NEW BETHLEHEM – A new, younger face joined the Redbank Valley Chamber of Commerce board last week.
Rachel Niccolai, a junior at Redbank Valley High School, was approved by the chamber board as the group’s first junior chamber member.
The effort, spearheaded by chamber president Gordon Barrows, mirrors the junior borough council program recently initiated by New Bethlehem Borough Council. Barrows said the addition of high school students to the local boards is an attempt to involve younger people more in their community.
“We were very, very impressed,” Barrows said of the interview conducted with Niccolai before her approval at last Thursday’s chamber board meeting.
He explained that Niccolai was a good fit for the chamber position because she already has her own business. She explained that she has a social media-based company with thousands of followers, and sells bathing suits and jewelry online.
Niccolai said she wants to be involved as much as she can with the chamber, and Barrows said the next step would be to appoint her to various committees that interest her.
In other business at last week’s chamber meeting, officials discussed the upcoming annual dinner, which will be held March 24 at the Hawthorn Fire Hall.
Organizer Dianna Brothers said that items are still being accepted for the dinner’s auction. She noted that she expects at least 125 to 130 people to be in attendance at the event.
The Sept. 14-16 Peanut Butter Festival was also briefly discussed.
Barrows said that due to changes with how Clarion County administers its Hotel Tax funding, the chamber has been asked to work more closely with hotels in the county.
He said that the chamber was developing special overnight packages with area hotels, and would submit the information soon for the grant.
Brothers said volunteers are still needed for the festival.
“Without the volunteers, the festival couldn’t happen,” Barrows said.
Barrows also told chamber members that he hopes to plan some business workshops and social mixers for the chamber this year to give members a chance to showcase their businesses’ services and to network with others in the area.
The chamber welcomed two new members this month, Beamer Enterprises and The Wellness Program of New Bethlehem LLC.
Upcoming events for the chamber include the annual Golf Outing at Pinecrest Country Club on May 18, community yard sales June 1-2 and the Independence Day fireworks display on July 3.