Wednesday, July 5, 2023
Important News for You
New Chamber Board Announced for 2023-24
Six new board of directors were jointly sworn in last week by County Commissioner Katie Walters and Bremerton City Mayor Greg Wheeler. They were joined by the twelve members whose terms will continue into this next year. The new board members named included Karen Bevers (Bremerton School District), Mike Columbus (Haselwood Auto Group), Paige Jarquin (Pillar to Post Home Inspections), Chad Melton (St. Michael Medical Center), April Onofre (Kitsap Bank), and Angie Tonkin (The Bridgeford Insurance Team).
Chamber News
Check out and like the
Greater Kitsap Chamber Facebook pages!
RECAP: June Luncheon
RECAP: Ribbon Cutting @ Studio K
Apply for Chamber Foundation Scholarship
Applications available now - due July 15
Bremerton GreenDrinks @ Kitsap Credit Union
Thursday, July 13, 2023
Save-the-Date: Education Carnival
Wednesday, July 26, 2023
Reserve your carnival booth now - spaces are limited!
Renew your membership today to ensure your place as a Charter Member of the Greater Kitsap Chamber! Questions about when to renew or how to upgrade your membership? Contact Irene now!
Missed a previous edition of the Chamber's Community Connections?
View all the past issues on our website HERE.
Member News
New Members - Welcome to the Chamber!
New & Renewing Members for June
Thank you for your continued investment & support!
Columbia Sportswear
Our Columbia factory store is located in Silverdale, Washington. We carry innovative outerwear, sportswear, footwear, and accessories for outdoor enthusiasts of all levels. Stop by our outlet store before you take on your next adventure this summer. Whether camping at a Hoh Rainforest campground, launching your kayak or canoe from Illahee State Park to explore Port Orchard Bay, hiking the trails leading to Dickerson Creek Waterfall, or fishing on the waters around the Kitsap Penisula, we have the equipment to fuel your outdoor thrills. Shop our large inventory of fishing apparel, men's and women's hiking boots, and other performance products that will keep you warm, dry, cool, and protected year-round.
9990 Mickleberry Road NW | Silverdale, WA 98383 | (360) 536-9865
Vibe Coworks Happy Hour
Following Free First Friday, July 7, 2023
Member Spotlight
Growing Greater Businesses Grant Spotlight:
Down to Earth Oracle
Unleashing the power of tarot
Discover the fascinating story of Jess Senires, owner of Down to Earth Oracle, as she takes us on a journey through her unique blend of spiritual wisdom and business acumen. From her captivating experiences with tarot and energy work to her unwavering commitment to making a positive impact, Jess's uplifting and bold approach to life leaves a lasting impression.

Education Committee
Member Education & Training Resources
SBDC: Are You Ready to Start a Business?
Thursday, July 6, 2023, 11:00 am
Are you looking to start a business but have no experience running one? Do you have an idea you are excited about and want insight into how to get started? Join us for this webinar to hear about the basics of starting a business.
Washington Technology Association
Cohort 10 Applications Now Open
Applications are now open for the next WTIA Founder Cohort accelerator!
If you are a seed-stage tech startup in Washington state this program is for you!

WTIA Founder Cohort program helps 30-35 venture-scale, seed-stage startups grow and scale over the course of 6 months.

We and our partners will provide founders with a roadmap that will help guide them through their next milestones as they navigate increasing revenue, securing investment, and growing the team.

Think of it like Startup University that turns into an alumni group of founders.

To date we’ve had 200+ companies accepted into the program and they’ve raised over $300M combined.

WTIA is a coalition of like-minded innovators and problem solvers who believe in harnessing the transformative potential of technology and our collective strengths to build a better, brighter world for everyone. Learn more at
SCORE Seattle: Digital Marketing
to Grow Your Business
Thursday, July 6, 2023, 11:15 am
This workshop will help small business owners develop a digital marketing strategy along with determining the specific tools you’ll use to make that digital marketing strategy successful. Topics covered in this workshop include:

  • What is Digital Marketing
  • Websites – what makes a great website
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Use of Video throughout the digital marketing spectrum
  • Paid advertising 
  • Email marketing 
  • Content development, including the effective use of blogs

When you leave this workshop, you’ll have a much better idea of how to build awareness of your product or services among your customers and potential customers. That will increase their interest in what you are selling, moving them to inquiring more. Finally, converting them to paying customers is the ultimate goal of this strategy so that you sell more of your products and services, and drive your business forward!

Workshop Fee: $40
L&I Releases New Outdoor Heat Exposure Rules
Enforcement begins July 17th

The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries has released its new outdoor heat exposure rules. The final rule was filed on June 27, but enforcement will not take place until July 17. You can read the complete rules here.

Temperatures are reaching the 90s in some parts of the state. Read more in Washington Hospitality's Wildfire & Extreme Heat Toolkit.
Business News & Resources
Top eCommerce Trends in 2023

The pandemic has fast-tracked eCommerce adoption, merging digital and physical experiences and altering customer expectations for speed, convenience, and personalization. This change is disruptive but offers new opportunities for retail and restaurant industries. Square partnered with Wakefield Research to survey consumers and business owners for key eCommerce trends. To adapt and thrive in the evolving market, see Square's 2023 Future of Commerce report.

1. Digital sales channels drive business
Capturing the 79% of consumers who make purchases via mobile devices is critical. With an average 22% of total purchases made while scrolling, businesses should emphasize their digital presence. Retailers now operate across an average of four sales channels, and over 80% plan to expand their digital channels in the next year. Utilizing mobile commerce tools to optimize a shoppable, mobile-friendly site is essential.

2. Customer engagement happens across channels
Consumers now buy an average of four products monthly from social media, a trend growing by 10% annually. Also, 19% prefer purchasing via text or chat, a slight but notable increase from 2021. These channels are altering consumer-business interactions, signaling the rise of conversational and mobile commerce. Businesses should, therefore, integrate social and text into their omnichannel strategies for consistency. Tools like Square Text Message Marketing and social commerce can facilitate this integration, enhancing exposure and sales.

3. Retailers understand the importance of omnichannel commerce
As businesses strive to engage consumers through new technology and sales channels, 96% of retailers find it challenging to manage these channels. Key difficulties include identifying suitable channels, ensuring information consistency, and determining meaningful engagement metrics. An integrated centralized hub, like an online store or point-of-sale system, can facilitate cross-channel sales, inventory tracking, and communication management. Despite initial costs, such digital systems effectively engage customers according to their preferences.

Complete KEDA's Top Employers Survey
Help bring talent to Kitsap County
This very short survey informs the localized economics research KEDA conducts and the Top Employers report we produce each year. This report is an essential reference to a wide range of Kitsap stakeholders, from policymakers to investors and it's the most downloaded and viewed content on our site. Your answers here will help bring more talent to our region and increase your visibility to prospective recruits, as well as inform the work we conduct.

Data reflects employment numbers as of December 31, 2022.
Small Business Optimism Remains Resilient
Courtesy of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Small business owners have record-breaking optimism about the future right now, according to new data in the Q2 2023 MetLife and U.S. Chamber Small Business Index.

The report comes amid the news in June of the Federal Reserve pausing interest rate hikes, and robust housing starts data.

Both hiring plans and revenue expectations reached record highs for the Index this quarter, which began in 2017. A record-high share of small business owners (71%) expects their revenue to increase in the next year. In addition, a record-high share anticipates hiring more staff in the next year (47%, up from 37% last quarter).

Also, almost half (42%) of small businesses say they plan to increase investment in the next year, consistent with last quarter (38%).

Other recent small business surveys echo this optimism. In TD Banks’ 2023 Small Business Survey released June 21, 80% of small businesses voiced optimism about how they will do in the next 12months.

Business Quick-Reads
Quick and interesting reads for employers, employees,
local leaders, and everyone in between!
Nonprofit News & Resources
The Greater Kitsap Chamber is proud to be one of only five Chambers statewide selected to partner with the Nonprofit Association of Washington (NAWA) to bring education and resources to nonprofits in Western Washington. Stay tuned to this section of our weekly newsletter for education, resources and more for our nonprofit community.
To learn more about NAWA, please visit their website here.
Guide to Setting Your Nonprofit's Website Goals
Published on, July 3, 2023
Photo: Getty Images by designer491

Your website is the foundation of your nonprofit’s digital presence. From attracting new supporters to your website to strengthening relationships with existing supporters, your site can function as a powerful tool to engage your audience and deepen their involvement in your organization. However, first you need to set specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound (SMART) goals to create a roadmap for success. 

From Narrative to Action:
Leveraging Storytelling for Success
in Communications & Fundraising
July 19, 2023, 7:00 am
In nonprofit communications, storytelling plays a crucial role in driving awareness, garnering support, and inspiring action. However, for small communication teams within nonprofits, crafting compelling narratives can be a daunting challenge, especially when operating as a “department of one.” Simultaneously, leveraging the power of story-based marketing is key to driving donor engagement, securing support, and maximizing fundraising efforts.

In this workshop, learn to harness the power of storytelling in communications and fundraising and explore strategies to collect, craft, distribute and effectively tell stories across multiple teams.

Participants will:
  • Discover the science behind storytelling and why it matters
  • Learn where to look for stories and how to engage other departments
  • Uncover the top three things stories do for a nonprofit and ways to catalog stories
  • Increase knowledge on where to use stories for maximum impact
  • Review common storytelling mistakes

$45 for NAWA Members
$65 for Not-Yet-Members
Greater Kitsap News
Development Group Raydient
Proposes North Kitsap Project
2nd community meeting on July 12th
Published in the Kitsap Sun, June 30, 2023
Photo: Nathan Pilling/Kitsap Sun

Three groups have sketched out a conceptual vision for a new multi-use sports and recreation complex home to a YMCA, sports fields and more off Bond Road in rural North Kitsap.

They include the development group Raydient – a subsidiary of the timber giant Rayonier, which owns a swath of land near the northern intersection of Stottlemeyer Road and Bond Road where the project is being proposed – the Rotary Club of Kingston-North Kitsap and the YMCA of Pierce and Kitsap Counties.

County Seeks Community Members
Volunteers to serve on two grant review committees
The Kitsap County Board of Commissioners is looking for community members to serve on two grant review committees that review and rate applications for federal, state and local consolidated grants awarded to help Kitsap communities and individuals most in need of services and support. Committee members review applications and make recommendations to fund: affordable and supportive housing; supportive services; public facilities and infrastructure; and economic development.

The time commitment for the committees is relatively minimal and includes an orientation and training session scheduled for August 3. Application review takes place on your own and then applicant interviews and deliberations with the committees and county staff to prepare funding recommendations take place over the course of a week in late August or early September. The time commitment ends once funding recommendations are approved by the committees and submitted to Commissioners. Committee members serve only for the 2023 grant review cycle this summer.

Before applying, please read the position descriptions, which include preferred qualifications and dates committee members must be available.

Applications should be completed by July 7. Please note that those working with agencies and organizations applying for funding in 2023 are not eligible to apply to serve on these committees.

Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribal Chair Jeromy Sullivan Remembered for Advocacy
Published in the Kitsap Sun, July 3, 2023
Photo: Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribe

Chair of the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe Jeromy Sullivan, a longtime advocate for the environment, cultural preservation and salmon recovery, died Friday. He was 50.

“Guided by a love of family, community, and nature, he felt deep connections to the water and the forest and was passionate about protecting the environment and tribal treaty rights,” the tribe wrote in a statement.

Summer Update on Bainbridge Ferry Project
Plan for walk-on only service between Seattle and Bainbridge Island Sept. 7-13 for walkway construction

If you've ever built a new home or remodeled one or maybe made a major career change, you've probably reached a point -- maybe midway -- where you've wondered why it has to be so difficult. And then, with the end in view, it becomes clear: You endured this short-term pain for a lasting benefit. 

Installation of the new walkway at Bainbridge Island will be that difficult part for our drive-on passengers. There will be no ferry service for vehicles, motorcycles, bicycles, and scooters from 1 a.m. Sept. 7 until 3 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 13 when the entire holding area becomes a construction zone as crew and cranes lower four large bridge spans -- totaling 338 feet in length -- onto their footings. See the construction graphic and more on the project website.

One-boat sailing schedule

Ferry service will operate on a one-boat sailing schedule and we'll use the existing walkway to load only walk-on and ADA passengers. Staff will be on hand to assist with the additional passenger foot traffic. We will accommodate emergency medical vehicles, in coordination with local emergency services. 
We understand the challenge this poses for passengers and we've done our best to compress the work into the shortest timeframe while keeping regular service for nearly all of construction. The benefit to all will be a seismically safer and more comfortable heated walkway for passengers that's set to open later this year. 

Alternate routes for drivers

We encourage people who normally drive aboard to walk on and use public transit in Seattle or Bainbridge Island. If you need to drive during this time, plan ahead to use one of these alternate routes: 

We're exploring additional service options on our other routes and will release that information soon. We'll base that decision on crewing availability and the service restoration plan.
PROJECT UPDATE: Greaves & Old Frontier Road

Construction of the NW Greaves Way and Old Frontier Road NW roundabout is suspended until late July due to supply chain challenges with the new roadway illumination poles. Construction on this project is not yet complete and crews will resume work once the new light poles arrive. The newly constructed roundabout is currently open with no restrictions.

This project provides enhanced traffic flow and increases safety. For more information on this project follow this link to view the project page.
Community Information
League of Women Voters Hosts
School Board Candidate Forums
July 10, 12, 13, 2023
The League of Women Voters of Kitsap County are hosting several candidate forums for the various school board elections coming up this fall. Forums will be hosted on Zoom and registration is not required. All candidates have been invited to participate and answer questions submitted by the public.

Dates and times for each candidate forum can be found here:

The League of Women Voters of Kitsap is a nonpartisan political organization which does not
support or oppose any candidate or political party.
No-Contact Advisory Issued
West End of Sinclair Inlet Impacted by Sewage Spill
Affected area: The west end of Sinclair Inlet (Gorst), from Ross Point to Sherman Heights area.

No-Contact Advisory: A no-contact advisory is in effect through July 9.

During a no-contact advisory, the public is advised to avoid contact with water in the affected area. The Health District recommends against swimming, wading, or types of water recreation that could cause water to be swallowed or get into the mouth, nose or eyes. People should also avoid direct skin contact if possible, and immediately wash with soap and clean water if they have exposure to the water.

Signs will be posted at public access points.

Check the state shellfish safety map for current shellfish closures.

For more information, visit
Silverdale GreenDrinks @ Maynard's
Wednesday, July 12, 2023, 5:24 pm
Community Hikes with Live Well Kitsap!
Bridging Bremerton 2023
Saturday, July 29, 2023
Masks & COVID Testing Kits Available
Free at the Greater Kitsap Chamber & Visitor Center
The Greater Kitsap Chamber still has some supplies available if your local business is in need of KN95 masks or COVID testing kits. Pick up your supply at both GKC locations today. Available while supplies last.
Tourism Information
KCMT Presents Into the Woods
July 7 - 16, 2023
Port Gamble Theater: Romeo & Juliet
July 14 - 30, 2023
Join the Port Gamble Theater as they present Shakespeare's tragedy, Romeo and Juliet. Two star-crossed young people, separated by an ancient family hatred must navigate the obstacles against them for true love.

Friday and Saturday evening performances at 7:00 pm, Sunday performances at 2:00 pm.
Kingston Wine & Brew Fest 2023
Saturday, July 15, 2023, 1:00 - 5:00 pm
Admiral Theatre Presents: Prom Date Mixtape
Saturday, July 15, 2023, 8:00 pm
Prom Date Mixtape is the Ultimate Live 80s New Wave Experience! Recently named “The Greatest 80s Tribute Band in the Pacific Northwest” by KOMO TV 4’s Seattle Refined, Prom Date Mixtape delivers the most authentic and energetic renditions of your favorite decade-defining new wave, pop, and rock tunes that you will ever hear.
Kitsap Pride
Saturday, July 22, 2023
Entertainment, vendors, food and drink, community, support - join us for the family-friendly Kitsap Pride Festival at the Kitsap County Fairgrounds in Bremerton.
Save-the-Date: Whaling Days
July 28-30, 2023
Stay in the know with what's happening for events
in Central Kitsap by checking out and liking the
Contact Us
Have something to share? CLICK HERE to submit stories and
events for Tuesday's Community Connections!
David Emmons
Irene Moyer
VP, Membership & Strategic Communications
Tiffany Diamond
Events Coordinator
Brenda Kelley
Tourism Coordinator
Bremerton Office (360) 479-3579 | 4th & Pacific Downtown Bremerton
Silverdale Office (360) 692-6800 | Kitsap Mall next to Macy's
PO Box 1218 Silverdale WA 98383
If you need assistance, please contact us directly.