Christine Hoyt of the Berkshire Chamber, right, speaks with Linda M. Alfonso, left, a consultant with BeautiControl and others after Alfonso provided a sample hand massage.
About 250 people attended the job fair sponsored by the Berkshire Chamber of Commerce at the Berkshire Hills Country Club in Pittsfield on Thursday. That figure was lower than last year — during the depths of the recession — but the good news was that the number of employers and employment resource services was up.
Christine Hoyt, the chamber's director of programs and events, said the turnout was good on both sides. "We had more than 40 employers, a little more than last year," she said. "Employers were satisfied with the good quality of the job seekers."
The excellent weather, along with the economy's slow emergence from the financial crisis, may have played a factor in the about average attendance, said Hoyt.
Employers ranging from LTI Smartglass, Interprint, Williams College and Norman Rockwell were on hand offering opportunities for the right candidates. iBerkshires' sister site, BerkshireJobs.com, also had a booth.
LENOX, Mass. — The Lenox Chamber of Commerce is working on a new visitor information center, to be located in the Town Hall, 6 Walker St.
According to the Chamber, the new center is due to open mid-spring and will have a "half price" ticket agency for some of the area's attractions, and will provide "the usual lodging, restaurant, shopping referrals and informational services" the Chamber office currently provides. In addition, there will be a guest phone for local area calls and a computer display of the county's attractions. The center will be open seven days a week during the high visitor season, with hours to be determined during the off season.
Vickie Salvatore from the Lenox Historical Society is helping with the decor.
If you'd like to volunteer with the project, contact Ralph at the Chamber (413-637-3646), Peggy Roethel at the Garden Gables Inn (413-637-0193) or Judie Culver at the Purple Plume (413-637-3442), or email email@example.com.
Berkshire Young Professionals, a program of the Berkshire Chamber of Commerce, will host a Networking Social at Rouge Restaurant and Bistro, 3 Center St., West Stockbridge, next Thursday, March 25, from 5 to 7 p.m.
Young professionals from around the county are invited to enjoy complimentary hors d’oeuvres and networking. The event will include a cash bar and attendees are encouraged to bring business cards in order to enter into a free gift drawing.
Berkshire Young Professionals’ events are open to all professionals and students living and/or working in Berkshire County. Events are hosted at popular venues throughout Berkshire County to foster networking opportunities for young professionals to build their careers, build friendships and enrich the community.
New North Adams Mayor Dick Alcombright's a popular guy at chamber breakfasts. If you missed him at the Williamstown breakfast last month, he'll be speaking next Wednesday, March 24, at a Berkshire Chamber of Commerce "Eggs & Issues" event at the Bounti-Fare in Adams.
The Berkshire Chamber hosts the informal breakfasts to allow members to hear about topical issues with local and regional experts and officials. The last breakfast was held at Hillcrest Educational Centers with Sen. Ben Downing (also a frequent favorite lately at area chamber events).
Wednesday's event, sponsored by MountainOne Financial Partners, will run from 8 to 9:30 and feature a light but we'll bet tasty breakfast, based on past experience.
The Berkshire Chamber of Commerce is holding an open house on Monday morning from 8 to 10 at its North Adams office at 6 West Main St. Volunteers, members and potential members are invited to attend and find out what the chamber can offer.
Attendees will meet the staff and be able to learn more about the many volunteer opportunities offered through the chamber as well as the benefits of membership. Businesses that are not part of the largest business-support organization in the Berkshires are also invited to attend the open house to learn more about the many benefits of chamber membership.
For businesses considering joining, March is a good month to do it. Along with regular benefits, the chamber is offering more than $1,500 in incentives for businesses that join during the month.
March has been developed as a "Membership Month" with the small-business or sole-proprietor owner in mind.
"By increasing the size of the chamber's membership base, businesses and their employees will realize a greater return on their investment," according to Jen Glockner, the chamber's membership manager. "With more businesses participating at our networking events, our attendees will have a much greater opportunity to develop new relationships. And, as we increase in size, the chamber's advocacy efforts represent a larger constituency creating an even stronger voice on business and legislative issues."
The following members will be offering discounts and/or freebies to new members: New England Newspapers (including The Berkshire Eagle, Nort Adams Transcript, and The Advocate), Custom Business Solutions, Winstanley Partners, MacFarlane Office Products, BBE Office Interiors, CompuWorks, Berkshire Coupon.com, Berkshire Jobs.com., iBerkshires.com (Editor: that's us!), Vox Communications (including WBEC, WUPE, WNAW, and WSBS), WJ Blueprint, Berkshire Print Shop, and Quality Printing Co.
Annual membership dues start at $255 for businesses with five employees or less. Applications are available at www.berkshirechamber.com. Business owners can also find out more by attending the open house on Monday or contacting Glockner at 413-499-4000, Ext. 17.