Honoring Small Businesses

The Jackson County Chamber of Commerce’s 9th Annual ANCHOR Awards will be held on August 9th, 2017.  The ANCHOR Awards was created to honor, reward and celebrate the achievements of outstanding small businesses and non-profit organizations in the community. The Jackson County Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber’s Small Business Issue Manager Group recognize that small businesses and non-profit organizations are the “anchors” that make the community successful.  Sponsorship opportunities and tickets are still available.

This year’s nominees are the following:

Small Business Category 1

Audiowave Car Stereo

Aztecas Restaurant & Cantina

Belk of Gautier

Cable One, Inc.

Coldwell Banker Alfonso Realty, Inc. – Pascagoula “CBAR”

Compton Engineering, Inc.

Floor Trader

Gibson Electric Motor Sales & Service, Inc.

Gulf Coast Marine Supply

Island Winds Title Company, LLC

Perkins Tire & Polaris, Inc.

Southern Belles Like Big Bows

 

Small Business Category 2

Community Bank

Hancock Bank

Keesler Federal Credit Union

Team Waste Gulf Coast

 

Rookie Category

Nura Juice

QuadMed, Ingalls Family Health Center

State Farm Insurance – Brenda Thompson

Whimsy Books & Toys, LLC

 

Non-Profit Category

Dream Program, Inc.

Feeding the Gulf Coast

Jackson County Civic Action Committee

Jackson County Literacy Council, Inc.

Jackson-George Regional Library System

Kiwanis Club of Pascagoula

Mississippi Power Community Connection Jackson/George Chapter

Pascagoula River Audubon Center

Second Baptist Christian Academy

 

The ANCHOR Awards program will be held on Wednesday, August 9th, at 7:30 a.m. at Pelican Landing Conference Center in Moss Point.  Tickets are $30 each, and Gold Sponsorships ($700, includes a table of eight) and Silver Sponsorships ($300, two tickets) are available.  Contact Linda Johnson at JohnsonL@jcchamber.com or 228-762-3391 about sponsorship.

The Chamber is here to support community and business development within Jackson County.  Opportunities such as this are available exclusively to members of the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce.  Small businesses make up nearly 85 percent of the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce membership. The Chamber is always here to support community and small business development within Jackson County.

Anyone interested in learning more about the ANCHOR Awards and Small Business Summer (free Summer Learning Series seminars and $2,500 Small Business Grants) or joining the Chamber should contact the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce at 228-762-3391 or membership@jcchamber.com.  More information is available on www.jcchamber.com and the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce business page on Facebook.

 

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Old School Learning Depot Equips Educators & Students

17636995_232403870562388_7502716450457121223_o-e1499301394373 Old School Learning Depot Equips Educators & StudentsOld School Learning Depot in Pascagoula is essentially a tutoring boutique for students, a classroom inspiration for teachers, and a lifesaver for parents. This summer they are offering workshops focused in math and language to help build foundational skills for students. To prepare for this upcoming school year Old School Learning Depot has stylish classroom decorations and resources for teachers. They also offer prepackaged school supply bags that will help parents save time, eliminate fighting the crowds, and cut down on the headaches.

In addition to the prepackaged school supply bags, they offer FREE summer homework help, during the month of July. To encourage parents to sign up for tutoring services for the 2017-2018 school year Old School Learning Depot is offering bundled tutoring services to ensure that their students starts the school year off with a success. The 9 Weeks Ultimate Package includes 4 scheduled sessions (2 Individual & 2 Group), Unlimited Homework Help Tuesday – Thursday, 15 % off additional services, and 10 % off merchandise. This package is currently priced at $235 until August 1st.

“My advice for parents is to find the opportunities to turn a “normal” event into an educational experience. Don’t wait until August to get your student thinking critically,” says Christina Bates from Old School Learning Depot. Bates goes on to say, “Old School Learning Depot offers a supplemental learning environment for students to help enhance what our local schools are doing. We want to support our local schools and help students be the best they can be.”

To check out more about Old School Learning Depot, visit them at the Anchor Square shopping village or give them a call at (228) 202-9691.

Also check them out on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/oldschoollearningdepot/

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Anchor Square offers help to burgeoning businesses

Starting a new business can be a daunting task. It may seem like all it takes is an idea and some capital, but there is a lot of planning and resources that go into such an endeavor. One of the most surprising expenses can be just how much it costs to rent a space. Well, there is help in downtown Pascagoula thanks to Anchor Square.

“Anchor Square is a small business incubator for the city of Pascagoula,” said LaLinda Grace, Economic Development Specialist for the city. “It is a group of 15 MEMA cottages that have been repurposed for retail and restaurant use. The goal is to offer low overhead for new, or new to Pascagoula, businesses. Anchor Square allows them to come in, establish their business, grow, and then move out to vacant properties in town.”

To date, Anchor Square has seen the transition of several businesses, including Zeal Boutique, Alan Hinklel Photography, Gourmet Gurl, and Whimsy Books & Toys.  

“It gives an opportunity for someone who wants to open a business and a place to start off with low cost, so that they’re not having to put in a lot of their own personal money,” Grace said. “It’s easier to start a business here than somewhere that maybe has a higher rent or things like that.”

The main purpose of Anchor Square is to serve as a starting-off point for small businesses. There are plans in place to make sure the businesses eventually move out of that location.

“Rent on our cottages increases by 10 percent each year for our tenants,” Grace explained. “We have two different cottage options: a single with a $235 per month rent and a double with a $291 per month rent, with tenants signing a one-year lease. We also have a transition policy in place where we do an evaluation of each business each year to help them move out. Businesses are usually able to stay for three years before they need to transition out.” 

For more information about Anchor Square, including a list of current businesses, visit their website or call Grace at (228) 938-2352. Anyone interested in getting advice on opening a small business can also visit the Anchor Square office or talk to the present tenants. 

 

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Refinery Walkers Raise Awareness, Funds for Multiple Sclerosis

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Pascagoula Refinery employees and family members joined more than 200 other participants for Walk MS on March 11 at Fort Maurepas Park in Ocean Springs.

The one-mile walk, organized by the MS Society, connects people living with multiple sclerosis and those who care about them. This year’s event raised more than $30,000, benefitting more than 2,300 people living with MS in Mississippi.

Thanks to refinery walkers (back row, from left) Alun Phillips (M&R), Paul Meline (C/A/A), Sean Campbell (M&R), (middle row, from left) Vicky Phillips, Kristen Meline, Cayden Campbell, Margaret Campbell, Anthony Hinkel (LPS), Marissa Badenhorst (M&R), (front row, from left), Elin and Alys Phillips, and Crystal and Nathan Hinkel.

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Black History Awareness Celebration

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The Pascagoula Refinery Black Employee Network hosted its annual Black History Awareness Celebration on February 21.

The celebration featured local Moss Point historian, Franzetta Sanders, and Chevron’s Fredrick Walker (Americas Regional Manager – Manufacturing and Supply). Both speakers addressed education from their perspectives. Sanders described her instrumental role in desegregating Moss Point’s school system. Walker discussed how race and education influenced his career and offered insight on how to approach the education of current youth.

The celebration also honored three scholarship winners from Moss Point High School who were selected based on their demonstration of leadership, ability to forge positive relationships with others and academic achievement.

This year’s celebration included a new interactive activity, The Hidden Figures Game. This activity was designed to highlight the contributions of various employees at the Pascagoula Refinery – our “Hidden Figures.” Similar to the characters in the feature film, these Chevron employees likely encountered different barriers throughout their careers, and their accomplishments may have otherwise gone unrecognized. The Hidden Figures Game was a fun way to showcase these accomplishments and to show all employees the benefits the Pascagoula refinery has received from employing a diverse group.

Overall, the 2017 Pascagoula BHAC was a huge success. Thank you to the the BHAC planning committee, BEN Leadership team, and all the BHAC participants.

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Volunteers Prep for Racquets for Ronald

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Thanks to the Chevron volunteers who recently helped prepare for Racquets for Ronald, a tennis tournament fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald House.

The event is held annually at Treasure Oak Country Club in Ocean Springs, and proceeds directly benefit the Share-A-Night Fund, which helps to cover expenses for Ronald McDonald House. The House offers 38 guest rooms, which are available cost-free for families with hospitalized children and helps support families seeking respite at two Ronald McDonald Family Rooms located inside USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital in Mobile.

Louis Henry, Refinery Strategy and Business Planning Manager, serves on the board of directors for the Ronald McDonald House.

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Chevron, Red Cross Partner for Fire Safety

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Chevron Pascagoula Refinery recently partnered with the American Red Cross, Pascagoula Fire Department and U.S. Navy volunteers to educate local residents about fire safety. More than 50 volunteers gathered on Feb. 3 to go door-to-door in east Pascagoula to pass out educational material and install free smoke alarms in homes where there were no working smoke alarms, not enough smoke alarms, or alarms that were not installed correctly.

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Greenhouse offers biscuits, beer and brew

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Just a few blocks away from Front Beach is a quiet little coffee house called The Greenhouse on Porter.

“We operate out of an old greenhouse we turned into a coffee shop,” said Kait Sukiennik, co-owner with Jessie Zenor. “We hold different events like a trivia night, when we donate the proceeds to a different charity every time. We have a poetry night, yard sales, we offer local music, and a lawn outside for kids. We’re not just a coffee shop but a place you can hang out with family and friends while you enjoy a beer or coffee.”

Another unique feature of the Greenhouse on Porter is their biscuit tournament. 

“This will be the third year we’re doing it,” Sukiennik said. “We call for submissions for biscuit recipes, then around September we narrow them down and let our customers try them and vote on which biscuits advance to the next round in the tournament. It usually lasts through December.”

The Greenhouse on Porter is a true gem of Jackson County, allowing people from all over to come together in one place.

“People come together from all walks of life, providing a place that allows us to get to know each other better.”

For more information about The Greenhouse on Porter, visit their website or like their Facebook page.

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JCC offers help during Small Business Summer

The Jackson County Chamber of Commerce is using the season to offer help to growing businesses during Small Business Summer.
 
As part of Small Business Summer, the chamber is offering a free Summer Learning Series. Held the third Thursday of June, July, and August at 720 Krebs Avenue, the series will cover different topics, such as accounting, employment law, and website development. The sessions are from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Attendees should bring their own lunch. 
 
 The chamber is also offering an application for a $2,500 Small Business Grant for all Jackson County Chamber of Commerce members with 50 or less employees. Applications are due Sept. 15 at 5.p.m.
 
For more information about the Summer Learning Series or the Small Business Grant, contact the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce. 

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Sip and Shop in downtown Ocean Springs

Ocean Springs is home to many unique, local boutiques, but it can be difficult to check them out when they are only open while you’re at work. Well, your chance is coming up thanks to Third Thursdays Sip & Shop.

Sip & Shop is a monthly event in downtown Ocean Springs when various downtown establishments stay open “after hours,” usually 5-8 p.m.

Many offer refreshments and specials, encouraging you to make a night of things. It’s a fun way to explore downtown Ocean Springs while getting to unwind after a long day of work. 

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