NEWINGTON - Business at the Newington Chamber of Commerce is booming, blooming and charming, with ongoing activities and events.
The “14 Days of Love Countdown to Valentine’s Day” is wrapping up just this week, highlighting local businesses that have a connection to the holiday and specials they are offering this February and beyond.
Then the chamber’s second annual Comedy Night is set to take place on Friday, Feb. 28, at Indian Hill Country Club. Doors open at 7 p.m. for a cocktail hour before several acts from Treehouse Comedy Productions take the stage for an hour-and-a-half-long show beginning at 8 p.m.
Chamber Executive Director Peter Forcellina is energized about his organization’s growing membership and active participation from new and longtime members alike.
“We’ve been growing and growing; bringing value and visibility to businesses in Newington,” Forcellina said. “We have great board engagement and sponsorships are helping us limit the amount of fundraisers we do.”
Over the course of one year the chamber has grown about 40 percent, now representing over 215 businesses in the community.
New initiatives like the V-Day countdown are also keeping local residents busy, thanks to constant efforts by Social Media and Marketing Director Tiffany Hamm Gouveia.
“It’s a great way to get the word out about these local businesses that people might not even be aware are there because they’re a little off the beaten path,” she pointed out.
Soft as a Petal Massage, for example, is located above Dilly’s Café, at 39 Market Square.
Owner Jennalee Levesque is skilled in a wide variety of techniques, from Thai massage to cupping and trigger point therapy. Loved ones will be grateful to receive a massage as a gift this Valentine’s Day, Hamm Gouveia encouraged followers on social media.
Also featured was WhipLash, an eyelash extension salon located on Carr Avenue in a largely industrial part of town. Owner Christina Petillo has some February specials, including a full set for $99.
Next month the chamber plans to highlight a whole different set of businesses for a St. Patrick’s Day Foodie Countdown, featuring bars and restaurants that will partake in the wearing of the green.
“We’re trying to think of ways to highlight chamber members that are fun and creative,” Hamm Gouveia said.
Back in November, the organization had a Small Business Saturday scavenger hunt.
Anyone could pick up a “Passport” and set off to visit five or more businesses on it that day, where their card was stamped. Competitors who collected the most stamps picked out raffle prizes donated by participating companies, including jewelry from Turgeon Jewelers, glasses from The Eyeglass Place, gift cards and more.
“We’ll be rolling that out again next November,” Forcellina said. “People just had a blast with it. It really brought the community together.”
The next big event people are looking forward to is Comedy Night, selling out fast. Three weeks out, only 50 tickets still remained. Inquire at newingtonchamber.com.
Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at 860-801-5097 or firstname.lastname@example.org.