At last year's Annual Business and Community Awards, the Bethlehem Chamber of Commerce honored former Bethlehem Central School District's Board of Education member Lynne Lenhardt, left, with the Citizen of the Year. She was recognized for being a public education advocate and being involved in many local community organizations. Provided photo
BETHLEHEM — The Bethlehem Chamber of Commerce has revealed the winners of the upcoming 34th Annual Business and Community Awards Dinner, to be held on Thursday, April 11 at Normanside in Delmar.
Normanside is located on 150 Salisbury Road in Delmar. The event will start at 5 p.m. with cocktails and opportunities to network, followed by the awards presentation throughout the night, starting at 6:15 p.m.
The Business of the Year Award will go to TACS Autobody Service, an automotive body shop in Glenmont, which the chamber recognized for having a positive impact on the community. BCC President Maureen McGuinness said that this family business shows how family businesses can still thrive today and it treats its customers well.
“Nobody wants to have their car worked on but if you go to a place where you’re treated well, it turns an unpleasant experience to a pleasant experience,” she said. “There’s also a lot of different big companies that do the same type of services and while there’s nothing wrong with that, I personally like family businesses and they set up a great example.” The business is located on 525 Route 9W in Glenmont.
The Citizen of the Year Award will be accepted by Quality PM, Inc. president and founder Gregg Biche.
“He does run a business … but when you hear all of his volunteer activities, that’s impressive,” said McGuinness. “He’s coached the Bethlehem Tomboys Girls Softball League, donated labor and materials to Eagle Elementary School’s playground effort, and volunteered with the Tri-Village Little League, Best Buddies Friendship Week, Schenectady Ring of Hope, Lake George Association, and First Night in Bethlehem.” Quality PM, Inc. is located on 199 Delaware Ave. in Delmar.
McCarroll’s The Village Butcher will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award, having been in business since 1921.
“Among the things I find interesting is that it’s a five-generations business and that shows their power and influence in the community, as well as how there’s always been nice enthusiasm about them,” said McGuinness. “It’s also neat to be in the center of town and it’s a place everybody pretty much knows.”
Brianna Price, a Bethlehem Central High School senior, will attain the Youth Award.
McGuinness said the chamber initially found it challenging to pick one winner since there were “many” nominations for this award. But Price’s sheer community contributions and personal accomplishments at such a young age were recognized in the end. “She’s very much involved in the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation; she’s a member of the Bethlehem girls soccer team, also involved in the Bethlehem soccer club, is a lifeguard and camp counselor, an honor student, and just an all-round really nice person who’s a role model for other people,” said McGuinness.
Besides the awards presentation, the dinner will feature a desserts table presented by CDPHP, a cocktail room and hour sponsored by Sunmark Federal Credit Union, selfie sticks sponsored by Kinderhook Bank which encourages attendees to take photos and share on Instagram, and a raffle.
McGuinness also expressed excitement over the attendance of longtime former Bethlehem Chamber president Marty Delaney, who had been with the chamber overall from 1985 to 2010. “She’s such a part of the fabric of the Bethlehem Chamber so I think her presence at this event just speaks volumes,” she said. “I think it’s an additional honor for those receiving awards this year that she’s making the trip back to the Capital Region. It’s just going to be exciting.”
To attend the event, dinner tickets are at $75 and one must register by RSVPing to 518-439-0512 or online at business.bethlehemchamber.com/events/details/bethlehem-chamber-34th-annual-awards-dinner-5928.
“It’s a wonderful slate of people to recognize this year and the room is going to be overflowing with gratitude and positivity,” McGuinness concluded, encouraging people to register in advance before the roughly 200 seats get filled. “These aren’t necessarily people who get recognition every day so it’s nice to just take an evening and say thank you. It’s a real honor for us.”