Thursday, September 24, 2009

Social Networking How To Series #1- Why and What are Social Networks

The number one question I receive at the Chamber revolves around the use of social networking sites such as Facebook, Linkedin, and twitter.  It seems that everyone is at least curious, can this help my business, am I missing opportunities because I am not on the sites, are my competitors doing it, how much time will it take, how do I get started.  These are questions I receive every week.

I have decide to post a little mini series of tutorials on how companies can get started.  We have plans to do some in person trainings at the Chamber in the upcoming months but the tutorials that I post here are a great way to get a base education on the tools so that the trainings at the Chamber can be more useful.

I am not recreating the wheel, there are lots of videos already online on how to use social networks and they are done in more creative ways than I can produce so I will be pulling ones that I think do the best job of explaining the tools.

I thought I would start at the beginning with what social networking sites are and why you might want to consider using them for your business or professional life.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Beauty Through Cancer Day in Asheville, October 1st

Every now and again I am incredibly moved by the efforts of our membership.  This is one of those examples.  Local business women, Earleen Bennett, has founded a new organization named Beauty Through Cancer.  The group provides therapy and social opportunities for cancer patients and survivors.  Earleen also provides, what I would call, self esteem assistance in the form of permanent makeup and wigs.

They are celebrating Breast Cancer Awareness Month on Oct 1st.  Here are the details.

What better way to kick off Breast Cancer Awareness Month than to introduce Beauty Through Cancer to the City of Asheville.

Join members of our organization, Board of Directors and volunteers as well as Mayor Terry Bellamy and other City Officials as we celebrate "Beauty Through Cancer" day in Asheville. 

The day will begin with businesses from all over the Western North Carolina Area donating a pledged amount of at least $1 for every customer, client, or patient they serve on October 1st to Beauty Through Cancer. You can see a list of businesses on our website that are generously supporting Beauty Through Cancer on this important day. "You could be one" !!!!!!

The day will culminate in our Grand Opening - Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting Ceremony and party from 5 - 7 p.m. at our office located at 131 McDowell St Suite 202 Asheville, NC

Enjoy food by Chef in Motion, Wine by WineStyles, beer, door prizes, raffle prizes, music and fun as you mingle with elected officials, community leaders, business professionals and the community at large. Meet our volunteers, board of directors and hear inspiring stories of cancer battles and survivorship! We look forward to meeting you and getting to know you.

*If your business would like to make a pledge to join our celebration of giving please call our office at 828-252-8558 for a pledge form! or email

Susan Stone of Stone Digital Media created this slideshow to help with promotion

Asheville's Habitat for Humanity to start work on 200th home

The Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity staff and board should be commended for their excellent work in our community. This is a great accomplishment that all organizations and companies in our community that have participated or donated should feel pride in. Here is the press release:

On Monday, October 5 at 12noon, Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity will raise the wall of another Habitat house being built in the Enka Hills neighborhood. This time though, the house sponsor isn’t a faith community, civic group or local business – it’s the board of directors and staff of Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity!

Executive Director Lew Kraus had been saying for the past twelve months that “The economy may be in a recession, but Habitat’s mission is not.” Board Vice-President Fred Barbour decided that it was time to show the community that the need for affordable housing is greater than ever and he called upon Habitat’s strongest proponents – its board and staff, to make that point. To that end, the funds and labor for this house will be coming from its internal team.

The media and public are invited to attend this special event – which happens to also be World Habitat Day 2009. And, this house will be the 200th Habitat house built in this community. After a short speaking program, Habitat board and staff members will join with the Noteboom family to raise the first wall of this 4-bedroom HealthyBuilt home.

In the past 25 years, Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity has welcomed 192 Buncombe County families to safe, decent and affordable houses. Habitat homes, which are HealthyBuilt certified, are sold at no profit to partner families, who pay back a no-interest loan.

Monday, September 14, 2009

The North Carolina Diamond Ring Race

Wow, I would like to sit back and watch this go down, a bunch of couples racing for a $20k ring!

A $20,000 Lazare Diamond ring has been hidden somewhere in downtown Asheville and it’s up to you to find (and keep!) it! The 1st Annual North Carolina Diamond Ring Race is a city-wide treasure hunt brought to you by Wick and Greene Jewelers! In this high-tech treasure hunt, all of the clues and riddles will be delivered via text message right to your cell phone! Any cell phone, any model, on any carrier can play! And playing is totally FREE! However, spots are limited and you must win a spot to participate. Visit and submit your story why you deserve to win the ring!

The race takes place on September 27 from 1 - 6 p.m.

Make sure you register so you can participate!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Weaverville Business Association Presents Art in Autumn

Weaverville's third Annual Art in Autumn outdoor arts and crafts festival takes place September 19, 2009, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Rain or shine, for one full day Main Street in Weaverville, NC will be transformed into a marketplace for over a hundred juried artists and craftspeople. The music stage will feature old-time and bluegrass music. In addition to festival food vendors, area restaurants such as Blue Mountain Pizza, Well-Bred Bakery, Mike's Main Street Grill, and Sunnyside Cafe will be open during the festival. Parking is available in designated parking lots off north and south Main Street. There are designated areas for handicapped parking as well. All are welcome. Admission and parking are free.

For more information, visit

2009 Bosses Day Golf Tournament

I know everyone out there is already struggling to come up with a great gift for everyone's favorite holiday, Bosses Day! The Asheville Independent Restaurant Association has answered your prayers by hosting the 2nd Annual Bosses Day Golf Tournament.

I volunteered at last year's golf tournament and it was a blast. The day starts with mimosas and blood mary's along with a continental breakfast and ends with a culinary reception following the round of golf at the Broadmoor.

Check out all the details for the day by downloading this form here!

Cafe Acoustic at Panera Bread

Panera Bread in South Asheville is hosting a free Friday acoustic concert series starting today, September 11 running through October 2. The music is from 7 - 9, sounds like fun!

Mini Sessions with Camilla Calnan Photography

At our new member orientation this week (if you have never attended an orientation it is well worth the hour out of your month) we had a new photographer Chamber member join us, Camilla Calnan Photography. She told me about this great opportunity to have a mini session, sounds ideal for families, kids, etc. Here is the scoop:

Mini Sessions with Camilla Calnan Photography

Mini sessions can be used for a family portrait, just for the kids, for couples and individuals. Fun, natural portraits by a local professional photographer offered as an option other than school portraits or traditional holiday photos.

A mini session is a 15-minute photo session by appointment for $25.

Includes: an online album of the images, 2-5x7 prints and a set of wallets.
Any reprints ordered within 2 weeks of your album being ready, you get 20% off.

To schedule your mini session, email:
or call: 828.242.2308. Space is limited, so call or email soon!

For more information visit:

Wednesday 9/16 - 9:00 am - 11:00 am; 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Sunday 9/20 - 10:00 am - 2:30 pm

Sunday 9/27 - 10:00 am - 2:30 pm

Camilla Calnan Photography is also offering several portrait specials right now if you would to prefer to schedule a session that will give us more time to work together.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Member Profile: Stone Digital Media

Susan Stone, owner of Stone Digital Media, launched the company this past January, 2009. Stone Digital Media specializes in transforming your photos, slides, video clips & music into a beautifully crafted multimedia production that can viewed on your dvd player, computer or website - so that you can preserve and celebrate the special moments of your life - from birthdays to corporate events.

This show was created for The American Cancer Society's annual Roaring 20's gala which took place on August 22, 2009 in Asheville. "Thanks again to Stone Digital Media for your AMAZING contribution to the event!! Your project contributed to the party in authenticity, feel and sponsor recognition." -Nancy Caine, Income Manager, American Cancer Society, Asheville, NC

Also check out a demo for Stone Digital Media here.

Here are a few photos from the Roaring 20's Gala that took place at The Venue a few weeks back. From everyone I have talked with the event was a blast, look for future decade themed parties from the American Cancer Society.

Susan Stone at the Roaring 20's Gala

Dancing at the Roaring 20's Gala, notice our own James Carter, Director of Membership Sales, getting his groove on in the hat!