by Laura Doster 

Executive Director

Spring is here and you can feel the energy as our outdoor views are transformed.  Your Chamber has been hard at work . . . in the office, out of the office and working from our homes.   The Outdoor Initiative is off to a great start with a meeting that included many of the Gorge’s key stakeholders – Conserving Carolina, Carolina Climbers Coalition, Rutherford County Outdoor Coalition, Rutherford County Economic Development, the Tourism Development Authority, Growing Outdoor Partnerships, Mountain BizWorks, Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), Destination by Design, Chimney Rock State Park, NC Parks, Rumbling Bald, Town of Lake Lure, Chimney Rock Village, NC Outdoor Recreation and Region C, to name a few.  We are very fortunate to have so many organizations protecting the natural integrity of The Gorge.  From the roundtable discussions we quickly learned who does what and what is needed.  There is A LOT!  The Chamber will become the Umbrella organization to facilitate and communicate needs and information as well as assist finding grants and funds.  We are working to assemble the information and ensure an efficient and effective medium of communication.  Stay tuned!

Chamber Events – several items of interest . . . Do not forget, fireworks the 4th of July this year will be held on Sunday the 4th in Lake Lure and Saturday, July 3rd at Rumbling Bald.  The fireworks on the 4th will be performed by Starfire Pyrotechnics.  Yes, the same company that did Labor Day, New Years and the First Day of Spring.  Starfire tells us it will be a staggering show –  the  best firework display to date!  

Recharges are back in the works with the goal to have one in the next 60 days.  Additionally, things will move forward for the Olympiad this year August 13 – 15th, more to come as the committee finalizes things.   

 We are working with our local vineyards to create the Time of Your Life Experiences the same weekend of the cancelled festival 9/24 and 25.  These will be ticketed events and serve as fundraisers for our Chamber while you get to have “fun” in a beautiful and safe venue.  And last, but not least, the Gala committee will be meeting soon to determine what we can expect this December along with our Winter Holiday plans.  Stay tuned – we will post events via emails, on our website and Facebook page.

Ribbon Cuttings – We recently held a grand opening ribbon cutting for Weichert Realty Mountain Executives.  What a fabulous job they did, a great turn out and we are excited to welcome them.  More ribbon cuttings will be coming for our new businesses that either recently opened or opening soon – The Jeep Rental, Japan House, Bearwallow Provision Company & Sacred Living Wellness. 

Lastly and in closing, hope you enjoy watching our first ever, video formatted, Annual Report.  Go to to watch and let us know what you think.