Patty Vadnais is the executive director of the Fernie Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber is hosting the Business Excellence Awards this Friday.

Chamber hosting local business awards

The Chamber of Commerce is hosting the Community and Business Excellence Awards on Oct. 23.

October is Small Business Month and as a way to show appreciation for businesses around Fernie, the Chamber of Commerce is hosting the Community and Business Excellence Awards.

The finalists have been selected and the winners will be announced at the Oct. 23 event.

The Chamber’s executive director, Patty Vadnais, she is excited for this year’s event to celebrate the work that’s being done in Fernie.

“There were some fantastic businesses that were

nominated and our finalists are just an example of that.”

Vadnais said it is important to have events such as the Community and Business Excellence Awards.

“It’s nice to take a moment to acknowledge the work that’s put in by our entrepreneurs and our small business owners,” she said. “I think if you don’t take a moment to celebrate the work that’s been done and look at all that we have accomplished, it’s easy to get bogged down with the day-to-day and forget.”

This year’s keynote speaker is Derrick Emsley, one of the co-founders of tentree – a Regina, Sask. based apparel company that plants 10 trees for every item purchased.

According to the company’s website, more than 6 million trees have been planted in nine countries since the company’s inception in January of 2012.

Tentree’s Facebook page defines the company as a “lifestyle apparel company” and says “by combining social and environmental consciousness with lifestyle apparel, tentree allows consumers to have a direct impact on the environment and communities worldwide”.

Vadnais said Emsley is a good choice to give the keynote address at the upcoming event, someone she calls “an entrepreneur of a new generation”, considering he’s a young business man in his 20s.

“He’s figured out a unique business model that works with his personal values and I think that would resonate with people in Fernie, as many of us choose to live here for a lifestyle and we love the outdoors, so we just thought it would be a nice fit.”

The event takes place at the Fernie Golf & Country Club and will begin at 5:30 p.m. starting with a meal, followed by the keynote address and onto the awards presentation.

Vadnais said new this year there will be entertainment following the award presentations.

“We just want people to make a full evening of it and have a lot of fun.”

Tickets are now on sale. For a list of award finalists, visit the Chamber’s website at Ferniechamber.com.