People trying to visit the Eatonville Chamber of Commerce’s website may have been surprised to discover recently that both the organization and its page no longer exist.
A new organization, however, the Eatonville Business Association, has formed to organize manage various events and represent business interests in town since the Chamber of Commerce has dissolved.
Members of the EBA hosted an informational meeting May 18 at the Eatonville Visitor Center to introduce themselves and talk about the organization, as well as hand out applications to people interested in joining.
Reasons why the Chamber of Commerce dissolved are murky as multiple people would or could not answer definitively when asked. None of the members of the Eatonville Business Association were involved with the Chamber of Commerce.
Christi McIntyre, the Eatonville Business Association president, said she decided to form the fledgling EBA to get more involved with the community.
"It is important for the businesses in our town to come together to help each other with whatever needs the businesses may need to thrive,” she said.
According to the Eatonville Business Association website, “EBA’s mission is to unite businesses, industries, and civic organizations into a common voice to promote commerce in the Town of Eatonville.”
McIntyre said part of the EBA’s role is to support Eatonville businesses by promoting them through events and beautification efforts, such as landscaping and keeping exteriors looking neat and clean.
As part of its beautification efforts, the Eatonville Business Association is collecting donations to purchase flower baskets to hang throughout the town during the summer. Each basket costs $75.
One of the biggest events in Eatonville that the Eatonville Chamber of Commerce used to manage is the Independence Day celebration every July 3 and July 4. The Eatonville Business Association is now overseeing the event.
"We need vendors for July 3 and the 4th, and if you know of anyone interested in being a vendor, please have them come and contact me directly for applications," McIntyre said.
The Eatonville Business Association meets at noon to 1:30 p.m. the second Wednesday of the month at the Eatonville Visitor Center, 132 Mashell Ave. N. The first hour will be dedicated to association business, followed by a half hour of networking. There is no cost for members or first-time guests. Non-members pay $20.
At the first official meeting June 8, Eatonville Business Association members will approve bylaws and the budget.
For more information about the EBA or how to join or donate, visit https://eatonvillebusinessassociation.org/. Contact McIntyre at 253-343-4382.
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