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Welcome to Chamber Insights - Complete October 2008 Issue

The monthly newsletter of the Columbia-Adair County Chamber of Commerce.

Editor and feature writer: Sue Stivers
President's Message: Donna Stotts
Feature Writer: Dan Koger, Ramie Hutchison

The Purpose of the Columbia-Adair County Chamber of Commerce is to promote and enhance the Business, Cultural, Educational and Civic Well Being of Columbia and Adair County.


Thought for the Month
"Hats off to all volunteers...those dedicated people who believe in all work and "NO PAY".


President's Message

WOW!! What an exciting month it has been at the Columbia-Adair County Chamber of Commerce. Many events have taken place and many others are being planned for the remainder of the year.

The 1st Annual "Wish List Event" for the Ronald McDonald Houses of Lexington and Louisville was a tremendous success. The people of this community came out, in full force, and really supported this effort. It was to honor so many families that have benefited from this wonderful "Home away from Home". The amount of items collected was so overwhelming that it is impossible to place a value. The Chamber would like to thank each business, individual or volunteer that made this possible

.We have had two ribbon cuttings this month. The Agape House ribbon cutting was on October 16th and Hallmark of Columbia, under new ownership with Joyce Reliford, was held on October 23rd. We welcome each of them as chamber members and invite you to stop in to visit and shop.

The 1st Annual "Treats on the Town" is well underway. Committee co-chairs, Dana Walker and Mindy Smith, have done an outstanding job of getting this event together. Children will be able to have a safe environment to enjoy Trick or Treating as they walk around the square in Columbia. For more information to set up call Dana at 384-7979, Mindy at 384-2361, or the Chamber office at 384-6020. Hope to see you there!

Christmas in Columbia Weekend will be on December 5th, 6th, and 7th. Many new events have been planned to make this year better than ever. A beauty pageant will be held on Friday night, followed by a fun filled day of free activities for the kids and a chance to buy home made treats and crafts for the entire family and wonderful entertainment and food. The parade, which always draws a crowd, will complete Saturday night. Sunday will complete the weekend with the Woman's Club Home Tours, Open House at Highland Rake Art Studio, A Christmas Play at local churches, and the LWC Choral ensemble at the Columbia Baptist Church. Local newspapers, radio, and flyers will be out soon to give you the final schedule of events. Call the Chamber office for information on how to get involved.

The guest speaker for the October Monthly Meeting was Attorney General, Jack Conway. It was an honor for us to have him in Adair County speaking about the problems he is addressing in Frankfort that are of great importance to all Kentuckians. It was also a privilege to have all 312 volunteers of the October 18th PRIDE Cleanup as the President's guests. Accepting this honor was County PRIDE official Lisa Lee, and County Judge Executive Ann Melton. This was the largest crowd in Adair County history. Thanks to all of you "Columbia, Kentucky is not only a Good Place To Call Home, but a Cleaner One as Well".

Corporate Sponsor of the Month

A special thanks to AIR EVAC LIFETEAM for being the corporate Sponsor of the month. The Chamber is grateful for your support and we are happy to have this service in our community. The two door prizes created interest, especially since the winners were Marsha Walker and Richard Walker. However, Richard graciously gave his prize back as he shared his story of how Air Evac was there when he experienced the immediate need on two different occasions to be gotten to out of town hospitals quickly. Yes, Air Evac Lifeteam...When Seconds Count, was there for him.The second door prize was won by Amy Thompson.

Amy Gentry, Membership coordinator gave the following talk at the Chamber meeting.

Air Evac Lifeteam is your local medical air ambulance service located in Campbellsville, KY. Air Evac Lifeteam has a membership program which allows Air Evac Lifeteam member's pay a yearly fee which entitles them to use the helicopter during the life-or limb-threatening emergencies at no additional cost. Membership coverage also includes hospital-to-hospital transfers in life-or-limb threatening emergencies.

Air Evac Lifeteam simply could not exist in the rural areas, without our membership program. When you become a member of the Air Evac Lifeteam, you help ensure that this valuable service will be available to you and your neighbors. You may never need our service, but a friend or loved one might. Your membership support literally helps save lives in your community.

An Air Evac membership offers significant benefits. First, your membership will not only save time in a critical emergency, it will also save money. Air Evac will work on your behalf with your benefits provider to secure payment for your flight. Whatever your benefits provider pays will be considered payment-in-full for your flight - no matter how many times a year you use the service for a life-or-limb threatening emergency. Furthermore, your membership is valid in all Air Evac Lifeteam service areas so you're covered while traveling. More than eighty mutually supporting Air Evac bases are located within the central United States.

Family Household (3 or more persons), 2 person Household and 1 person Household memberships are available at reasonable costs. Any person who has a question or would like to become a member of Air Evac, may call Amy Gentry at 270-283-1933, or e-mail at: gentryamy@air-evac.com,or for more information visit the Website at: www.lifeteam.net, Also you do not have to be a member to use this service.

New Member Highlights

The Chamber is extremely happy to welcome 2 new members to the Columbia-Adair County Chamber of Commerce.

Lake Cumberland ADD - Cumberlands Workforce - Donna Diaz, Executive Director & Darryl McGaha, Workforce Director. 270-866-42002384 Lakeway Drive, Russell Springs

Joyce's Hallmark Florist & Gift Shop - Owners Joyce, Amanda & Ashley Reliford270-384-0232 - 930 Jamestown Street, Columbia.

By joining the Chamber, you become a part of an organization that is dedicated to the economic growth and prosperity of Columbia and Adair County. Your investment in the Chamber means an "investment" in "your community". This is your Chamber...your voice in our community...helping to make "Columbia-Adair County "A Good Place to Call Home".

Looking Ahead...Your Chamber at Work

November 18 - Chamber Monthly Meeting - 11:45 AM
Speakers: Governors & Roger Scholars - ACHS students
Lindsey Wilson College Dining Center
Come and support these outstanding youth. Family members of the students are welcomed to attend. The Chamber is extremely proud of our youth.

December 1 - Chamber Christmas Party at LWC Dining Center - 6 to 8:00 PM
Calling all Chamber members...You won't want to miss this special event...good food, fun and fellowship and great entertainment. Corporate Sponsor of the Month will be Lindsey Wilson College.
Mark the date on you calendar and make plans to attend.

December 5, 6 & 7th - Christmas In Columbia Weekend
Make your plans to stay in Columbia the first weekend of December. There's something for everyone...youth and adults It will be the best ever...bigger and better...watch for details coming soon!!


THE CHAMBER BOARD OF DIRECTORS
WISH YOU AND YOUR FAMILY
A HAPPY THANKSGIVING


What Makes November Special=
  • Election Day....November 4th
  • Veterans' Day...November 11th
  • Southern & Eastern Kentucky Tourism Development Association....Nov. 27th
  • Thanksgiving Day...November 27th
  • National Nutrition Month...November 1st-30th
A new month is approaching. It's a month of remembrance for and appreciation of our veterans. A day to have the freedom to go to the polls to vote. It's a time of thanksgiving and family gatherings. An entire month to concentrate on good nutrition and a time to attend SEKTDA Tourism Caucus at the Center for Rural Development in Somerset.

Some tools to use in attracting more customers to your place of business are:
  • Offer discounts to veterans and soldiers.
  • In recognition of Nutrition Month, offer fruits and vegetable items, such as refrigerator magnets or stickers for kids.
  • Offer a discount to customers who bring in non-perishable food items for donation to the local food bank.
  • Decorate with cornucopias, fodder shocks, pumpkins, mums and other fall items.
  • Provide complimentary pumpkin cookies, bread, or pie.
Did You Know?

Adair County's first newspaper was the "Columbia Reporter" published from 1825 - 1928. The first successful county paper was the "Columbia Spectator" published from 1869 - 1909. News was often posted on the doors of the courthouse and at grist mills where numerous people had access to it. Early taverns were also centers where people met to discuss current events.


In the World of Economic Development
Skateboarding and Tourism are Connected


By Dan Koger, LWC Communications Professor

In pursing rural economic development, it helps to know that everything is connected to everything else.

This is especially so when the development objective is to attract more tourists and the dollars they pump into the Columbia-Adair County economy.

So far, area tourism brings in about $10 million per year. Sue Stivers is Executive Director of the Columbia-Adair County Chamber of Commerce and a tourism expert with many years of experience in tourism, locally, in the region and on the state level. She thinks that local figure could be significantly improved, under the right conditions.

"If we want to compete in the tourism business, everyone in the county has to know his or her job," Stivers said. "This is especially so for local residents who have direct contact with the public." For her, this includes everyone from mini-mart and gas-station attendants to waiters in restaurants, clerks in stores, students and faculty at Lindsey Wilson College, and even people on the street who are asked for driving directions.

"Visitors form impressions of our County based on the experiences they have with the people here," Stivers said. "Counties and towns in Kentucky and other states that get the most from their tourism resources are also the ones where everyone knows how to make tourists feel welcome. The little, and not so obvious things are often the ones that really matter."

She uses local skateboarding as an example of how even the most seemingly unrelated activity can make tourists happy, or resolved never to visit us again.

Adult tourists traveling with families are always interested in things for the kids to do, she said. A favorite activity for this demographic is often skateboarding.

"People who check into our motels or bed-and-breakfasts, often ask where their teenage son can go skateboarding," Stivers said. "Directing them to the local skateboarding park would be helpful, except that we don't have a skateboarding park."

As a result, Stivers said, the would-be skateboarders have to find some other diversion, something that isn't always easy when you're away from home. Or they may improvise, as skateboarders often do, by turning sidewalks, stair railings, brick walls and other urban structures into a make-shift obstacle course, at some hazard to themselves and to the sidewalks, rails and walls that they're sailing over. Local skateboarders are already doing this, with predictable impact on structural appearances.

"Structures damaged by skateboarding aren't as attractive to tourists as those in pristine repair," she said. "A skateboard park would save wear and tear on our infrastructure by local boarders while providing a valuable attraction for visitors."

"Whatever the cost of a skateboard park might be," Stivers said, "it could very well pay for itself in tourism gains."

To her, this is just one example of small things that can bring large tourism returns.

This is especially so in regards to local residents and business people.

"The nice thing about County residents seeing themselves as 'in the tourism business', Stivers said, "is that the community doesn't have to spend money on industrial parks, tax breaks or other incentives often needed to attract large firms, and their accompanying jobs.

"A community's success in tourism is more a matter of wisely developing existing local resources, especially people," Stivers said.

Business owners can help by assuring that their employees deliver considerate, knowledgeable customer service, at all times.

This is good business practice under any circumstances. For Columbia-Adair Tourism Commission, it can also mean more dollars in the county economy.


Computers
"Tip of the Month"


Americans are a people of shorthand and shortcuts, but there never seems to be a shortcut when dealing with computers. However, there are several keyboard shortcuts that will emancipate you from the hassles of your PC mouse.

When dealing with typed text or pictures after you have highlighted the text, these handy shortcuts will save valuable seconds of your time.
  • To copy, press Ctrl + c
  • To paste, press Ctrl + v
  • To select all text, press Ctrl + a
  • To save your document, press Ctrl + s
  • To print, press Ctrl + p
  • To search a document or webpage for a word or phrase, press Ctrl + f
  • To center your highlighted text, press Ctrl + e
  • To left align, press Ctrl + q
  • And to right align, press Ctrl + r
Although a simple pleasure, these shortcuts will save time and frustration while using your PC.

That's your Duo-County Tip of the Month......Ramie Hutchison

Junk Mail and Identity Theft

Did you know that junk mail presents an opportunity for ID thieves to steal important personal information? Junk mail is a nuisance for many consumers who receive daily postcards, flyers, specially-marked envelopes and pre-approved credit card offers. Let's look at some steps consumers can take to reduce the amount of unwanted mail and the possibility of identity theft.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, Americans throw out more than four million tons of junk mail every year, and what is one man's garbage is an ID thief's goldmine. A Javelin Strategy and Research survey on Id theft estimates that 8.1 million Americans became victims of identity theft in 2007, with nearly half a million cases of ID theft occurring as the result of stolen mail.

Better Business Bureau recommends consumers always shred important documents and take steps to reduce the amount of junk mail they receive that could fall into ID thieves' hands.

Pre-approved credit card offers are an easy target for identity thieves who can steal incoming mail and use these offers to open fraudulent credit accounts. Stopping these pre-screened credit offers can help reduce the chances of identity theft.

To "opt-out" of receiving pre-approved credit card offers for at least 5 years, and perhaps permanently, consumers can call toll free 1-888-567-8688 or visit www.optoutprescreen.com

To stop receiving direct mail offers consumers can go to: www.smaconsumers.org/cgi/offmailing. It may take as much as six months before solicitations stop.

A consumer's mailbox can often be over run with catalogues, even if they've never shopped with the company. To stop individual catalogues, consumers can contact the specific company in question. To stop mass mailings, consumers can e-mail, optout@abacus-us.com or write to Abacus, Inc., PO Box 1478, Broomfield, Colorado 80038.

Consumers can remove their address from "resident" and "occupant" mailings that offer various goods and services, by contacting Valassis by calling toll free 1-888-241-6760 or send a written request to ADVO, Inc., Customer Assistance, PO Box 249, Windsor, Connecticut 06095.

To stop receiving coupon packs, consumers can visit: www.coxtarget.com/mailsuppression/s/DisplayMailSuppressionForm and fill out an online request form. Other requests can be directed to the sender on the printed envelope received.For more advice on ID theft prevention - including trustworthy advice on staying safe on the internet, visit www.bbb.org



This story was posted on 2008-10-28 09:40:22
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