Bartow to celebrate Manufacturers Appreciation Week
by Jason Lowrey
Aug 02, 2014 | 1148 views | 0 0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Starting Monday, organizations and businesses across Bartow County will say thank you to employees, managers and owners of area manufacturers in order to recognize their contributions to the local economy.

For 2014 the week’s focus shifted from larger events, such as a golf tournament and factory tours, to a smaller breakfast that will be held Tuesday from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Cartersville-Bartow County Chamber of Commerce. Co-Chair Tamara Brock said the breakfast is intended to be a drop-in, drop-out breakfast to give manufacturing employees the flexibility to attend.

“We’re excited. We’re looking forward to it, I think. We have a good community that supports our manufacturers. So we’re excited to appreciate them and highlight them next week,” Brock said.

In addition to the breakfast, area retailers and restaurants are offering a series of discounts to manufacturing employees. To receive the following discounts, employees are asked to present their employee ID or business card:

• Athlete’s Locker, $10 off a minimum purchase of $50 though Aug. 31

• Cartersville Medical Center, $69 cardiac scoring and/or free online heart risk assessment

• Devilrays, free annual membership, a $55 value

• La Bella Baskets, 20 percent off any basket $49.99 or more

• Georgia Fitness Academy, $5 off any training session

• IHOP, 20 percent off guest’s check

• Johnny Mitchell’s Smokehouse, free fried green tomatoes or fried pickle appetizer with purchase of entree

• Johnny’s New York Style Pizza, 15 percent off food and non-alcoholic beverages

• Laurie Dabbs at Locks Salon on Public Square, $5 off any men’s haircut and $10 off any lady’s haircut, expires Aug. 31

• Lilly n Jake, 10 percent off fall clothing line, one per employee, expires Sept. 30

• Mary Kay, free satin facial for up to three people, expires Dec. 31

• Okinawa, 10 percent off food and non-alcoholic beverages

• Terminus Wake Park, 20 percent off riding and rentals

• Woodland Hill Golf Club at Carter Grove, $27 for 18-hole round of golf with green fees and cart included, Aug. 4-8 only

By coordinating with local businesses to provide such discounts, Brock said she aims to put the focus on employees and show how the community is grateful for their work.

“Well sometimes the employees at manufacturing facilities, they do all the work but they don’t get some of the perks sometimes, so we just wanted to make sure that they were appreciated as well and could take advantage of discounts during the week as well,” she said.

In addition to the discounts, manufacturers will also receive a gift basket. Included in the basket is a framed piece of art by Laura J. Designs depicting all the names of Bartow County manufacturers arranged in the shape of Jacob Stroup’s blast furnace.

Manufacturing accounts for approximately 23 percent of Bartow County’s workforce, said Cartersville-Bartow County Economic Development Executive Director Melinda Lemmon. She added that much of the area’s recent growth in terms of manufacturing came not from new companies, but existing industries.

“As they grow and prosper so does our community,” Lemmon said. “So weeks like Manufacturing Appreciation Week are very important. But the reality is we appreciate them all year-round. It’s just we was a community make a concerted effort to pay attention to them and give them a little special acknowledgment, particularly one week a year.”

Manufacturers Appreciation Week was announced in a July 28 proclamation signed by Bartow County Commissioner Steve Taylor, Cartersville Mayor Matt Santini, Taylorsville Mayor Mitchell Bagley and Euharlee Mayor Dennis Thayer with the dates of Aug. 4 through Aug. 8 set aside as a time for Bartow to acknowledge what industry has done for the area. The recognition is ordinarily held in April to coincide with Georgia’s statewide recognition effort, however, chamber CFO and Executive Assistant Kathy Hall said personnel changes in the chamber during the spring led to the event being delayed.

Even if the county’s appreciation came a few months late, Brock said it was still important to have the event.

“Sometimes manufacturing is seen as a — they kind of get lost and forgotten, but they really do contribute a lot to our community, to our cities and our county and help us keep running. The payroll amount alone and how many people they employ is a huge asset to our county,” she said. “... They don’t just come here and become a number and get forgotten. We want to recognize them and appreciate them for everything they do for us.”

For additional information on Manufacturer’s Appreciation Week, contact the chamber of commerce at 770-382-1466.