Pine Island - As befits the 50th Anniversary of the Pine Island Chamber of Commerce, President Marlene Caraballo and Membership Chair Leonard DeBuck are proud to announce that the 2011 drive was a great success and has resulted in a record number of memberships. “The membership of the Pine Island Chamber has grown to 92 memberships thus far this year, with 22 new members, which represents a 24 percent increase over last year,” DeBuck said. “About 30 members are individual residents. Our 50th year membership goal is 100. “We’ve been able to keep membership dues at comfortable levels, $50 for business members and $35 for individual members, and still offer increasing benefits,” he added. Benefits include a listing on the chamber web site plus a free link to business Web sites, free event listings in the chamber’s new monthly e-newsletter, ribbon cutting ceremonies, publicity for new businesses, and discounted fees for chamber events. Dues help continue the chamber’s year-round beautification program responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the hamlet’s welcome signs, seasonal flower plantings and holiday decorations. Many members have also elected to sponsor roadside banners in the hamlet, in addition to their annual dues. Because Pine Island as a hamlet has no official government, the chamber often fulfills a vital communications role in the representation of the special concerns of its residents. To commemorate the 50th anniversary, the Chamber is planning special events including: The new outdoor Pine Island Black Dirt Farmer’s Market, which takes place every Saturday through Columbus Day at the Pine Island Park The third annual Black Dirt Feast, at Scheuermann Farms & Greenhouses on Aug. 2. Tickets can be obtained for this al fresco multi-course culinary event by contacting Sondra Hall at 258-4176. The annual social and installation of officers will take place on Oct. 23 marking the 50th anniversary by honoring the chamber’s founding members and past citizens of the year. “We will continue to work on creative ways to promote and beautify our hamlet, as well as to better connect, inform and interact with the community.” says Caraballo, “We sincerely thank those who have joined or renewed this year, and we continue to welcome new memberships throughout the rest of the year.” The public is invited to attend monthly chamber meetings, held the third Tuesday of each month at the newly-built Pine Island Firehouse.
Top 10 reasons ... for shopping at the Pine Island Black Dirt Farmers Market every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. now until Columbus Day weekend: 10. It’s an open air market held in the beautiful Pine Island Park. 9. There is plenty of nearby parking for all in a grassy shaded parking lot including handicapped spots. 8. The kids will find plenty to do in the playground while you’re visiting the market vendors. 7. You’re likely to meet friends and neighbors there. 6. You’ll be able to meet and greet a local community service organization whether it’s Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts or the Warwick Valley FFA. 5. You’ll find someone playing music, a dance performance, or an exhibit by a local artist, all taking place center stage at the beautiful newly erected gazebo. 4. You’ll be supporting your community by shopping local and keeping dollars circulating here. 3. You’ll find fresh vegetables of all sorts, as well as many specialty products including grass-fed beef, eggs, honey and a variety of flowering horticultural plants all at affordable prices. 2. You’ll have an opportunity to actually meet and get to know the person that is growing, raising or supplying the products that you are purchasing. 1. It just tastes better. Source: Pine Island Chamber of Commerce