Membership in the Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce brings area businesses a full complement of benefits from management operational support and advice to marketing support, legislative advocacy, and economic development. Best of all, membership connects you and your business with leading businesses across southwestern Vermont.
As a Chamber Member you receive:
Visitor Center Referrals: our new, year-round visitor center is the home of the Chamber. It’s staffed with a trained and customer-oriented staff.
Web Presence: get a free listing and web link on bennington.com
Free Area Guide Listing: with more than 60,000 copies distributed annually, our area guide is the resource for visitors and residents of the greater Bennington Area.
Networking Opportunities: show off your business and talk shop with fellow chamber members. We host:
- Monthly Mixers
- Open Houses
- Grand Openings
- Plant Tours
Business Support: the chamber is a resource for local businesses. From discounts to advice and industry connections we can help you solve your business problems.
- Health and Dental Insurance
- Prescription Benefit Plans
- Bulk Mail Discounts
- Mailing label opportunities
- Lead Distribution Opportunities
- Marketing Assistance
- Telephone and Internet Discounts
- Employee Discount Programs
Legislative Advocacy: The voice of business leaders in the greater Bennington area, we work closely to make sure our representatives in Montpelier and Washington understand the needs of our members. We hold regular legislative breakfasts and roundtable and other meetings as needed.
Recent Chamber Activity
Chamber members and staff are active across our region. Here are few things we do for our community
Demographic Development: At the chamber we’re working to make our region vibrant and attractive to young people and young families.
- Sponsored a special seminar on How to Plan a Career and Get a Job in Today’s Economy.
- Worked with high school and college student interns to expand their education and build their interest having a career in Bennington.
- Help promote partnerships throughout the community.
Legislative Advocacy: we help local businesses understand the impact of state and federal legislation and advocate for business-friendly policies in Montpelier and Washington. We sponsor
- Annual Chamber Day in Montpelier
- Legislative Breakfasts during session.
- Round Table Discussions with state and federal representatives
- Assist in developing and reviewing proposed public policy
- Provide testimony on economic impact for legislative committees such as commerce, appropriations, education, and transportation
- Lead economic discussions through the Vermont Assoc. of Chambers of Commerce Executives
Marketing: The chamber is the area’s go-to source for information and ideas on marketing your business. The chamber also provides area-wide marketing that benefits all Bennington area businesses, including:
- Prime positioning at the New Bennington Welcome Center
- New Bennington.com Website
- Print ads in magazines and newspapers
- Production of the region’s premier tri-state Area Guide
- Representation at National Trade Shows
- Catamount Access Public Television & RSN @ Mt Snow
- WBTN Local Radio
- Banners Promoting Local Activities
- Professional Organizations
- Vermont Travel & Recreation Council
- Vermont Travel Network
- Weekly Newspaper Column in the Bennington Banner
- Shires of Vermont Regional Marketing Cooperative
- Green Mountain Regional Marketing Organization
- Tour Operator Integration
Recreation and Transportation Infrastructure: The chamber works with the state of Vermont, local municipalities, the Bennington County Regional Commission to assess and advocate for improvements to recreation and transportation infrastructure that will benefit the residents of Bennington County. Some of our greatest accomplishments include:
- The Bennington Welcome Center at the junction of the bypass loops
- The Ninja trail project: created by volunteers with the help of chamber members and the town government, this project created a safe, scenic hiking trail from Bennington to North Bennington.
- The rail to trail project which will convert unused railroad line into hiking trails
In addition, the Chamber takes part in a variety of local and statewide transportation and other infrastructure initiatives:
- Vermont’s Infrastructure Committee Meetings on Freight and Passenger Rail
- Working with Department of Transportation on setting priorities for maintenance and development in Bennington County and nearby New York
- Broad band communications strategy and infrastructure groups
- Historic By-Way Steering Committee
Networking & Support: The chamber is dedicated to our community. As a result, you’ll find our chambers and its members working with almost every civic group or club in our communities. Here are a few groups we partner with
- Better Bennington Corporation
- Lions Club
- Viet Nam Veterans
- Bennington County Industrial Corporation
- Bennington County Regional Commission
- Bennington Center for the Arts
- Bennington Museum
- Park McCullough
- Bennington Battle Monument
- Mt Snow Chamber of Commerce
- Brattleboro Chamber of Commerce
- Londonderry Chamber of Commerce
- Manchester & the Mountains Chamber of Commerce
- Bennington Battle Day Committee
- USS Bennington Inc.
- Bennington Young Professionals
- Career Development Center
- Southern Vermont College
- Goodwill Industries
- Bennington Free Library
- American Association of University Women
- Habitat for Humanity
Art & Cultural Programs: If business is the brains behind an economy, arts and cultural programs are its heart. The chamber and its members work to create arts and cultural events that infuse money into our community. Events like Moosefest and the Catamount Prowl bring in visitors who shop at local stores, dine at local restaurants and stay in local lodgings. Chamber events have won Top Ten designations from the Vermont Chamber of Commerce. Here are some of our past and ongoing cultural events and opportunities:
- The Bennington Car Show, in partnership with the Bennington Rotary Club (September)
- Southern Vermont Garlic and Herb Festival (Labor Day Weekend)
- Bennington Winter Festivals and Penguin Plunge (Late January)
- Catamount Prowl (Spring, 2014)
- Aurora Dance Parties (Spring)
- Bennington Informational Sign System
- Molly Stark Historic Byway