Beyond economic gloom, businesses still thriving


In a struggling economy, it’s thrilling to see businesses thriving and new entrepreneurs realizing their dream of owning a business. In the last few weeks, the Chamber’s seen a large number of professionals and business owners who realize being a part of the collective voice of the Chamber is good for business.

Hanah Reed opened The RockIt Roost on Silverdale Way, Neil and Theresa Chiddick realized their dream with the opening of Island Jamz (a terrific Caribbean restaurant) in Keyport and Jeff Woody and partner Tim Hall realized their goal of moving Naturally 4 Paws to a larger location on Silverdale Way. Glass artist Lisa Stirrett has opened her Munson Street studio to the public. The businesses in Old Town are revitalizing their merchants’ association to bring more visitors to their very unique area. All small business owners realizing their potential and seeing the promise of success despite the ever-present messages of economic doom and gloom.

Your Silverdale Chamber of Commerce has the tools, resources and services to help you succeed whether you are already in business or are considering making the leap. Health benefits that might be otherwise unaffordable to you and your employees can be found at discounted rates. Opportunities to network directly with nearly 400 other professionals and business owners can be accessed. The Chamber’s role as an ambassador to individuals visiting or looking to relocate to the area provides members with the opportunity to be the first businesses these people are exposed to.

Whether you are a business owner (large or small), a professional or a community member interested in the economic vitality and development of your community, the Silverdale Chamber of Commerce has something to offer you. It also affords the chance for you to be involved at whatever level you choose in the shaping of your community.

Contrary to the myths, Chamber involvement is affordable, not just for the “good old boys,” not beholding to a national overseer and will provide you a return on your investment equal to your involvement.

The second annual West Sound Business Expo on Feb. 19 at the Kitsap Fairgrounds Pavilion is a fantastic example of collaboration of all the Chambers on the Kitsap Peninsula (North Mason and Gig Harbor included), offering outstanding networking opportunities and a place to showcase businesses. Whether you are in business or attend as a consumer, the Expo is a great place to make connections and learn more about the businesses (big and small) that are a part of the very diverse economic fabric of the peninsula.

If you have questions about how being involved with the Chamber of Commerce could help you do business or help you get more involved with the community, call (360) 692-6800.

One of the most often asked questions I get is “When is Trader Joe’s coming to Silverdale?” I don’t have a great answer for that. What I’ve heard, secondhand, is they aren’t interested in locating west of the Sound, that they don’t think there’s a market here. To impress upon them that there is indeed interest and a market here, we’ve put the link to the “request a location” for Trader Joe’s on the front page of our Web site at www.silverdalechamber.com. You can send them a note encouraging them to locate here.

As always, the public is invited to attend our monthly membership meetings. We will be picking them back up again in January when we meet on the 28th at 11:30 a.m. at the Silverdale Beach Hotel. We will be featuring a speaker and business showcase on financial services for businesses. Reservations are strongly encouraged. Don’t forget you can keep abreast of Chamber happenings by subscribing to our weekly e-mail newsletter. Send an e-mail to subscribe@silverdalechamber.com. Until next month — shop Silverdale!

Darla Murker is the executive director of the Silverdale Chamber of Commerce.

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