President’s Message–September 2016

A Bold Beacon for a Bright Future
This summer my wife Gail and I traveled to Charleston, South Carolina and experienced a beautiful city, one-fifth the size of Manhattan, that combines modern commerce, exquisite dining, a diverse population and a rich history.
 charles old homesCHARLESTON AT NITE
Amongst the many interesting things about Charleston was that it was subjected to an artillery barrage for 567 days that decimated the City during the Civil War.  Through a combination of many factors, many areas of the City have been restored to the way they looked at the time of the Civil War. Part of the charm of Charleston is its devotion to the past and embracement of the future.

The Chamber has adopted this concept of past and future in its work to commission a tribute to the victims of September 11th. Our goal was to create a work of art that was beautiful, uplifting, inspiring and a solemn remembrance of that dark day. We also wanted to reaffirm the principles which make our country and community great: Liberty, Tolerance & Freedom.

On Sunday, September 11th at 4:30 pm the Chamber will be hosting a special tribute
and will present to the community the beautiful sculpture created by renowned artist and sculptor, David Haussler. Using a piece of steel from the World Trade Center as the centerpiece, David has fashioned an inspiring work of art that meets all of our goals. The sculpture will be permanently placed at the POB Library’s Alma Craib Garden, a serene and contemplative home for the sculpture. The community support for the Chamber’s project has been outstanding—from Chamber members, the POB Library and the POB School Board, as well as the many community residents and business owners who have donated time and money to support this project.  Many thanks to all of our 911 Committee members, lead by Francesca Carlow, who have worked very hard for almost a year in making this project a reality.

World ViewThe sculpture will be a lasting tribute to those who lost their lives on September 11th and a bold beacon to a bright future for both our community and country. Please join us on September 11th at the POB Library to participate in this special day and special tribute.

In addition to the 911 Memorial, we are having our Annual Craft & Gift Fair on Saturday October 1st at the POB Library parking lot. The Fair Committee, lead by Bryan Trugman and Dr. Ben Carlow, has worked long and hard to make this year’s event bigger & better! I hear they’re working on a new sponsor who plans on guaranteeing a sunny day! I want to send a BIG SHOUT OUT! and HUGE THANKS! to all of our Sponsors–from Gold to Literature. You help make the Fair a great event and the Chamber deeply appreciates your support! Plan on spending the day at the Fair where you’ll be treated to wonderful entertainment, yummy food, shopping bargains galore and the friendship of neighbors and Chamber members. If you haven’t done so already, there’s still time to become a Sponsor or a Vendor! If you just want to advertise at the Fair you can Click Here to get started. Don’t miss out!

In case you haven’t noticed, the Chamber has gotten bigger this summer—no we haven’t gained weight—we’ve acquired new members through our MapToons Campaign! New members run the gamut from retail, restaurants, entertainment, professional services, houses of worship and more. You’ll be receiving the new MapToons soon and our updated Membership Directory will be distributed at the Fair promoting our Chamber and all of our members. Our Chamber has more than doubled in size in the past five years–a testament to the vitality of our members and the Chamber as a business organization.

We’re looking to offer more networking opportunities for our members. Alan Goldberg will be spearheading our networking committee. If you have ideas or would like to host a networking event, contact Alan, Tami Racaniello, David Weinstein or Bryan Trugman, all of whom are on the Networking Committee. Our first networking event will be hosted by Dr. Joel Kestenbaum of Optix Family Eye Care on September 27th. Put it on your calendar & make sure you come down!

We want your input and ideas—we’re going to convene a Brain Storming Committee (BS Committee for short!). What do you want out of your membership? How can we make the Chamber better? What do you want that’s new and different?  What do you want changed? This will be a great way to get your feedback and incorporate your ideas into Chamber programs. Watch for news about the BS Committee–if you’d like to get involved, let me know!

Don’t forget to come to the Kick Off Meeting on Wednesday, September 21st at the Marriott Residence Inn. Assemblyman Chuck Lavine will be our featured speaker. Come on down, meet new and old friends and learn more about what’s happening in Albany and on Long Island. Spotlight Speaker will be David Rosenberg, Esq.  Breakfast, bagels, coffee and schmoozing will all be available!

We’ve been busy this summer planning for the upcoming year. I hope you’ll get involved; come to meetings and events and get to know each other. As we learn more about each other, we’ll begin to collaborate and explore new opportunities for business, networking and progress. The beacon is beaming and the future is bright!

I look forward to seeing you soon!

Elan Wurtzel