Dear Chamber Supporters:
 
I’m going to resist saying “is it hot enough for you?”…I’m just going to take a leap and assume it!! This week has been the hottest collective week of this summer for sure. More favorable temps are predicted next week…we just have to hang on a couple more days!! I’ll admit I think I’m getting soft. When farming, I would spend all day baling hay, filling silo, caring for cows and the heat never affected me. Thursday, when we finished the Legacy Market, I felt like a melted tub of ice cream…can’t take the heat like I used to!!
 
Legacy Market:
 
As I just mentioned…it was hot Thursday evening at our second Legacy Market! Our number of vendors was down this week…and so also the buyers. But in fairness, it was the hottest day of this summer to date. Last week we had 19 vendors…this week 9. We had several sellers cancel last minute because of the heat…I’m equally sure many buyers went straight home after work – and frankly, who could blame them. So too, the produce was down…that said, the heat this week was hard on gardens. We watered ours just to keep it alive until hopefully cooler weather when it can be rejuvenated.  
 
In light of all the above, there were still a fair amount of people who braved the heat and came to purchase local products (pictures here). Even with the hot temp, there was a breeze through the pavilion at Legacy Square…it made the hot temp more bearable. We had a new vendor this week…6-year old Violet used the hot weather as an excuse to stay inside and make “fairy catchers”…when hung in a window, they are guaranteed to attract any wayfaring fairies flying by, to come into your house. I couldn’t resist buying one from a young and energetic entrepreneur…anyway – my grandkids love fairies!   
 
We are committed to establishing this new market in the downtown. Hopefully with cooler weather in weeks ahead you will stop by…we have a food truck for each event and usually music. At least there was good shade and a nice breeze blowing…if we weren’t all so acclimated to air conditioning, last evening would have been very manageable. Hope to see you next week!!
 
Spruced Entry:
 
Former Chamber President and current City Commissioner, Tom Weigand got tired of looking at our torn carpet at the entry to the Chamber office. He donated money to have Bob Redeker (former restaurant owner, Poncho’s) tear the carpet up and paint the entry with non-slip paint (pictures here). It is a gritty finish and makes our doorway look so much better. Thanks Tom and Bob for your donation and efforts…we really appreciate it!!
 
COVID Update:
 
The news regarding COVID continues to get worse…locally and nationally. Nick Robbins, Franklin County EMS Director, reported to County Commissioners this week there are 87 current cases locally and our county percent positive rate is up to 13.2%. Several local assisted living facilities have once again shut their doors to the public to protect their residents…there were 3 deaths this week.  At this point this disease and the politicizing of the vaccine is defying logic …this week I had 2 friends die (husband and wife) within 7 days or each other – both from COVID. Why risk family tragedy and the lives of your friends…get the vaccination – it works. The County also reports the local breakthrough rate (those fully vaccinated who test positive) is 0.002% and no reported hospitalizations or deaths from COVID when fully vaccinated. 
 
Nationwide these are the 6 biggest myths surrounding the vaccine and the most common excuses given when choosing not to be vaccinated:
  • Myth 1: If You Had COVID-19, You Don’t Need to Get Vaccinated
  • Myth 2: The Vaccine Was Rushed So It’s Not Safe
  • Myth 3: The Vaccine Impacts Fertility
  • Myth 4: The Vaccine Can Give You COVID-19
  • Myth 5: The Vaccine Has a Microchip or Will Alter Your DNA
  • Myth 6: The Vaccine Created the COVID-19 Variants
 
If we don’t get this virus stopped it will eventually morph into a variant against which the current vaccine will not be effective …please stop delaying if you haven’t received the vaccination – get vaccinated!!
   
Couple of Chamber Announcements:
 
We have the 2021 Chamber plaque stickers in the office (picture here if you are not sure what I’m referring to). Additionally we find many members who are missing multiple years…if you email the office what years your plaque is missing, we will drop them by or mail them to you.
 
The Chamber and our members have had a phone app available to us for some time through our software program, Chamber Master (CM)…this morning we hosted a coffee at the Historic Post Office to help members understand and download the app (pictures here). CM is how we track all active members, phone number to your business, and all our billing and invoicing. However, we use the software Constant Contact (CC) to communicate with members. Therefore, CC has more emails and up-to-date contact information. This summer, we had our Chamber intern, Hadley Gibbons work at merging the two programs so our contacts and member information in CM is now more complete. 
 
All that said, it now makes sense to encourage members to download the free CM app (information here). When you download the app, turn “push notifications” to the on position. This will allow us at the Chamber to send notifications to your phone such as Chamber Coffees and member events. We’ve had demand for this for a while…we just couldn’t make it work financially until now. If you would like help getting it downloaded and understanding features, stop by and we will be glad to assist.
 
The grandkids are coming this weekend…so I’m sure I’ll have a few pictures next Friday. Here is a picture of a newly painted bike rake at City Hall…looks really good!!
 
Sounds like the weather is going to ameliorate in the week ahead…I hope so! Stay cool – talk to you next week…
 
Onward ~ John 
 
John Coen
President/CEO
Ottawa Area Chamber of Commerce
785-242-1000