Member News – February 21, 2018

Member News

  • Today is the last day that Thrivent Financial will be collecting items for the Ronald McDonald House of Danville. Thrivent has a collection box at its office located at 417 W. Main St., Bloomsburg, and is collecting small snack items and beverages such as K-cups, juice boxes, and individually-wrapped snack items like granola bars, crackers and cookies. Anyone interested in making a donation should drop it off at Thrivent’s office by 3 p.m. today. Tomorrow, Thursday, Feb. 22, the public is invited to join Thrivent at the Ronald McDonald House between 5-8 p.m. where these donations will be presented to RMHD, and attendees can hear about the mission and focus of RMHD, take guided tours of the house and enjoy some hors d’oeuvres and a dessert buffet. 


  • Friedman Electric will host an art exhibit featuring local artist Claude Harrington at its Bloomsburg store, located at 1100 Old Berwick Rd., this afternoon, Wednesday, Feb. 21, from 3-5 p.m. There is no cost to attend and light refreshments will be served. Attendees can meet the arist, enjoy the arts and grab a snack while also having an opportunity to look around Friedman Electric’s Lighting Design Center, which features a wide range of products to keep homes and businesses a place of beauty, comfort and energy efficiency. This would make a perfect and convenient stop on the way to tonight’s Business After Hours, which is just down the street from Friedman Electric at Art of Floating and begins at 4:30 p.m.



  • The Atlantic Sunrise pipeline construction continues to make steady, safe and environmentally responsible progress, according to Williams. Construction is already more than 30 percent complete, keeping the project on schedule to begin flowing natural gas later this year in late summer. To keep residents, businesses and other interested stakeholders up to date on construction activities, Williams has prepared an Atlantic Sunrise Construction newsletter for Schuylkill, Northumberland and Columbia counties. In it, you’ll find information on the latest round of the Atlantic Sunrise Community Grant program, and a mention of Williams’ recent nomination for the Chamber’s 2018 Large Business of the Year award. 


  • The Borough of Danville recently transitioned to new recycling tubs for its curb side recycling program. If you or anyone you know is still using the black plastic buckets for recycling, please call the Danville Borough office at 570-275-3091, ext. 0 to request a new recycling tub. 


  • The Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit’s technology group will conduct a pair of computer fairs for middle and high school students in March, and is seeking professionals in business and the community to serve as judges in specific categories. The middle school fair will be held on Monday, March 5 while the high school fair will be on Monday, March 26. Both will be held at CSIU 16’s building located at 90 Lawton Lane, Milton, and will run from 9-11 a.m. Categories that need judges are animation, computer fair logo, digital movies, graphic design, programming and web page design. For more information, or if interested in serving as a judge, contact Bill Herald as CSIU via email no later than this Friday, Feb. 23.


  • The Bloomsburg Municipal Airport, which is operated by the Bloomsburg Municipal Authority, will hold a Fly-In/Drive-In Breakfast on Saturday, March 3, from 8 a.m. – noon at its location at 301 Airport Rd., Bloomsburg. The event is free and open to the public, however donations are suggested, and will be held rain or shine. 


  • The local PA CareerLink centers have scheduled their 2018 job fairs. The local one in our area will be held on Wednesday, May 9, from 4-7 p.m. at Columbia-Montour Area Vocational Technical School, located at 5050 Sweppenheiser Dr., Bloomsburg. There will also be job fairs during May just outside of the area at Shikellamy High School in Sunbury on May 2 and at the Selinsgrove VFW in May 30. Later in the year, there will be one at the Best Western in Lewisburg on Sept. 6. The registration links for employers are now open for the three May events. See the flyer for more information as well as registration links. 

Application Deadline For Next Round of Atlantic Sunrise Community Grant Program is March 1

The Atlantic Sunrise Community Grant program has granted more than $2 million to 268 organizations through Pennsylvania since its inception in 2015. Williams is now accepting grant applications for its latest round of grants, which will be the seventh round, and application deadline for this spring cycle is next Thursday, March 1. Two cycles of Atlantic Sunrise grant awards are announced each year – spring and fall. 

Please visit the Atlantic Sunrise Community Grant program page to learn more about the application process, eligibility guidelines, and how organizations are utilizing grant funds to improve their local communities. The application can also be accessed on the same website. 

Several Chamber members have benefited from receiving grants during previous grant rounds since the program’s inception in 2015, including the Columbia County Traveling Library, the Foundation of the Columbia Montour ChamberHemlock TownshipPennsylvania College of Technology Foundation, Buckhorn Volunteer Fire Co.Camp VictoryBenton Rodeo AssociationBloomsburg Theatre Ensemble and the Columbia-Montour Area Vocational Technical School

Welcome New York Life – Elizabeth Kelchner, Agent

More than 400 businesses and organizations belong to the Chamber to receive benefits and support efforts to strengthen their businesses and our region. Increased membership allows us to offer additional programs and benefits, have a stronger voice in advocacy and be involved in more activities and initiatives in our communities. The Chamber welcomes its newest member, New York Life – Elizabeth Kelchner, Agent, to help us fulfill our mission.

A native of Berwick, Elizabeth Kelchner is an independent agent of the New York Life Insurance Company. Although she operates out of her office in Scranton, she lives in Columbia County, and has been a New York Life agent since 2016. She offers a variety of products through New York Life that can help meet a number of insurance and financial needs, including but not limited to retirement, college funding, long-term care, lifetime income strategies, and much more. She can be reached at 570-854-1869, or visit her website or Facebook page

Chamber’s Energy Partner Improves Service Offerings

The Chamber’s energy consulting partner, OnDemand Energy, helps businesses and individuals save money on electric and natural gas costs by managing the complexities of energy supply, delivery, and consumption. In January, OnDemand was acquired by Kinect Energy, Inc., a World Fuel Services company. Representatives expect that this acquisition will further benefit chamber members.

OnDemand/Kinect Energy will continue to serve all segments of the chamber membership from residential through large commercial and industrial customers. With Kinect Energy, our ChamberChoice Energy Program will have increased capabilities to provide marketing and back office support to all chambers, allowing education to smaller members and residents on the energy program value.  Finally, the ChamberChoice Energy Program large commercial offerings, particularly on multi-state or international chamber customers, will be significantly enhanced through a much broader and comprehensive set of energy products and services.

“OnDemand has been the exclusive energy consultant for our ChamberChoice Energy Program and has done an incredible job delivering market leading energy products and services over the last 10 years.  Their combination with Kinect Energy will strengthen our existing energy program and now enable our Chamber members to realize a much broader and comprehensive suite of energy products and services while continuing to allow them to focus on their core business,” said Sam Weber, president of ChamberChoice.

Members of the Columbia Montour Chamber have collectively saved millions of dollars on their energy costs through the program since it began. To find out if you can save on your electricity and natural gas costs, contact OnDemand Energy at 888-566-3362 and tell them you’re a member of the Chamber for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation. Or, Chamber staff would be happy to facilitate and introduce you to an OnDemand rep, so, if you would prefer that route, call the Chamber office at 570-784-2522. 

Business Continuity Strategies Discussed at Learn at Lunch Featuring Thrivent Financial [Video]

Attendees had an opportunity to learn about ways they can protect their business from going out of business in the event of an unexpected event that keeps them from running their business on a daily basis at a Learn at Lunch on Feb. 13. The lunch talk was sponsored by PPL Electric Utilities and held at the Hampton Inn Bloomsburg

Financial advisors Richard Keller and Kerry Maurer from Thrivent Financial in Bloomsburg spoke about steps that business owners can take to ensure their business continues in the event of death, extended sickness or other leave, retirement, or other unexpected event that makes them unable to fulfill their regular day-to-day duties in running the business. Things like buy/sell agreements, special life insurance policies designed for the beneficiary to be able to buy the business, key personnel insurance, and various other subject and concepts related to business succession planning and protection were discussed. 

The entire presentation was broadcast on Facebook Live, and all Learn at Lunch events this year are scheduled will be streamed on Facebook Live as well, so that other interested members and others will be able to hear the presentation should they be interested but unable to attend in person. See below for the entire presentation, which lasts just over 50 minutes.