Elkford held their virtual Business Awards ceremony over Zoom on Oct. 29. (Soranne Floarea/ The Free Press)

Elkford held their virtual Business Awards ceremony over Zoom on Oct. 29. (Soranne Floarea/ The Free Press)

Elkford businesses recognized at 2020 Business Awards

The socially-distant yet celebratory event was streamed online this year

The Elkford Chamber of Commerce honoured their businesses via the annual Business Awards, which aired over Zoom on Oct. 29.

Maintaining the celebration while respecting distance, Shawna Bryant, executive director of the Elkford Chamber of Commerce, surprised the recipients with their awards, showcasing the filmed reactions alongside a slide show of uplifting comments from the community.

“One thing we found in Elkford, was that we were starting to see that a lot of the town was loosing momentum,” said Bryant.

“It’s been hard, everyone’s been affected in so many different way when it comes to Covid, so we really wanted to be able to do something special.

“These businesses and people in our town have worked so hard to give back to the community in so many different ways.”

Kicking off the celebration, the Business of the Year award was presented to The Kootenay Market, and accepted by Mark Pitcher. According to Bryant, not only does Pitcher always give back to the community, but he also brought in specialty products for customers throughout the pandemic and opened up alternate hours for high risk residents.

“Mark and his team are just incredible… he is always reaching out to people, especially those in the vulnerable sector to ensure they are taken care of, which is above and beyond and tells a lot of who he is as a person,” added Bryant.

Further honouring local businesses, The Industrial Business of the Year award was presented to Chris Duthee for his company Precision Arc Industries. According to Bryant, residents constantly praised Duthee for going above and beyond his line of work.

Also acknowledged at this year’s award ceremony was Candice Klapp, who accepted the Customer Service of the Year award for The Klapp Farm, who started a delivery service throughout COVID-19, delivering jam, baked treats and specialty coffee to customers every Saturday.

“Candice is extraordinary, as is what they did while they couldn’t open their shop – and then of course when they were able to, they’ve been amazing at getting students on board to work with them and get involved,” said Bryant.

Also recognized at the virtual ceremony was Bill MacDonald, who accepted the Non-profit Business of the Year award on behalf of Mountain Meadows Golf Club.

“One of the things that stood out the most was how well they were able to navigate through Covid with all the regulations they had to follow, while being able to keep their customer service up and still reaching out with donations to other community organizations.”

Continuing to celebrate residents that support their community, the Volunteer of the Year award – the district’s only fully-citizen selected designation – was given to Dylan Forsyth for his contributions via the Rod and Gun Club, the Elkford Clean-Up, and other local organizations.

“Throughout the year, Dylan is a really big part of our community, getting different donations set up to be able to help out other local organizations,” added Bryant.

Wanting to make the event as spirited as possible, the Elkford Chamber of Commerce further recognized each of the 72 nominees with a gift bag this year.

Anyone looking to watch the Zoomed awards ceremony can do so on the Elkford Chamber of Commerce’s website.

READ MORE: Finalists announced for Fernie’s Business Excellence Awards


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