Living in Upper Arlington is a wonderful experience. The neighborhoods are peaceful, the parks are pristine and the school system is top notch. Owning a business here can be even more wonderful, especially when you have the support of other business owners around you.

Living in Upper Arlington is a wonderful experience. The neighborhoods are peaceful, the parks are pristine and the school system is top notch. Owning a business here can be even more wonderful, especially when you have the support of other business owners around you.

My wife, Sarah, and I have owned and operated our "little" fitness center since the fall of 2002. We stumbled upon this community and our current business venture by accident, but quickly came to the realization that this environment was more than we hoped we would find.

Move Your Mind Fitness was well received by the other merchants at Tremont Center and we immediately felt at home.

Our business blossomed very quickly, even as other competitors were opening up bigger facilities just a few miles away. We felt we had a unique approach and soon began to notice that our members felt the same way. Even better, we had a network of businesses around us that shared that same sentiment and showed an appreciation for it.

The Tremont Center Merchants meet several times during the course of the year to share ideas that will promote the shopping center as a whole. We have planned and executed events here at the center that continue to expose our businesses individually as well as collectively. It is an incredible asset to our company, but one that I realize is rare in today's business environment.

As a new board member of the UA Area Chamber of Commerce, I am inspired to share this experience with other businesses in and around our community.

The Chamber's Retail Committee, partnered with the city of Upper Arlington, has been hard at work creating opportunities for other chamber members to feel the same sense of belonging. We are planning and executing events that replicate what the Tremont Merchants have done, but on a larger community scale.

Business owners value a chamber membership in different ways. For Move Your Mind Fitness, it has paid for itself annually with just one event The Taste of UA. The exposure that we receive at that one event every August justifies the investment our company makes with our chamber membership. For others, maybe it is the golf outing, the annual meeting or the social networking opportunities of First Thursdays.

The Retail Committee is hoping to fill any other needs. We will continue to seek new ideas and opportunities to create value for our fellow chamber members.

We hope that you will ask yourself how a chamber membership can benefit you and then share that information with us. If you feel that a chamber membership doesn't benefit you, we would love for you to share that information too. We look forward to finding new ways to support your business.

Charles Griffith co-owns Move Your Mind Fitness with his wife Sarah. The 10,000-square-foot facility is located upstairs in the Tremont Center and offers a wide variety of fitness offerings such as Yoga, Spinning and Pilates, as well as personal training, a supervised playroom, two weight rooms and three cardio areas. Membership options vary from day passes to 3-, 6- or 12-month custom tailored access cards.