A ribbon cutting ceremony is a great way to recognize a special event. The Allendale Area Chamber of Commerce is delighted to help your business celebrate with a ceremony and will be happy to facilitate a ribbon cutting.
As an AACC member benefit, the chamber is available to assist with your ceremony if your business has:
- Opened its doors within the past 6 months
- Changed ownership or is under new management
- Moved to a new location due to expansion
- Has been remodeled or has expanded its current location
- Is celebrating a milestone anniversary (10yr, 25yr, 50yr, etc.)
What the AACC can do for you:
- Provide you with a half price ¼ page ad in ‘The Announcer’ announcing your ceremony and business
- Created by AACC or your in-house marketing department
- Business must provide date, time, details by the 10th of month prior to the month of publication in which the ceremony will take place
- Provide an excel mailing list of current AACC members for your own mailing
- Contact Advance, GR Press, & WJQ Radio
- Provide Large Scissors/Ribbon
- Participation of AACC representative
- Ask for participation of ACT Officials (Supervisor, Clerk, Township Board)
- Post on our website, event calendar and Facebook
Helpful Planning Tips
Because your ribbon cutting is your event, there are no set guidelines. What follows is an assembly of steps to help you plan a successful event.
- Choose a date that avoids major conflict with community events or holidays.
- Give yourself plenty of preparation time. 3-4 weeks is sufficient.
- Tuesday’s, Wednesday’s, and Thursday’s are usually best days during the week for business people.
- Careful consideration of the time of your event determines the atmosphere of the celebration
- Morning events should start no earlier than 8:00 am as a general rule.
- Avoid late evening functions where people will have to go home between the end of their work day and your event. (unless your business is best suited for this type of event)
Who you invite to your event is as important as hosting the event. Your invitations may be as simple as a letter or as elaborate as a formal invitation. Be sure to include the: who, what, where, why, and when as well as a RSVP method to help plan accordingly for food and beverage. The AACC is happy to assist you with members that are can help with your printing needs. The following are some suggestions of people to consider when creating your invitation list:
- Current, past and potential customers
- Family and friends
- Your employees and their spouses/guests
- Those that helped you get started: Banker, Accountant, Lawyer, Architects, Builder, Realtor, etc.
- Neighboring business people
- Representatives from the AACC Board and members
- Key government officials: Township Supervisor, Township Clerk, Township Board Members
- Miss Allendale
*Note that you are eligible as an AACC member to receive a complimentary list of current member labels.
Providing time-appropriate refreshments is very well received. For example; during a morning event it is nice to offer coffee, juice, bagels or pastries, while during a lunch or evening event offering light hors d’ oeuvres or finger foods is appropriate. Enlisting the help of a caterer is often helpful. The AACC is able to assist you with a list of current members that are happy to cater your event
- Create an event agenda. A brief program adds focus to the event. It provides not only valuable recognition for you and your key people, but it makes the event more purposeful and permits you the opportunity to explain more about your business.
- Ideas to consider include; introduction of key people that helped you make this milestone possible, speeches from leaders in the community (keep these brief), and possibly a tour of your facility if time permits and is necessary with your type of business.
- Conclude your program with some ceremonial or symbolic activity to commemorate the event such as a ribbon cutting for a ribbon cutting/grand opening ceremony or shoveling the first load of dirt for a groundbreaking, or the cutting of the cake for an anniversary. This is a nice way to let guests know that the program has concluded and allows for great photo opportunities.
- Have plenty of brochures, business cards, and handouts available for your guests. If possible have promotional items such as pens, magnets, mugs, etc. available to hand out.
- Have a drawing or give-away. Winning a sample of your product or a gift certificate to a nice restaurant can add to your guests’ enjoyment and perhaps build attendance.
- Presentation of the AACC membership plaque for new members, and/or a framed ‘Buck for Luck’ for new businesses.