Tracey S. Wheeler, IOM
President & CEO
What an amazing time it continues to be in Baytown, Texas! Our community partners including the City, the Chamber, Economic Development Foundation, school district and the college are all working together to ensure that the City of Baytown is a quality place to live and to work. Again this year, commercial growth has exceeded what any of us would have expected with a continuing explosion of restaurants and retail facilities. Much effort is going into the management of traffic as we are experiencing all of this growth. The city is busy building new streets in the retail area of our community. Baytown Town Square, is a beautiful addition to our Texas Avenue area and many activities have already been held there. What a great addition it is to our Texas Avenue area. The ice skating in December continued to be a big hit. All of this activity brings new people to our community. Several new apartment projects are in the making along with several large housing developments. The newly opened HEB has caused quite a stir and the development around it will bring some additional retail establishments to that area. The new mall ownership continues to work with the anchor stores to attempt to get a final layout for the new shopping area. It has been a great year for our community and we are looking for another great year in 2018.
Upcoming for the Chamber is the Epicurean Evening – A Taste of the Baytown Area to be held on March 1st, 5:00 to 8:00 at the Royal Purple Tower Club. The event will feature restaurants from around the area with each of them sharing their gourmet delights. This event is open to the public and tickets are on sale for $35 each. We hope you can join us for this fun evening.
The State of the City is scheduled for March 6th. This is the time that the Mayor gives us an update on the City’s activities and progress. It is always exciting to hear what he has to share and often he has a great new announcement.
We are in the planning stages for the Annual Chairman’s Gala which is our annual changing of the gavel. Some 250 Chamber members and guests will join us for socializing, dinner and entertainment in addition to recognizing the outstanding volunteer leaders who have made it possible to have a Chamber rated “outstanding” by most.
The Golf Tournament follows close behind the banquet and is already about 70% sold out. The tournament will be held at Eagle Point Golf Club. If you are interested in playing in this outstanding tournament, sign up early as it sells out quickly. This event gets more popular each and every year.
Chambers of Commerce have played an important role in the development of our nation and our state. Whether openly or with a silent hand, chambers have guided policy and taken action to affect change. If you look closely, you will see that the chamber of commerce was present for many of the major decisions which have affected our community. We continue to work to ensure that our community is a great place to do business and to raise a family.
It seems we are cutting ribbons almost daily with new businesses opening all over our community. It’s an exciting time to be in Baytown!! Happy New Year!!