Prospect Area Chamber of Commerce

Prospect business owners
create new chamber

Effort designed to boost
Hwy. 42 corridor businesses

By Don Ward

PROSPECT, Ky. (April 2004) – After months of planning, the Prospect Area Chamber of Commerce has become a reality for business owners and managers along Hwy. 42 in Jefferson and Oldham counties.
The group has been meeting almost weekly since late February, has elected board members and incorporated the entity as a nonprofit organization. The kickoff meeting to recruit new members, billed as a Charter Member Open House and Orientation, is scheduled for 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. April 15 at the Harrod’s Creek Fire Department. Refreshments will be served as board members meet prospective new members and seek input for what activities they want the new chamber to pursue, said newly elected board president Robert Prince of Prospect Jewelers.
“People in this area wanted a way to connect with the community and develop relationships to make them more a part of the community in a visible way, and a chamber is one way to do that,” Prince said.
To help entice businesses to join, the new group is offering a $25 discount on membership for those who join by June 1. Instead of paying the regular annual membership fee of $125, early birds will be able to join for only $100. The group’s first formal chamber meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. May 13 at Captain’s Quarters Restaurant on River Road. The group has invited Prospect Mayor Lonnie Falk and Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson to speak. Refreshments will be served and networking opportunities will be available with new members. The group plans to meet quarterly thereafter, Prince said.
With the city’s unique location on the border of Oldham County but off the I-71 corridor and away from the La Grange business district, the Prospect group members decided to form their own chamber to better promote their businesses along the Hwy. 42 corridor, which includes Goshen in Oldham County.
“We don’t see this as competition for the Oldham Chamber, because of our location,” Prince said. “We have had the full support of the Oldham Chamber in this effort.”
To help get the chamber organized properly, group members called on the advice of Jeffersontown Chamber president Vicky Weber, the St. Matthews Area Business Association and Joe Schoenbaechler of the Oldham County Chamber. All were “extremely helpful,” Prince said.
Weber said the level of organization by the group was encouraging, elevating her recommendation from a business association to a full-fledged chamber. “I drove around the area before our meeting, and I did see a corridor of businesses that could benefit from having its own chamber,” Weber said. “This group is so dynamic and assertively trying to know their neighbors. I shared the benefits we offer our members so they could take from that the things that might work in Prospect.”
Weber said the group’s association with the Co-Alliance of Business Associations, a collection of Louisville Metro chambers and business organizations, would enable the Prospect Chamber to qualify for grant money. Up to $1,500 could be available for use as seed money, Weber said. One Prospect board member, Tammy Gadlage, already serves on the Co-Alliance board. Her husband, Michael, owns Harrod’s Creek Marine Supply.
Besides Prince, other officers of the Prospect Area Chamber are Vance Fritton (Vance’s True Value Hardware), vice president; Missy Fultz (Republic Bank), treasurer; Stacy McPhillips (Max & Erma’s Restaurant), secretary; and Paul Masterson (Captain’s Quarters Restaurant). Board members include Chris Aponte (Harrod’s Creek Fire Department), Deborah Dillon (F&D Development), John Herzfeld (SCORE), P.R. Lancaster (Lancaster Built Homes), Candy Medina (CGM Associates LLC), Marc Yussman (Goldberg & Simpson PSC) and Gadlage.

• For information about the Prospect Area Chamber of Commerce, call (502) 228-7493 or mail: 9219-C Hwy. 42, Prospect, KY 40049. For more information on the Co-Alliance, visit: www.coalliance.net.

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