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From the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce
Accredited, US Chamber of Commerce, **** Rating
2010 Chamber of the Year, Florida Association of Chamber Professionals
Serving all of Charlotte County for more than 86 years
Upcoming Chamber Events
Thurs., May 30, 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., Business Card Exchange, Kingsway Country Club, 13625 SW Kingsway Circle, Lake Suzy
Members interested in advertising in the 2014 Visitor's Guide on pages 4, 5, 6, 7, & 8, the inside front or back cover, the page facing the inside back cover, the center pages or the back cover: please note that a representative of your business must be present for the Premium Page Drawing on May 21st at 4:00pm in the conference room of our Port Charlotte Office. Click here for the Advertising Contract for the 2014 Visitor's Guide, prices quoted are for camera-ready copy.
Important Update! The date of the 5th Annual Junior Leadership Charlotte Golf Tournament has been changed to June 22! The Four Person Scramble will be at Kingsway Country Club. Check in at 7:30a.m., with shotgun at 8:30. Sponsorships are available. The committee is looking for volunteers to help collect prizes, a business to donate 75 bags, goodies for the golfers’ bags and, of course, golfers. Click here for the flier. If you have questions, please call Tom Natoli at (941) 625-0623 or email Ruth at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please patronize the Chamber's Sustaining Partners: (Click on the links to go to their websites.)
Ribbon Cuttings & Groundbreakings (to which all members are invited):
Thurs., May 23, 5:15 p.m., Suncoast One Title, 357 W. Marion Ave., PG
Culver’s of Port Charlotte, PO Box 591, Rhinelander, WI 54501
DiLuv Acupuncture Enterprises, Inc., 20406 Edgewater Dr., PC 33952
Total Air Solutions, 1050 Corporate Ave., #118, NP 34289
Chamber Member Events
The Punta Gorda Airport will have a “ceremonial” one-million passengers celebration on May 21st after the Allegiant flight comes in from Lexington at 2:50 p.m.
Peter Keating, Certified Business Analyst, Florida Gulf Coast University’s Small Business Development Center, is hosting a seminar, Managing Your Credit: How to Develop & Maintain a Healthy & Accurate Credit, at the Chamber’s Port Charlotte office on Friday, May 24th from 9 am -11 am. This free seminar will give you a clear understanding of how the credit scores, reports and bureaus work to help you manage your financial goals. Guest speaker will be Sandee Raines of CredAbility, a nonprofit credit counseling company. Call Beverly at 941-627-2222 to make your reservation or register at www.sbdcseminars.org.
Shawn Smith, Shawn and Company, invites you to his annual birthday bash on Wednesday, May 22 at Ruby Tuesday when the Charlotte County Imagination Library is receiving a $5000.00 check from the Cultivate Wines "The Give" competition! Also, there will be a raffle if you would like to donate (with the proceeds going to the Imagination Library). The event runs from 4- 9 pm, with the check presentation at 7 pm.
There is still time to support Special Olympics Florida - Charlotte County with an Ice Cream Social this Wednesday, May 22 from 4 to 7 pm at Harborwalk Scoops & Bites at Laishley Park. Your $10 ticket will support their bowling season and you will get a sweet reward for your good. 100% of proceeds will be donated to them! Choose any ice cream item such as a Hot Fudge Sundae, Malted Milkshake PLUS get a vintage soda. Laishley Park - Marina side. Open daily from 11 am to 9 pm. 941-505-8880 www.scoopsandbites.com
Higher Ground Performing Arts invites you to attend their Year-End Production “HG Soul” on Saturday, June 8th with the younger ensemble performing at 2:30 pm and the older ensemble performing at 7:00 pm. Special Guest, Al Holland, will perform at our evening presentation. This music and dance production will celebrate the sounds of Classic Soul and R&B. Come experience this exciting night of soulful expression. Charlotte Performing Arts Center, Punta Gorda. Tickets: $13/$15. To purchase tickets, advertise in the program, or for more information please call 941-625-3622 or visit www.highergroundperformingarts.net
The Visual Arts Center in Punta Gorda has opened registration for the first summer session of classes for elementary, teens, and adults, beginning the first week of June. Class offerings are on line at www.visualartcenter.org or by stopping in at the VAC, 210 Maud St., across from Fisherman’s Village. The camps fill up early so please call to reserve space. Registration fee is required to hold space. All equipment and material are included in price: $50 per student for Summer Arts Camp and $60 per student for Teen Art Pottery Camp.
Parkside Business Association Informational Meeting on May 29th, 5:30 p.m. We are pleased to announce that Debrah Forester from the Charlotte County Department of Economic Development will be speaking at our next general meeting to be held at Don Gasgarth's Ford in the Parkside area. Refreshments will be served. Please join us.
Higher Ground Performing Arts is holding two summer sessions of Performing Arts and Enrichment for children 3 years of age and older. June 17th-28th 2012 and July 15th-26th. The program will consist of two exciting weeks of theatre, vocal, and dance instruction. The “Sparkle” and “Dazzle” enrichment programs is for girls ages 6 thru middle school. The program will include etiquette, games, crafts, dance & dramatic art. The studio is located at 17353 Geddes Avenue, Port Charlotte. Tuition starts @ $50. For more information or to register please call (941) 625-3622 or visit www.highergroundperformingarts.net.
Smoke and Roses invites you to follow their progress as they sail the Bone Island Regatta from Sarasota to Key West, by clicking this link starting Wednesday May 15th, http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0q6tkgEIWX9M7BT3YqhHX0fUNzUEg9Zgz. The link shows our exact location and plots our course on a map, details can be opened by expanding the small check in boxes on the left. All chamber member charters on Smoke and Roses during May, June and July receive a 10% discount. Visit www.smokeandroses.com or call 605-366-7673.
Community partners gathered last October and discussed possibilities for our schools and the Charlotte County community. Charlotte County Public Schools would like to invite you to join us on Tuesday, May 28, 2013, from 8:30-10:00 am to continue the conversation. We will again meet in the Board Room at the District's Murdock Center.
Charlotte Players are offering four drama workshops this summer. The first two workshops will be held at the Charlotte Performing Art Center, June 10th- June 22nd for students grade 1-12. Participants will have “hands-on” experiences in all facets of a theatrical production. There will be a one week drama workshop at Deep Creek Elementary School, June 24th-June 28th for grades 2-6. Register at email@example.com or by calling the Charlotte Players at 255-1022. Workshop fees: CPAC $175 before June 4th and Deep Creek $75 before June 17th .
To celebrate national bike month, Bicycle Center is hosting free tech nights without the tech talk! These clinics are designed to empower and educate any cyclist and will be held at Bicycle Center, 3795 Tamiami Trail. Clinics are each Tuesday in May at 6pm. May 7th, Fix Your Flat In A Flash. May 14th, How To Maintain Your Drive-train. May 21st, Install and adjust cables. May 28th, Open Forum/Wrap Up. For information call 941-627-6600, email Kim at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit our website at www.bicyclecentercc.com
The staff and volunteers of the Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center (CHEC) announce Wet ‘n Wild ECO Week Nature Camp for 8 to 14 year olds; scheduled for Tuesday, May 28 through Friday, May 31, from 8 a.m. until noon at the Alligator Creek Preserve, 10941 Burnt Store Road in Punta Gorda. Children will enjoy four days of fun environmental education, including hiking, plant and animal ID, a wading adventure, a Peace River boat journey, water and wetland education. There is a $50 fee for ECO Week. Please call 575-5435 to register.
Freedom Boat Club invites you and your guests are cordially invited to the Punta Gorda Dock Party on Monday, May 20, 2013 at Laishley Crab House! Laishley Crab House, Monday, May 20th, from 5:30pm-7:30p. Please come and enjoy light appetizers, cash bar, raffle and live music and entertainment, This is a great opportunity to meet new people with similar interests, mingle with Freedom Boat club members, or just relax and enjoy an "Evening in Paradise." R.S.V.P. to email@example.com
June 8th, Sat.: Charlotte Harbor Nature Fest & Outdoor Recreation Expo, 10 am-6 pm. In recognition of National Marina Day, visit with organizations dedicated to the environment and the natural habitat of Charlotte Harbor and the Peace River. Enjoy live music by Gator DJ 11 am-3 pm Center Stage at Fishermen’s Village. Market your business or nonprofit! Call 941 575-3067 for pricing and booth reservations.
The Nav-A-Gator Grill & Marina will again sponsor the 19th Annual Peace River Cleanup scheduled for the weekend of June 1-2. The Navigator Boat Club will organize the clean-up on June 1st and the Charlotte Harbor Parrot Head Club will organize the clean-up on June 2nd, both days beginning at 9am – 2pm and a prize awarded for the most unique/unusual item found from the clean-up. After the clean-up it’s time to “Party with a Purpose” from 2-5 pm. If your group, organization or club would like to help sponsor and/or donate please contact 941-627-3474.
Rocky Mountain Hardware Roadshow, 8:00 am - 11:00 am on Tuesday May 21, at the Kimal Lumber & Hardware Sales & Design Center, 608 Colonia Lane E., Nokomis, (Intersection of 41 & Captain Eddy's). Call 941-483-3667 for more information.
King Fisher Fleet invites Dads to cruise for free in honor of Father’s Day Fri., June 14, 7:30 p.m.; Sat. June 15, Cabbage Key, 9:00 a.m., Sunset 7:30 p.m.; Sun. June 16, Cabbage Key, 9:00 a.m., Cayo Costa Beach Trip 9:00 a.m., afternoon Harbor Cruise 2:00 and 4:00 p.m. and sunset, 7:30 p.m. Advance reservations are recommended. King Fisher Fleet runs cruises each week including full day out-island cruises, half day harbor and river cruises, and short afternoon and evening cruises and also offers charter fishing. For more information, please call (941) 639-0969.
The Arts & Humanities Council of Charlotte County announces the 2013 Charlie Awards honorees: Tom and Carolyn Hamilton for Outstanding Contributions to the Arts, William Robson for Outstanding Contribution to Music and Paul Holms for his Outstanding Contribution to the Humanities. The Seventeenth Annual Charlie Awards Ceremony will take place at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 6, at the Isles Yacht Club. Tickets for the formal reception are $40 per person. A cash bar will be available. Tickets can be purchased by calling (941 764-8100. As a special treat, the United Methodist Church Punta Gorda Choir will sing.
Join the Bicycle Center for their annual Go by bike barbecue and bike ride on May 25. Celebrate national bike month and our birthday- 41 years and 21 years under current ownership. We’ll leave Bicycle Center sat 9 am for a ride, 15-20 miles @ 12-16 MPH. Depending on the turnout, there may be two rides. Return by 12 pm and enjoy the barbecue until 4pm. In keeping with the Go by bike theme, participants are encouraged, but not required, to ride to the event. For more information all 941-627-6600 or visit www.bicyclecentercc.com.
Nav-A-Gator happenings: Thursday, May 23 – Jim Morris 6-9 pm; Saturday, May 25 – Roy Schneider & Kim Mayfield 2-5 pm and Sunday May 26– Gary & Kerri 2-5 pm. Cover charge – canned goods & non-perishable food items for all live music.
The Charlotte County Republican Club will hold its next informal mixer from 5-7 p.m. Monday May 20th at St. Andrews South Golf Club, 1901 Deborah Dr., Punta Gorda. Free admission and appetizers with cash bar at "Happy Hour" pricing. Local and state elected officials always in attendance. For more information, call 941-276-4872 or visit www.charlottecountyrepublicanclub.com.Forget happy hour - It's happy night on Tuesday May 21 at Visani, with 2 for 1 wines, wells and beers, 5 pm – 9 pm. For those attending the Al Holland and Verceal Show, Musical Tribute To Luther Vandross, Aretha Franklin, Etta James and many more! And, join us on Tuesday May 28 for Rare Soul, Tribute To Motown’s Classics and R & B Legends. Please call us at 941-629-9191 to make reservations! And be sure to check out video clips and biographies for all the artists on the Music Events section of our website! www.visani.net
Nerium International Brand Partners - Real Results Party Tuesday Night 5:30-6:30 pm at Harbor Events Center. Look Better. Live Better. Make Money…and Have Fun all at the same time! Nerium International is a $100 Million dollar company offering an income sharing plan for its Brand Partners. We are pleased to announce that Rita Meissner of Allegria Spa has been promoted to Senior Brand Partner and will be awarded a FREE iPad on top of compensation for sharing this wonderful product. Visit the nerium look or call 941.564.9789
Chamber Member News
Are you a veteran or do you know a veteran in need of home repairs or an affordable home? Charlotte County Habitat is participating in the 'Legacy of Valor' campaign to rally our community to honor veterans, inspire patriotism and embrace freedom. Our goal is to identify and qualify local low-income veterans in need of home repairs or safe, affordable housing. Please call Jan Nick at 941-639-3162 Ext. 410 for additional information.
This year’s 4th Fest and Fireworks at Laishley Park in Punta Gorda is just a short time away. Each July 4th, Americans of all ages come to Laishley Park to enjoy great food, drink, water mania (slides), live music, vendors, displays, fireworks and to just enjoy themselves. You can help make this Fourth of July one of the best ever! We are still seeking sponsors and donations for the 2013 Fireworks. For more information contact Jerry Cleffi, Smuggler's Event Management, 941-637-5953 or www.PuntaGordaFireworks.com. 100% of all donations and sponsorship goes directly to the fireworks display.
May 31 is “World No Tobacco Day” and the theme is In 2010, tobacco companies spent 7.3 billion in the U.S. to promote tobacco products in retail stores. Teens are more likely than adults to be influenced by advertising in these stores. At the urging of the Charlotte County Tobacco Free Partnership, local government has passed resolutions urging local retailers to cease the sale and marketing of candy-flavored tobacco products, which are considered starter products, and to prevent Charlotte youth from starting tobacco.
Charlotte County Family YMCA has opened registration for Indoor Soccer for ages 6-12, All-Sport for ages 3-5, and Tot-Time, Parent-Tot Swim, and Gym & Swim for toddlers. An indoor/outdoor soccer clinic is slated for mid-July. For more information, call 941-629-9622 or visit the YMCA online. Want to make a truly meaningful difference in your community? Try volunteering a few hours a week as a coach or referee in a youth sports program. We are seeking men and women willing to share their knowledge of and passion for their favorite sport. Call or e-mail Dan Cormier at 629-9622 ext. 108.
This year, the American Cancer Society is turning 100 years old. During the last century, we’ve led the way in saving lives. With your help, we want to finish the fight and change the statistics from 2 out of 3 people surviving cancer today in the US to 3 out of 3 surviving. We need everyone in every community to join us today. Here’s how you can help locally - make a donation to help save more lives faster. Call Kris Boyden at 941-441-6470 or the office at 941-627-3000 ext. 3801.
You Deserve a Break - Take a day off and Go Fishing. Let Obsession Sportfishing handle all the details. Capt. Dave will provide everything including the license and lunch! All you’ll need is sunscreen and your camera. Nothing recharges the batteries like a relaxing fun day on Beautiful Charlotte Harbor. All skill levels welcome. Tarpon, Snook, Spanish Mackerel and Sea Trout fishing is excellent right now! Contact Capt. Dave: www.obsessioncharters.com, 941-235-1311, firstname.lastname@example.org ~ providing quality outdoors experiences formore than 20 years~ Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide, member of the Florida Guides Assn.The Charlotte Local Education Foundation is helping Charlotte County families by providing their children with much needed back to school supplies. You will have a chance to make a real and meaningful difference with the donations of supplies and money to make this event a success. School supplies such as pencils, notebooks, binders, folders and crayons are needed. All monetary donations will be used to purchase supplies. For more information on how to help, call the Charlotte Local Education Foundation at (941)255-7500 x294 or www.charlotteschoolfoundation.org.