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Chamber kicks off new program

Effort to assist restaurants, bars

The Blair County Chamber of Commerce has kicked off a 60-day program incentivizing its members to support local bars and restaurants.

Using the name, “Eat. Drink. Help,” the effort falls under the recently launched “Buy Here. Thrive Here.” initiative.

The program encourages businesses to purchase gift cards or gift certificates from Blair County bars and restaurants to help offset Gov. Tom Wolf’s order that restricts operations at a reasonable level of productivity.

Businesses that purchase $150 of cards or certificates will receive a free ad in the chamber’s newsletter that is emailed to more than 4,000 subscribers on Mondays.

Businesses that qualify to receive the ads may instead donate the space to local nonprofits.

“We’re looking for as many ways to make a positive difference in our community as we can,” chamber President/CEO Joe Hurd said in a statement.

“Our bars and restaurants were still in the process of recovering from the first wave of crippling mandates and now the second punch has landed,” he said. “By offering our businesses the opportunity to promote themselves in our newsletter as a motivation to put some extra money in the coffers of local bars and restaurants is a win-win.”

The third winner may be local nonprofits.

“With so many business sectors impacted by COVID-19, many of the nonprofits in the county were somewhat overlooked,” Hurd said. “Having some free ad space to promote rescheduled programs and events will hopefully make a difference for them as well.”

Purchasers of gift cards or gift certificates must present proof of purchase, either by stopping at the chamber office or by texting or emailing a photo of the cards. Only chamber members are eligible to receive the ads but bars and restaurants where cards and certificates are purchased do not have to be members.

For more information, call the chamber at 943-8151.

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