It’s encouraging to see our members again planning events. Most are reconfigured in some way. But they are being scheduled, added to our Chamber Community Calendar by the members themselves, and are now easy for the public to find.
Monitoring the continuous addition of events is possible because the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce recently completed a conversion of its entire operating system software. This included the development of a new member interactive website at CharlotteCountyChamber.org, allowing members to enter their own upcoming events. It’s a wonderful thing … now.
Of course, the massive conversion contract was signed just before the onset of the current worldwide emergency, with emphasis on “of course.” It’s no use flippantly or sarcastically asking “what were the odds?” anymore because all odds flew out our collective windows back in March.
For background, our new operating system is ChamberMaster, a membership management software designed to manage all day-to-day operations of chambers of commerce and offer valuable member benefits. Organizations currently using this system range from 30 to more than 3,000 members, with our chamber hovering in the 1,000 member range.
Our 90-day conversion agreement began on Jan. 15. You can do the math. We had 90 days of contracted support to convert all of our data to the new system. After the new database was complete and ready to use, staff training began for invoicing, credit card integration, and other equally exciting details. Simultaneously, the new website was being developed and integrated with the database.
Our members have begun to have fun with the new interactive system. Some of the entered events include:
• Gator Wilderness Camp School Banquet — Join us for an awesome evening of learning about Gator Wilderness Camp School while enjoying a great meal and singing from our boys. Seating will be limited due to COVID-19. 5:45 p.m.-8 p.m. Thursday, 3727 Bahia Vista St., Sarasota. Limited seating available, sponsor a table of eight for $400, 941-639-7722, gatorwildernesscamp.com.
• North Port Art Center “Let the Colors Unfold” Exhibit and “NPAC Instructor’s” Showcase through Oct. 2. Open 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday. The art center is located at 5950 Sam Shapos Way, North Port. For additional information, call 941-423-6460 or visit northportartcenter.org.
• Charlotte County Democrats Blue Gala Fundraiser — Charlotte County Democrats will host its annual Blue Gala fundraiser virtually at 6 p.m. Saturday. Contact Charlotte County Democrats at 941-764-8440 for more information. Purchase your ticket at secure.actblue.com/donate/blue-gala-2020.
• Throwback to the ’50s — Join us for live music in all three sections of Fishermen’s Village as we salute the music of yesteryear. Noon-4 p.m. Oct. 24 at Fishermen’s Village, Punta Gorda. More info: fishville.com.
Just follow the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce to keep up with scheduled member events and support our local businesses and organizations. It’s your community.
Teri Ashley is the executive director of the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce, now in its 95th year. She can be reached at 941-627-2222 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.