BUSINESS BEAT: Chamber gala highlights best of Alberni businesses

The annual Alberni Valley Chamber of Commerce community excellence awards will be presented April 21

BUSINESS BEAT: Chamber gala highlights best of Alberni businesses

The town will be painted red at the business event of the year Friday night.

The Alberni Valley Chamber of Commerce Community Excellence awards will take place at the Italian Hall Friday night and everyone attending is encouraged to wear red in recognition of Canada 150, the 50th anniversary of the merging of the two Albernis and the 10th anniversary of Westcoast Home Hardware, the title sponsor for the event.

“Without the title sponsorship, this event would not happen,” says Bill Collette, executive director for the chamber. “This is sure to our biggest and best one yet!”

Many other local businesses have contributed to making the annual awards event a success. Each award is sponsored by a local business, as well as the flowers, wine, decorations, signage and photography. Local media have provided promotion for the event.

Home Hardware has also created the more than a dozen awards that will be presented at the event.

Getting to the presentations has taken a lot of planning. Nominations have been accepted for all categories throughout the year. In recent weeks, the chamber awards committee has narrowed the list down to three finalists in each category.

The finalists, sponsors and guests will enjoy a gala evening starting with cocktails and networking to the music of Jericho Road, continuing to dinner catered by Swept Away Inn and served by the ADSS cheerleaders.

Speaker for the evening is Mr. Terry Davis, CEO of Home Hardware.

The awards presentation, emceed by Zack Jones, will reveal the best in business in past year. Categories recognize business excellence, business investment, customer service, green business practices, health and fitness, rising star, social media use, tourism/hospitality excellence, and the most welcoming workplace.

Individual awards will also be presented to recognize community excellence with citizen of the year, youth of the year, volunteer of the year, a visionary, the spirit of music, an ambassador of service and support for the chamber.

Following the awards, the celebration will continue into the night with dancing to Katz from Studio 70.

The event is sold out, but check the Alberni Valley News online for a list of nominees, on Facebook and in print for photos and the results from the gala.


In other business news, Parry Gallagher, owner of Coombs Furniture at Coombs Junction is opening a store in Port Alberni. The new store will be located on the top section of Redford Street in the building across from Healthy Habits. Look for a soft opening of the store by the end of the month.


The popular Boomerangs Restaurant on lower Johnston Road is closed for renovations, but hungry customers can still get a meal to go, delivery or to enjoy at a sidewalk table. The Kiwanis food truck is parked in front of Boomerangs with a special menu serving breakfast, burgers and some Boomerangs favourites. Food truck menu is available at /desserts or call 250-724-5794.


Boutique Belles Amies has set the date for their annual Spring Fashion Show that raises money for local charities. The show will take place at Starboard Grill on Tuesday May 16. Tickets sell out fast, so be sure to book early. 250-723-0966.


More news from Kingsway Crossing. Carmoor’s Cookery is being made over into Porto Taco, a licensed Mexican restaurant on the corner of Argyle and Kingsway that will also feature sidewalk seating.

Just up the block on Argyle, next to Azalea’s Flowers, another restaurant is in the works. Boomtown Café is hoping to open May 1.

And down at Harbour Quay, Starboard Grill is mixing it up with an international menu every second Wednesday. So far, chef Brad DeClercq has come up with tantalizing menus from such cultures as Brazil, the Netherlands, South Africa and Portugal. Call 778-421-2826 or follow them on Facebook to see what the next international menu will feature.

Teresa Bird is the Alberni Valley News’ publisher. Do you have a business tip for her? E-mail her at

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