Downtown Incubator Seeking Office Equipment

Downtown Bloomsburg Incorporated (DBI) is leading the effort to establish a business incubator/work co-space in downtown Bloomsburg.  Currently, its partners include Bloomsburg University, the Columbia Montour Chamber of Commerce, Kawneer, and the Wilkes University Small Business Development Center.  It has secured a location and is working to design, build out and promote this new venture. It has one of the busiest locations in Bloomsburg. 

The intention is to bring entrepreneurial-minded individuals of all ages together under one roof to share ideas and work together to start and grow their business ideas in Bloomsburg. DBI will also offer educational opportunities such as website design, social media consultation, financial projections, marketing plans and business plans for existing businesses in the community designed to accelerate their success while creating jobs and revenue for the region.

How can you help?  Like any new venture, this project has numerous needs.  DBI wants to establish a professional, first class facility for its clients. Its committee has identified a wish list of furnishings, appliances, equipment and supplies needed for the facility. It is requesting assistance in the form of donations of any new or gently used items, or a monetary donation for it to purchase the necessary items. Additionally, discounts on items and/or labor would be greatly appreciated. 

Wish List

  • Paint and painting supplies including rollers, brushes, pans, drop cloth and tape
  • Conference table and chairs
  • Printer/copier/scanner
  • Flat screen television and wall mount
  • Security camera system
  • Projector
  • Lockable filing cabinets
  • Phone system
  • Refrigerator
  • Microwave
  • Coffee Pot
  • Office supplies including copy paper, hanging files, file folders, staplers, staples, paper clips, ink pens

Please contact Andy Gegaris, DBI Downtown Manager at 570-784-2522 or email with any questions or concerns.

Thank you in advance for your time and consideration of this request.

Rescheduled Celebrate Historic Berwick Festival This Saturday

The Celebrate Historic Berwick festival, which was previously scheduled for May 13 before being postponed due to rain, will be held this Saturday, June 3. The festival started by the Chamber to encourage people to come to Berwick is now being coordinated this year by the Berwick Area Marketing Committee. Live music, ethnic food, kids activities, and competition to crown the best pizza in Berwick will be held from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. this Saturday on Market Street in front of the Jackson Mansion. There will be craft beer along with wine from Freas Farm Winery and O’Donnell Winery. Gold sponsors for the event are the Central Susquehanna Community Foundation, First Keystone Community Bank, and the Berwick Industrial Development Association.

Find out more as the event draws near on Facebook.

Penn National Declares Eight Percent Dividend for ChamberChoice Business Insurance Program

Chamber members that utilize the ChamberChoice business insurance program through Penn National Insurance will receive an 8% dividend delivered back to them in form of a check for policies written and retained during the program’s fifth year (May 1, 2015 – April 30, 2016). Members enrolled in the program should expect to receive their checks in the month of June. 

Since the program’s inception in 2011, over $6 million has been returned to member businesses in dividends out of over $30.9 million in annually paid premiums. The average annual dividend return in the five years of the program has been 7.4%. Columbia Montour Chamber members enrolled in the program have received over $140,000 in dividends over the last five years. 

To see if this program could be a good fit for your business, contact Chamber members Associated Insurance Management at 570-275-0100 or Hutchison Insurance Agency at 570-784-5550, for a no-obligation quote. 

Addressing Flood Insurance Affordability

Bill Seigel, Chief of SEDA-COG’s Community Development program, provided an overview of the Biggert-Waters Insurance Reform Act of 2012 and its impacts on flood insurance at a recent public meeting in Danville.

SEDA-Council of Governments (SEDA-COG) has begun an education and training process that helps municipalities and residents in the region find solutions to flood-related issues.

SEDA-COG received funding for the completion of a planning process to develop a Self-Help Assessment Tool for several central Pennsylvania riverine communities. The assessment is aimed at assisting the municipality and its citizens in defining and designing flood resiliency strategies and to better implement those strategies. The planning process has been tested in the pilot community of Selinsgrove and are proposed to be replicated in five additional communities to include the boroughs of Milton, Danville, Newport, and Lewisburg; and the Town of Bloomsburg

Specific project activities include public meetings to educate and increase awareness about flood-impacts and flood insurance reform. A meeting was held in Danville on May 18 and the Bloomsburg meeting is Tuesday, May 30, at 6 p.m. at Town Hall. Residents learn how to develop a response to these threats through a series of community working groups and data analysis. The community teams identify appropriate flood-mitigation options, match structures with best-suited options to mitigate flood impacts, and identify means of financing those options. Additionally, SEDA-COG will assist each community with the creation of a Flood Task Force Committee, and members of this Task Force will be recommended to Council for approval. The Task Force Committee members will vary from community to community, but may be comprised of a combination of citizens, insurance agents, real estate agents, and Council members. 

SEDA-COG has also entered into a contractual agreement with a professional services provider to provide discounted Elevation Certificates for citizens in these communities. The need for Elevation Certificates has become increasing important with the increase in flood insurance, particularly for Pre-FIRM structures with the enactment of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 and the Homeowner Affordability Act of 2014. 

The completion of this initiative will allow SEDA-COG to examine legislative solutions to flood insurance reform with local, state, and federal officials.  For more information, or to participate in either the Danville or Bloomsburg working group, contact Teri Provost at SEDA-COG at 1-800-332-6701.

Leadership Central Penn Class Celebrates Graduation








The 18th Leadership Central Penn class celebrated its graduation last Thursday at Frosty Valley Country Club. The keynote speaker was Dr. Holly Morrison, CEO of the Central Susquehanna Community Foundation, and the elected class speaker was Randy Hartranft of PPL Electric Utilities. The class community service projects this year benefitedThe Women’s Center, EOS Therapeutic Riding Center, Camp Victory and the Northern Columbia Community & Cultural Center.  Special thanks also go out to the program’s sponsors:  Welch Performance Consulting and the Central Susquehanna Community Foundation.
Applications for the 2017-18 Leadership Central Penn class are now being accepted and sought. The application deadline is July 31. For more information about this program or for questions, contact Donna Eyerly.

Congratulations to the 2016-17 class members:

Athena Aardweg
Northern Columbia Community & Cultural Center

Phil Baney
Autoneum North America, Inc.

Jordan Barbour
Geisinger Bloomsburg Hospital

Nikki Dietterick
First Keystone Community Bank

Gordy Evans
Geisinger Medical Center

Wren Fritsky
Bloomsburg University

Robert Geiger
Girton Manufacturing

Kevin Gordon
Autoneum North America, Inc.

Randy Hartranft
PPL Electric Utilities

Mark Hepler
Kawneer, an Arconic Company

Artur Jagielski
Kawneer, an Arconic Company

Megan Kiliti
Berwick Area Swimming Pool Association

Brian Klinefelter
First Keystone Community Bank

Shelly Tyson
Geisinger Medical Center

Aubry McConnell
Bloomsburg University

Christiana Paradis
The Women’s Center

Hannah Sick
First Columbia Bank & Trust

Cassie Weaver
Columbia Child Development Program