News from Fannin County Chamber of Commerce

Business, Community, Fannin County Chamber
Fannin County Chamber of Commerce  eNewsletter
February 2018
News for Members
Fannin Co. Chamber Logo

Leading the way to economic vitality and quality of life in Blue Ridge, McCaysville, Morganton and all of beautiful Fannin County, Georgia.

Manda Gwatney is Chair of 2018 Board of Directors;
Frankie Rigdon is Chairman Elect

Paul Gribble received a plaque and gift as the retiring Chamber Board Chairman of 2017 at the Annual Dinner last weekend at Brasstown Valley Resort.

Manda Gwatney will serve as Chairman for 2018,  joined on the Chamber Executive Committee by Frankie Rigdon, ETC, Vice Chairman/Chairman Elect; Lisa Vest, IGA Hometown Foods, Secretary; Rene Bidez, Treasurer; and Paul Gribble, Georgia Mtn Cabins, Past Chairman.


Other Members of the 2018 Chamber Board of Directors
Keith Jenson, Summit Inspection
Donna Tipton, United Community Bank
Jason Farmer, Mountain Gateway Appraisals
David Lewis, Tri State EMC
Billy Porter, TDS Telecom
C.J. Stam, Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals
Richard York, Woodmen Life
Shannen Oyster, Oyster Fine Bamboo Fly Rods
Betsy Hyde, Fannin County Schools
Dr. Jennifer Jabaley, Jabaley Eye Care
David Lillard, Mercier Orchards
Sandy Ott, University of North Georgia
Bill Banzhaf, Harry Norman Real Estate
Jenny Mundy, Dickey McCay Insurance

Brandon Holloway, Mountain Valley Community Bank

Rene Bidez Receives Honorary Lifetime Membership 
Rene Bidez, CPA received the Chamber’s Honorary Lifetime Membership Award at the Chamber Awards Dinner, presented by Paul Gribble.  Rene has served as the Chamber Treasurer since 1990.  His services include providing accounting services for the Chamber on a voluntary basis.

There is no one who has been more instrumental in the success of our Chamber than Rene Bidez.  His professionalism gives our board, members, and local government partners sure knowledge that our finances are sound and money is being managed correctly.  As a perpetual member of the executive committee he knows more about our Chamber than anybody else, and his council has been invaluable to the 27 executive committees he has served.

Angela Stewart DeLorme  – Chamber Member of the Year

The 2017 Member of the Year, Angela Stewart DeLorme, has served four terms on the Chamber’s board, beginning in 1989 and ending in 2016. She has practiced law for 33 years, is a former partner in the law firm of Ralston and Panter and currently a sole practitioner. She was the first female attorney in Blue Ridge.

Angela was instrumental in writing the Chamber’s incorporation, bylaws, policies and procedures, and she is still the Chamber’s agent of record with the Secretary of State. She has chaired numerous committees and has been an invaluable board member because of her love for and dedication to the Chamber and Fannin County, her knowledge, wisdom, competence and leadership.

Blue Ridge Mountain Trout Unlimited

Receives Community Service Award
Blue Ridge Mountain Trout Unlimited received the Community Service Award for conservation, protection and restoration of Fannin County’s cold water fisheries.  TU was responsible for naming Fannin the Trout Capital of Georgia. The group sponsors Rivers Alive, Trout in the Class Room, the Trout Adventure Trail, and Troutfest, an annual event held in April for the past two years.

More 2017 Awards and Recognition

Bonnie Roper, Farmer’s Insurance,  received the Ambassador of the Year Award, presented by Ambassador Chair Donna Tipton


Retiring Board Members:

Joe Foster, Glenn Harbison, Susan Kiker and Cynthia Panter

Newsworthy …  
WANTED: Sponsors for Business After Hours
We’re looking for a few more sponsors for Business After Hours in 2018. The months available are March, August, October and November. Let us know if you are looking for this kind of great exposure for your business and what month you have interest in hosting! Call Dianne Mallernee at 706-632-5680 or email her at
HGTV’s Log Cabin Living to Feature Mineral Bluff
Tune in to HGTV February 10 at 11:30 p.m. for Log Cabin Living. This episode will feature two home buying families who are searching for a log cabin close to Mineral Bluff, GA.

Welcome New Members!
Blue Ridge Patriots Friends of NRA
Morganton, GA, 30560
Dan Spies
Friends of NRA is the blockbuster fundraising program under The NRA Foundation. Since day one, it has been a 100% grassroots effort fueled by a united front to secure the Second Amendment and raise money for the shooting sports.
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Cone & Associates CPA, LLC
John Cone
Cone & Associates CPA offers accounting, tax and consulting expertise focused on your unique business and personal needs.
Full Moon Over Blue Ridge
Blue Ridge, GA, 30513
Patrick Binienda
Full Moon Over Blue Ridge is a cabin rental with attached tree houses nestled in the Blue Ridge mountains. Full Moon Over Blue Ridge is perfectly located to all the activities and amenities that make the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Aska Adventure Area so desirable, yet also secluded enough to relax and enjoy the quiet and natural beauty of the Chattahoochee Forest.
Grams & Pops
Tracey Ciongoli

Grams and Pops has a lil’ bit of everything: unique gifts, t-shirts, women and children’s clothing, home and garden items, jewelry, bath and body products.

Mountain Attitude Designs
Terri Adams
Mountain Attitude Designs is located in the historic building of the Doradele Move Theater circa 1925 in Copperhill, Tennessee. They offer a wide variety of items including exclusive local handmade leather, sterling, stainless and copper jewelry, photo postcards, along with unique train and mountain jewelry & gifts and apparel. 
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Silk Road Traveler 
Estela Carson-Priede
Silk Road Traveler offers a variety of rocks, fossils and gems as well as meditation tools, sages and smudges.

 Like us on Facebook

SleepMore Mattress Store 
Traci Hamby
Sleep More Mattress Store offers a variety of mattresses to suit every comfort need.

Like us on Facebook

Wilderness View Cabins 
Chatsworth GA 30705
Sharon Bungo
Wilderness View Cabins offers vacation cabin rentals, property management and specialized cabin cleaning services.
Like us on Facebook

February Community Events Calendar
January 13 – February 24 – Art Exhibit: Pamela Beagle-Daresta,
Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association
February 1-4 – School of Rock, Blue Ridge Community Theater
February 10 – Children’s Bakery Class, Mercier Orchards
February 17 – Randall Bramblett – Rock and Blues, Blue Ridge Community Theater
February 17 – Fire and Ice Chili Cook-Off Festival, Downtown Blue Ridge
February 24 – Bringin’ the Blues to Blue Ridge, Willow Creek Falls
February 24 – Tri-State Model Railroaders Open House, Mineral Bluff Historic Depot
February 24 – Customer Appreciation Day, Mercier Orchards
Recurring Events
* Trivia Tuesdays, Fightingtown Tavern


* Brewery Tours & Tastings:
Thursday through Saturday’s at  Fannin Brewing CompanyGrumpy Old Men and Mercier Orchards.
* Swan Drive-in –Now Playing
In This Issue
Business After Hours
Manda Gwatney is Chair
Honorary Lifetime Member
Chamber Member of the Year
More 2017 Awards and Recognition
New Members
Community Events Calendar


Chamber Events
February 7 – Lunch N Leads, Blue Jeans Pizza and Pasta Factory
12:00 p.m.
February 12 – Tourism Committee Meeting at the Chamber
12:00 p.m.
February 20 – Business After Hours at The Black Sheep Restaurant
5:30 – 7:00 p.m.
February 22 – Ambassador Lunch, Mercier Orchards
12:00 p.m.
Member Renewals
 Thank you!
5 Star Lodge & Stables
Blue Ridge Mountain Trout Unlimited
Cameron Hall of Ellijay-Five Star Senior Living
Cox Farmhouse
Done Wright Packaging
Elite Response
GoCo Rolloffs
Joseph C. Webb
Mountain Getaway Cabins of Blue Ridge
Nicholson Tire Center #2
North Georgia Storage
Ridgeline Counseling
The Sweet Shoppe
The Village Restaurant
Toccoa Wilderness Tubing
Walter G. George Soil

Chamber Member Anniversaries – Thank You!
Cucina Rustica
First Baptist Church of Blue Ridge
5 Star Lodge & Stables
Cindy West, RE/MAX Town & Country
Financial Guideposts
Rays Tire & Auto
Walter G. George Soil Consultants

Member Ads


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The mission of the Fannin County Chamber of Commerce is to provide services to members, support existing business and promote economic development and tourism, while preserving and enhancing our community’s character, natural resources and quality of life.

Fannin County Chamber of Commerce

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