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WE-LEaD Networking Event Slated for This Evening
Chamber Board to Assist in Membership Recruitment
Foundation Board Seeking Additional Revenue Sources
Knickerbocker Tavern to Host GRYP Networking Event
Seminars Will Help Businesses Save Energy
Saftey Program to Address Reasonable Suspicion
LBC Adult Session to Focus on Diversity
Informational Meeting Set for Chamber's Italy Trip
Booth Spaces Added to Accomodate More H&G Exhibitors
Nomination Forms Available for Business Excellence Award
Have You Received Your CertifiChecks Reimbursement?
Central Blair Recreation Dinner to Honor Irwin
Blue Card Discounts

WE-LEaD Networking Slated for February 13th
The Chamber’s Women Encouraging Leadership, Education and Development (WE-LEaD) will hold a networking event tonight from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Marzoni’s in Duncansville. The cost to attend is $12 for Chamber Members and $20 for non-members. The corporate sponsor is Advantage Resource Group. To register for the event, contact The Chamber at 943-8151 or register online by noon today.

Chamber Board to Assist in Membership Recruitment
Membership recruitment is a high priority of The Chamber and the organization’s Board of Directors has agreed to assist staff and the Chamber Ambassadors in identifying and contacting potential members. “The Board is in a great position to speak to the benefits of membership,” explained Board Chair Ron Muffie.  “It’s not necessary for them to be there start to finish, however, they can open the door with some of the prospects that have been the most challenging.” The Board will meet Thursday at 7:30 a.m. at the Devorris Center.  Any Chamber member wishing to address the Board or attend the meeting should contact Joe Hurd by Tuesday at noon at 943-8151.

Foundation Board Seeking Additional Revenue Sources
The Education Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program has been a great boost to the Blair County Chamber Foundation’s effort of funding Leadership Blair County Youth and Businesses And Schools Investing in Cooperative Solutions (BASICS).  But as funding levels for EITC diminish, the Foundation has begun to look for alternative funding sources. The process for that search will be the primary agenda item at Wednesday’s Foundation Board of Directors meeting, to be held at 8:00 a.m. at the Devorris Center. “Clearly we need to find other ways of accessing financial support for the educational programs that The Chamber provides,” emphasized Michelle Zitsch of CCIS of Blair County, President of the Foundation Board. “The EITC program is too unpredictable.” Anyone interested in contributing to the Blair County Chamber Foundation should contact Cindy Cessna at 943-8151.

Knickerbocker Tavern to Host GRYP Networking Event
The monthly networking event of The Chamber’s Growth & Relationships of Young Professionals (GRYP) will be held this Thursday from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Knickerbocker Tavern in Altoona. There is no cost to attend for GRYP members. Non-members can attend for $5.00. To register, contact The Chamber at 943-8151 or register online.

Seminars Will Help Businesses Save Energy
OnDemand Energy, the Blair County Chamber’s partner on the ChamberChoice Energy Program, is offering Chamber Members the opportunity to learn more about ways to save energy through Act 129 programs.  Sixteen seminars are being offered that will talk about incentives and rebate programs for commercial and industrial energy efficiency projects as well as technical assistance, training workshops, energy assessments, utility bill analysis, bulk purchase consortiums and new laws concerning lighting that will take effect later this year.  There is no cost to attend any of the seminars. The complete list of seminar sites is listed here.

Safety Program to Address Reasonable Suspicion
A common misconception with employers is that if you have evidence an employee is abusing drugs on the job, you can just take them in for a drug test. This of course is not true. There needs to be a proper policy in place to legally comply with employment rules and regulations. To help understand the importance of a reasonable suspicion policy, The Chamber’s Safety Committee will present a workshop this Friday, February 17th, at the Comfort Inn, Duncansville. Featured speakers for this workshop include Kimberly Balamuta, Occupational Health Specialist from WorkPlace Health and Jamie Miller, Director of Employee Screening Services from Advantage Resource Group. The workshop will start promptly at 7:45 a.m. until 9:30 a.m. and will include a continental breakfast. Cost to attend is $15 for Chamber Members, $25 for non-members. Register online or by calling The Chamber at 943-8151.

LBC Adult Session to Focus on Diversity
Session #5 of the Leadership Blair County Adult program will be held this Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at The Casino at Lakemont Park. The session will focus on diversity and will include a number of exercises and discussions that will point out what many Blair County people face each day in their quests to be productive citizens. For more information on Leadership Blair County, contact Judy Juda at 943-8151 or visit The Chamber website.

Informational Meeting Set for Chamber's Italy Trip
The Chamber is offering its next exciting trip – Italy’s Great Cities – from October 7-14.  To help people get a better sense of the trip, a meeting has been scheduled for February 21st at 6:00 p.m. at the Devorris Center for Business Development.  Cindy Sullivan from Globus will be on hand to do a presentation and answer questions.  There is no obligation to sign-up for the trip and the meeting will last only about an hour.  To register, call The Chamber at 943-8151.  To obtain a brochure about the trip, call Classic Travel at 696-3558.

Booth Spaces Added to Accomodate More H&G Exhibitors
All booth spaces on the 2012 floor plan for March’s Blair County Home & Garden Show have been purchased. That does not mean that anyone still seeking a booth is out of luck for this year. “Last year, because the demand for booths was not as great, we changed the floor plan and eliminated some of the booths,” explained Stacy Hoover, The Chamber’s Vice-President of Events & Technology. “With a greater demand this year, we’ve added those booths back-in so that more exhibitors can be accommodated.”  Any business still interested in being an exhibitor at the Show, should contact Stacy at 943-8151. Sponsors for this year’s Home & Garden Show are: CCS Custom Builders, Furniture Unfinished, Home Depot, Re-Bath, Superior Walls by Advanced Concrete, and Wolf Furniture.

Nomination Forms Available for Business Excellence Award
Even though The Chamber’s Business Excellence Dinner won’t be held until June, the process has begun to determine the honoree for the Lifetime Achievement Award for Business Excellence, the highlight of the event.  Nomination forms are online or can be obtained at The Chamber Office, located in the Devorris Center for Business Development.  The deadline to nominate someone for the award is noon on February 29th. 

Have you Received Your CertifiChecks Reimbursement?
The bankruptcy hearings have been completed and people holding Chamber CertifiChecks when the company ceased operations are starting to receive checks in the mail for a small portion of what the actual value of their CertifiChecks had been.  Since The Chamber paid-out, at full face value, all unused CertifiChecks, any checks received should be turned-over to us.  A few people have already done that and we hope everyone who had previously been reimbursed by us would do the same.  Thanks for your understanding!

Central Blair Recreation Dinner to Honor Irwin
The Central Blair Recreation and Park Commission’s Community Classic Dinner will be held on February 25th beginning at 6:00 p.m. at the Bavarian Hall.  Tickets for the event are $30 each and includes a meal.  The highlight of the evening will be the presentation of the Respected Citizen Award to Thomas Irwin, Jr.  Guest speaker will be Adam Taliaferro.  For tickets, contact the Recreation Office at (814) 949-2231 or email Michael Hofer.

. . . to the following Chamber Members who were recognized as one of the “Top 100 People of 2011” by Pennsylvania Business Central magazine: Robert Bilger of M&T Bank, Steve Clark of Steve Clark Advertising, Debra Dellaposta of Word Processing Services, Donald Devorris of Blair Companies, Philip Devorris of Blair Companies,  Robert Eyer of Wessel & Company, Jason Fralick of Herbert, Rowland & Grubic, Randy Frye of Saint Francis University, Allan Hancock of The Hancock Group, Barry Kumpf of Blair County Convention Center, Lloyd Lamm of First National Bank of PA, Martin Marasco of Altoona-Blair County Development Corporation, Dawn McClellan of Evolution Physical Therapy and Wellness, Michael McLanahan of McLanahan Corporation, Jennifer Misner of Altoona Holiday Inn Express, John Moore of Moore Power Sales, Jerry Murray of Altoona Regional Health System, Marcia O’Rear of StelTek Graphics, Edward Sheehan of Concurrent Technologies Corporation, Jenny Sheetz of Saint Joseph Institute, Joseph Sheetz of Sheetz, Inc.,Stephen Sheetz of Sheetz, Inc., Glenn Steele of Geisinger Health System, Nino Vella of New Pig Corporation and Glenn Wilson of AmeriServ Financial Bank.

. . . to Invisible Fence of Central Pennsylvania which was named a 2011 Dealer of the Year by Invisible Fence Brand.

Blue Card Discount offers
Here are a few of the discounts you can receive with your Chamber Blue Card. Click here to see the full list of Blue Card Discounts. To have an offer listed contact Stacy Hoover at The Chamber at 943-8151.

Elmcroft Senior Living

Present your Chamber Blue Card and receive $500 off 1st month rent..

 Damin Printing Company, LLC

Present your Chamber Blue Card to receive a 15% discount on wedding invitations.

Dr.'s Centar & Imler


 Present your Blue Card to receive 20% off of spectacle lenses and frames OR receive 20% off of an exam and contact lens fitting. (Discount cannot be combined with any other insurance programs, coupons or courtesies.)

 Edward Jones Investments

Present your Blue Card to receive a FREE Business Retirement Plan Assessment from Edward Jones Investments, Altoona.

Envision Laser Centers


 Save $300 OFF PER EYE on Custom Lasik Lifetime Package. *Not combinable with any other offer including financing and insurance discounts.




February 13, 2012

Upcoming Events

Register online

GRYP Networking Event

Thursday, February 16, 2012
6:00 - 8:00 p.m.

The Knickerbocker Tavern

Register Here

Safety Presentation

Friday, February 17, 2012
7:45 - 9:30 a.m. 
Comfort Inn, Duncansville

Topic: Reasonable Suspicion

Kimberly Balamuta, Occupational Health Specialist from WorkPlace Health

Jamie Miller, Director of Employee Screening Services from Advantage Resource Group 

Register Here 

Italy Informational Meeting

Tuesday, February 21, 2012
6:00 p.m.

Devorris Center for Business Development

Register Here

Business After Hours

Thursday, February 23, 2012
5:00 - 7:00 p.m.

Sponsored by:

allegheny ballet

1003 N. 4th Avenue, Suite D, Juniata

Register Here 
GRYP Snow Tubing

Friday, February 24, 2012
7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Blue Knob All Seasons Resort

Register Here 

 Blair County Home & Garden Show

home and garden logo

March 2, 2012 - 1:00 - 9:00 p.m.
March 3, 2012 - 10:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.
March 4, 2012 - Noon - 5 p.m.

Jaffa Shrine


Upcoming Committee Meetings
Week of 2/13/12

BASICS Steering Committee
Monday, February 13, 8:00 a.m.
Greater Altoona Career & Tech Center

President's Forum Steering Committee
Monday, February 13, 1:30 p.m.
The Chamber

WE-LEaD Steering Committee
 Tuesday, February 14, 8:00 a.m.
Devorris Center

Home & Garden Show Committee
Tuesday, February 14, 8:30 a.m.
The Chamber

Chamber Foundation Board
Wednesday, February 15, 8:00 a.m.
Devorris Center

Hotel/Attractions Roundtable
Wednesday, February 15, 8:15 a.m.
Holiday Inn Express

LBC Adult Committee
Wednesday, February 15, 3:30 p.m.

The Chamber

Chamber Board of Directors
Thursday, February 16, 7:30 a.m.
Devorris Center

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