Increasing Awareness of Substance Abuse and Recovery

The United in Recovery coalition is participating in events throughout the fall to raise awareness of substance abuse issues and celebrate recovery. A display in the Education building at the Bloomsburg Fair is designed to help parents and guardians identify potential hiding places for drugs. The Hiding in Plain Sight display simulates a child’s bedroom and was recently unveiled at a high school football game.

The coalition, organized by the United Way of Columbia and Montour County, seeks to reduce substance abuse in our area through education, prevention, and recovery and treatment. Community organizations, including the Chamber, and concerned citizens meet monthly to coordinate efforts in all three areas. The most recent newsletter provides an overview of these efforts, as well as information on a 5K event to be held Oct. 13 at the Bloomsburg Fairgrounds.

Anyone interested in getting involved in the coalition should contact Adrienne Mael, United Way President & CEO, at 570-784-3134 or email.

Welcome Lapels

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, Lapels, to help us fulfill our mission.

Lapels is a locally-owned, full-service dry cleaner located in Bloomsburg that not only offers same day service if dropped off by 9 a.m., but also has several other services in addition to traditional dry cleaning of clothing. It also offers a cleaning service for items that may have been damaged in fire or by water, cleaning for other household items such as comforters, sheets, drapes, tablecloths and other similar delicate items, alterations, as well as wedding gown cleaning, pressing and preservation. Lapels also offers a loyalty program. For more information on Lapels, including its many services, rewards program and same day service details, visit their website or Facebook page. Lapels is located at 833 Columbia Blvd. (Rt. 11) next to Dunkin Donuts, and is open Monday-Friday, 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., Saturday from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Sunday from 12-3 p.m. They can be reached at 570-387-1015. 

Bloomsburg Community Foundation Awards Over $10K to Local Nonprofits

Front Row (seated): Linda Resseguie, Friends of the Columbia County Traveling Library, Inc.; Ruth Joy Capozzi, Your Loving Choices, Inc.; Laurie Swank, AGAPE; Sandie Yule, AGAPE;
Second Row (standing): Kara Walsh, Friends of the Columbia County Traveling Library, Inc.; Heather Beagle, The Exchange; Anne Cosper, The Exchange; Jim Mccann, Central Susquehanna Sight Services; Debbie Jones, Columbia County Child Development Program; Ashley Miccio, Bloomsburg Area YMCA; Sue Jackson, Coalition on Social Equity; Lydia Kegler, Bloomsburg Public Library; Oren Helbok, The Exchange

The Bloomsburg Area Community Foundation (BACF), whose funds are administered by the Central Susquehanna Community Foundation, recently awarded $10,300 to local nonprofits during its competitive grantround. The awards were granted through the Bloomsburg Area Community Foundation Fund. The awards were given out at a luncheon at Monty’s on the Bloomsburg University, on Tuesday, Sept. 11, during which the BACF’s impact was also celebrated. Included in the 13 organizations that received awards were five Chamber members.  

The BACF focused its funding on organizations that invest in community programs and projects within Bloomsburg and surrounding areas.  Those grant recipients include:

  • AGAPE – Love from Above to our Community, Daily Bread Meal $1,000
  • Benton Area School District, Student of the Month Award Program $300
  • Bloomsburg Area YMCA, Summer Camp $500
  • Bloomsburg Public Library, Health Literacy Resources for Teens $700
  • Central Susquehanna Sight Services, Inc., Prevention of Blindness Services 500
  • Coalition for Social Equity in honor of former board member Isabelle Tarr $1,000
  • Columbia Child Development Program, Increase Mathematical Materials for 2-5-Year Olds $1,500
  • Friends of the Columbia County Traveling Library, Inc., Establishing Core Collection of Children’s Audiobooks $800
  • The Bloomsburg Salvation Army Service Center, Back to School Clothes Shopping $1,500
  • The Children’s Museum, Update and Improve Health and Nutrition Exhibit $600
  • The Dental Health Clinic, Financial Aid Awards to Help Individuals Pay for Dental Work $1,000
  • The Exchange, Creative Engagement with Youth-Artmaking Programs for Summer Camps $500
  • Your Loving Choices, Inc., Dad Parenting Curriculum $400

The Bloomsburg Area Community Foundation is an affiliate of the Central Susquehanna Community Foundation which helps administer BACF’s grant investments. Nonprofit organizations that provide programming in the Bloomsburg community and surrounding areas are encouraged to apply during the 2019 competitive grantround.  Details will be available on the CSCF’s website.

BACF Board Members are Fred Gaffney, Cleveland Hummel, Lauren Martz, Paul Reichart, Rev. Howell Sasser, Jr., John Thompson, Fred Trump, Rick Vanderpool


Member News – September 12, 2018

Member News

  • The Penn State World Campus will hold a number of informational webinars in September for those that may be interested in pursuing a degree or certification through Penn State’s online/virtual delivery unit. Tonight, Sept. 12, from 8-9 p.m., there will be an information webinar on the redesigned Penn State Online MBA. Then, on Thursday, Sept. 27 from 7-8 p.m., there will be an online MBA sample class in which interested individuals can discover what it’s like to be a student in the Penn State Online MBA program. For a complete listing of upcoming PSU World Campus information events and news, check out its Sept. newsletter for alliance partners, through which all employees of Columbia Montour Chamber members, their spouses and dependents are eligible for a 5% discount on tuition through the Penn State World Campus. 


  • The Central Susquehanna Community Foundation will host a special presentation on how federal tax reform, signed into law last December, is impacting charitable planning for businesses this afternoon, Sept. 12 at the Iron Fork at Frost Valley Resort in Danville. An afternoon session focusing on businesses will be held from 4:30-5:30 p.m., with hors d’oeuvres served at 4 p.m. There is no cost to attend. See the flyer for additional information. RSVP by by emailing or calling Karri Harter at 570-752-3930 ext. 6. 


  • Innotek Computer Consulting was recently ranked as one of the top managed service providers (MSPs) in a worldwide study conducted by Channel Futures. The online media company devoted to the Information Technology (IT) field publishes its annual MSP 501 ranking list, the IT channel’s first, largest and most comprehensive industry ranking survey. Innotek came in ranked #441 in the world out of thousands of submission from across the globe. See the full list here


  • Bloomsburg University will be conducting a test of its emergency siren system this Friday, Sept. 14 at 9:50 a.m. Emergency management agencies have been notified. 


  • The Weis Center for the Performing Arts will hold a free concert this Friday, Sept. 14 at 7:30 p.m. in the Weis Center Atrium featuring classical Arabic music, Sufi music of northern Egypt and music popular along the Nile River.

    Mohamed Abozekry & Karkadé

    It will feature Mohamed Abozekry, an oud (lute) master still in his mid-20s, who brilliantly explores Egypt’s popular and classical music traditions, Sufi calls, and secular poetry with a new instrumental project called Karkadé. With Karkadé, his new project that he is bringing to the United States for the first time, he evokes the fragrant hibiscus tea found in Cairo and the eponymous French café at which the ensemble was born. He is joined by Farag Hamouda (ney – flute), Lotfy Aly (violin), Hany Bedeir (riqq – percussion), and Aly Mohamed (dehola/daf – percussion).


  • The Borough of Danville’s Flood Resiliency Task Force will host a flood insurance policy seminar at the Danville Borough building, 463 Mill St., Danville, on Thursday, Sept. 20, at 6 p.m. Stetler Insurance Associates will present information regarding what should be included on the flood insurance policy declaration page, review common mistakes seen on flood insurance policies, and answer questions. The Flood Resiliency Task Force is made up of representatives from real estate, banking and insurance industries, as well as local residents and Borough staff. See the flyer for additional information, or contact Jamie Shrawder at 570-275-3091 ext. 3 or email


  • The Central Susquehanna Community Foundation will hold a luncheon on Friday, Oct. 5, from 12-1:30 p.m. at the Iron Fork’s banquet room to celebrate the grants made to community organizations through the Danville Area Community Foundation. Local nonprofit organizations will be presented with the 2018 grant awards. There is no cost to attend, but an RSVP is requested. RSVP online or by emailing or calling Karri Harter at 570-752-3930 ext. 6. 


  • NEPIRC, DRIVE and SEDA-COG will team up to host a Lunch and Learn titled “Cybersecurity Trends & Safeguards for Manufacturers” on Tuesday, Oct. 23,  from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Monty’s on the Bloomsburg University campus. This free seminar is specifically intended for manufacturers and helping them respond to current threats and trends in the cybersecurity world. Topics covered will include ransomware, hacking, breaches and disasters, and safeguards will also be presented including best practices for prevention, mitigation and incident response. See the flyer for more information, and register online, by email, or call 570-704-0018. 


  • MePush will be hosting a series of study sessions throughout the fall at its conference room at 130 Buffalo Rd., Lewisburg, for information technology professionals that are taking and interested in getting together to study for the Cisco CCNA exam. This major certification in the IT industry is a big undertaking for some, so MePush would like to offer a forum to help other IT pros in the area improve their skills and certifications. If interested, please email Art so MePush can have a headcount. 

Members Learn About AGAPE’s Work, Numerous Volunteer Opportunities

While it certainly wasn’t planned out this way back when Business After Hours were scheduled for 2018 late last year, the timing of the Chamber’s second Business After Hours of August couldn’t have been better to highlight the needs of AGAPE, as it once again took on a leading role in the local flood recovery efforts. At the event held on Aug. 29 at AGAPE’s facility in downtown Bloomsburg, attendees not only had an opportunity to see and hear about AGAPE’s many accomplishments during the last decade as it celebrates its 10th anniversary, but they also saw firsthand some of AGAPE’s ongoing needs as well as the many opportunities to get involved on a volunteer basis.

AGAPE’s biggest need from a volunteer standpoint is help to cook and serve its weekly community meal to those in need, which is done each Wednesday from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Volunteers are needed to come for just a few hours, prepare and cook (if appropriate) the meal, and then serve it. AGAPE will take anything anyone can give, but is generally not looking for a big time commitment from anyone, as if just a few people or groups from organizations such as churches or civic organizations could commit just a few hours a month, that would go a long way. In addition to its weekly community meal, AGAPE’s main mission is to fill in the gaps for those in need that don’t always get addressed by public welfare programs. It is helped thousands of people over the last decade, and its mission is to eventually go out of business because there won’t be any more needs in our community. Read more about AGAPE in this Member Spotlight from last year. 

Business After Hours provide regular opportunities to build business relationships while learning about the services offered by other Chamber members. The next Business After Hours will be held at the Quality Inn Bloomsburg, on Wednesday, Sept. 19, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Prior to the After Hours, there will be a ribbon cutting at 4 p.m. for the new renovations that were recently completed at the hotel.