Good Golly Miss Molly – where did the summer go?! The cooler air is rolling in, the humidity is rolling out, and the trials and tribulations of summer 2020 on Cape Ann – and signs of renewed prosperity – are leading us into the fall.
Never in our modern day history have we seen such challenges faced by all aspects of our community, and in particular our healthcare, senior services, and hospitality organizations. And our deepest sympathies go out to the families and friends of those who lost loved ones.
The Chamber’s operations were also fundamentally impacted by the pandemic, with our team working from home since March and our focus shifting to COVID-19. We provided updates on business operations during the pandemic; reported on measures taken by our local, state and national governments to assist businesses; and brought the community together for regular virtual meetings.
Events on Cape Ann were significantly impacted by the pandemic, including the Chamber’s Irish Sweepstakes Raffle, which went online; and the Education Fundraiser at Bass Rocks Golf, which was postponed to July but achieved record turn-out. The downtown Gloucester Block Parties were reformatted as Shop, Stroll and Dine events, and Manchester’s Festival by the Sea was rescheduled to the end of August and presented as a sidewalk sale. We had to cancel the Waterfront Festival and Essex’s Clamfest, but we look forward to The Love Cape Ann Fundraising Auction, postponed to November, and our community holiday activities, which we are re-planning now.
Our milestone event this summer is the BIG news depicted at the top of this email: the opening of our new office, and Visitor and Community Collaboration Centers.
After more than a year of hard work, we have officially relocated to 24 Harbor Loop in downtown Gloucester. We love the location, at the intersection of Harbor Loop and Rogers Street, steps from the historic waterfront and businesses along Main and Rogers Streets and Harbor Loop. The new site – on one of region’s primary thoroughfares – is also more accessible to the other Cape Ann communities and is adjacent to a large municipal parking lot. Lean more about this, and meet our interior designer, Martha Sutyak, by viewing our September Love Cape Ann videocast: insert link
Looking ahead, we begin our next round of events in October with our BIG $25K Game drawing on October 15. With this event, which will be held online, someone is going to win $10,000! And there will be 12 chances to win at least $500 – and with only 500 tickets sold, these are the best odds on the North Shore. Don’t delay; contact the Chamber right now to get your tickets!
Our Businesswomen’s Luncheon is also taking place in October – again, virtually, stay tuned for details. And Cape Ann Plein Air (CAPA) 2020, now in its fifth year is being reformatted to be an online sale during the traditional CAPA week of October, with the week of painting and the art sale and gala moving to May. This is followed closely by the holiday season, and we are starting to plan fun and safe community festivities and important business and economic events, including Shop Small Saturday.
Work on our three Mission Imperatives – Promoting Our Region, Strengthening Our Businesses, and Supporting Our Community – is heating-up. We are preparing to start our 2021 publications cycle, key to raising the visibility of our region and our members; and planning for our Fall Cape Ann Caucus, where we meet with all local and state elected officials and public safety, education and business leaders to discuss issues and opportunities effecting our region. We will also be kicking-off our Business Education Collaborative, with our annual Focus on Education Roundtable, again bringing together all state and local elected officials and education and business leaders to specifically progress regional education priorities.
Cape Ann’s vibrant business community plays an important role in what makes this area a special place to live, work and play. Together we are making great things happen, building on our strong heritage to create a bright future. As we noted at our annual celebration in January, the Chamber is making a difference – for our members, our region and our community, and are serving a vital role through this pandemic.
Click here to view this months episode of Love Cape Ann.