2016-2017 MRMA Scholarship for Students at CF


2016-2017 MRMA Scholarship for Students at CF

Application Deadline June 15

Mid-FL Regional Manufacturers

Association Scholarship

Selected students will be awarded with a scholarship sponsored by MRMA.  Apply today! Recipients will be selected based on interest in manufacturing,scholastic achievement, Experience and need. Preference given to MRMA member employees/families.

Apply by June 15, 2016

• Applicant must have a minimum GPA of 2.5.

• Applicant must be enrolled in a degree program in business, finance, engineering, computer technology or a noncredit professional certification.

• The Scholarship can be used for tuition, books, fees or housing at College of Central Florida.

 Scholarship Application

Questions: Rob Adamiak

 Executive Director

 Mid-FL Regional Manufacturers Association




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Measure Twice Cut Once

Measure Twice Cut Once
Date: 3/25/2016
Measure Twice Cut Once

A Blog Post by Chamber member Pete Langlois, Nova Network

Customers are King. They set the priorities for your business because they control what they will buy, how they will buy, and when. How can you understand more about your customers so that you can find more buyers that act like your best customers: the ones who like and buy your highest margin products and services, the ones who look for the value you add because it meets their needs, and the ones who share your business and its offers with their friends?

The first and most critical step to find more customers like those you want most, is to pay close attention to the ones you have. Where do they live? Are they married? Do they own a home? What is their income level? How can you possibly know that? You can ask. Grocery stores do. Many ask for your identity in exchange for a card that gives “discounts” on products they offer. And while asking for income with a purchase of a soft drink doesn’t make sense, if you know an address, you can nearly guess the income by using a few publicly available tools. Neighborhoods have similar financial characteristics, and those characteristics are close enough to use effectively.

When your best customers come back, how do you recognize them? Will it be the spouse this time, and not the person you saw last? Will it be a different employee greeting them? How can you know how good a customer or a family is if you don’t really know what they spent? Collecting an identifier or two (like address) sorts out this problem quickly, even if its just zip-code. Develop a customer measurement information system that best fits the type of information you can obtain and interaction you have with your customers. Get some help setting it up and training your team – if you need it. You need a system you and your team can manage.

Regardless of what your business does, measure your customers to understand their needs and likes, and to determine the best ways to reach them and those like them. Measuring to support decisions is sensible and smart for a broad set of businesses. It doesn’t matter if your business provides building services, food, entertainment, or even a place to sleep. Know your customers so that with a bit of investigation your can tell how many other potential customers exist, and how existing and potential customers go about choosing a business in your category when start thinking about what you offer.

Know your best customers by keeping information that helps you recognize them, and lets you make informed decisions about how to find others like them. When practical, record name and address for credit card transactions. Take information from work orders, phone caller ID, and for some businesses it makes sense to see if the license plate is local or not. Some find it useful to offer a promotion to develop a name and address list with best contact method. If you run a seasonal business, understanding who buys in peak season when you are struggling to keep up – and the exact dates – will help better plan resources for next year. And measuring who buys in the off-season will help you understand promotion timing and key offers, offers that keep cash flow moving. A monthly top sales list (by geographic area) can be a great tool.

Whether for advertising, staffing, inventory, or a range of other reasons, knowing and measuring your best customers and their patterns and characteristics will give you the power to know, not guess, when it comes to important decisions. Ask any carpenter: measure twice, cut once. There are no “do overs” for important decisions you must make for your business.

Pete Langlois, Nova Network, novanetco.com, 703-930-9613

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2016 Floral City Strawberry Festival: Only One Week Away!

The 2016 Insight Credit Union Floral City Strawberry Festival is only one week away! The staff here at the Chamber is busy putting the final touches on what will no doubt be, the best Strawberry Festival ever!

In its 29th year, the Floral City Strawberry Festival is seeded (pun may be intend) in rich tradition here in Citrus County. Strawberries have been grown locally for generations and the Citrus County Chamber of Commerce is proud to highlight these amazing berries every year at the Floral City Strawberry Festival.

In anticipation of this great event, we have compiled some interesting facts about this delicious fruit.

  • Strawberries are the only fruit with seeds on the outside
  • Strawberries are grown in every state in the United States and every province in Canada (Floral City’s is the best!)
  • In ancient Greece, the strawberry was a symbol for Venus, the Goddess of love
  • Native American Indians called strawberries “heart-seed berries” and pounded them into traditional corn-meal type bread. After discovering the great taste of this bread, colonists decided to create their own version, which became the Strawberry Short Cake we all know and love today
  • Eight Strawberries contain more vitamin C than medium orange
  • Strawberry juice combined with honey can reduce inflammation and pain from sunburn
  • In order to grow, strawberries need as much as 6 hours of direct sunlight

For more information on the Strawberry Festival, visit us http://www.ciruscountychamber or by clicking here



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Calling All Citrus County Young Professionals!

The Citrus County Chamber of Commerce Young Professionals are looking for a few new members. The YP’s will meet Tuesday, March 1st at the Inverness Chamber office (106 W. Main St.) at 5:30 pm in conjunction with the Chamber’s Floral City Strawberry Festival Volunteer meeting. All young professionals  who are interested in becoming more active in their community are welcome to attend.

Click here to learn more about the Young Professionals or call the Chamber at 352-795-3149.YP Logo 2


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Citrus County Schools Rated an “A” Again by the Florida Department of Education

For the 9th year, Citrus County Schools has received an “A” rating by the Florida Department of Education. This is a tremendous accomplishment for the Citrus County School system.

Congratulations to all of the teachers, staff, administrators and students  of the Citrus County School District. A job well one!

To read more, click here



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Get Ready for Strawberries!

Insight Credit Union Floral City Strawberry Festival Arrives March 5th and 6th

It’s less then 3 weeks until the Chamber’s annual Floral City Strawberry Festival, and have we got a great event planned! Here are some of what is in store for you:

Entertainment: Two days of almost continuous entertainment on the main stage in the middle of the festival grounds.


11 am – 1 pm: The  “Amazzing” Steel Drum Ensemble returns for another year to perform happy music with a tropical, flair on hand-crafted steel drums. A project of The Good Spirit Foundation in Hernando, these talented young people are perennial crowd pleasers.

1 pm – 5 pm: Hayfire is Orlando’s hottest, high energy country music band. Although this is their first appearance at the Floral City Strawberry Festival, they have played numerous venues in Citrus County with great response. We are pleased to introduce Hayfire to our festival audiance.


10 am – 12 pm: Also making their first appearance at the Floral City Strawberry Festival is the Jody Beggs Band. Growing up in a musical family near Gainesville, FL, Jody formed his first band in 1984. He moved to Nashville, TN, a few years later where he formed a new band that opened shows for country music stars like George Jones, Merle Haggard, Charlie Daniels and the Judds. Now back in Florida, Jody recently released an album, “It’s a Florida Thing”.

1 pm – 4 pm: Susanne Smith Band is the band that Citrus County just can’t get enough of! Called the “big voice in a small package”, Susanne is known for her incredible 4-octave range, tremendous versatility and wide range of styles, Susanne and her band always wows their audiences.

Additionally, the talented DJ John Diorio will be on hand throughout the festival playing the perfect entre-act tunes.

Beer and Wine Garden:  Adults may enjoy the entertainment accompanied by smooth libations in the Beer and Wine Garden by the entertainment stage.  Wine has been added to the list this year, along with a selection of craft beers.

Festival  Vendors: Nearly 200 booths of unique art and craft, business marketplace, non-profit organizations will wind through the festival with handmade goods, distinctive merchandise, and beneficial information that will be sure to have just the perfect treasures that you will want to bring home with you.

Festival Food:  How can you ever resist festival food?  So many mouth-watering options to choose from, including arepas, Greek, Cajun and Caribbean foods, seafood, BBQ, homemade Belgian ice cream and much, much more will tempt you to wait until tomorrow to go back on that pesky diet.

Strawberry Shortcakes : We will be busy, busy, busy  churning out the most delectable strawberry shortcake ever.  We know you will make a beeline to the shortcake tent to put your spoons into the juicy, whipped cream topped strawberries over the soft cake soaking in the sweet strawberry juices.  NEW THIS YEAR are milkshakes!  A limited number of fresh strawberry milkshakes will be available as we test out this new treat.

FRESH Strawberries!!:  This is what you really come for, right!!?? Fresh picked full and half flats of local Ferris Farm-grown berries will be available for purchase for you to take home to make your own sweet goodies.  Here’s where we can be healthy: Strawberries are one of the best fresh food sources of antioxidants, polyphenols that may help regulate blood sugar and Vitamin C, among other vitamins and minerals.  So buy and eat up!

Miss Strawberry Pageants:

9 am: Little Miss Strawberry Princess Pageant (for 4 – 6 year olds)

10 am: Miss Strawberry Princess Pageant (for 7 – 12 year olds)

Pie-Eating Contests: It’s messy, but great fun!  Try your hand at the strawberry pie eating contests at 12:30 pm on Saturday and Sunday near the shortcake pavilion.  There will be contests for the adults, along with special contests for the little ones.  And yes, we do provide water and towlettes for post- noshing cleanup up faces and hands.

Kids Zone: When you see the Kids Zone, even the adults want to be kids again!  With a rock wall, bungee jump, inflatables, pony rides, kiddie train, and petting zoo, the young ones will want to stay all day.  NEW THIS YEAR are human hamster balls!

Travelling A’s:  These classy Model A cars will once again be on exhibit all day Saturday.


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Calling all Princesses!!

ALL girls are princesses. Take a moment and register your little princess to participate in the Miss Strawberry and Little Miss Strawberry Princess Pageants that will be held during the Insight Credit Union Floral City Strawberry Festival on Saturday, March 5th. This special pageant is designed to be fun and enjoyable for the whole family and to help children build self-esteem. It is not a highly competitive event.


The Little Miss Strawberry Princess pageant is for girls age 4-6; the Miss Strawberry Princess pageant is for girls age 7-12. Come in age appropriate Sunday-best dress. Dress ina  strawberry theme or color if you like!


All participants will receive a gift bag filled with fabulous prizes and a certificate of participation. Pageant winners will be crowned with a tiara and will receive a trophy and sash displaying their title. Winners will also be invited to participate in the Inverness and Crystal River Christmas parades in December.


Contestants must register to participate. Applications can be found on the Chamber’s website at http://www.gostrawberryfest.com or call Kathleen at 352-795-3149 for more information. Deadline to register is February 19th.


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