Great Lakes Experience will return to Dunkirk

President and CEO of the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce & Executive Director of the Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier

For the second year in a row the Dunkirk Community Chamber of Commerce is proud to be working with a coalition that will be hosting the Great Lakes Experience. This extraordinary festival will focus on the environment and ecology of the Great Lakes and the heritage of the region. The festival, to be held Saturday, June 21, and will include family entertainment, environmental exhibits, food vendors and lots of information about habitat, science, recreation, tourism and fun! Reaching out to the youth of the region, to educate them about the natural sciences and the environment, is a primary goal.

The inaugural Great Lakes Experience festival in Dunkirk last year drew more than 1,000 people. This year, organizers expect that number will increase as they work to include even more entertainment and information in the day’s events.

The committee organizing the Dunkirk event includes Denise Clay, outreach coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; John D’Agostino, publisher of the OBSERVER; Jason Ferguson of Star Media Group; Bob Fritzinger, director of the SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator; Mike Jabot, a science education professor at SUNY Fredonia; Dave Kleparek of the Dunkirk Community Chamber; Lacy Lawrence, deputy director of development and planning for the city of Dunkirk; Linda Liedke, co-founder of Great Lakes FX; Ellen Luczkowiak of First Niagara Bank; Gail Miller, community member; Andrew Nixon, director of the Chautauqua County Visitors Bureau; Zen Olow, Chautauqua County sportsman; Gene Pauszek, outdoor columnist for the OBSERVER; Linda Prechtl, community member; Beth Smeader, executive director of the Great Lakes Experience; Sharon Sprague, community member; Tammi Sullivan of the SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator; and Jay Warren of the Dunkirk Community Chamber of Commerce.

Organizers this year are working to tie in even more local businesses, restaurants and cultural attractions to the Great Lakes Experience, which will be held again at Memorial Park. The Great Lakes Experience is a not-for-profit organization for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The committee continues to work on plans for the event and is reaching out to the community to attract exhibitors, environmental demonstrations and waterway-related vendors, sponsors and other resources.

The Chamber looks forward to learning more about this event as plans come together in the months ahead. If you would like to help or participate in some way, contact Smeader at bsmeader_gle@yahoo.com or Sullivan at tammi.sullivan@fredonia.edu or by calling 680-6009.

Social media learning opportunities for business

Social media has quickly become a major driver for business communications. There are a couple of opportunities in the coming month to learn about LinkedIn for business and one for Google AdWords.

The Small Business Development Center and the Continuing Education Center at Jamestown Community College will offer two sessions of “How to Build Profitable Relationships Using LinkedIn.” The first session will be held Wednesday, March 12 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. on the Jamestown campus. The second session of the same class will be a special offering through the Chamber of Commerce Business Over Bagels series and will be held Thursday, March 27 at 8:30 a.m. in the JCC North County Training Center, Dunkirk.

This class is tailored to using LinkedIn to help grow your business by creating a profile that works, making quality connections, finding leads and starting or joining a LinkedIn group or company page. Participants are encouraged to bring a tablet or smart phone to enhance the learning experience. The instructor for both of these sessions will be Curt Anderson, a business advisor at NYS SBDC at JCC. He is an e-Commerce and internet marketing consultant. He has been an entrepreneur for 23 years, including 17 years in e-Commerce. He is passionate about internet marketing and how it can help you reach out to new customers that you might not have reached through conventional marketing techniques.

The Chamber’s Business Over Bagels session is being sponsored by the SBDC, the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency, JCC’s North County Campus and the Chamber of Commerce and is offered at a special price point. To register for the Dunkirk class at the special Business Over Bagels price of $10 per person call 363-6585. To register for the Jamestown LinkedIn session at $20 per person, call 338-1024.

“Using Google AdWords for Faster Lead Generation” will show you how you can bring quality traffic to your website in minutes and turn it into leads. This course will be conducted on Wednesday, March 19 from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. on JCC’s Jamestown campus. It will be taught by Josh Curcio, the owner of Protocol 80 in Bradford, Pa., one of the regions only Google Partners. For more information or to register for the Google AdWords course, call 338-1024.

Chamber State Legislative Breakfast April 11

Each year the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce provides opportunities for its members to have a direct conversation with elected officials from each level of government. This year, the State Legislative Breakfast will be held April 11 at the Lakewood Rod & Gun Club, 433 E. Terrace Ave., Lakewood.

Senator Catharine Young and Assemblyman Andrew Goodell will provide their insights about legislation in Albany and be available for questions from the audience.

This event is sponsored by DFT Communications, Double A Vineyards, Fredonia College Foundation, Jamestown Community College, Jamestown Mattress Company, KeyBank, Nestle Purina PetCare, Serta Mattress Company, WCA Hospital and WJTN/WWSE/WKSN/WHUG/WQFX WJTN. The cost to attend is $18 per person. To register call the Chamber at 484-1101 or 366-6200 or visit the Chamber website at www.chautauquachamber.org.