Getting to Know … Your Local Chambers
This is the time of the year when our local chambers of commerce – Crescenta Valley, Montrose-Verdugo City, Sunland-Tujunga, La Cañada Flintridge and Glendale – start ramping up. Just last week, the CV, MV and LCF chambers hosted a tri-city business expo up at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital. This well-attended event hosted over 60 businesses that had the opportunity to present information (and sometimes samples) of their business to over 500 people. Those who attended learned of local goods and services and tasted some wonderful food.
On Saturday, the CVCOC is holding its annual 5K run/walk at Two Strike Park. This is a fundraiser that benefits the chamber and its scholarship fund. Runners, walkers and their pets are welcome to show up at 7 a.m., ready to take on the hills of the Crescenta Valley. Don’t be frightened, though – the 5K isn’t too demanding. I know, I did it last year! The cost is $20 prepay or $25 at the park (5107 Rosemont Ave.).
Next month, the MVCOC is organizing what is arguably the biggest party in the foothills – Oktoberfest! On Oct. 5, crowds numbering 30,000 are expected along Honolulu Avenue to get their annual dose of all things German. We’re talking brats and beer, games and music. There’s no cost to attend and you have plenty of time to take part. Oktoberfest is from noon until 11 p.m. (CV Weekly will be there, too, manning a wine booth.)
The LCF chamber ushers in the holiday season with the annual Festival of Lights. Festivities include caroling, snow, the announcement of the Miss La Cañada Flintridge finalists and the lighting of the gazebo and Foothill Boulevard. The Festival of Lights takes place the first Friday in December at Memorial Park on the corner of Foothill and La Cañada boulevards from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Some of my favorite events are part of the LCF chamber’s Fiesta Days celebration. This three-day extravaganza takes place over Memorial Day weekend and includes a parade, a barbecue complete with fireworks and the kick-off to the annual summer Music in the Park series at Memorial Park. If you can’t wait until Fiesta Days, you can still get a “taste” of the chamber by visiting its weekly farmers’ market every Saturday morning from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 1300 Foothill Blvd., across the street from Memorial Park.
The Glendale chamber is a busy one. It has an active ambassador program and holds regular workshops geared for local businesses. On Oct. 16, for example, it is hosting a tabletop expo and mixer. Exhibitors can showcase their products and services from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Hilton in Glendale. And, like the other chambers, they have monthly networking mixers for business owners.
The Sunland-Tujunga chamber hosts the popular Food in the Foothills on Wednesday nights. San Fernando Valley’s gourmet food trucks park along Foothill Boulevard at 5 p.m. between McVine and Oro Vista avenues. Locals and out-of-towners can enjoy a treat every week! Artist displays, music, choice foods offered by local shops, cafes and restaurants as well as a host of gourmet trucks to choose from.
I sit on the board of the CVCOC and there are times that I really treasure. Each year, the chamber (like most) hosts a recognition luncheon or dinner (we hold a dinner). The recognition banquet spotlights local people and businesses that make the Crescenta Valley so special. We are preparing for our November dinner and are winding up notifying those special people and businesses. I had the pleasure of telling Sue Present of CV Tow that their business was named as Business of the Year and was at the CVTC meeting when President Cheryl Davis was informed that she was named Woman of the Year. On Tuesday night I had the privilege of telling Julie Dowse, in front of 50-plus teenagers and friends at the Fire House, that she was chosen as the Volunteer of the Year. They were all very surprised!
Next week we’ll include pictures of the awardees when they received the news.