Get focused; scout and explore what Upper Bucks County has to offer

After months of preparation and hard work, the 2016 focused Upper Bucks County directory hit the streets in early January. As the fresh title suggests – a nod to the past and vision toward the future – focused is a showcase of chamber membership, the region’s rich resources and traditions, along with goods and services available in Upper Bucks County.

The 2016 edition of focused is packed with helpful information. We’ve unearthed intriguing nuggets about local history and lore, and provided a one-stop treasury of the vibrant businesses and entrepreneurs located and operating here.

In addition to being available in print, focused Upper Bucks County is also available online, along with convenient links to our business advertisers’ websites.

About 5,000 print copies of the new directory are available now throughout the municipalities that make up Palisades, Pennridge and Quakertown Community school districts.

We’ve built focused Upper Bucks County from scratch using chamber members experience, expertise and services they offer. That means money spent to create the publication was reinvested in our own business community. From creating original copy, layout and design to photography, print and online production, this issue is entirely home grown.

Previous editions of the annual publication were produced by packaging publishers, and printed in other parts of the country.

Printed in nearby New Jersey, Chamber Executive Director Tara King witnessed the presses rolling. King had the opportunity roll up her sleeves, view color “tear sheets” as they came off the press, parlay printer lingo, and gained a greater understanding of the complex composition and printing industry process.

A flyer appearing in the February 4th edition of Bucks County Herald announces focused, and its print availability.

In addition to chamber business listings and helpful resources, anyone reading focused can learn about the area. We’ve included feature story-style reporting throughout, as we shine the spotlight on shopping and dining, agriculture and education, business, location, government, demographics, and more.

Think ahead! A photography contest for next year’s edition is an open invitation for anyone with a digital camera or Smartphone, to submit pictures to be considered for publication. Photography contest details will be announced.

Be focused, scout and explore what Upper Bucks County has to offer.

Look for focused throughout the community, available at municipal buildings, and various locations, or stop by the Upper Bucks Visitor Center to pick up a copy today.

Upper Bucks Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Center is located at 21 North Main Street, Quakertown. Hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday – Friday.

 

 

Advertisements

UBCC Year in Review

Abundance. Mild weather. A growing economy and positive outlook.

As we wrap up 2015 there’s a lot to remember, and a lot for which to be thankful.

Making connections, providing resources and offering business leaders an opportunity to find one another, were 2015 hallmarks of the Upper Bucks Chamber of Commerce mission.

From the annual Small Business Conference & Expo at Bucks County Community College, Perkasie Campus in March to developing relationships and better business outcomes, UBCC is an active community member.

Regular business card networking opportunities provide a relaxed way for members to come together. Look for additional, new happy hours in 2016.

The annual June golf classic was another chance to meet and enjoy some relaxed time on the greens. This year’s Upper Bucks Foodie event in October, drew record numbers to the Sands Chrysler Jeep Dodge dealership for an outstanding sold-out evening of great food and drink samplings, raffle baskets, and community bon ami.

Take advantage of online webinars and educational opportunities, free online training and staff development – it’s all available through the chamber.

We’re strengthening business relationships.

Throughout the year we’ve blogged and profiled area business leaders and entrepreneurs from food and home services industries, tech companies, manufacturers, a public school district and the area’s technical career school, among others.

Consistently, we hear and see demonstrated the small town charm associated with Quakertown, Perkasie, Sellersville and beyond. And recently, acceptance in the Classic Towns of Greater Philadelphia program validated what generations living in Quakertown have known all along: The heart of Upper Bucks is a great place to call home.

Upper Bucks leaders, business owners and operators are savvy forward thinkers braced to face the challenges of living in a 21st Century world and economy.

For the first time the newest chamber business directory, Focused, was built from the ground up by chamber members.

Focused will premiere in January. In addition to the print copy of the directory, an online edition promises to be more engaging and interactive than ever before. Online, Focused will be easy to use and provides a launching pad for finding member businesses, and much more. It’s jam packed with information about the wealth of resources that make up our region, and offers our tips and picks for how to spend a day, a vacation, or to settle and live a lifetime.

As we look to better serve existing members and welcome new members, a photo contest for the next chamber directory could showcase your work. We’ll share more on how to submit photos in the New Year.

Among our New Year’s resolutions are continued growth of our membership and networking communities. In 2016, our goal is to grow membership to 1,000 from our current 600 – that’s an ambitious membership increase of roughly 40 percent.

You can help us reach the new member goal. Invite a business colleague, new business start-up or entrepreneurial friend to the next networking event.  Tell your non-chamber business contacts about the resources available to them, once they join the Upper Bucks Chamber of Commerce.

Don’t be shy. Take advantage of the benefits chamber membership, and a valued place in this diverse community, affords you.

Member Spotlight – Upper Bucks County Technical School

Strong alliances with business and industry to benefit employers and a skilled talent pool to join the workforce are the main objectives of the Upper Bucks County Technical School.

From animal to automotive technologies, baking and pastry arts, cabinet making, carpentry and cosmetology, the Upper Bucks County Technical School trains high school students to succeed after graduation in skilled trades and industry at the Bedminster Township facility.

More than 23 different industry trades are represented at the rural school, which is currently wrapping up a two year, roughly $23 million renovation project, according to Bern Wagenseller, Upper Bucks County Technical School executive director.

Among the campus upgrades is a covered connecting hallway so students may travel indoors to either of the site’s main education buildings.

Serving Palisades, Pennridge and Quakertown high school students, Upper Bucks County Technical School taps local manufacturing industry and trades leaders to ensure best practices and cutting edge curriculum are in place at the school.

“Our business partners meet twice a year to discuss equipment, curriculum safety and to cement our partnerships,” Wagenseller said.

A recent conference of industry leaders gathered about 165 participants at the site, Wagenseller said.

Throughout the year, 20 advisory committees meet to review and help guide curriculum and align equipment, safety and labs, to best industry practices, said Cathleen Plesnarski, Upper Bucks County Technical School assistant director.

Plesnarski said the school makes a point of keeping pace with technology keeps a close watch on industry and trade trends. “A couple of years ago home health aides became a bigger program as the industry need in Upper Bucks also grew,” Plesnarski said.

The school is a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation emission certification site, according to Wagenseller. “We’ve re-certified about 90 technicians to conduct state inspection emissions testing,” Wagenseller said.

After a two year hiatus, a trades based adult night school program is slated to launch after construction is completed, sometime in 2016. “We are looking at workforce development, and offering classes in machining, welding, and HVAC,” Wagenseller said.