ARLINGTON — The Arlington-Smokey Point Chamber of Commerce's latest Business After Hours not only shined a spotlight on some smaller business, but also paved the way for a future partnership with the Downtown Arlington Business Association.
Randy Farrell, co-owner of AbouttheWOW, was one of nearly half a dozen merchants showcased in the Legion Park gazebo during the Aug. 21 Business After Hours. He cited the chamber's offices and visitor information center at the Depot in Legion Park as one reason why he and his wife, Edith, began talking with Mayor Barbara Tolbert about branching out into Arlington.
"We've operated out of Granite Falls, with the new route they've set up, a lot of people are going to miss that town altogether," Farrell said. "Here, you've got the chamber offices and visitor center right on Centennial Trail."
Event organizer Michele Wiley provided tours of the Depot.
"Businesses can stock their own brochures at the Depot, which also provides maps and guides," Wiley said. "This all makes it a perfect stop for tourists, especially since it's right on the trail, in one of Arlington's parks and in the middle of its downtown hub."
The Local Scoop complemented the networking between businesses with an on-site ice cream social, and DABA President Mike Britt extolled Arlington's virtues as a business-friendly community.
"He was very motivational and inspiring," Wiley said. "In fact, we're looking at hosting some events jointly in the future, possibly even the Hometown Halloween or Hometown Holidays."
One resource the chamber could always use, to stage such events, is a number of volunteer ambassadors.
"One of our ambassadors was ill and the other ran late due to traffic, so I was freaking out for a little bit," Wiley laughed.
For more information about being an ambassador, or about the chamber's Business After Hours meetings on the third Thursday of every month, log onto www.arlington-smokeypointchamber.com.