News and Updates

12th Chamber golf tournament a huge success

Thursday, June 15, 2017

1st-place in the Chamber Golf Tournament went to the team from American Vapes. From left are Wayne Kinley, Kevin Collier, Doug Cochran and Bryan Hough

A hundred golfers, 33 sponsors, more than a hundred prize and goody bag donors and at least three dozen volunteers all came together to make the 12th Annual Chamber Golf Tournament a tremendous success on Thursday, June 15, 2017, at Cramer Mountain Club. CaroMont Health was the presenting sponsor. The American Vapes team took the first-place trophies and prizes, with Chick-fil-A of Belmont coming in second and Sign Connection third. Proceeds from the tournament are crucial the the Chamber’s financial success each year. Many thanks to Joe Campbell and his staff at Cramer Mountain Club and to all of the players, sponsors, donors and volunteers who contributed to another great tournament.

2nd-place team - Chick-fil-A of Belmont. From left, Donnie Loftis and players Benny Bowles, Tony Gilbert, Lee Dorn and Tommy Belcher, Jr. 

3rd-place team - Sign Connection. From left, Donnie Loftis with players Matt Elkin, Eric Clay, Patrick Horneman and Clay Gibson.  

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Bisque Imports hosts "Network After Work";

Thursday, June 8, 2017

The folks at Bisque Imports know how to “make business fun,” and here they're doing just that under the “Monty Belmont Lounge” sign during the Chamber’s “Network After Work” reception. That tall guy in the middle is CEO D.J. Toal, with members of his BI team (from left) Dee McDaniel, Tesha Palmer, Chris Denison (a.k.a. Monty), Kevin McCaskill and Rachael Pursell. In the photo below, you may notice a likeness between Chris Denison (minus hair and beard) and Monty.

BI team knows how to make business fun

Chamber members and friends got their evening walk in early during a “Network After Work” reception at Bisque Imports, when company CEO D.J. Toal led them on a tour of the 180,000-square-foot BI facility in Belmont. The company is located at 1 Belmont Avenue in the former Stowe Mills Spinning Plant, one of four former textile mills now owned by the companies of brothers D.J. and Scott Toal. Bisque Imports began about 17 years ago in the trunk of D.J. Toal’s car before taking over his barn and later moving into the former Majestic Mill on Catawba Street in Belmont. That building now is leased to the owners of Catawba River Antique Mall. Bisque Imports supplies unpainted bisque figurines to pottery and craft studios all over the United States and internationally, and is one of the largest regional customers of Federal Express. A large group of Chamber members and friends were eager to learn more about this unique and growing local company, make business connections and enjoy refreshments provided by H&M Catering. For more on Bisque Imports, visit

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 Chamber members listen to presentation by D.J. Toal in the lounge at Bisque Imports.

River District development to create jobs by tens of thousands

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Lincoln Harris Senior Vice President Tracy Dodson (center) and, to her right, Gastonia native Elilzabeth Adams McMillan, Director of Development at Crescent Communities, spoke about The River District project at the Chamber's Business Buzz breakfast. With them, from left, are Belmont Mayor Charlie Martin, Chamber Board Chair-elect Carey Roberts of Carey Roberts Design and Gaston County Commissioner representing South Point Township Ronnie Worley. In map below, shaded area is The River District.

Charlotte's next wave of development spreading to the west

Close to a hundred Chamber members and friends attended a Business Buzz breakfast this morning to learn more about the River District project between the airport and the Catawba River in western Mecklenburg County. 

Gastonia native Elizabeth Adams McMillan represented Crescent Communities, and Tracy Dodson spoke for Lincoln Harris, the major River District developers.

The plan calls for 4,500 homes, 1,000 hotel rooms, 500,000 square feet of retail and restaurants and 8 million square feet of office space, when the project is fully developed, at least 25 years from now.

More than 11,000 construction jobs will be created and, throughout the region, more than 50,000 total jobs are predicted to stem from the project, which will boost the tax base by an estimated $2.7 billion.

The Chamber presents Business Buzz programs several times a year on topics of significant interest in the cities and towns of the Montcross area of eastern Gaston County. CaroMont Health is the sponsor. 

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Almost 100 attended the program at Gaston College Belmont campus. 



Cato Properties now able to sell manufactured homes

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Cato Homes' first model is 3 bedrooms, 2 baths and can be purchased for under $50,000. 

"Why rent, when you could buy?"asks Cato Properties

If you think it's impossible to buy a new three-bedroom, two-bath home in Belmont for $50,000, you need to talk to Tammey Thomas. She's the owner of Cato Properties, which just entered the manufactured home sales market after four decades of renting lots in a community off Wilkinson Boulevard in Belmont. 

Cato Properties kicked off a three-day open house (May 19-21) with a Chamber ribbon-cutting and lunch at a new model home at 75 Wallace Ave., Belmont, NC 28012. Tammey's father Charles Cato founded Cato Rentals 40 years ago, and the company now has more than 270 mobile home lots available in the community, which features all occupant-owned homes. Owners in the community are not permitted to rent their homes.

One fully furnished and decorated model home is available now in the community and more are planned. "Why rent, when you could buy," is the slogan for the pet-friendly community, which has a mix of young, mature, single, married, widowed and retired residents.

The lot rentals and home sales office for Cato Properties is at 7101 Wilkinson Blvd., Belmont, NC 28012. Tammey Thomas is the contact for lot rentals, and Laura Ogle is the home sales manager. For more information, call 704.825.2946, or visit

Tammey Thomas cuts the ribbon with Laura Ogle and manufactured homes consultant Ken Corbin. Belmont Mayor Charlie Martin (second from left) attended the celebration and lunch along with dozens of Chamber members and friends, including members of the Belmont Police and Fire Departments. Holding the ribbon are Chamber Board member Melia Lyerly of Lyerly Agency and former Board Chair Timothy Roberts of Cottage Keepers. Holding the banner, provided by Cato Properties, are Neil Brennen (left) and Jeff Davenport (behind banner) of Davenport Printing. 



Image Source Photography unveils new name and services;

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

 Dodie Huffman is cutting the ribbon with members of her Image Source team Bristol Crider, Lisa Jackson and Mika Christopher. Belmont Mayor Charlie Martin (second from left) also attended with many  other Chamber members, clients and friends. Holding the ribbon are Moses Nueman, left, of NB Technology and Chamber Board member Chris Kennedy of Kennedy Business Solutions.  

Go to the Image Source for all kinds of photography services 

Dodie and Scott Huffman have rebranded their popular photography studio in Belmont to reflect the wide variety of services they now provide clients. Image Gallery is now Image Source, offering, in addition to traditional photography, all types of business and commercial photography, corporate events, video, wedding and lifestyle shoots and much more.

After months of planning, they launched their new brand name with a lunch and ribbon-cutting ceremony for Chamber members, clients and friends at their studio at 132 N. Main Street in downtown Belmont. 

For more information on Image Source, call 704.869.8968, or visit

Moses Nueman of NB Technology donated a prize for the event and drew the winning business card from a basket held by Dodie Huffman.

Gaston Arts Council hosts Chamber members

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Arts Council celebration a big hit with Chamber members

The promise of a spring evening on the riverside with barbecue, live music, craft beer and rum tastings brought out lots of Chamber members and friends when Gaston Arts Council hosted Network After Work at Riverside Marina in Belmont on Thursday, May 11, 2017.

Hogzilla BBQ provided the food, Muddy River Distillery offered tours and tasting, York Chester Brewing brought the beer and the Shu Band performed. Kim George, executive director of the Arts Council, coordinated the Chamber networking event. 

Riverside Marina opened recently at 1500 River Drive in Belmont, at the same location as the Riverside Complex, a large former textile mill that now is home to many small businesses and provides warehousing space for many others.

Network After Work is offered free for Chamber members and others interested at least once each month. Its purpose is to provide networking opportunities and also to allow members to learn about a fellow member business.The receptions usually take place at he host member's business.

For more on Gaston Arts Council call,704.853.ARTS (2787), or visit  

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Taylor Law opens new office in Belmont

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

In the photo, Yansea Taylor is cutting the ribbon with her husband Alex and Taylor Law team members (from left) Miranda Skates, attorney Hailey Hawkins, Rebekah Valour, Rachel Jenkins and Hailey’s husband and daughter Matt and Natalie Hawkins. Among a large group of Chamber members and friends attending, are, on the front row from the left, Chamber board chair-elect Carey Roberts of Carey Roberts Design, Belmont Mayor Pro-Tem Martha Stowe, Myra Hanks of Coldwell Banker MECA Realty, Dodie Huffman of Image Source Photography and Timothy Roberts of Cottage Keepers.

Now at 217 Glenway St., across from Belmont Post Office

Taylor Law has grown into its third location in Belmont since opening five years ago in the Stowe Building. Attorney Yansea Taylor and her team hosted a grand opening celebration and Chamber ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday, May 9, 2017, at the firm’s new and larger home at 217 Glenway Street across from the Belmont Post Office. In the interim, Taylor Law was located on Wilkinson Boulevard in Belmont.

The firm practices  in several areas, including bankruptcy, family law, wills and estate planning and real estate.  For more information, call 704.461.8785, or visit


Yansea Taylor was interviewed live at the grand opening by Bill Jordan of  WGNC Radio.


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