Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce Blog
Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce Blog
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11:17 AM

New Year, New Chair, Same Great Community


Kim Crider_copy1

Message from Kim Crider, Board Chair, Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce

It’s the beginning of a new year and my first year as chair of the Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce board of directors. What a wonderful time it is for me to dive in and learn more about the needs of our members and community, and to witness the ongoing transformation of our downtown and surrounding areas.


The Chambersburg area is growing and changing, with more great projects on the way. The Coyle Free Library has just completed a beautiful renovation. The former Central Junior High School project is well underway with plans for residential loft apartments and office/learning space. Construction on the borough building is moving forward quickly. The Memorial Park pool is getting a much-needed overhaul. It is an exciting time to live and work in Chambersburg!


None of this could happen without the support of our local businesses. Over 60 percent of our Chamber members are small businesses with less than 10 employees, and yet many manage to support our local economic growth by sponsoring events, donating funds and volunteering their time. The large employer members also give their time, talents and funds to make sure our community has the resources needed to create successful economic development ventures. Every dollar donated matters. Every person hour donated matters. Every service donated matters.


I invite you to take a moment or two to walk around our town and look at what you have helped accomplish. When we come together as a community, our local citizens benefit. When we come together as a community, local businesses reap the benefits. When we come together as a community, local economic development flourishes. Thank you for all you contribute to the Chamber and our community!


There is so much more to come in Chambersburg! I’m looking forward to continuing to share our community successes and thanking you for your hard work in making Chambersburg a wonderful place in which to live, work and play.

8:10 AM

What’s the Narrative Playing in Your Head?

2017 Jimmy head shotby James M. Carchidi, CSP, CEO (Chief Enthusiasm Officer), JFC Staffing Companies


Don’t be an elephant!


I recently heard an excellent story told by Dave Ramsey on his podcast, EntreLeadership.  The message sparked a profound awakening in me and my hope is that it does the same for you.  It went something like this…


You know how circuses tame a baby elephant? 


They drive a “giant” metal stake deep into the ground with an “enormous” chain from it tied to the elephant’s ankle.  The infant mammal fights with all her might until eventually coming to an understanding that she cannot free herself.  Soon enough a mindset formulates, she accepts the situation, and no longer attempts moving the stake.




You know how they restrain her years later as a full grown, mighty adult?


They drive a “little” steak into the ground with a “tiny” rope from it tied to the elephant’s ankle.  Ironically, she chooses not to move.  Why?  The only thing holding this 10,000-pound mammal back is her belief in the past. 


The reality is that many of us err on the side of perceived limitations, those that aren’t necessarily real.  Like the elephant in the story, we become immobile by past beliefs or at least they constrain us in some way.  By believing them, of what we can and cannot do, we become blind to future possibilities.  In doing so we impoverish our full potential.


Ask yourself, “What confines am I imposing on myself at work…are they real or just made up?”  


Evaluate the story you might be telling yourself about goals.  Then shatter any limited beliefs that are holding you back.  The story of the elephant reminded me, and hopefully you, that we are confined only by the walls we build ourselves.


The story you are telling yourself will either hold you back or propel your forward.  If it is not working, then change the story.  Literally the narrative going on between your ears determines how you participate in life.

8:19 AM

Grand Re-Opening: Coyle Free Library

The Coyle Free Library has finished its extensive renovation and reopened at 102 North Main St. in Downtown Chambersburg - Congrats! The library is the main public resource center for Franklin and Fulton Counties. It now includes a rooftop terrace, micromarket with foods from The Butcher Shoppe, children's room, conservatory and much more.

Stop in and discover all it has to offer in downtown Chambersburg. Learn more here:

3:29 PM

New Innovation Hub to Promote Entrepreneurship

LaunchBox_Open_HousePenn State Mont Alto Chancellor Francis K. Achampong hosted an Open House and Reception on Nov. 16 to introduce the Mont Alto LaunchBox, a program to promote entrepreneurship in Franklin County. The event was held in conjunction with Penn State’s Global Entrepreneurship Week, Nov. 12-16, and highlighted what Penn State is doing to promote entrepreneurship.

“The idea is to offer free services to entrepreneurs in communities around the Commonwealth to help them start and grow businesses that will drive economic development in their communities,” said Achampong.

The Mont Alto LaunchBox ― one of 17 innovation hubs at the Commonwealth Campuses ― is part of Invent Penn State, a broader Penn State initiative to promote entrepreneurship and innovation across the Commonwealth. It is located at 40 North Second Street in Chambersburg.

Seeded by a three-year, $50,000 grant, the Mont Alto LaunchBox will serve as an incubator to help aspiring entrepreneurs develop their ideas and take their products and services to market.

The project has already received a $15,000 gift from the Franklin County Area Development Corporation (FCADC) that will be matched by Penn State, according to Achampong.

As part of its A Greater Penn State fundraising campaign, Penn State has committed to matching dollar-for-dollar all funds raised for entrepreneurship in the 2017-18 fiscal year. In addition to the one-to-one match, the University will match up to $1 million raised for the LaunchBox specifically and, if the entire gift comes from one donor, the University will name the LaunchBox after the donor.

LaunchBox services will include legal and patent advice, co-working space, mentorship to help de-risk and accelerate startups, and connection to micro grants and other resources.

The Mont Alto LaunchBox is slated to open in early 2018.

1:52 PM

Ribbon Cutting: Diné Development Corporation

Welcome Diné Development Corporation (DDC) to Downtown Chambersburg! They celebrated with an Open House and Ribbon Cutting at their new location at 70 W. King St. - the former Ft. Chambers Building.
DDC is a proactive business holding company charged to establish, invest in, own, and operate subsidiary corporations. The former Fort Chambers Building has been redesigned as a beautiful office space to house DDC subsidiaries: NOVA Corporation, Diné Development Corporation Information Technology Services (DDC-ITS), Diné Development Corporation 4-C (DDC-4C), BRIC, and Diné Source. DDC's primary lines of business are information technology services and solutions, and environmental remediation services. DDC is wholly owned by the Navajo Nation. Learn more here.

2:32 PM

Board of Directors Hires Stephen Christian as Chamber President

The Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors is pleased to announce the hiring of Stephen "Steve" Christian as president of the Chamber and executive director of Chambersburg Area Development Corp. The appointment was made after an extensive nationwide search led by the executive search firm Waverly Partners... Read More

8:44 AM

Forty-two Local Travelers Explore Ireland with the Chamber Travel Club

Forty-two local travelers ventured to Southern Ireland discovering castles, sampling Irish specialties, exploring picturesque landscapes and absorbing Irish culture for the inaugural Chamber Travel Club trip earlier this month.

The seven-day excursion, the first of five trips scheduled, was hosted by the Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce as part of the newly formed Chamber Travel Club and coordinated by Cathy Folmar and Rhonda DeShong of Dream Vacations.
“The Chambersburg Chamber is providing a reliable, comfortable base for our community to unite and travel together,” Folmar, franchise owner of Dream Vacations, said. “The Chamber staff are doing an incredible job launching the new travel program. The Ireland trip was amazing; 42 guests left Chambersburg as acquaintances and returned as Irish family. We look forward to our next adventure with friends old and new.”

The group, comprised of local residents from Chambersburg, Waynesboro, Greencastle, Mercersburg, Shippensburg and Ft. Loudon, explored the wonders of the Emerald Isle led by CIE Tours International. Highlights included Dublin and the Guinness Storehouse, Trinity College and the Book of Kells, Blarney Castle, Killarney, the Dingle Peninsula, (don’t forget Fungie the Dolphin!), a medieval banquet at Bunratty Castle, the Cliffs of Moher and more castles than they could count!

“We created the Chamber Travel Club to provide an easy and fun way for local residents to travel while also giving back to our community,” Lark Plessinger, marketing manager at the Chambersburg Chamber, said. “Each trip is hosted by a different Chamber member travel agency with a portion of the proceeds supporting the Chambersburg Chamber. We were blown away by the response with this trip, and how well the group toured together – it shows how connected our community is no matter where in the world they travel.”
The group consisted of all ages and backgrounds as they traveled from Dublin to Galway. Many in the group had not traveled internationally and appreciated the help of the Chamber Travel Club coordinators to guide them every step of the way.   

“I had a wonderful time exploring a new country while getting to know great people from my hometown; that is a win-win!” said Kim Calimer, Chamber Travel Club Ireland 2017 trip attendee.  
The Chamber Travel Club has four additional trips planned with their Chamber member travel agents through early 2019. They include:

·         June 30-July 5, 2018 – Bermuda Cruise on the Royal Caribbean coordinated by Carol DiBiase with Cruise Planners.

·         September 12-19, 2018 – Pacific Wine Country Cruise on Princess Cruises coordinated by Cathy Folmar and Rhonda DeShong of Dream Vacations.

·         November 6-15, 2018 – Reflections of Italy with Collette Vacations coordinated by Kay Estep of Kay’s World Class Travel.

·         February 16-24, 2019 – Natural Wonders of Costa Rica with Globus coordinated by Uniquest Chambersburg Travel, LLC.
For more information about these trips, upcoming information sessions or to join the Chamber Travel Club communications, please contact Plessinger at 717-264-7101 ext. 206 or For past trip photos and tour itineraries, visit

The Greater Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit organization with more than 850 Chamber member businesses. It has been serving the community since 1911 and exists to help its members prosper as well as enhance the quality of life in the Chambersburg area.

View More Photos Here: 

12:05 PM

Grand Re-Opening: Comfort Inn

Congrats Comfort Inn! They celebrated their new location and extensive remodel today with a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony attended by family, friends, staff and prominent business leaders in the community.

Comfort Inn is located at 3648 Olde Scotland Road in Chambersburg and offers complimentary breakfast, free WiFi, beautiful views of the countryside, a new fitness center, accommodations on three levels, easy access to Interstate 81 and much more. Learn more about them by clicking here or call 717-264-6288.

1:28 PM

Ribbon Cutting: DICE Office Equipment

Congratulations! DICE Office Equipment celebrated their new location at 20 Commerce Ave. in Greencastle with family, friends, staff and community business leaders. 

They aim to make finding, repairing and operating office equipment as easy as it should be with quality products at fair prices. Stop in and learn more about their business or contact them at 1-800-495-3423 or

9:20 AM

Ribbon Cutting: The Shook Home Rehabilitation & Wellness Center

Congrats to The Shook Home for the grand opening of their new Rehabilitation and Wellness Center! They celebrated with many community leaders and Shook Home residents at a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday, September 22. Guests got to tour the new facility while enjoying delicious food from Main Street Deli and Catering... Read More