Saturday, May 30, 2009

Chamber luncheon discusses how to win hits and influence Google

Click to read full article by Michele Marcotte, The Daily Sentinel

During a packed Nacogodches County Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Friday, local businessman and online marketing specialist Scott Jacobs outlined a number of ways for area businesses to maximize their Internet presence.

Using the online success of his own online business, Pine Straw Direct, as an example, Jacobs demonstrated how search engine optimization, online brand awareness and the use of e-mail marketing and social media can benefit a business.

"Web sites don't have to be complex to rank high (on a search engine search)," he said, using visual examples of several local Web sites, including his own. "A search engine's job or function is solely to return relevant results for the people searching. The (search engine) is not interested in what a site looks like."

Photo: Chamber Chair Donna Finley and Scott Jacobs, owner Jacobs iServices and Pine Straw Direct, at the May Fourth Friday Luncheon. Click to view more photos.

Click for KTRE story and video by Donna McCollum.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Kroger renovates North Street store

On April 29, Kroger celebrated a re-grand opening of its store on North Street.

The newly renovated store now features a drive-thru pharmacy, a Tortilla Station, which serves up fresh tortillas daily; an expanded "Nature's Market" section that offers a larger selection of organic and healthier food products; and an improved wine and beer department featuring a new "Mix & Match" program for micro-brews and imports.

Other improvements are an increased bakery variety and a sitting area for customers.

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Sunday, May 24, 2009

Stallings Court Nursing Center rated perfect by state inspectors

Stallings Court Nursing and Rehabilitation Center recently completed its annual inspection and was rated “deficiency free” by state inspectors. “Deficiency free” means that inspectors from the Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS) found no errors in their annual review of the rehabilitation and health care services provided to Stallings Court customers.

State inspections are conducted by a team of health care professionals that spend consecutive days reviewing care and services provided during the past year. Stallings Court is in rarified company. Over the past year and a half only 69 Texas nursing homes rated deficiency free.

“It’s unusual for a nursing home to have a single deficiency free year, and it’s a real tribute to our team that we’ve received a survey with no deficiencies,” said Andrea Hill, administrator at Stallings Court. “Our rehabilitation and nursing care professionals are among the best in the area, because in addition to their technical proficiencies they have a genuine desire to deliver thoughtful and compassionate services to seniors and their families. It’s an absolute honor to have the opportunity to lead this great team of health care providers.”

Click for more information about Stallings Court or call (936) 569-5600.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Farmers' Market news

The Wednesday market will be startng up Wednesday, May 27, in addition to the regular Saturday market hours.

Asa Calhoun will be there with green beans, green onions, red potatoes, yellow squash, strawberry jelly and grape jelly. He will also be selling his wife's homemade necklaces and earrings.

Singer/songwriter Mary Martha will be playing next Saturday, May 30.

Click to go to the Farmers' Market blog for updates.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Vendors needed for Freedom Fest

Photo from past Freedom Fest taken by Bruce R. Partain.

Organizers of the upcoming 6th annual Freedom Fest are seeking food vendors to fill available booths at the July 4th event in downtown’s Festival Plaza.

Vendor applications are available at the Nacogdoches Convention & Visitors Bureau, located at 200 E. Main St. in downtown Nacogdoches. A limited amount of booth space is available, so vendors are encouraged to make reservations early. The deadline to turn in vendor forms is set for June 12th.

Freedom Fest will be held July 4th. This year’s festival is presented by Brookshire Brothers and the Nacogdoches Jaycees and celebrates our country’s independence. Local and regional musicians will perform from five to 9:30 p.m. in historic downtown Nacogdoches. Families are invited to enjoy delicious festival food, children’s activities and a fireworks display beginning 30 minutes after dark. Admission is free.

For more information about vendor booths or to have an application mailed to you, call the CVB at 936-564-7351 or 1-888-OLDEST-TOWN.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

One thousand plus jobs available

Read full story at East Texas Review

Dozens of employers are seeking to fill over 1,000 positions that East Texas job seekers will have the opportunity to apply for at Congressman Louie Gohmert’s upcoming East Texas Job Fairs. These numbers are expected to grow as more businesses and entities continue to sign up for the events that will be held in Lufkin and Longview during the month of June. Hiring employers still have time to register their business or entity for the free job fairs, and job seekers with a range of backgrounds and experiences are encouraged to attend.

Rep. Gohmert stated, “It’s easy to be discouraged by the gloomy economic forecasts broadcast by national leaders and media, but the truth is there is hope and there are jobs out there. Dozens of employers will be at our Job Fairs to meet with hardworking East Texans to fill over 1,000 available positions. My office and our partnering organizations want to do everything we can to help bring together the diverse East Texas job market with our capable citizens for the greater benefit of our community and economy. We look forward to seeing more employers register for these events and a strong turnout from East Texas job seekers.”

Updates are as follows:
Monday, June 1, 10AM-1PM
Location: LUFKIN, First Baptist Church - Family Life Center, 106 E. Bremond Ave, 75901

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

3rd Saturday Cruise Nights in Nacogdoches

Every third Saturday of the month, cruise by Marketplace II at the intersection of North St. and N. Stallings Dr. in the evening. Stop to view some of the sweetest steel beauties in East Texas.

Felicia Bell is the Challenger SRT8 owner.

Click on the photos to view larger images.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Texas Blueberry Festival set for June 13

Bruce Webb, left, and Dennis Stevens, center, flip blueberry pancakes. The Kiwanis Club will again serve the hot, delicious Blueberry Pancake Breakfast at the 20th Annual Texas Blueberry Festival at 8 a.m., Saturday, June 13 in downtown Nacogdoches. (Photo by Bruce R. Partain)

Texas Blueberry Festival
set for June 13
By Brittany Logan
Chamber Intern

The most delicious festival in Texas returns to Nacogdoches the second Saturday in June with a day-long celebration of the annual blueberry harvest, featuring live music, farm tours, delicious blueberry fare and children’s activities.

“The 20th annual Texas Blueberry Festival will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, June 13, in historic downtown Nacogdoches – the First Town in Texas,” said Festival Chair Michelle Smith. “Admission and parking are free, and thanks to Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful, the festival is a litter free event.”

According to Smith, at least two new events will be at the festival.

“Cowboy Max will give his daring exhibition of trick roping and bullwhip stunts in his wooly chaps,” said Smith. “He'll also assist gourmet chefs in the Cookin’ Up the Blues cooking demonstrations happening in the CBTx lobby. Celebrity chefs will be sizzling up some tasty blueberry delights.”

The celebrity chefs appearing during Cookin’ Up the Blues are Camilla Saulsbury, Pepperidge Farm representative,, Texas AgriLife Extension Service Jr. Chef Member Molly Perkins, Family and Consumer Sciences Agent Karen Tucker and other agents from the district.

Click to read full story.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Television Recycling Option!

Good news! We now have a more convenient way to keep televisions out of our local landfill. Best Buy will accept old/unwanted 32" or smaller televisions for a $10.00 fee (this fee is required by the state), but the fee will be refunded in the form of a Best Buy gift certificate. Best Buy stores recycle many other electronics. Click here to read about Best Buy's recycling program. To contact the Lufkin Best Buy store: (936) 699-1100.

For other questions about where and what can be recycled in East Texas, please visit the Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful web-site: and click on the Nacogdoches Recycling tab (scroll to the middle of the page).

The Cottage final week - 75% off sale

This will be the final week for long-time business The Cottage.

All items will be 75 percent off.

From the Cottage blog: “The Cottage is an amazing quaint kitchen shop nestled in the oldest town in Texas. We have a wide variety of kitchen items and gadgets. We also have that gift for the hard to buy for someone. Come see all the amazing things we have to offer.” The business is located at 114 N Church St. Phone: (936) 564-1238.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Charm Night Out

Tuesday, rather than spending the evening curled up with your remote and yesterday's leftovers, grab a girlfriend and head out to the Hotel Fredonia for The Daily Sentinel's inaugural Charm Night Out.

The evening, which begins at 3 p.m. and lasts until 8 p.m., will feature a number of vendor, informational and demonstration booths, as well as appetizers and beverages.

Click to read full story by Michele Marcotte, The Daily Sentinel

Lois Marie Bright and Gayla Mize honored by Citizens 1st Bank for their contributions to downtown

The Nacogdoches Main Street Advisory Board recently received $20,000 from Mr. Perkins, of Citizens 1st Bank to honor two outstanding citizens, who dedicated their lives to downtown Nacogdoches. The donation, made in honor of Gayla Mize and Lois Marie Bright, will be used to manufacture, install and maintain 20 planter boxes in the downtown district. “We couldn’t be more excited about this project,” Gerry Larabee, Main Street Advisory Board President stated. “We cannot thank Mr. Perkins and Citizen’s 1st Bank enough.”

Gayla and Lois Marie, loved downtown Nacogdoches, and were both instrumental in the transformation of the Plaza Principal and various other projects. Both active in various garden clubs, this couldn’t be a more fitting tribute to the two friends.

For more information or questions about the Main Street Advisory Board Planter Box Project or the Nacogdoches Main Street Program’s revitalization efforts please contact the Nacogdoches Main Street Office at 936-559-2573

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Blueberry Golf Bash winning teams

Congratulations to the top four teams. Thanks to everyone that made the 12th Annual Blueberry Golf Bash a success!

FIRST PLACE team Advanced Business Copiers scored 49.8. Pictured from left are Doug Brown, Brian Stevens, Nick Spencer and Ralph Ervin.

SECOND PLACE team City of Nacogdoches-Parks and Recreation scored 50.5. Pictured from left are Kathy Joslyn, Aron Kulhavy, David Smith and R.J. Joslyn.

THIRD PLACE team Axley & Rode, LLP scored 51.1. Pictured from left are Joe Aguilar, Gary McEuen, Drue Scull and Don Silva.

FOURTH PLACE team Point A Media scored 52.3. Pictured from left are Brad Woodard, Todd Brown, Jeff Brewer and Joey Bray.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Charm Night Out

Fun & Fabulous
An evening for women of all ages & phases
Shopping, Informational Booths, demonstrations, Appetizers & Beverages
featuring Kathy Patrick
author of the Pulpwood Queen's Tiara-Wearing, Book-Sharing Guide to Life
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
3:00 p.m. -8:00 p.m.
Hotel Fredonia in Nacogdoches

Ribbon Cutting - Edward Jones - Justin Brady

Edward Jones - Justin Brady
4930 North St.
Justin Brady, Finanical Advisor
New Business Location

Ribbon Cutting - Mercyfull Home Health, Inc.

Mercyfull Home Health, Inc.
320 North St., Ste. 101
Rita Parker, community liaison
New Chamber Member

Hospitality Training for Downtown Business

Helping make downtown Nacogdoches a “Texas Friendly” downtown will be the goal of an upcoming workshop hosted by the Main Street Program.
Sarah O’Brien, Main Street manager for the City of Nacogdoches, will lead the workshop. Participants will learn about Nacogdoches' opportunities for tourism development, as well as the basics of customer service.
The workshop will be held on Thursday, May 21st, at the Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, 200 E. Main Street in downtown Nacogdoches. The session will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. The workshops are open to anyone interested in sharpening his or her customer service skills.
"In today's hurry-up society, we sometimes forget how to slow down and treat the customer or visitor with respect and friendliness," said O’Brien. "It is so imperative for front line customer services workers to treat our visitors with a ‘Texas Friendly’ attitude, often those casual experiences are the impressions that visitors take home with them.”
The program uses curriculum developed by the Texas Agricultural Extension Service. The Texas Friendly program encourages business owners as well as employees to promote hospitality habits when dealing with local customers and visitors.
According to Texas Economic Development, the state agency for economic development, tourism is a $40 billion industry in Texas each year. In Nacogdoches
County travelers and tourists spent nearly $57.0 million in 2006.
"Nacogdoches and downtown have so much to offer visitors," said O’Brien. "Visitors to Nacogdoches have it all – from unique shopping destinations, history galore, to unparalleled nature tourism- like the Ruby M. Mize azalea garden, Texas’ largest in fact. I don’t think most of our residents realize how big of an impact tourism has on our local economy.”
“We are confident this workshop will benefit not only the individual attendees but also Nacogdoches residents and the many visitors we welcome downtown to the oldest town in Texas each and every year,” O’Brien said.
Class size is limited, and advanced registration is required. To register for the Texas Friendly Hospitality Workshop, call the Main Street Office at 936-559-2573. The cost is free for all downtown business and $15 for any other interested participants. Participants will be given a certificate of completion.