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CCGM Holds Annual Meeting of Members

On Wednesday, October 7, 2015, the Chamber of Commerce of Greater Milford held their annual meeting of members at Grotto Pizza in Milford. The purpose of the meeting was to elect new officers and approve bylaw changes that were added recently.

“We had three members whose terms end December 31, 2015,” said Angela Dorey, President. “These three board members have served two terms and must step down from the board with replacements voted in by the membership.” The three board members whose two-year term ends at the end of 2015 include Ruth Abbate of Delaware Electric Signal, Angela Dorey of Dorey Insurance and Financial Services, and Deanna Smith of Artisan’s Bank.

By unanimous vote, Dave Hitchens of First State Manufacturing, Cory Fetterman of David L. C. Fetterman Insurance Inc. and Brad Fielder of Dover Federal Credit Union will replace the outgoing members of the board of directors.

In addition, Cheryl Doucette of the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition, Alicia Hollis of Kent-Sussex Industries, Christine Rust of M&T Bank, James Sharp of Moore & Rutt P.A. and Craig Warrington of Milford School District were re-elected to their positions on the board for their second terms. Board members with first terms expiring as of December 31, 2016 include Michael Ashton of Bayhealth Medical Center, Bruce Johnston of Burgers & Beans, Heather Pleasants of Heritage of Milford, while Terri Favata of Coldwell Banker Resort Realty’s second term will expire on that date.

Darel LaPrade of the Milford Chronicle and Cindy Small of Kent County Tourism will have first year terms that expire on December 31, 2017 while Luanne Holland of Delaware Hospice will have her second term expire on that date.

Bylaw changes that were approved at the meeting included a change to the number of members required to be on the board of directors. Instead of a set number, the bylaws will now allow a range between 10 and 18 members. In addition, the new bylaws will allow proxy votes. All changes to the bylaws were approved unanimously.

Last Minute Gifts in Downtown Milford

With holiday gift giving season in full swing right now, many people are scrambling to find that one-of-a-kind unique gDSC03470ift for everyone on their gift list. Look no further than downtown Milford for your gift giving needs. The downtown area offers a wide range of fun, original gifts for everyone on your list.

Of course, during the holiday season, everyone enjoys those special treats, looking toward the New Year to start that diet. Dolce Bakery and Coffee Shop creates delicious, fresh baked snacks that will disappear from your holiday table. For the holiday season, they are offering George’s famous cheesecake, decorated for Christmas and the Dolce Yule Log. Of course, they always have their beautifully decorated cupcakes and muffins available. While you are shopping, stop in and enjoy a candy cane latte. Dolce also offers bags of coffee, travel mugs and gift certificates for your gift giving needs.

Blooming Boutique offers many interesting and unique gift items. They have handbags, shows, clothing, jewelry and more, including Troll Beads and a wide variety of Switch Flops. Choose from home décor items, fun, insulated mugs or scarves that your gift recipients will love. They even have their own clothing line, made in the USA, in sizes that range from extra small to 3X.

Art is the perfect gift for any occasion, and the Mispillion Art League offers an ever-changing supply of original works of art, all created by local artisans. The gallery, located in the historic Humes Hardware Building in downtown Milford, displays everything from oil paintings to watercolors to wood carvings, all handmade. Interestingly, a study conducted by University College of London found that viewing art triggers pleasure responses in the brain. Everyone enjoys a night out on the town, so why not consider purchasing advance tickets to a show at Second Street Players? The theater group will present “Inherit the Wind” in February and “Peter Pan” in March. You could include a gift certificate to one of the many fine restaurants in Milford to accompany the tickets, so that your friend or family member could enjoy dinner before the show. Georgia House, Park Place, Abbott’s Grill and Arena’s all offer excellent food in a variety of atmospheres.

Do you have a history lover on your gift list? The Milford Museum is the perfect place to go to find something for them. Take a stroll throughout the building, which used to house the United States Post Office in Milford, learning more about Milford history. The museum also sells books and DVDs related to Milford history that will capture the attention of your history lover.

Let’s face it, right after the holidays, everyone decides it is time to get healthy, lose weight and become more active. Why not help those on your list get a head start on those New Year’s Resolutions this Year. Good News Natural Foods, located at 1 North Walnut Street, offers supplements and natural foods designed to help people live a long and happy life. In fact, Marcia Collins, one of the partners in the company credits natural and organic supplements with aiding her in recovering from breast cancer in 1996. Stop in and try samples of different foods, organic teas and coffee samples offered daily as you shop.

No matter who is on your gift list this season, you can find something to please them in downtown Milford. They can even help you find those last minute gifts for those hard-to-buy-for friends and family members.

Harrington Raceway Featured at Sunrise Seminar

The November Sunrise Seminar for the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Milford spotlighted one of the 2014 “10 of the Best” winner Harrington Raceway and Casino who was named “2014 Large Business of the Year.” Jeff Sanders, Sales Manager at Harrington Raceway dispelled some myths about the raceway and casino while explaining some of the things they offer that people may not be aware of.

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Jeff Sanders of Harrington Raceway and Duane Fox of Carlisle Fire Company

According to Mr. Sanders, people often get them confused with the Delaware State Fair, which is a completely separate entity from the casino. Mr. Sanders said that harness racing began at the location in 1946 and that that entity, which is connected to the casino, consumes more than 53 acres of the grounds. There is a training center that includes a pool specifically designed for horses, as well as storage and barns. The racing season lasts between 84 and 89 days with post times at 5:30 PM.

In 1996, the casino opened with a legislative requirement that it had to be connected to a track, making the facility a “racino.” The casino offers sports betting and there are many events related to sports, such as Superbowl and playoff parties. There are meeting spaces and a ballroom available for rental as well. Mr. Sanders, there have been many events held at the casino, including weddings, class reunions and concerts.

One attraction the casino is proud of is their steakhouse, Bonz, that offers entertainment and an outdoor patio, weather permitting. In addition, the casino offers off-property catering for events and there is a nightly buffet as well. The casino is privately owned, not a state entity.

One thing that Mr. Sanders mentioned was that they often get questions about children at events held at the casino. Because there is no hotel or common area, special arrangements must be made if children under the age of 21 are attending events. The casino simply asks that they be informed there will be children prior to the event so that they can make arrangements such as having them exit and enter through an outside door or use restrooms that are not on the casino floor. Children may also eat at Bonz, but diners should call ahead to make them aware there will be children in the party. It is illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to be on the casino floor and, because there are often regulators on the floor, the organization must be watchful.

Mr. Sanders said that it is difficult for casinos to cut costs like other industries as 60 percent of all revenue is returned to the state. He explained that the recent “bail out” was not necessarily bailing the casinos out of trouble, but actually a direct transfer to vendor fees in an effort to reduce the casino’s costs.

Mr. Sanders said that it was important for people to remember that Harrington Raceway and Casino was more than slots and harness racing. Residents and businesses should consider the casino when planning special events or for dinner out at Bonz even if they don’t choose to gamble.

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Mrs. Frketic and students from First State Academy in Lincoln.

CCGM holds a Sunrise Seminar every month and features an interesting guest speaker at each. Members who attend are provided a free breakfast and anyone who arrives prior to 7:45 AM places a business card in a drawing for a five-minute presentation on the products or services their business offers at the start of the meeting. In addition, members who bring guests are given a “goodie” bag of gifts. For more information on promoting your business and networking, or to learn more about Sunrise Seminars, contact CCGM at 302-422-3344.

 

 

 

 

Carlisle Fire Company Featured at Sunrise Seminar

 

The 2014 Non-Profit Organization of the Year, Carlisle Fire Company was featured at the Chamber of Commerce of Greater Milford Sunrise Seminar for November. Fire Chief, Duane Fox talked to those in attendance about the fire company and offered tips on keeping businesses and homes safe.

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Chief Duane Fox pictured with Jeff Sanders, Harrington Raceway and Casino

According to Chief Fox, there are only three paid fire companies in Delaware, two of which are military and the third in Wilmington. Carlisle Fire Company is volunteer, although they do have paid staff that operate the ambulance. The fire company was incorporated in 1802 and is named after Paris T. Carlisle, a member who died in World War I.

Chief Fox said he was fire chief from 1995 to 1997 and returned to the office after his children were grown. He said that when he was chief just 15 years ago, the company ran between 285 and 300 fire calls as well as around 2,000 ambulance calls. This year, with almost two months left, the company has already run over 400 fire calls and it is anticipated that they will run more than 5,000 ambulance calls. These numbers are putting a strain on the volunteer company as, although there are 100 members on the books, only 25 to 30 are active members.

The company accepts members at the age of 14, although Chief Fox would like to see it changed to 16. When they started accepting members at 14, members that young could be trained at the Delaware State Fire School, but now the Fire School requires trainees to be 15½. He says they will accept members from 14 until “almost dead.” He also explained that there for those who do not want to fight fires, there are other volunteer opportunities.

According to Chief Fox, the fire company is a multi-million dollar business. The last fire truck they purchased cost $500,000. They are currently looking at replacing their ladder truck and estimates are coming in at well over $1,000,000. Therefore, the company needs volunteers who understand financial matters, equipment maintenance and other behind-the-scenes duties.

In addition, Chief Fox said that he would encourage business owners to discuss volunteering for the fire company with their employees if they are looking for volunteer opportunities. He also said that many of the calls come in during the day when there are few people available for fires. He asked that business owners talk to employees to learn if they are volunteer firefighters and consider giving them the time off to fight fires or work at accident scenes.

One program that Chief Fox wanted to make people aware of was the Knox Box Program. A Knox Box is a safe that attaches to the side of a building that contains a key to the business that only the fire company has the ability to open. This allows the fire department to enter a building if the automatic alarm goes off when the building is not occupied. He explained that the fire company could only open boxes that were within their fire district. For example, if the Harrington Raceway, who was in attendance at the seminar, had a lockbox, his key would not open it, but Harrington Fire Company’s would.

Chief Fox explained that if an alarm went off in the middle of the night, he had two choices. He could use the key in the box so that the owner did not have to get out of bed in the middle of the night and bring him one, open the building, check it out, and if he found nothing, he could lock the door and go write his report. His second choice was to bring the big fire truck with the shiny tools, break open the door, check out the building, but if he found nothing, he was not going to be able to lock the door when he left because it would be damaged. He also reminded businesses that had the Knox Box installed to be sure the key inside was the current key, as sometimes when personnel changed, locks were also changed. He said that the fire company, at one time, had the boxes that they sold at cost to those who wanted to install them.

Chief Fox discussed the Smart911 program as well as ordinances for smoke detector requirements. He pointed out that a smoke detector was only necessary when you were asleep because when you were awake, you could detect smoke or fire. Therefore, he suggested that smoke detectors be placed in every bedroom and on each level of the home, including the basement.

CCGM holds a Sunrise Seminar every month and features an interesting guest speaker at each. Members who attend are provided a free breakfast and anyone who arrives prior to 7:45 AM places a business card in a drawing for a five-minute presentation on the products or services their business offers at the start of the meeting. In addition, members who bring guests are given a “goodie” bag of gifts. For more information on promoting your business and networking, or to learn more about Sunrise Seminars, contact CCGM at 302-422-3344.