The Chamber and the City of Sonoma are teaming up to host Santa for a special visit on Friday, December 6. Join us at City Hall at 5 p.m. for hot chocolate and some special entertainment. Santa arrives on the antique fire engine at 5:30 p.m. to greet the kids, and afterward families can head over to the Sebastiani Theatre for a special showing of "Frozen".
One of the best ways to "Think Local First" this holiday season is to support those in need. This year is the first year that Sonoma’s nonprofits will be coordinating with Sonoma Valley F.I.S.H. to ensure that the neediest in the community will experience the joys of the season through a holiday giving program to families and those with no family. For details on the Adopt A Family Program visit fishadoptafamily.org. To learn more, contact Cathy Gorham at Rabobank at 933-3090.
Each year at the Chamber's "Women in Business" breakfast forum, we tap into our talented pool of local leaders to share their stories. This year's featured speakers are Maureen Cottingham, Executive Director of the Sonoma Valley Vintners & Growers Association; Sharon Cohn, Breathless Sparkling Wines and LifeVantage Corporation; and Claudia Mendoza, a seasoned multicultural communications professional and current Board President for La Luz Center.
Always an upbeat and inspiring event, this year's forum is set for Friday, November 15 from 7:30 - 9 a.m. at the Sonoma Golf Club. Tickets are $45 for Chamber members and $60 general. Register online here or call the Chamber at 996-1033.
Held on Wednesday, October 30 at the Krug Event Center at Sonoma Valley Inn, the workshop is presented in two sections. The first session, from 8:30 – 10:30 a.m. provides an overview for business or building owners on strategies for making their business accessible to the public while managing risk. The program includes a virtual “walk-through” of a property demonstrating common barriers to access and aspects of non-compliance that can give rise to lawsuits. Discussion will include examples of simple fixes, as well as the policies and practices that can help businesses meet state and federal accessibility standards.
A follow-on session from 10:45 a.m. – noon will provide more in-depth information and evaluation tools, and is aimed at design and building professionals, property owners or managers, and real estate professionals. Business owners seeking additional information are also welcome to attend this section.
Workshop presenter Craig Williams is a Sonoma County based architect and Certified Access Specialist (CASp) with an extensive background in access design, site evaluations, and accessibility consulting.
Cost to attend is $25 for the first session and $40 for both sessions, and space is limited. Click here to register. This workshop is co-sponsored by the Sonoma Valley Economic Development Partnership and the Sonoma County Economic Development Board.
Sonoma's newest businesses will be spotlighted at the New Business Welcome, held in conjunction with the Chamber's after-hours networking reception hosted by Bank of Marin, Thursday Oct 17 from 5:30-7pm. This business event provides a friendly setting for new and veteran businesses to promote themselves, from connections and potential customers and learn about resources available through the ED Partnership and the Chamber.
Hope to see you there!
The Sonoma Valley Chamber and KSVY/Sun TV are providing a public forum on Thursday, October 3 from 7-8:30 pm to promote community awareness and information regarding Measure B, the Hotel Limitation Ballot Initiative that will be decided by City of Sonoma voters in a special election on November 19, 2013. The forum is open to all who would like to learn more about Measure B and will take place at Burlingame Hall, located at the First Congregational Church, 252 Spain Street.
As part of the Chamber’s mission to promote awareness of issues impacting the local economic environment and business climate, the community forum is structured to provide equal time for representatives from the two committees organized around the proposed measure; Preserving Sonoma Committee (Yes on B) and Protect Sonoma (No on B).
Community member and long-time civic volunteer Dick Fogg will serve as the forum moderator to provide a politically neutral environment for presenters to provide information to audience members. For questions about the event, contact the Chamber Offices at 996-1033.
Sixty-two businesses participated in the 2013 Sonoma Valley Business Survey, representing a diverse cross-section of the business community. Altogether, their responses to the survey provide a picture of local economic trends, challenges, and opportunities. Findings include:
local economy continues to improve. More
than two-thirds of survey respondents reported that business is better this
year than last year, and 82% believe the economic environment for their
business will improve over the coming year.
is trending up. About 36% of businesses have increased staffing over the past year, and about half of businesses plan to increase staffing
in the coming year.
is an issue. More than 73% agree that, for
the employees they seek to hire, Sonoma Valley is an attractive place to
live. However, 56% report that finding
housing can be a problem for their employees. Almost 75% of respondents indicate that
availability of rental housing is a weakness of Sonoma Valley as a place to do
local businesses are generous! 25%
contribute more than $10,000 per year to local community organizations,
schools, and non-profits.
· Sonoma Valley is seen as a good place to do business. When asked to rate their overall level of satisfaction with the Valley as a place to do business, almost two-thirds gave Sonoma Valley a high rating (4 or 5 on a scale of 1-5).
Click here for a summary presentation of the survey results, presented at the 7th annual "Tops in Sonoma" breakfast forum on September 26.