Monday, April 26, 2010

Enjoy a ‘Staycation' at the Village Fair

You do not have to travel far to have fun and make memories with family and friends. It's that time of year to enjoy the flashing lights of the Ferris wheel, smell of elephant ears, colorful carnival rides, games, and entertainment. This year's Village Fair will be held from June 3-June 6 in downtown Birmingham.

Come to the fair not only to enjoy the fun and games, but also to support the community. Did you know the fair provides proceeds to more than 20 local nonprofits? Over the years, thousands of dollars have been raised for local nonprofits in our community. It's also a great way for our local nonprofits to gain awareness.
Due to the construction in Shain Park, the long-standing Birmingham tradition will continue at a new temporary location. Festivities will take place in the street of South Old Woodward in Birmingham between Brown Street and Landon Street on Thursday, June 3 from noon to 10 p.m.; Friday, June 4 from noon to 11 p.m.; Saturday, June 5 from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; and Sunday, June 6 from noon to 9 p.m. A complimentary shuttle service will be available for fair attendees. Pick up locations are at the following Birmingham city parking decks: Peabody Street, Pierce Street and Chester Street. The shuttle will drop off attendees at the fair entrance on South Old Woodward at Bowers Street. As always, there will be complimentary parking for two hours at the parking decks.

In the spirit of “Staycation,” the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber is offering a $5 savings on wristband vouchers, selling them for $15 each. The wristband voucher allows unlimited carnival rides on one the following days and times (please note these differ from Fair hours); Thursday, June 3 from noon to 10 p.m.; Friday, June 4 from noon to 6 p.m.; and Sunday, June 6 from noon to 9 p.m. Wristband vouchers will be sold at the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber's new office location at Adams Square - 725 S. Adams Rd. Suite 130, Birmingham from Monday, May 3 to Wednesday, June 2. Office hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Regular priced wristbands will be sold at the fair for $20.

For more information or to volunteer contact Andrea Foglietta at (248)644-1700.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Birmingham Farmers Market swings into action early

Spring has arrived in Birmingham. Each spring brings eager shoppers to downtown, ready to enjoy the sights and sounds of our unique and special shopping district. A new spring tradition begins this year with the start of the Birmingham Farmers Market even earlier in the season: On Sunday, May 2.

What I enjoy about the Birmingham Farmers Market is seeing entire families come to downtown Birmingham on Sunday mornings each summer. It is an experience everyone seems to enjoy and look forward to. Our patrons who come year in and year out know they're supporting Michigan by shopping at the market to purchase fresh locally grown produce and products. Our new patrons are pleasantly surprised by the variety of things to see and do at the market.
They appreciate the experience of the Birmingham Farmers Market including the fresh prepared foods, live entertainment and a children's craft area set up with volunteers helping them create a different project each week. Many folks also enjoy visiting with their friends and neighbors at the market, which has become a gathering place for area residents.

John Heiney is executive director of the Birmingham Principal Shopping District.
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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Chamber covers a lot of territory

According to Oakland County Census and Demographics Information, in 2008 Oakland County had more people than each of these nine “states”: Alaska, Delaware, District of Columbia, Montana, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont and Wyoming. The County ranks 31st in population of all U.S. counties.

The Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber is proud to serve a vital role as the lead business advocate in five communities within the County; Beverly Hills, Bingham Farms, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Bloomfield Township and Franklin.

The Village of Beverly Hills has provided its residents with a safe and tranquil environment for the 51 years of its existence. Beverly Park is a beautiful 32 acre, multi-functional park. Located in the heart of the Village it provides baseball fields, tennis courts, a playground, nature trails and outdoor concerts.

The Village of Bingham Farms, known for its quiet rural charm, was incorporated in 1955. The 1.255-square-mile Village is located between 12 Ω mile and 14 Mile Roads and Telegraph and Lahser Roads. This affluent community dates back as early as 1820.

Birmingham is not only a well-known shopping destination, it is home to a spectacular collection of restaurants, theaters and parks. The Principal Shopping District also houses 2.2-million-square feet of office space, including 56 law firms; 48 financial, mortgage lenders and investment firms; nearly 30 physician offices; more than 20 dentists; more than 15 mental health professionals; 12 advertising agencies and eight interior design firms, among many other types of business.

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Monday, April 5, 2010

What's the forecast for health care costs?

It's no secret that medical costs have escalated in the U.S. On average, we spend more per person on health care than both food and housing. Insurance premiums are multiplying much faster than inflation, which prevents economic growth and leaves businesses with less money to give raises or hire more employees. Many people have differing views on the viable solution, but there is one thing most agree on - something had to be done.

In an effort to keep you informed, the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber will host a “Healthcare Forecast” on Thursday, April 29, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Townsend Hotel. The luncheon session will feature a panel discussion focused on the current state and future impact of health care in the United States. Panelists will include a senior-level representative from a local hospital, a small business owner and an individual who can speak to the changes we, as citizens, will encounter.

The Forecast Series has become an important forum for those who work and live in the area to stay informed, learn about trends and meet industry experts. All Forecast Luncheons are held at the Townsend Hotel from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and include lunch. Individual registration is required: $50 Chamber Members; $60 Nonmembers. In addition to individual reservations, corporate tables are available. Reservations are required three business days in advance and can be made online at or by calling the Chamber at (248) 644-1700.

Carrie Zarotney is president of the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber.