Business expo to feature informative sessions, speakers

This year’s Business to Business Expo is titled, “The Power of: Collaboration, Social Media and Health.” The Expo will be held Wednesday, Oct. 16, at the Pagosa Center for the Arts.

“A community is the built, social and natural environments that comprise a defined location where people live, work and play together. A true community is one in which people are willing to work together toward a common good, framed by common core values.” — Tim Merriman and Lisa Brochu of Heartfelt Publications, international consultants and keynote speakers at the upcoming Chamber of Commerce Business to Business Expo.

How does Pagosa fit these definitions? Are there steps we can take to become a more cohesive, collaborative community? Which groups can work together? How do we identify and prioritize community projects?

Merriman and Brochu recently won the Evvy award, the largest student-run award program in the nation, for a book that is filled with inspirational stories and helpful community planning tips.

The Downtown Colorado Inc. group came to Pagosa earlier this year and we did a SWOT analysis of our town (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats). Heartfelt Publications offers another analysis, HEART: Holistic, Engaging, Appropriate, Rewarding and Thematic. Merriman and Brochu will give us tips at the Business Expo on how we can take our SWOT analysis, apply it to the HEART analysis and create some steps or groups that can move forward.

Several grass-roots groups, community leaders, and unaffiliated residents of Pagosa have been looking for ways to work better together. These speakers are inspirational and motivating, and will inspire the audience to grow our community and set some plans in motion. Representatives of government agencies, school systems and non-profit organizations, and members of the general public, are invited to attend this summit. Many topics will be discussed, including the presentation by Merriman and Brochu.

Another guest speaker will be Jack Jostes, Internet marketing director of Ramblin’ Jackson Multi Media Group. Jostes will take us through the fast, furious and ever-changing world of social media.

We have also been talking about the new health care issues and the Connect for Health Colorado Marketplace. Linda Gann, Western Slope coordinator for Connect for Health, will be the luncheon speaker. Since the marketplace will be open, Linda will be able to guide us through the insurance shopping maze, identifying what businesses are required to do in the ever-changing policy arena, discussing how individuals can benefit from tax credits and what kinds of insurance policies are available.

All the speakers coming to the Business Expo will be here to help you improve your business and help us as a community. Registration for the event is open and tickets can be purchased online or at the Chamber. General admission tickets are $25 and vendor booth space is $50. These prices include lunch, all the sessions and a networking reception at the end of the day. There will also be giveaways and opportunities for business promotion.

For more information, sponsorship opportunities, or to purchase tickets, contact the Chamber at 264-2360.

Thank you

As the busy summer season draws to a close for many non-profit organizations that live on volunteer support, the Chamber would like to take this opportunity to once again say “thank you” to the many full and part-time people who work so hard volunteering in our community. Our Visitor Center volunteers are no exception, and we thank them for the hours they spend here. The Visitor Center will be going to winter hours mid-October, which means reduced weekend coverage and we will close at 5 p.m. instead of 6. The Chimney Rock Interpretive Association with their stalwart volunteer program informs thousands of people about our National Monument and guides them through numerous special summer programs in almost any kind of weather conditions. You all are true troopers.

The Chamber has reserved the Business After Hours for May 2014. Our organization, in conjunction with many of the non-profit organizations, will be thanking the community at that reception. When we speak about volunteers, we also want to include our businesses. It is the businesses that donate, donate, donate to so many causes in our community. Without their donations of goods and services, non-profit organizations would not be able to host their auctions and many fund-raising efforts. So, the 2014 May Business After Hours will be dedicated to thanking the community: our volunteers and businesses. You will hear more about this event as the year progresses, but it is everyone’s efforts that make our service and non-profit community so strong.


Remember, there will be two new events held this week and next.

The Epic Mountain Challenge will be held Oct. 5-6. Athletes will be in town to compete for a large prize purse. There will be nightly race videos, food and beverages, and a concert by Tim Sullivan. Events will be based at The Springs Resort. For more event information, visit the website,

Then, on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 12-13, the Pagosa MAKERS Expo &Tour will be held. This interactive experience will showcase some of the fantastic products and art made here in Pagosa as the owners of creative businesses and artists show their products and illustrate that Pagosa is home to a growing creative community and is taking shape as an arts and creative tourism destination. The work on display will include food and beverage products, crafts, traditional arts, tools, music, quilts, natural body products, clothing, jewelry and more. The expo will be located at SHY RABBIT Contemporary Arts and the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts. Tour stops are located throughout the area. Stop by the Chamber or many other locations to pick up a program and location booklet. The expo and tour are free.


We have one new business joining the Chamber this week. We welcome Aileen Wolfer and her Shaklee Independent Distributorship. Shaklee offers natural nutrition and personal care products, economical and safe cleaning products, sports nutrition and a breakthrough approach to weight loss and maintenance. Aileen is available for consultations 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Give her a call at 797-9209. Welcome Aileen and Shaklee.

Renewing members this week include All Seasons Lake Lodge, A Hummingbird Haven, Sunset Ranch Cabins, Happy Camper RV Park, Higher Grounds Coffee, River Pointe Coffee Cafe, Pagosa Glass, Pagosa Insurance Agency, Summer Phillips/Goldsmith, Wilderness Journeys/Pagosa Rafting Outfitters, Diamond Hitch Stables, Mountain Eye Care, San Juan Outfitting, Lantern Dancer Gallery and Gift Shop, Terry’s Ranch and Home Supply/Ace Hardware, and Plaza Liquor.

This story was posted on October 3, 2013.