I was recently encouraged to start writing again. Not that the writing is awesome, but apparently I can be pretty informative. So, here we go.

Like everyone, the past couple of years have been challenging for the Fort Payne Chamber of Commerce. While we are far more than a networking entity, that is a large part of what we do. We consider ourselves connectors of people, resources and opportunities. A good bit of that can be done via telephone, email or ZOOM (which I discovered can be great for certain meetings), but there is just something about shaking a hand and looking someone in they eyes. We have missed that.

I suppose Halloween was our big debut. We held the Halloween Block Party at the VFW Fairgrounds Halloween night, and it was packed. Downtown was becoming very crowded and in an effort to allow more space for our community to spread out, we changed venues. The consensus is....leave it at the VFW. We hope to get better every year. With around 30 local businesses giving out free candy, everyone got something. The Leos (Lion’s Club) gave away popcorn and Church at the Vineyard gave away Taco’s. It was a fun time.

Next we will host our Women in Business Luncheon on Tuesday, November 16th. We will recognize Silvia Hernandez, Woman Owned Business; Linda Stiefel, Woman in Management and Kelli Gardner, Woman in Community Leadership. The DeKalb Living magazine has wonderful articles about these ladies, you can purchase a copy at the Fort Payne Chamber of Commerce, 300 Gault Ave. N Fort Payne. If you would like more information about attending the luncheon call 256-845-2741.

Finally, we have the Fort Payne Christmas Parade scheduled for Friday, December 10th. If you would like to participate stop by the Fort Payne Chamber of Commerce to complete an application and pick up your pass (300 Gault Ave. N Fort Payne). This year former Superintendent Jimmy Cunningham will be our Grand Marshal. Boys in the Band (Alabama Tribute Band) will perform following the parade at The DeKalb Theatre (must have a ticket to enter), you can find more information on Facebook.

Looking forward to diving in deeper to some topics over the next few months. I hope you will follow along. In the meantime visit www.fortpaynechamber.com for upcoming events and our member directory.

— Jennifer McCurdy is executive director of the Fort Payne Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached by calling (256) 845-2741 or by emailing her at jennifer@fortpaynechamber.com.

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