Pilot Project to Maintain 24/7 Pedestrian Space in Two Blocks of Kirkwood Through 2020 Bloomington, Ind.
In its ongoing effort safely to advance economic vitality and quality of life during the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Bloomington has expanded a pilot project that creates pedestrian space within three blocks on Kirkwood Avenue through the end of the year.
Closing the blocks from Indiana Avenue to Dunn Street, Dunn Street to Grant Street, and Washington Street to Walnut Street to motorized vehicles over the weekends since mid-June has allowed restaurants and businesses in these blocks to provide outdoor seating and commerce in the street to facilitate physical distancing for their customers. At the request of the participating businesses, the City has extended the pilot so that the blocks from Dunn to Grant and Walnut to Washington will remain closed to motorized vehicles throughout the week until December 31, 2020. The block from Indiana to Dunn will reopen on weekdays.
NOTE: This "It's Your Business" column by Chamber CEO Erin Predmore was published in the Oct. 9, 2020 Bloomington Herald-Times.
This year, the presidential election is sucking all the oxygen out of the room as we head toward Nov. 3. It’s certainly a crucial race, and not just for the business community.
But here’s the thing: While presidential candidates receive much-deserved attention and scrutiny, many of the down-ballot races go virtually unnoticed. How many times in the past have you filled out your ballot and wondered: “Who the heck are these people?”
The candidates we elect for local and state offices have a direct impact on our daily lives. They make decisions that impact businesses, nonprofits, educational institutions and individuals. They decide how our tax dollars are spent. They make policies and regulations that affect how your business can operate and whether you can thrive. They hire and oversee our school superintendents. They determine how laws are applied. And most of them do this in relative anonymity.
PRESS RELEASE: The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce Celebrates 105th Annual Meeting Virtually
Bloomington, IN – The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce held its 105th Annual Meeting and Community Awards this afternoon. Instead of the usual friendly confines of the Monroe Convention Center, this year the Chamber took the proceedings to Zoom® with a new approach.
“We’ve all heard this time and time again over the last 6 months, but this has been an unprecedented year for many reasons,” said Erin Predmore, President & CEO of the Chamber. “Here at the Chamber, we are glad that we have been able to be a resource for our members through this time, and we are so grateful to still have opportunities like our annual meeting to connect with you, even if only virtually.
PRESS RELEASE: The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce Opposes Current Local Income Tax Proposal
Bloomington, IN – The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce is urging the Bloomington Common Council to vote against Mayor John Hamilton’s proposal to increase the local income tax (LIT) by 0.25%.
“A lack of public process makes this tax proposal impossible to support,” said Erin Predmore, the Chamber’s President & CEO. “Adding to the community’s tax burden is an important decision and should be guided by a clear community consensus. That work hasn’t happened.”
In an online survey of Chamber members taken this week, 73% of respondents opposed the current proposal and an additional 18% opposed it at this time. Only 9% supported the proposal.
NOTE: This "It's Your Business" column by Chamber CEO Erin Predmore was published in the Aug. 14, 2020 Bloomington Herald-Times.
Earlier this summer, we unveiled an important historical marker for our community as a whole, for the business community, and most importantly, for the Black business community.
In the 1960s, a business called The Black Market operated in the spot where Peoples Park is located now. Owned and run by IU grad student Rollo Turner, it was a Bloomington store celebrating Black culture, with African art, clothing, and music. It was a welcoming place for Black IU students and community members to gather.
On December 26, 1968, in a violent reaction to the civil rights movement, the Black Market was firebombed. What was one moment a thriving, locally owned business and center for Black culture became in the next moment a burning symbol of hatred and racism. The store was destroyed in the fire.
PRESS RELEASE: The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce to Commemorate Peoples Park with Historical Marker
Bloomington, IN – The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce the installation of a historical marker at Peoples Park in Bloomington to mark the location of the Black Market, a Black-owned business that was firebombed in 1968. The installation will take place on Friday, July 31st at 10:00am at Peoples Park located at 501 E Kirkwood Ave (the corner of Kirkwood Ave and Dunn St).
This ends a process that officially began in the summer of 2019 with an application to the Indiana Historical Bureau. The Chamber had originally planned to have this event and marker installation in May, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, plans were rescheduled for this month. The Chamber will be livestreaming the installation of the marker on their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/chamberbloom.
Bloomington, IN – The public is invited to join Chamber members on Thursday, July 15, 2020 at the annual Health & Business Conference hosted by the Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce from 9:00am to 10:30am. The conference will be a virtual webinar via Zoom.
The program will be focused around the current COVID-19 crisis and how the Bloomington medical community has responded and will continue to handle the situation locally. Brian Shockney, President of IU Health South Central Region, and Dr. Dan Handel, Chief Medical Officer for IU Health South Central Region will offer insights on the local implications of the COVID-19 pandemic.
PRESS RELEASE: The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce Seeks Nominations for Unmasked Hometown Hero Awards
Bloomington, IN – The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce is now accepted nominations for its upcoming “Unmasked Hometown Hero Awards,” which will take place August 20th. Stories have been coming in throughout the pandemic of community members who have sacrificed for the greater good, taken care of their neighbors, or helped support others in need, and the Chamber would like to recognize them.
Can you help the Chamber "unmask" these hometown heroes? We've all noticed others around us during this time who have stepped up, given more than their share to our community so that we could continue on, and helped to take care of others. As we continue our recovery, we would like to pause to appreciate all that these heroes have done and celebrate the positive impact they have had on all of us.
Bloomington, IN – The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce received a donation on behalf of the community this week from Cook Medical who donated 84,000 face masks and 180 gallon-sized bottles of hand sanitizer to be distributed to the local business community. The Chamber will be storing the supplies and distributing them to businesses and organizations through the community.
“The Chamber staff is grateful to Cook Medical for this donation of necessary supplies to help get our city and county back to business while keeping our community safe and healthy,” said Erin Predmore, the Chamber’s President & CEO. “We have been working hard to support our business community in any way we can during this time of crisis, and we are happy to be able to help now in this way by distributing PPE and supplies to the businesses and organizations who need it most.”
PRESS RELEASE: Bloomington Chamber Now Accepting Nominations for the 2020 Women Excel Bloomington Awards
Bloomington, IN - The Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce it is now accepting nominations for the 11th Annual Women Excel Bloomington (WEB) Awards. Each year, seven women are recognized for their outstanding leadership in influencing the growth of others in the community and/or in their professional organization. These prestigious business leadership awards will be presented at the WEB Awards reception scheduled for late May.