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Chamber board nominations being accepted

It is the time of year when the Chamber accepts nominations of qualified Chamber members who are interested in serving a term on the board of directors.

While nominations are made by the existing board, interested parties in the community can nominate themselves.

Meetings are held once a month — the incoming board decides the appropriate day and time. A board member serves on the Chamber board for three years. Those interested in being on the board must have a business that has been a Chamber member for one year, and Chamber dues must be current. A representative of the business can be selected to serve on the board with the approval of the owner(s). Members on the board can serve on other committees, which meet at different times than the Chamber board. We seek a wide representation of businesses on the board including restaurants, lodging, retail, real estate, finance, legal, home-based businesses, non-profit agencies and individuals. Wide representation is important; we represent a diverse community and different perspectives are always brought to the table.

A board member must seek to improve the exposure of the Chamber and the services we offer to the community. We seek progressive business skills, personal success in business, and the ability to recommend new programs and actively support the business community. The board of directors is a working group and time is also committed to assisting with Chamber-sponsored events.

If you are interested in running for the Chamber board of directors, self-nomination forms are available at the Visitor Center and online.

Nominations must be submitted by the close of business, Wednesday, Oct. 13. Any current board member can provide more information (a list of members is available at the Chamber or online), or contact Mary Jo Coulehan, executive director, 264-2360.

SunDowners

SunDowner signup begins Monday, Oct. 4, at 8 a.m.

SunDowners are “Business After Hours” functions where establishments can show off a brand new business, something new in the business, or reintroduce themselves to the public. Businesses in close proximity to each other can co-op and host a “block party” or partner with a business that may not have store frontage.

SunDowners are fun social interactions and they are effective networking opportunities — probably one of the best opportunities available in the community. We encourage businesses to co-op a SunDowner, and we have a lot of home-based businesses that could use some more exposure. Partner with another business. Think of a creative place to have a SunDowner and make the event unique. If you are a new establishment, SunDowners provide terrific exposure for your new facility. Non-profit organizations can utilize this opportunity to host a fund-raiser.

Because of their popularity, SunDowners are booked a year in advance. Business owners interested in hosting a SunDowner should come to the Chamber on Monday, Oct. 4. Beginning at 8 a.m. we will filling the months for 2011. SunDowners are typically held the fourth Wednesday of the month, except for November and December when they are held the third Wednesday due to the holidays. There are no SunDowners in January due to the Chamber Annual Meeting or in September due to ColorFest. Some business owners have a specific month in mind, so they arrive at the Chamber earlier than 8 a.m. Numbers are available for members to draw. The lower your number, the better chance you have of selecting your preferred month. We also keep a waiting list since, in most years, there is a cancellation. You must be a Chamber member to host a SunDowner. The business provides edibles, while the Chamber provides the alcoholic and non-alcoholic refreshments. SunDowners are open to Chamber members and invited guests.

If you have any questions about hosting a SunDowner or the signup procedure, call Kim or Mary Jo at the Chamber at 264-2360.

Studio and gallery tour

This is the perfect time of year to combine viewing the gorgeous fall colors and the gorgeous works of art that will be on display all over the community, Saturday and Sunday. Over 25 artists will be featured, either in a gallery in town or at their studios.

The Artist Within will host four artists, Artisans of the Southwest will feature three artists, Estudio y Galleria will show off works of four artists, Wild Spirit Gallery will feature five artists and Painted Pony will have two artists. The other wonderful part of the tour is that you can see the studios of some local artists such as Pierre Mion, Chris Nelson, and Gerry and Marcia Kmack.

The studio tour is free on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Don’t miss this exciting event hosted by the Pagosa Springs Arts Council.

More Art

Although the opening reception has already occurred, you should still stop by SHY RABBIT Contemporary Arts to see the Print National 2 exhibit. The exhibit will continue until Sunday, Oct. 17, in the gallery at 333 Bastille Dr. There have been rave reviews about the showing, so you don’t want to miss this opportunity to see 90 pieces of exceptional contemporary printmaking from 45 artists.

The exhibit is free and open to the public. SHY RABBIT is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily, or evenings by appointment. While at the gallery, walk around and experience the incredible space that this workshop, studio and gallery have to offer. Also check out future classes that will be offered. For more information, you can contact the gallery at 731-2766.

Adoptathon

Ever wonder how those talented dogs get through all the obstacles and agility equipment? Ever think this would be a great way for your dog to work off some extra energy? Come out to Pagosa Feed and Nursery on Saturday, Oct. 2, and have some fun. From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. you can bring your dog and have your pet experience the agility course. The Humane Society will be on hand to assist with animal tips, as well as show off their dogs for adoption. Pagosa Feed and Nursery is located at 166 Bastille Dr. For more information on this pet-friendly event, call the Humane Society at 731-4771.

Funding opportunity

The County Tourism Commission has announced that special event funding applications are now available, either at the Chamber or online at www.archuletacounty.org. Groups that coordinate events in Pagosa Springs are eligible to apply. Funding is provided with county lodging tax dollars. The CDC is dedicated to contributing to the success of events and the attraction of visitors to the area. Special event funding dollars are limited. Applications must be turned in by the close of business Friday, October 22. Interviews will be set on Monday, Nov. 8. For more information, contact Mary Jo at the Chamber or Karin Kohake at the county at 264-8300.

Membership

We are pleased to announce the relocation of, and a ribbon cutting for, Photos by Griz, now located in the Country Center Plaza, Suite I, next to The Hub. Photographers Griselda Cervantes and Douglas Chapin specialize in “old time photos” complete with fancy historic attire. The Chamber will host a ribbon cutting at the location on Saturday, Oct. 2, at 5:30 p.m. Photos by Griz will offer a free photo for all attendees at this time only. They will also have some delicious hors d’oeuvres and beverages. What a fun way to close out your very busy Saturday. Stop by on your way out to dinner or after all your activities for the day. We look forward to welcoming another business to Pagosa and to the Chamber.

We have four other new members this week, the first two run by Andrew Baker. Andrew runs the new Calvary Pagosa nondenominational church, where their vision is Win-Disciple-Send. Participants will study the Bible verse-by-verse and chapter-by-chapter. You can attend service at 9:30 a.m. on Sundays at the Pagosa Youth Center behind the Humane Society Thrift Store, or hear them at 9 a.m. on Sunday mornings on KWUF 1400 AM.

Andrew also has Pagosa Home Inspection, offering home inspections for a seller or buyer and utilizing the latest equipment for carbon monoxide detection and other poisonous gases. Pagosa Home Inspection is a member of the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors. To contact Andrew, call 946-8062.

What used to be Rocky Mountain Cable is now USA Communications. They are upgrading their services and provide cable television, high speed Internet, and digital phone services. They are striving to provide the best value to their customers through quality products and services at a fair price. For more information about signing up for cable services, contact USA Communications at 731-2211.

We also welcome Happy Camper RV Park located west of town. Congratulations to the park for winning one of the Pagosa Pride awards at the 2009-2010 annual meeting for all the work they have done to improve the property. They are open year-round and offer full hookups, free WiFi, clean restrooms, horse corrals and are pet friendly. They accept a number of camping passes such as Passport America and Good Sam Discount cards. You can call 731-5822 for more information about campsites.

Our renewals this week include Growing Spaces; Pagosa Insurance Agency; Wilderness Journeys; Waste Management of New Mexico; Willie Swanda with Crazy Horse Outfitters; Choke Cherry East; SHY RABBIT Contemporary Arts; and the noon Rotary Club.

It was a busy summer. Take a breath and take time to look at your business. The Chamber will present a number of important educational forums during the next few months, as we get ready for the Parade of Stores to be held Dec. 3-4.