Neither Snow Nor Holiday
by Kirby LindsayEven with ice sheeting the streets, the Fremont Chamber of Commerce held its monthly Board of Director’s meeting on November 24th at 8a - that is, the day before the Thanksgiving holiday. The extremely slim turnout caused the meeting to progress swiftly, but nothing, it seems, can slow the progress of business in Fremont.
In November, Seattle City Light shut down 34th Street eastbound from Fremont Avenue to Woodland Park Avenue for repairs, and the Board discussed how to avoid this in the future. However, Chamber Executive Director Jessica Vets did contact city representatives immediately, and had the roadway reopened after only a half day closure.
Chamber President Marko Tubic reported on a visit he had with David Roman. Roman has worked on an application for Seattle Department of Parks & Recreation Opportunity Funds for a wetlands trail park for the south side of the Fremont Bridge, that may be in jeopardy. Tubic solicited advice from other Board members, who offered the names of contacts at Seattle Parks and the Seattle Department of Transportation, which both own parts of the land. Tubic offered to follow up.
Vets announced that the 2011 Walking Guide has a record 118 listings, requiring the addition of another leaf. Recently, both Tubic and Vets have been asked for advice by organizers from Ballard and Wallingford on how they can produce their own handouts, as personalized and successful as the Walking Guide to Fremont.
In January, the Chamber Board will hold a semi-annual Advance (not Retreat) to discuss strategic planning for 2011 – with a few new members. The Board elections, held in November, went well, according to Vets, with the same percentage of members voting, although the election took place on-line for the first time. Election results will be announced at the Holiday Party.
For while this would be the last Chamber Board meeting for 2010, the Chamber has more gatherings coming up. Vets mentioned Lenin Lighting (December 3rd), the Holiday Party & Awards Presentation (December 8th), Shop Thursdays (special extended hours for Fremont retailers in December,) and Fremont Gives (December 9th) when participating businesses donate a percentage of their sales to the B.F. Day Elementary After-School Tutoring Program.
The safety report covered several concerns, including a possible campaign for early 2011 to build awareness to better protect pedestrians from bicycle traffic on sidewalks. Also, Vets is investigating installing Chamber financed trash cans for high litter areas. “It’s all about management,” she explained, the project will go forward, “if we can find someone who will keep them clean.”
Due to late arrivals, the Board discussed the Oktoberfest and Fremont Fair twice – with positive reports given both times. The report included an account of the recent meeting between representatives from the Chamber and the producer of both events, Bold Hat Productions, and Mike Buchman, of Solid Ground. Solid Ground previously produced the Fremont Fair, but passed the festival onto the Chamber early this year.
“They were absolutely thrilled with how the transition went,” reported Phil Megenhardt, of Bold Hat. Solid Ground ran the Fair to raise money, and awareness, for their social service programs. Now the Chamber assists with these efforts year ‘round – including filling several tables at the Solid Ground fundraising luncheon in May. According to Vets, the showing by Chamber members at the luncheon had major importance – and the Board agreed that a similar effort should be made in 2011.
The Chamber Board does not meet in December, but plenty will still go on. To find out more, check out the website – or contact Jessica Vets. The next Board meeting will take place on January 26, 2011 at 8a at History House (790 N 34th) and, as always, everyone is welcome to attend – and get involved!
©2010 Kirby Lindsay. This column is protected by intellectual property laws, including U.S. copyright laws. Reproduction, adaptation or distribution without permission is prohibited.