candidates the information and confidence to make a positive change in our community.
Participants will expand upon their personal and professional networks as they work together one day for each of nine months. The program will culminate with the proposal of a class project.
The Senior Job Fair aimed at high school seniors ready to enter the workforce was held in May.
Medical Services of America, Brook Health Care and the Chamber teamed up for the Second Annual Senior Expo in May. This event was an educational event for our county’s aging population and their caregivers. Proceeds of $5,000 were donated to the Newberry County Council on Aging.
We hosted the Grow Newberry Farmers Market in the summer and fall. It’s the perfect setting for obtaining local produce and crafts.
We held a Business Expo with the Greater Chapin Chamber of Commerce in June.
We participated as one of eleven counties in Clemson Extension’s Ag+Art Tour of South Carolina. Since its inception in 2012, over 20,000 visitors have experienced agriculture and local art throughout South Carolina. With our addition, we brought a couple of thousand visitors to our area. The lingering effects are that people leave educated about agriculture and have added to their network of agricultural goods and artisans. ETV’s Making It Grow hosted an unplugged version of their award-winning show at the Newberry Opera House during the weekend.
It was a great experience to participate in the EclipseFest planning with the City of Newberry, Newberry Opera House, Ritz Theater, Newberry College, Piedmont Technical College, and so many others.
Our Annual Golf Tournament was held in September. WKDK was the winning team of the 2017 tournament.
We held the Annual Pumpkin Painting Party in October.
In November we hosted a Job Fair at Piedmont Technical College.
We participated in the four Christmas parades around the county. NYP board member Sami Baird made our signs promoting shopping local.
We enjoyed hosting many children and families the first four evenings in December for Santa’s Workshop and Storytime with Mrs. Claus. Munson Summer and students perform each evening.
We hosted a successful Christmas Tour of Homes. Central United Methodist Church was the featured church on the tour. Bubba and Lynn Cromer, John and Rose Marie Favors, and Robbie and Mary Alex Kopp opened their homes for the occasion. The evening was capped with a wine and cheese drop-in at Uptown Pour.
We bid farewell to four Chamber board members: Our Chair Sandy Scherrens, Newberry College; Robert Martin, Lane Properties; George Piersol, State Farm/George Piersol; and Wayne Pratt, Pratt Funeral Home. We thank them for their service and support.
We look forward to a successful 2018. Our mission is to promote a positive business environment and to enhance the quality of life in Newberry County by supporting the state and county economic development efforts while meeting the needs of our communities and members. Please visit us at 1209 Caldwell Street on the first floor of Community Hall in downtown Newberry or call us at 803-276-4274 to discuss your business needs.