Audra Winters

Marana Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Audra Winters

The Marana Chamber of Commerce started off its new year with a flurry of activity, starting with the first of our 2020 Lunch and Learn Series titled “Insider Secrets to Creating Great Online Content” by Wanda Baader of Strategize Your Success. 

We also celebrated two local milestones. First, when Tucson Orthopaedic Institute hosted a grand opening and ribbon cutting for its newest Physical Therapy location in Marana, bringing more resources to people of all ages. They are at 8275 N. Silverbell Road #113.

Second, we hosted a ribbon cutting for the new Carondelet Marana Hospital, at 5620 W. Cortaro Road. This “neighborhood hospital” is an exciting opportunity for Carondelet Health Network to introduce this new model of care in Marana. This concept has been applauded nationally for its high-quality patient care and enhanced patient satisfaction. They will be opening sometime in March.

“Marana Insights,” recently renamed from Community and Regional Update, was held Jan 22. The year-end stats for single family residential homes for 2019 in Marana was a whooping 808. We learned of new business growth from Curt Woody including Frankie’s South Philly Cheesesteaks opening a new location at the Northwest corner of Ina and Thornydale along with a Lucky Wishbone in the same area. Wicked Monkey Brewing Company at 7701 N. Business Park Drive will be opening in the fall. PVB Fabrications will be building in front of International Towers on Tangerine east of I-10 and will add many jobs to our community. There will be some traffic interchange work going in advance of the new Villages of Tortolitas. 

Our Fourth Tuesday Mixer was hosted by member The Station Pub & Grill, which is getting ready to celebrate its eighth anniversary here in Marana. Way to grow!

At our Partners in Education Luncheon, the focus was The Future of Work and Its Impact on Schools. We learned of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and how technologies like artificial intelligence, automation, and the internet of things are merging with humans' physical lives. While these changes are disrupting, we must be adaptable by better predicting and reconfiguring our education systems and life-long learning in the workplace. Cathie Raymond, formerly of Marana Unified School District and now Deputy Associate Superintendent/State Director, Career and Technical Education with Arizona Department of Education, explained how the State was responding with a clear mission and vision and creative problem-solving. Several students spoke about how their improved educational opportunities had changed their lives.

Before the luncheon, some of us were lucky to tour the new Dove Mountain CSTEM School in Marana. Our student tour guides spoke passionately about how Computer Science, Technology, Engineering, Math were integrated in all segments of campus life making it fun to go to school.

Marana Young Professionals held a seminar and interactive class, “Navigating the Inter-generational Workplace” at The Other Place. John Page Burton, The JP Burton Group was the speaker and moderator and gave a thought-provoking presentation on how we can work together in what is now a five-generation workplace. We had all five represented in the class and had some terrific revelations and hopeful solutions in our interactions with the group. The MYP plans to continue with quarterly events.

Some of our upcoming events:

• The Town of Marana’s Founder’s Day on March 28 will kick off with the parade. Within the Community Vendor Fair after, the Marana Chamber’s Veterans Committee will host a Veteran’s Mini-resource Fair with five to 10 resource vendors focusing on Marana veterans.

• The Film Committee is presenting a film and business mixer and a workshop including an expert panel discussion and feature speakers Matthew Earl Jones, Film Director from the Arizona Commerce Authority and Kate Snapp of Marriott International on how businesses can do business with the film industry in Arizona. This will be held on March 26. 

• Business Walk- The Marana Chamber and Town of Marana will continue our series along the Cortaro and Arizona Pavilions corridor. We’ll be getting to know our business neighbors on March 31.

• Our March 19 Business Connection Luncheon will be “Economic Development- What Does It Mean for the Future of Marana.” Curt Woody, Economic Development Director for the Town of Marana and Tim Kanaval, Pinal County Economic Development Manager will be our speakers. We are excited to hear about how the growth will positively affect Marana residents.

I would like to throw in a teaser that the Chamber and Town are planning to have a mixer in the fall for our home-based businesses in order get to know their needs better. For more information about this or any other events, please email to info@maranachmaber.com 

We’d also like to welcome our new Marana Chamber Members: Arizona Youth Partners; Evergreen Mortuary & Cemetery; Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers; Radiology Ltd.; Agape Acres; and Green Living Magazine.

Thanks to all our renewing members for providing the foundation that makes our community great! For more information about our members or events in this article, go to maranachamber.com  or call 682-4314.

Remember, you can save money by investing back into your community by shopping locally, driving less, and saving time.

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