Business networking event to address slow winter months

Creative hub - The County’s community development department and community and economic development commission will host Sur-Thrive-Al at Bloomfield’s Baxter Arts Centre next week, hoping that a collection of creative minds in a creative space will lead to big business gains this winter. (Adam Bramburger/Gazette staff)

Sur-Thrive-al Oct. 25 designed to foster new ideas and events




A business networking event next week is intended to help produce ideas to sustain the local economy through the slow months of January, February, and March.

At Monday’s meeting of the County’s community and economic development commission, commissioners supported a $2,000 investment in Sur-Thrive-al.

“The purpose of the event is to foster collaborative opportunities within the community,” said director of community development and strategic initiatives Neil Carbone in a report. “This event will build connections, encourage collaborations, and identify and develop ideas and events that grow shoulder-season visits, helping local businesses not only survive but thrive.”

The commission was told that $2,000 would cover the costs for a facilitator, venue, nominal catering and beverages for the session Oct. 25 at the Baxter Arts Centre from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Community development co-ordinator Trevor Crowe told the commission its destination marketing subcommittee received feedback that it could help to foster programming and events outside of the traditional tourism season. While that has happened in the fall, feedback has suggested there could be more events in the winter months to draw interest.

“This is an opportunity to gather like-minded people into one room to brainstorm ideas where the business community can leverage or expand existing events,” he said.

Commissioner Bill Roberts wondered about expected attendance. Crowe said 16 businesses have committed to attend and the County is hoping for that number to double. The maximum number that could be accommodated would be in the neighbourhood of 50.

Carbone said the event would be similar to previous efforts of the commission to host business forums to spark discussion and action. He indicated the spend is in line with the County’s corporate strategic plan objective of a business-friendly environment and the commission’s priorities of workforce development through year-round full-time job creation, increased employer engagement and awareness of community and economic emerging issues, and increased awareness of shoulder season experiences.

Businesses should contact the County’s community development department for registration information.