Live Green SLC! Festival in Downtown Salt Lake City

Friday, April 30th, 2010

Live Green is May 8 at Library Square

The Downtown Alliance is pleased to  announce a new partnership with ReDirect Guide to present the 7th  annual Live Green SLC!  Festival: Saturday, May 8th at Library Square  from 10 am to 6 pm.

This event—which is the most recognized environmental  fair in the State of Utah—is educational, entertaining, and  engaging. More than 100 vendors are expected to be at the  festival, including a variety of businesses that share the vision of  providing a healthy environment and a more sustainable  economy.

“We’re really excited to join the Downtown Alliance  this year in producing this fun and well-known sustainability event. The  festival is free and will showcase the many local resources that  make living green fun and easy, as well as present pragmatic ideas for us all  to help protect the natural beauty of our home and vibrancy of our  community,” says Mike Johnson, co- producer of the event  and founder of ReDirect Guide.

Join your conscientious community for this festive  occasion, explore the many options for environmentally-friendly living, and experience some of the following exhibits and  demonstrations:

Movie  Premiere: Be among the first to see Waste Land, winner of the 2010 Sundance Film  Festival World Cinema Audience Award for Documentary.

Live  Auction: Have fun bidding for green goods and services  from local restaurants and businesses, with low starting bids on most items to  encourage fun and engagement.

Alternative  Transportation Exhibitors: Talk to vehicle owners,  inventors, and businesses about alternatives: biodiesel, solar-powered,  electric, natural gas, and pedal-powered.

Local Plant  Vendors: Add some “green” to your life. A variety of  vendors will be selling locally-grown bedding plants, and Master Gardeners  will offer advice on the proper plants for your plot.

Sustainable  Products and Businesses: Become familiar with businesses  that strive to reduce carbon footprints. (Recycled paper products, low-water  toilets, recycled timber buildings, and much more.)

Builders and  Architects: Learn about the benefits of living downtown  and using sustainable products for building. Downtown Salt Lake City is home to leaders in green  building design.

Eco-Activities  for Kids: Bring the entire family to Live Green.  Teaching children about conservation and preservation gives profound hope for  a healthier and more sustainable future.

Community  Advocates: Be introduced to the organizations that fight  the good fight. Learn about what issues different groups support and volunteer  opportunities in the non-profit community.

Solar Powered  Food Vendors and Beer Garden: Enjoy food  from a selection of organic and natural food vendors who are dedicated to  reducing, reusing, and recycling. Visit the Squatters beer tent powered by the  sun.

Live Music, Performers, Great  Fun: Listen to the rhythmic sounds of favorite local musicians, be  amazed by local talent, climb the rock wall, enjoy the Eco-Chic fashion show  and many other event features.

Visit www.LiveGreenSLC.com for more information.

Pioneer Celebration in the Heart of the West

Friday, April 30th, 2010

Utah is known for its majestic mountains, white-powder skiing, red-rock formations, dinosaur quarries and beautiful scenery.  One of its best kept secrets, though, is that Utah is home to one of the oldest and largest Pioneer Celebrations in the West.

The entrance of the first Pioneers into the Salt Lake Valley on July 24th, 1847 marked one of the greatest treks in American history.  In the years that followed, even more settlers came from many nations of the world, seeking to create a new life.  These early pioneers worked hard in transforming the barren desert land into a thriving community and the crossroads of the West.

The first holiday honoring the coming of the pioneers began on July 24th, 1849.  At that time, the population numbered 1,949 persons.  The celebration included the raising of a 65 foot-long flag, cannons firing and a brass band marching through the streets.  The holiday became known as “Pioneer Day”.  Annual celebrations continued throughout the years and on July 5th, 1943, Daughters of Utah Pioneers and Sons of Utah Pioneers signed an agreement to officially produce a Pioneer Day Parade.  At that time, the event was renamed, “The Days of `47.”

Today, “The Days of `47 Inc.” is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization, whose charge is to plan and carry out events that honor Utah’s pioneer heritage and inspire modern-day pioneers.  Most of the celebratory events are free to the public and occur during the month of July.  The Days of `47 Parade has grown to be one of the largest in the United States.  The Days of `47 Rodeo is one of the oldest in the west and top ranked rodeos in the nation, with world champion cowboys, cowgirls and rough stock.  The Days of `47 Youth Parade and Festival is also one of the largest of its kind in the country.  Other events include a Royalty Pageant, Pioneers of Progress Awards Dinner, Float Preview Party, All Horse Parade, Family Fun Day at This Is The Place Heritage Park, etc.  Each year, visitors travel from far and wide to experience the grand celebration of Utah’s history.

For more information on The Days of `47, visit www.daysof47.com.

The future of High Speed Rail in Utah

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

High Speed Rail – Millar from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

The Salt Lake Chamber hosted some of the nation’s leading experts on High Speed Rail to discuss the potential for a network of trains exceeding 100 mph connecting Salt Lake City with other western cities like Denver, Las Vegas and Phoenix.

President Obama recently announced $8 billion dollars in funding for high speed rail in the United States. For long range trips, those greater than 600 miles, air travel is still the way to go. There is, however, evidence that trips less than 600 miles are a great fit for high speed rail.

In Utah, we continue to improve our transportation systems by building roads and rails. The next frontier is rail travel between Utah and surrounding states.

High Speed Rail – David J. Carol from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Where the rubber meets the road

Monday, April 26th, 2010

As a business organization, we at the Salt Lake Chamber work hard to help businesses succeed.

All year long, and particularly during the legislative session, we focus on promoting public policy that benefits business.

We keep our eye trained on the goal of sustained economic growth as we try to build a better future for Utah businesses and Utah families.

While much of our effort goes into public policy work, the Chamber is also focused on helping business where the rubber meets the road.

We’re in the middle of the 4th Annual Dine O’Round, presented by the Downtown Alliance.  Through May 1st, 37 downtown restaurants are offering some great deals to encourage people from all along the Wasatch Front to come downtown and try something new.

All 37 restaurants offer a special 3-course dinner for either $15 or $30.

New this Spring is “Lunch On Us!” which features a special two item lunch for $5 or $10 at 27 of the participating restaurants.

Dine O’ Round is a boost for downtown business and provides a great opportunity to get out of the office on a beautiful spring day and enjoy the many special flavors of downtown eateries.

For more information, you can go to DineORound.com.

We’re also holding our Expo MarketPlace May 13th at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

The Expo MarketPlace is another great way the Chamber helps business network and strengthen the bottom line.

Before the doors open for the Expo MarketPlace, this year we’re offering a new feature, the Expo Forum. Bill Manning, president of the MLS Cup Champion Real Salt Lake, will give insight on “Building a Championship Franchise.”

Booth space is going quickly but a few opportunities are still available.

For more information about participating in the Expo MarketPlace or to attend the Expo Forum, go to our website at slchamber.com.

Where the rubber meets the road from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

The Days of `47’s Crowning Jewel

Saturday, April 24th, 2010

Crowning a queen at a Pioneer Day celebration is a long-standing tradition in Utah.  The first queen, Emma Lunt was chosen in 1897 to reign over the 5 day festivities celebrating the “Utah Pioneer Jubilee”.

She was called, simply, “Utah”.  In 1931, Margaret Young was selected among 200 contestants to be “Miss Pioneer”.  Since 1931, queens have graced the state of Utah, celebrating pioneer heritage, with the exception of 1932 to 1934 during the Depression.  On July 5th, 1943, Daughters of Utah Pioneers and Sons of Utah Pioneers signed an agreement to officially produce a Pioneer Day Parade.  At that time, the event was renamed, “The Days of `47”.  Pat Pixton was the very first to hold the title,

“Queen of The Days of `47”.  In 1947, The Days of `47 Queen and attendants rode in the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California as a commemoration of the Centennial of pioneers arriving in the Salt Lake basin.  Calleen Robinson was Queen at that time.

The rich legacy will continue as a new “Days of `47 Queen” is crowned for 2010.  Come enjoy a unique part of Utah Heritage at this year’s annual Days of `47 Royalty Pageant and celebrate “Pioneer Spirit—Then and Now”  Presented by the International Society Daughters of Utah Pioneers, the grand event will be held on April 24th, from 6:30 till 8:30 pm at the LDS Conference Center Little Theatre.  For more information, visit www.daysof47.com.

Free tickets are available online at www.lds.org/events.

Building a better North Temple

Friday, April 23rd, 2010

Construction crews are hard at work tearing down the North Temple viaduct to make way for an improved version–bringing TRAX from the airport to downtown.  The new shortened bridge will also encourage economic development on the northwest corner of downtown. With pedestrian paths and bikeways, the new viaduct embraces a future where cars are just one way of getting around.

This important, if unglamorous, work of tearing down a viaduct will help transform North Temple as a Grand Boulevard, as envisioned by the Downtown Rising plan. Funding for this project was made possible through dedicated efforts and vision of many people including: Salt Lake City, UTA, the Salt Lake Chamber, the Utah Legislature, along with local property and business owners. This project illustrates the benefits of public and private sectors coming together to build a better community.

Motivated only by profit, it is difficult to find businesses willing to invest in visionary projects that are in the community’s long-term interests. Conversely, local and state government projects can be bloated, inefficient and unwieldy without direction, guidance and support from the business community. The best planned projects combine the strengths of public and private sectors in strategic ways.

The consensus driven approach of Downtown Rising laid out clear objectives about the future of our community that includes the best of public and private sector resources and motivations. The reconstruction of the North Temple viaduct and airport to downtown TRAX line are fruits of this long-term, strategic partnership.

Utah’s 2010 Census participation rate surpasses 2000 levels

Friday, April 23rd, 2010

Utah has reached a 73 percent participation rate for the 2010 Decennial Census, surpassing its 2000 rate of 72 percent. This response also puts Utah ahead of the national participation rate of 71 percent.

In our region, only two states had higher participation rates (South Dakota and Nebraska, both at 75 percent), but Utah was the only state to see an increase in the level of participation compared to a decade ago.

The high number of Utahns returning their census forms boosts the state’s odds at securing a fourth seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Utah missed out on that seat by less than 900 people in 2010.

Utah has grown by an estimated 500,000 residents since 2000 and in 2009, Utah was identified as “The fastest growing state in the nation.” Of Utah’s 29 counties, 16 are at or have exceeded their 2000 rate and 12 counties are at or above the national average. In all, 118 of 239 cities or towns are at or have exceeded their 2000 rate with 130 of them at or above national average.

There is more on the line than representation in Congress, some $400 billion in federal money is divided among the stated based on data gathered in the census.

The next phase of the 2010 Census will have Census workers going door-t0-door to count those who failed to return their forms. The decennial census is required by the United States Constitution. It is an effort to gain an accurate count of persons living in the United States–regardless of their citizenship status.

American Chamber of Commerce Executives meets in Salt Lake City

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

American Chamber of Commerce Executives from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

The Salt Lake Chamber is hosting the American Chamber of Commerce Executives board meeting this week. ACCE President Mick Flemming sat down with Communication Director Marty Carpenter to discuss the organization and the future of chambers of commerce.

The American Chamber of Commerce Executives is a national association uniquely serving individuals involved in the management of chambers of all sizes. ACCE’s mission is to support and develop chamber professionals to lead businesses and their communities. The organizational vision is that ACCE is the organization of choice for chamber professionals.

ACCE currently has over 7,800 professional members in 1,400 chambers of commerce. These professionals represent local, regional, and state chambers of commerce of all sizes across the United States and Canada.

The organization’s goal is to empower chamber executives with a combination of knowledge, information, networks, connections, and career advancement.

Women’s Business Center hits the airways to promote “Taste of Success”

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

The Women’s Business Center helps aspiring entrepreneurs (yes, men too) succeed. It’s the number one location for anyone looking to start a business or to grow their business–it’s a one stop business consulting shop and the services are free.

The good news is Utah leads the nation in small businesses owned by women, 51 percent. The not so good news is most businesses that come to the WBC don’t have a solid business plan. The WBC can help with that.

While the services provided by the WBC are free, it still requires some money to help all these businesses. To raise essential funds, the WBC is hosting “A Taste of Success,” hosted at the Viking Cooking School and featuring some amazing food from restaurants including:

• Metropolitan

• Cafe Trang

• Frida Bistro

• AM Bor

• Ben & Jerry’s

• concoXions

• Tate’s Tortes

“A Taste of Success” is so much more than a fundraiser. the WBC will honor star clients who have used the advice provided by the WBC as a springboard to success and recognize supporters of the WBC who have been instrumental in helping the organization succeed. This year’s honorees include:

• Natalie Gochnour, Salt Lake Chamber

• Ann Marie Wallace, The Yarrow Resort

• Diana Kirk, Zions Bank

• Stacy Tie, Design Consultant

To REGISTER for “A Taste of Success” click here.

LISTEN to the Women’s Business Center discuss “A Taste of Success” on B98.7.

Education drives economic development

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Education drives economic development from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

The educational opportunities provided to American students—and to Utah students are to be envied for sure.

Here in Utah, we have thousands of dedicated teachers and professors who strive to challenge young minds and inspire their students to reach their potential.

The University of Utah is one of the top 100 universities in the world and has produced three Nobel Prize winners—so far.

From Logan to St. George, our universities and community colleges provide opportunities for education and training that shape the state’s workforce and attract business to our state.

And yet there is room for improvement.

We can still do better.

Educating the future workforce of our state is a top priority of the business community. Business leaders have a considerable interest in education because what happens in classrooms across our state directly affects their businesses.

In the last year we’ve seen marquee businesses including Goldman Sachs, Microsoft and eBay embrace Utah as a place to grow. These organizations join a strong line-up of locally grown businesses that understand the benefits of a business-friendly state equipped with a well-educated workforce.

We need to reward the trust they have placed in our ability to produce the best workers. And we need to continue to earn the trust of businesses so they will expand and relocate in Utah, creating jobs for our children and grandchildren.

The business community has made a long term-commitment to education as we push for unified, statewide goals for education and strategies to improve both public and higher education.

Working together, as business leaders, as elected officials, as educators—and as concerned citizens, we can make a difference. Utah can have the best education system in the nation