Elgin Chamber of Commerce Blog

Welcome to the Elgin Chamber of Commerce's blog. We use this blog to keep you informed.

  • Tuesday Toolbox: Online Marketing --Where should I focus my energy?

    9/23/2020 12:44:41 PM Link |  | Add comment

    Meet our first presenter, Emma Clark:

    I moved to Elgin 3 years ago from the UK and have never looked back! I live downtown with my husband, two doggos and six chickens. 

    Since moving here I've co-founded She Creates Union, a small grassroots organisation that provides a supportive space for women makers and creators to share and encourage one another, as well as joining the board for Elgin Farmers' Market where I fill the roles of Treasurer and web/social media manager. I also run a fledgling creative business, Ferret and Fern.

    Professionally I have over twenty years experience planning, designing and building websites. During that time I've worked with everyone from charities and small businesses to large government agencies and NGOs.  

     

     

  • Tuesday Toolbox: Digital Marketing Tools

    9/23/2020 9:05:05 AM Link |  | Add comment

    Watch for the Tuesday Toolbox videos on Facebook and Instagram.

    A team of us have been developing a Toolbox of short videos with digital marketing tips for you. They cover social media topics that were brought up during conversations with some of our Chamber members, friends and colleagues.

     

    These videos will be of our experiences using Zoom, Instagram, Facebook, websites, blogs, Pinterest, WordPress, etc. We are not posting as experts in any of these areas but simply want to share our successes, failures and discoveries. We hope these tools will be helpful in maneuvering through social media and ease the anxiety of delving into something new! Maybe you have some tips and ideas to add to each week's presentation from each other, we may learn new ways to help the next person who finds these things challenging.

  • June 29, 2020

    6/30/2020 2:00:03 PM Link |  | Add comment

    Happy Monday! It is a very different Monday in this office compared to past years at this time. Normally we would be celebrating a successful  Western Days Festival. We are very disappointed that we had to cancel this year’s event that was scheduled for this past weekend. However, today  we are celebrating  the generous and outstanding support from our business community.  Three  weeks ago we created a new Chamber Champion Sponsorship  Program.  The goal was to create a program that would spotlight  companies and individuals  that are dedicated to the mission of the Chamber. These sponsors would  receive benefits above and beyond standard membership and give the Chamber the opportunity to replace Western Days income.  Thanks to the generosity of this community, the Chamber Champion sponsorship  program has  brought in over $22,000 !!  We will still be accepting sponsorships for a couple of more weeks but we  want to acknowledge our sponsors that have committed so far.

     

    Special thanks to our Chamber Champions!!

    Platinum sponsors: Rush Chevrolet, Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative, Prosperity Bank,  Firewild Catering, Evergreen Farms Christmas Trees, Frontier Bank

    Gold Sponsors: State Farm Insurance – Brad Carter,  Elgin Smiles Dental,  Dr. Randy Robertson, Jodi & Robert Duron, Solid Ground Storage

    Silver Sponsors: Winkler Real Estate, Aqua Water Supply, Yegua Creek Farms, Banccorp South Bank, McDonalds, Independence Title, Yerico Manufacturing, Inc.

    Bronze Sponsors: Providence Jones Funeral Home, Modern Cleaners, Lauren Cannon – Xyngular Independent Distributor, Main Street Board, First National Bank, Down Home Ranch, Friendly’s Auto Repair, Rainey Real Estate, Edward Jones-Candace Elliott, Elgin Courier, Elgin Funeral  Home, Greater Texas  Credit Union, Elgin Meadery, John Allgood, CPA,  Donna Snowden, Texas Center For Local Food, Gladys Markert, CPA

    T-Shirts For Sale!

    We created a special Western Days t-shirt to help us remember the 2020 festival that did not happen. We included our Chamber Champions logos on the back of the shirt  that we had  received before we went to print last week.  Those T-shirts are now available for purchase for $15. We have the shirts at the Chamber office and at several other locations in the community.  If you would like to purchase a shirt you would be helping us replace Western Days income. Our hope would be to sell so many shirts that we have to print more and would include even more Chamber Champion logos on the back!

    If you would like to purchase a t-shirt or sign up as a Chamber Champion – contact the Chamber office.

    Have a great week!  Be safe and  wear your mask!

    Working together,

    Gena

     

     

    Gena Carter

    President

    Elgin Chamber of Commerce

    114 Central Ave. / P.O. Box 408

    Elgin, Texas 78621

    (512) 285-4515 FAX (512) 281-3393

    www.elgintxchamber.com

    Sausage Capital of Texas

    Home of Western Days Festival 4th Saturday in June

     

     

  • June 15, 2020

    6/15/2020 11:09:08 AM Link |  | Add comment

    To: Chamber Members and Business Community

    Thanks to everyone that has responded to the Chamber Champion Sponsorship Program. We will be going to print this week on our special t-shirt and in order to have your logo on the shirt we need to have your commitment this week. 

    More details are below:

    As a reminder, this sponsorship program was created to replace the Western Days income. The 51st Annual Western Days Festival scheduled for June 23-27 has been cancelled due to COVID19 concerns.   This event is the largest fundraiser for the Chamber and our budget has been directly impacted. Without the $30,000 this event normally raises, the Chamber could face challenges by having to  reduce staff and services to our members and community. As an effort  to replace Western Days income, we have created a new Chamber Champion Sponsorship  Program.  All Chamber Champion sponsors will receive recognition and allows us the opportunity  to spotlight companies that are dedicated to the mission of the Chamber. These sponsors will receive benefits above and beyond standard membership. For more details about the program and ways you can assist us follow this link: https://www.elgintxchamber.com/elgin_chamber_champion_program.htm

    Western Days is a favorite summer tradition in this community and  we are disappointed that it will not be held this year.  But, to help us remember the 2020 event that didn’t happen, we have created a  special 2020 Western Days commemorative  t-shirt. All our Chamber Champion  Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze sponsors will have their logos on the back of this t-shirt. These shirts will be sold for $15 and will be available later this month.  

    As our community, continues to re-open businesses and works towards a  different “normal” -  let’s remember to be kind, extend grace and support our friends and neighbors. One Town One Team One family!

    Please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of assistance.  

    Working together……

    Gena

     

    Gena Carter 

    President

    Elgin Chamber of Commerce 

    114 Central Ave. / P.O. Box 408 

    Elgin, Texas 78621 

    (512) 285-4515 FAX (512) 281-3393 

    www.elgintxchamber.com

    Sausage Capital of Texas 

     

    Home of Western Days Festival 4th Saturday in June

  • April 17, 2020

    4/17/2020 2:14:45 PM Link |  | Add comment


    To: Chamber Members and Elgin Businesses



    The Elgin Chamber of Commerce is continuing to provide our community  with  available resources that we have found that are available during this COVID-19 crisis.  Below are  resources that have been shared with us by our community partners.  We have also included  updates from the Governor’s office, City of Elgin  and Elgin ISD. Please reach out to us if we can be of any assistance.



    Save Small Business Fund: An initiative of the US Chamber Foundation



    Small businesses are the foundation of our communities and our economy. Employing nearly half the American workforce, companies like yours keep our neighborhoods running and make them feel like home.  Funded by corporate and philanthropic partners, the Save Small Business Fund is a collective effort to provide $5,000 grants to as many small employers as we can. We hope these supplemental funds will help you get through the next days and weeks.



    Click here for more information: https://www.savesmallbusiness.com/#eligibility



    PeopleFund: Disaster Relief Program of COVID-19



    PeopleFund is standing by to assist our small business community with disaster relief efforts and financial assistance. We now have a suite of quick turn-around, disaster assistance loans to meet your needs as well as payment assistance for current clients.



    Click here for more information: https://peoplefund.org/get-a-loan/apply-for-a-loan/



    Texas Woman’s University: AssistHer Emergency Relief Grant



    Offered to Woman Owned Businesses: The purpose of this grant is to help sustain your business while you are under economic hardship due to COVID-19. The funds can be used for technology upgrades or other items needed to change or adapt your business model. Operating expenses (excluding payment of sales tax, payroll, purchase of food for consumption, penalties and fees, and charitable donations). 



    Click here for more information: https://twu.edu/center-women-entrepreneurs/assisther-emergency-relief-grant/



    Business for All Grants



    Apply for grants up to $50,000 to support business growth, including $10,000 emergency COVID-19 Business for All Grants to help small businesses in crisis.



    Click here for more information: https://businessforall.helloalice.com/



    Google Grant Program for Small Business Advertising



    Google is offering $340 million in credits for Google Ads that the company says can be used throughout 2020 across any of Google's advertising platforms. The stated goal is to alleviate some of the cost of staying in touch with their customers.



    Click here for more information: https://support.google.com/google-ads/answer/9803410



    Small Business Relief Initiative



    GoFundMe.org, the charitable and advocacy arm of GoFundMe, started the Small Business Relief Fund to benefit small businesses. Supporters can donate to the Small Business Relief Fund, which will issue $500 matching grants to qualifying businesses that raise at least $500 on GoFundMe.



    Click here for more information: www.gofundme.com/c/small-business-relief-initiative-and-fund-faqs



    Texas Small Business Emergency Micro Grants for Minority Owned Businesses



    The Texas Black Expo is offering micro-grants of $1,000 to 100 entrepreneurs who have been in business for two years, are currently open, and are experiencing coronavirus-related hardship.



    Click here for more information: http://texasblackexpo.com/



    Wellness Relief Fund



    Reclamation Ventures opened a grant opportunity to cover one month of missed revenue (up to $2,500) for wellness spaces and wellness instructors that represent underestimated communities. Applications will be open until April 30.



    Click here for more information: https://www.reclamationventures.co/apply/relief-fund



    Texas Shared Work Program



    The Texas Shared Work program allows an employer to divide the available work or hours of work among a specified group of affected employees in lieu of a layoff, and it allows the employees to receive a portion of their Unemployment Insurance benefits while working reduced hours. The percentage of reduced hours can be different for different individuals, as long as the reduction in normal weekly hours ranges from 10 percent to 40 percent each week. To apply for the program, log in to Employer Benefits Services and submit your Shared Work Plan online with the Texas Workforce Commission here: https://www.twc.state.tx.us/businesses/employer-benefits-services



    City of Elgin



    https://www.elgintx.com/1065/COVID-19



    As a reminder,  Bastrop County Order 1 A requires the use of cloth face coverings anywhere outside your home and property.  We have signs available for your business.  You can print the attached sign from this email or you may pick up a free sign that has been printed by the City of Elgin and Bastrop County.  There are two sizes of signs available:     a large chloroplast sign and an 8 1/2 x 11 sign printed on cardstock. Both of these signs are available at the Elgin Chamber of Commerce 114 Central Ave.



    ( Red building across from the gazebo in Veterans Memorial Park).  The signs are available in a plastic container outside the Chamber entrance on the porch. 



    Elgin ISD



    Elgin ISD announces all school campuses closed through the end of the school year.



    https://www.elginisd.net/site/default.aspx?PageType=3&DomainID=4&ModuleInstanceID=86&ViewID=6446EE88-D30C-497E-9316-3F8874B3E108&RenderLoc=0&FlexDataID=5439&PageID=1



    IMPORTANT INFORMATION FROM GOVERNOR  GREG ABBOTT:



    Governor Abbott has announced that all schools (public, private, charter, colleges/universities) will remain closed through the end of the 2019-2020 school year.



    Governor Abbott has released Executive Orders regarding re-opening Texas businesses and State Park openings. 



    See those Orders here:  https://gov.texas.gov/  (NOTE:  Orders are being updated now so check back and refresh page if needed)



    Texas Re-Opens Retail Businesses for “Retail to Go”:  Today, April 17, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott signed an Executive Order authorizing the re-opening of retail businesses. Review the DSHS guidance on how to re-open safely for both employees and customers here:  https://www.dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus/docs/ReOpenedRetailGuidance.pdf



     



    Gena Carter



    President



    Elgin Chamber of Commerce



    114 Central Ave. / P.O. Box 408



    Elgin, Texas 78621



    (512) 285-4515 FAX (512) 281-3393



    www.elgintxchamber.com



    Sausage Capital of Texas



    Home of Western Days Festival 4th Saturday in June


  • April 7, 2020

    4/7/2020 11:35:05 PM Link |  | Add comment




    T0: Chamber Members and Elgin Businesses


     


    We hope you all are staying safe during this time.  The Chamber office is closed to the public during this time but we are still here each day to continue  to provide updates, information and resources for your business or organization during this COVID19 crisis.


     


    As a reminder for current Elgin information please visit the City of Elgin website COVID19 resource page.  https://www.elgintx.com/1065/COVID-19


     


    For statewide  resources and business information:  https://gov.texas.gov/coronavirus


     


    The US Chamber page is an excellent source for business information and resources.    https://www.uschamber.com/


     


    For information about the SBA loan disaster program for businesses and nonprofit the SBA link:  https://www.sba.gov/page/coronavirus-covid-19-small-business-guidance-loan-resources


     


    The most important thing you can do at this time  is to educated yourself on the programs and make contact with your banker.  Your  local banker can assist you with the Paycheck Protection Program or PPP loans and provide you with additional information. For the EIDL loans you will need to apply directly with the SBA. We realize this may be confusing and we know navigating through the SBA website is challenging. We also know that these funds will be depleted soon and businesses must take action now.  By  contacting your banker there may be other programs that individual banks are  providing to their business customers.   You can also contact me at the Chamber office and I can help walk you through your options.      


     


    Below is a link to the Virtual Town Hall meeting that Workforce Solutions hosted yesterday. The webinar addresses questions for employers about  business services and employment law questions amid coronavirus (COVID19) concerns.


     



     


    For non-profit resources, volunteer opportunities  and information on social services providers visit the Bastrop County Cares website.   https://www.bastropcares.org/


     


     


    We know these are challenging times  for our businesses and our community. The latest poll released by the US Chamber of Commerce over the weekend states 1 in 4 or  43% businesses say they are 3-6 months away from permanently  shutting down. These are staggering numbers and they concern us.  But we are also optimistic that this crisis will pass and we will work together during this time to get to the other side. Please know the  Elgin Chamber of Commerce is here to assist you.  We are available by phone, email, social media messages  or feel free to contact me on my cell phone at 512-988-0006.  I welcome the opportunity to visit with you and want to hear how your business is doing. If you know of other resources or have ideas how we can assist businesses please let us know.   



     


     


    Stay safe and healthy,


    Gena


     


     


    Gena Carter 


    President


    Elgin Chamber of Commerce 


    114 Central Ave. / P.O. Box 408 


    Elgin, Texas 78621 


    (512) 285-4515 FAX (512) 281-3393 




  • Week of December 9, 2019

    12/10/2019 3:51:49 PM Link |  | Add comment

    To: Chamber Members

    We hope you will join us for Sip Shop and Stroll this week! There are many special activities at this month’s event.

    Ribbon Cutting for Nurse Next Door Thursday 5pm

    Join us at 5pm as we  welcome Nurse Next Door to their new location downtown at 205 South Main Suite C. We will cut the ribbon at 5pm. 

    Reception Honoring Alan Tolbert and Amy Miller

    Stop by The Clever Tiger from  5:30-6:30  to extend your best  wishes to recent Texas Downtown Association Award winners. Alan was awarded the Texas Downtowner of Year Award. Amy was awarded the Professionalism  Excellence Award.  We  congratulate Amy and Alan  for their  outstanding contributions to our community. 

    Gena Carter 

    President

    Elgin Chamber of Commerce 

    114 Central Ave. / P.O. Box 408 

    Elgin, Texas 78621 

    (512) 285-4515 FAX (512) 281-3393 

    www.elgintxchamber.com

    Sausage Capital of Texas 

    Home of Western Days Festival 4th Saturday in June

  
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