Upper Arlington News

Community Celebration and Business Showcase

Chamber will honor the past, look to the future


The Upper Arlington Area Chamber of Commerce will remember its past and look toward the future of the community and regional business sector March 1 at its fifth annual Community Celebration and Business Showcase.

Driven by votes from the public, the chamber will hand out a multitude of awards to area businesses and people who have helped further the betterment of the community during the event at St. Agatha Church-Parish Hall, 1860 Northam Road, Upper Arlington.

Online voting for the awards and reservations to attend the event both can be completed through Feb. 22 on the chamber's website, uachamber.org.

Reservations also can be secured by calling the chamber at 614-481-5710.

"This event, with the mix of individuals, organizations and companies from the Upper Arlington area, is really what makes the chamber Community Celebration event a unique opportunity not only to showcase our local-area businesses, but to connect closely with the community at large," chamber President Becky Hajost said. "We have the opportunity to recognize and honor those individuals and companies that made significant contributions physically and financially over the years and will offer a glimpse of the future."

The theme for this year's event is "Back to the Future." The chamber has partnered with the Upper Arlington Historical Society in putting together a video presentation which will show both the growth of the chamber and community since 1977, when the chamber was established.

"Having chaired this event for all five years, I'm pleased to see the collaboration between the Upper Arlington Historical Society and the chamber in planning this year's event," said Charlie Groezinger, historical society president and chairman of the Community Celebration. "It has grown into a fun celebration for the community, and our area businesses, and will showcase another successful year for the chamber."

In keeping with the evening's theme and the video, the chamber will seek to recognize businesses and community members which have had significant impacts on daily life and in their respective industries.

"We want to remember where we've been and where we are going by celebrating this unique community that is Upper Arlington," said Edie Rader Blough, 2013 chairwoman of the chamber's board of trustees. "We are so fortunate to have many longtime businesses, as well as wonderful new businesses that add to the convenience, value and quality of life in UA."

Additionally, the Community Celebration will feature a presentation by Tom Walker, chief executive officer of TechColumbus, who will discuss the current climate for business and economic development in central Ohio, as well as strategies and opportunities for job creation and public-private partnerships.

The event will feature an open bar; the business showcase and silent auction portions of the program will begin at 5 p.m. March 1.

Award winners will be announced during the dinner portion of the Community Celebration, which will begin at 6:30 p.m.

Individual tickets are available for $50, and a table of eight can be reserved for $375.

Various sponsorship levels, ranging from $250 to $2,500 also are available, and sponsorship forms can be found at the chamber's website.

Silent auction items also currently are being accepted.

"We really want to make sure we recognize all the businesses in our area that reflect our membership and the people who've shaped our community," Hajost said. "We're also trying to provide some real quality entertainment.

"We try to have an event that has some pizzazz."