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THE GREATER SOUTHINGTON
Chamber of Commerce
Celebrating 75 Years of Service 1938-2013
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GREATER SOUTHINGTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
|Southington COC Express|
8th Annual Wing Fest Attracts Over 300 Patrons;
Event Collected Dozens Of Toys For Families
The Chamber’s Wing Fest competition proved popular again as more than 300 patrons attended the event recently at the Cadillac Ranch. With music provided by Jenni Beaudoin of All Smiles of Entertainment and 11 local restaurants serving up samples of tasty and creative wings, a mix of hungry folks mingled and enjoyed three hours of fun and eating.
A panel of six judges tasted samples and along with patron balloting, later announced that The Groggy Frogg on Center St. had served the best overall wings with the Giovanni’s Pizza taking second place. The Groggy Frogg was judged as the hottest samplings with TD Homer’s as the second place. In the category of Most Original, the new J. Lynn’s Harvest Pub won top honors with Buffalo Wild Wings taking second.
The Chamber thanks the participating restaurants, Cadillac Ranch for hosting, judges and the Chamber Women for making the Wing Fest one of the best events of the year! Photo shows winners accepting their awards with Chamber women. More than 75 toys were donated by patrons that will be distributed by the Chamber Women as part of the annual Adopt-A-Family project.
Contributing sponsors for the Wing Fest include Webster Bank, Calcagni Real Estate, The Herald Publishing Co. and IMS credit card processing.
Riccio pledges strong effort for economic development
Chamber member Mike Riccio was elected by his peers to be the new chairman of the Southington Town Council. Riccio and five fellow Republicans were elected in the recent election. He said his goal is to target economic development and to push for a stronger effort to secure success for a Plantsville downtown Renaissance. Riccio is the son of the late Ralph Riccio who was in the clothing business for years in downtown Southington with his twin brother Vito.
Chamber Women’s Group names new co-chairperson
The Chamber Women’s Committee has announced that Donna Dicesare has been named co-chairperson of the group effective immediately. Donna will chair the women’s committee with Julie Chubet who was elected several months ago. Donna is a well-known Mary Kay distributor and has been a member of the women’s committee for some time. The Chamber Women were organized in 2004 and have been instrumental in assisting the Chamber of Commerce by coordinating several fundraising events. The women also donate a scholarship each year to a SHS senior and collect toys for needy families each December as part of its adopt-a-family project. They meet the second Thursday of each month at the Chamber conference room at 9 a.m. Any Chamber woman member is invited to attend.
Chamber’s Central Business Alliance has busy agenda
Bolstered by promising news regarding High Street, the Chamber’s Central Business Alliance had a full agenda at its November meeting chaired by Al Monbaron of Baron Realty. The committee received unofficial reports that High Street could be widened to include a right turn lane with support from the new Liberty Bank located next door. Also, the committee discussed the decoration of downtown empty store windows by a group of volunteers headed by MaryDecroce. The CBA also reviewed plans to propose upgrading downtown lights, sidewalks, benches and other items relating to the Renaissance. This would involve expenditures from the town to repair downtown in sections that could last four or more years. Also, there was discussion about a Yoga demonstration next year including numerous yoga instructors and participants that would be featured with a wellness fair.The committee complimented the YMCA on its additions and improvements. TheDecember meeting was cancelled. The CBAmeets the third Thursday of each month at the Travel Center (truck stop) in Milldale at 8:30 a.m.
Chamber to greet new council to seek continued partnership
Chamber President Art Secondo announced he was to attend the Dec. 9th meeting of the town council to ask for continued partnership for the benefit of both the Chamber and town. “It’s important that the cooperation continue,” said Secondo. The Chamber, he stated, has enjoyed having a town official on the board of directors for the past decade and that Town Manager Garry Brumback has been extremely helpful. The Chamber’s Economic Development Marketing Committee works closely with the town’s department and Lou Perillo and the Chamber’s Central Business Alliance has been effectively working to encourage movement on a proposed Plantsville Renaissance. “I am confident the councilors understand the value of our partnership,” Secondo said.
“Training for Tomorrow, Today” Internship Program
(What you do today changes tomorrow)
By Mary Allard, Project Coordinator,
Five years ago, when Dr. Erardi, superintendent of schools, Charlie Cocuzza, then chamber of commerce chairmen and Art Secondo, chamber president, sat down to lunch, little did they know that a few notes jotted down on a paper napkin would become the Training for Tomorrow, Today Internship Program that it is today. Their mission at the time was to expose Southington high school students to practical work experience utilizing the vast talents and knowledge available through the 600 Southington Chamber of Commerce businesses. That first year, 5 students participated in the program. Last year, more than 50 students interned and this year, an anticipated 75-100 student are expected to enroll.
The Training for Tomorrow Internship Program is designed to provide junior and senior high school students with a 9 week / 90-hour work experience in their career of interest. Each October, chamber business owners come to the high school and speak to students about their own career path. They discuss their personal experiences including the challenges they faced while trying to find the career that was right for them. Their ultimate purpose is to let students know that there are many career options available and now is the time to explore these careers, avoiding some of the challenges and setbacks others have experienced because they were ill prepared to make an informed career choice.
Interested student are required to submit an application to their guidance counselor and a meeting is arranged with Mary Allard, Southington Chamber of Commerce director and Nancy Chiero, Southington High School teacher to review the program's requirements and student expectations. Mrs. Allard then contacts chamber businesses to secure a possible placement. Students are emailed the contact information and required to set up an interview to meet the owner, present their resume and discuss their role. After the business mentor and student review and confirm the job description, the internship can begin. During each internship, Mrs. Allard visits the site, discusses student progress and takes pictures for a PowerPoint presented at a SHS breakfast, showcasing each business mentor and student.
Why should students participate in internships? Research has shown that an internship is an excellent way to get an inside glimpse into a particular career while providing an opportunity to discover whether or not it meets their interest and expectations. More and more colleges and employers are expecting to see these experiences listed on resumes. Finally, business contacts established now can possibly lead to a future relationship.
For more information about this internship program or to see how you can become a business mentor, please contact Mary Allard, email@example.com or Nancy Chiero, firstname.lastname@example.org.
TO OUR NEW MEMBERS FOR THE
MONTH OF NOVEMBER 2013
HOMEWOOD SUITES BY HILTON HARTFORD/SOUTHINGTON— Hotel
***WELCOME*** 1096 West Street, Southington, CT 06489. The phone number is 860-276--3366 and the fax number is 860-276-0066. Kim Jackson and Jeremy Starr are the primary contacts.
KGN LLC-BP GAS STATION— Convenience Store/Gas Station
***WELCOME*** 398 Main Street, Southington, CT 06489. The phone number is 860-863-5105 the fax number is the same. Rick Kahn is the primary contact.
VELOCITY URGENT CARE— Health Care
***WELCOME*** 365 Queen Street, Southington, CT 06489. The phone number is 860-372-4699. The website is www.velocityurgentcare.com John Yaylagul is the primary contact.
SOCCER360 LLC— Soccer Store/Training
***WELCOME*** 400 North Main Street, Unit 2, Southington CT 06489. The phone number is 860-621-6778 The website is www.soccer360ct.com. Nick Kelly is the primary contact.
PAYHUB— Payroll & Payment Processing
***WELCOME*** 200 Fisher Drive, Avon, CT. 06001 The phone number is 860-284-0152 and the fax is 860-677-4748. Lauren White is the primary contact. Payhub specializes in payroll and payment processing for small to mid-size businesses.