By Tommy Hartzog

Executive Dir., HNG Chamber of Commerce


We live in the midst of what has to be the highest per capita volunteer community to be found anywhere. Churches, civic organizations, events and community causes are beneficiaries of this admirable and reassuring dynamic within our area.


Recently the Chamber held a monthly ReCharge event that served as our Annual Meeting (required by our by laws). Eighty-six of your fellow citizens, who are Chamber members, gathered at the glorious Chimney Rock Park Meadows pavilion for a fantastic meal, libations, wonderful desserts and Chamber updates.


Unification of and communications with engaged citizens create a powerful sense of teamwork within a community. A depthful team spirit and an invested common cause can, as history proves, move mountains.


The Hickory Nut Gorge communities are growing as people discover this incredible piece of heaven. Quality and managed growth are essential to the vibrancy and health of a community, and the Chamber joins the organized towns of Lake Lure and Chimney Rock Village in carefully influencing the future.


To that end, and along with other vital functions that an effective Chamber performs, we must credit our membership support with providing the necessary funds.


Corporate citizenship is an important part of any community and we are no different. We have numerous supporters who give unselfishly to aid the Chamber in carrying out its duties. One of those supporters is Ingles.


As Paul Harvey used to say “now for the rest of the story”.  As we shopped for the food and beverages for our very large “picnic”, we ended up with two very full grocery carts that required a payment plan. Ingles staff stood with the Chamber President and myself in the aisle and offered to assist with funding for the event. However, what happened next was the most dramatic portion of the encounter. You see, an Ingles employee overheard the discussion involving a nonprofit organization and funding for the community event and offered, on the spot, to give $100 of his own money to make it work. He did, and the event was magical.


We are humbled by the show of support from “our Town”, and we pledge to work hard for you and to always respect your money.


The Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge


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