Greater Franklin Chamber of Commerce
574 Main St., Franklin (Rich Farmhouse)
Present: Trish Tyrell, Johanna VanDeusen, Helen McLean, Bill Gruber, Jan Mulroy, Betty Fischer, Don Hebbard
November meeting minutes were reviewed. Corrections: Brian will have draft bylaws by Annual Meeting, a letter needs to be drafted to solicit donations for the auction (not Brian will draft one), and this meeting is a regular business meeting (not a planning meeting). Bill motioned to accept minutes with corrections, Johanna seconded, motion carried.
Helen advised that the community calendar on the Franklin Local website has been improved to allow calendar submissions. All regular local meetings have been posted. A link of sorts will be put onto the Chamber website to connect to this calendar.
Flags & Benches:
There are still several benches out, and banners are still up. Don will speak with Marc to see about getting these items taken care of.
Rifle season is over. No one present knows who the winner is.
Trees- Don advised the house trees went over very well, and people kept their lights on longer into the evening as requested. Don proposed that Rotary take over the coordination of the Village Christmas Trees, and he has already discussed this with the Rotary members. All present agreed that Rotary can take this project over. It was encouraged that the Rotary seek collaboration or donations in the future from the Chamber if needed for this project. There was some disappointment with the quality of the tree purchased for the park, in that it was very sparse.
Market– Jan and Betty reported on the Holiday Market. A total of $342 was collected from table rentals ($10/ea) and refreshment sales. This amount was $20 more than last year. Jason Star and his band played for free during the market- and secured two future acts. The vendors collectively brought in approximately $4,875. Jan and Betty have had thoughts about moving the Holiday Market to small business Saturday.
Stroll/FIS- Franklin Improvement Society (FIS) remains in operation as a 501(c)3, with accounts and assets. They continue to want to operate the Christmas Stroll. Lisa Heimbauer was the lead for the Stroll organization, but other members including Nancy Cloonan and Kim Hyzer participated. It was an FIS decision to post stroll posers on 12/1/16. Kim Hyzer sent out postcards and two ads were run in the Daily Star. The FIS intendeds to run the stroll into the future. The Chamber need not have any roll into the future. Chamber members present were okay with this. Insofar as the $460 taken in from stroll tickets sold by Chamber members and holiday related expenses: it was agreed that the $75 award should not be requested/held from FIS as it was everyone’s recollection that the Christmas Decoration judging has always been a Chamber project. Additionally, it was agreed that $100 should not be held towards the trees. We can request that FIS contribute $100 towards the trees, as they have contributed in the past- but it would be their decision. It was agreed that the $28 in printing fees should be requested to be reimbursed, with all other funds given to FIS.
Future Holiday Plans- With separation from trees and stroll, we can be freed to do other things, or to collaborate in other ways. Discussed potentially beginning a “business district decorating” project- lighting present trees and encouraging storefronts to decorate. To be discussed further in the future.
Raffle drawing winners are: Bonnie Seegmiller and Elzbieta Putrycz. Trish will contact, purchase gift certificates from Wise Guys Pizza, and send certificates to the winners. Trish will also get verbal consent to post winner’s names on the website. More online surveys have been received, with a total of near 70 surveys received so far. Agreed to send one more email reminder out, to see if get any more. Results need to be analyzed and will be published in March NFR.
Scheduled for Saturday, March 25, 2017 from 5pm-10pm, at the Franklin Fire Dept. Set up will begin at 4pm. Country Express will play from 5pm-9pm, price unknown. Decided ticket prices of $5 in advance/on-line, $6 at the door. These are same prices used from previous Fall Fundraiser. Tickets will need to be designed and printed for sale. Decided decoration theme to be “rustic spring”. Trish will draft solicitation letter to members for donations. Letter drafted will be emailed and mailed with membership invoices. A list of donors from Fall Fundraiser will be brought to next meeting as starting point for donation solicitation. Johanna will contact Tom Worden of the Fire Department to see if they will sell food at the event. Advertising will include posters, social media, website, community announcements (print/radio), and paid advertising. Will also seek to have on FD sign.
Discussed need for balance in Chamber between community service/beautification and economic advocacy. Discussed possibly working more closely with the Village government as they are actively interested in revival of Franklin business and community. Discussed possibly highlighting business buildings in the village for sale. Discussed kiosk for business announcements and business cards. Also discussed that increasing tourism is a goal. Don advised that he discussed, at the recent Town Board meeting, the possibility of a community shared solar project upon the grounds of the former landfill. The Board did not shoot down the idea, so Don will continue forward by contacting Southern Tier Solar Works regarding initial steps to starting such a project.
Discussed possibility of working with County Chamber to sponsor event/speaker and do something similar to their Friday meetings.
Wednesday, January 25, 2017 at 7pm, Rich Farmhouse