Year in Review: Blaine Chamber of Commerce

Published on Tue, Dec 31, 2013 by Carroll Solomon

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Blaine Chamber of Commerce in 2013:

  • 83 members, with 19 new members this year.
  • The Business of the Year is Sterling Bank.
  • Bite of Blaine raised over $7,000 for fireworks and donation programs at Cost Cutter Market and Pacific Building Center. The event was moved to a new location this year – Loomis Trail Golf and Country Club.
  • We promoted our events in The Northern Light, Waterside, Entertainment NW, The Seattle Times, Bellingham Tourism, Bellingham Chamber magazine, The Bellingham Herald, 23 online calendars throughout western U.S. and Canada and all local radio and print media.
  • The Old Fashioned Fourth of July, with more than 80 parade entries, brought thousands of visitors to our town.
  • Drayton Harbor Days, held in early August, brought hundreds of people to celebrate our Maritime heritage.
  • Participated in several trade shows in British Columbia and Ferndale promoting business and recreation in Blaine.
  • More than 5,000 people asked for information or assistance at the visitor center in person, by telephone and by email.
  • 1,600 volunteer hours were served in the visitor center between nine volunteers (Carroll Solomon, Clare Nurre, Ali Sivills, Bessie Barredo, Lynette Treen, Mike Myers, Kathy Richardson, John Liebert and Summer Starr). There were approximately 2,500 total volunteer hours in 2013 including all chamber events.
  • We continued to offer seminars covering relevant business topics free of charge to anyone interested in attending. We hope to continue this, and welcome feedback and suggestions for future subjects.
  • Carroll Solomon retired after 17 years of service as an employee of the Blaine Visitor Center, although she continues to be a volunteer and Blaine Chamber of Commerce secretary.

With the closure of Semiahmoo in the early part of the year, the chamber faced an uncertain future for the Blaine Visitor Center and the events we sponsor throughout the year. Several months were spent reviewing budgets and working with the city to see what was to become of the visitor center. Fortunately for us, with the support of the Blaine City Council, several community members and local businesses, the visitor center was granted continued funding.