Traverse Chamber Bulletin
Top Talk
October 21, 2015
Q & A with the Candidates! 2015 Virtual Forum
Chamber Launches Virtual Candidate Forum

An important election is coming up in Traverse City on November 3. The Chamber wants its members and the public to know where the candidates for Mayor and City Commissioner stand on key issues facing our region.

The Chamber's Virtual Candidate Forum includes videos from candidates for Mayor and City Commission, plus responses to a series of questions concerning development issues facing the city, neighborhoods and working with the city's business community.

Learn more about the Chamber's Virtual Candidate Forum and don't forget to cast your vote on November 3.


Only a Few Expo Booths Remain

There's only a handful of exhibit spaces remaining for the Chamber Business Expo coming up November 3 at the Grand Traverse Resort & Spa. It's an opportunity to showcase your business to more than 1,000 visitors and join upwards of 140 other exhibitors at the region's largest business expo.

The Expo immediately follows the Chamber's sold-out Economic Outlook Breakfast from 7:30 - 9 a.m. that morning at the resort. TraverseCONNECT CEO Doug Luciani will moderate a panel discussion on Michigan's energy future featuring Valerie Brader, head of the Michigan Agency for Energy, along with David Mengebier, Senior Vice President of Governmental and Public Affairs for CMS Energy.

The Chamber Business Expo is presented by:

The Economic Outlook Breakfast is sponsored by:

IMPACT | Advocacy for Business
Get Answers to Health Care Questions

There are still plenty of questions surrounding health care coverage for businesses and their employees. The Chamber wants to make sure you have the answers to make the best decisions. Mi Health Answers is a website sponsored by Chambers of Commerce around Michigan for employers and workers seeking information on health care reform and purchasing health insurance coverage. It's also an opportunity for health care providers to create a profile on the site and answers questions submitted by businesses and consumers.

Click here to learn more.

CONNECT | Events and Programs
Membership Event Gathers Momentum
Membership Event Gathers Momentum

The excitement is building for the Chamber's Membership Event coming up December 8 - 10 headquartered at West Bay Beach - Holiday Inn Resort. An extraordinary group of event chairs have stepped up to lead the effort, including:

  • Tammy Tarsa (Integrity Home Health Care)
  • Allison Beers (Events North)
  • Kevin Schlueter (Kalkaska Screw Products)
  • Troy Broad (Team Elmer's)
  • Warren Call (Huntington Bank)
  • Stephen Peacock (Rehmann)
  • Sander Scott (TCAPS)
  • Dale Tumey (Huntington Bank)
  • Lisa Pointe (Runner's chair - Great Lakes Children's Museum)

These chairs will assemble their captains and teams to gear up for a fun but fierce few days of competition during the Membership Event to bring new members into the Chamber. Those who took part in this high-energy event two years ago won't soon forget the excitement generated, and if you weren't part of the enthusiasm you'll want to be part of this year's effort. If you want to help out, contact Chamber Event Planner Andi Wagenschutz at

Keep following your Chamber communications for updates on the Membership Event preparations.

Free Bowling, Games and Fun at BAH

What's more fun than spending an evening at the Chamber's Business After Hours? How about a free $5 gaming card and bowling from our hosts at Incredible Mo's?

Join us tonight from 5 - 7 p.m. for some incredible food, refreshments and networking opportunities and to check out all the family fun available at Incredible Mo's, located at 1355 Silver Lake Crossings Blvd. in Grawn.

Also mark your calendars for November 18 when we close out the Business After Hours 2015 season at the new offices of the Larkin Group in Traverse City.

Business After Hours is presented by:

2014 DSA recipient Susie Janis
Last Call for DSA Nominations

This Friday, October 23, is the last day to submit nominations for the Chamber's Distinguished Service Award.

The Distinguished Service Award is among the area's longest running civic awards, presented annually by the Chamber since 1929. It's been shared by some of the region's legendary figures including Jerry Oleson, Les Biederman, Sen. George McManus and dozens of others for their service and commitment to the Grand Traverse region. Do you know someone who's gone above and beyond to make the Grand Traverse area a better place? Submit your nominations here.

Also, save the date of Friday, January 15, 2016 for the presentation of the 2015 Distinguished Service Award at the Chamber's Annual Celebration, hosted by the Grand Traverse Resort & Spa. Registration will open soon.

West Front is Front and Center

It's time to celebrate the reconstruction of West Front Street in Downtown Traverse City. The Chamber is co-sponsoring a Grand Opening Celebration for the West Front Street reconstruction project this Saturday, October 24 from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. It will include a ribbon cutting ceremony at 11:30 a.m.

Come and check out the new streetscape design that includes marked bicycle lanes and crosswalks, high-tech lighting and the new City Lot area next to the City Fire Station. Activities will include pumpkin decorating, sidewalk chalk, live music, a scavenger hunt and much more. Plus it will be an opportunity to drop in on the West Front Street merchants whose businesses were impacted by the extended construction schedule this summer. Learn more at

INSPIRE | Leadership Development 
Fellows Dive Deep

It's been an informative first year for members of the Chamber's Leadership Grand Traverse Fellows. LGT Fellows is an alumni program for graduates of the flagship Leadership Grand Traverse program. It's a way for past LGT participants to stay connected with each other and be aware of other leadership opportunities available in the area.

LGT Fellows this year are also taking part in a series of "Deep Dive" discussions on topics impacting our region. Upcoming programs include:

  • Education Deep Dive
    Tuesday, November 10 from 9:30 - 11 a.m.
  • Positive Leadership Deep Dive
    Monday, November 16 from 3 - 4:30 p.m.

Register for these sessions and learn more about LGT Fellows.

Leadership Fit for a King

The Chamber's new Leadership at the Movies program opened to rave reviews in 2015. The series wraps up for the season on Tuesday, November 4, featuring one of the most heart-warming films in recent times, The King's Speech.

Join us from 7:30 - 9 a.m. at the Bijou by the Bay theater where leadership strategist Jonathon Pool will expound on leadership lessons from this true-life story and multiple Academy Award winner, including Best Picture. This informative program is free to Chamber members. Reserve your seat today.

Chamber Leadership programming is supported by:

Tune in to WEF

One thing the Grand Traverse area isn't short on is a successful collection of entrepreneurs who've launched successful businesses in the region. Each Wednesday at 8:30 a.m., the Chamber's Weekly Entrepreneur Focus on NewsTalk 580 features a local business owner who talks about his or her experiences, challenges and triumphs in running their own business. Join co-host Ron Jolly of WTCM and Chamber Executive Director Laura Oblinger to learn more about these inspiring stories. If you miss an episode, click here for an archive of past shows.

The Weekly Entrepreneur Focus is sponsored by:

Partner News
TC New Tech Continues November 3

TC New Tech is a new local tech-related group that gathers each month to talk about new tech products and services, job openings, trends and other items related to the technology field. It's co-sponsored by the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce and the next meeting is Tuesday, November 3 starting at 6 p.m. at the Center Pointe building in Traverse City. Register here.

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In Case you
Missed it...
Read Chamber Executive Director Laura Oblinger's Business column in the Traverse City Record-Eagle.
Get connected to more Chamber program info:

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