News and Updates

Nellie's hosts Chamber members for Morning Spark networking

Thursday, December 1, 2016

General Manager Joy Auten speaks to Chamber members from the performing stage at Nellie's Southern Kitchen during Morning Spark networking. 

A large crowd of Chamber members and friends enjoyed breakfast refreshments and networking while learning about a popular new restaurant in Belmont at Nellie's Southern Kitchen on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016. General Manager Joy Auten introduced the group to Nellie's Pick Me Up, which offers breakfast biscuits, pastries and take-out food daily starting at 7 a.m. She also spoke about the live entertainment provided every evening in the restaurant and about private party and meeting facilities at Nellie's to accommodate groups of up to 50. 

McAdenville gaining a William Henry Salon and new home for the Christmastown Thomas Kinkade Gallery

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

From left, Jay McCosh, Lindsey Burchfield, Somer Wilson, Bob Clay and Bill Carstarphen

Celebrates with Chamber "Network After Work reception

Chamber members and friends attending "Network After Work" in downtown McAdenville on November 29, 2016, learned about the recent relocation of the Christmastown Thomas Kinkade Gallery and the pending arrival in early 2017 of a William Henry Signature Salon at 131 Main Street. A 3000-plus-square-foot space, ideal for a restaurant, still is available.

The joint Montcross Area Chamber and Gaston Regional Chamber after hours reception and ribbon-cutting drew well over a hundred guests. Pharr Yarns and Coldwell Banker Commercial MECA co-sponsored the event.

Somer Wilson and Lindsey Burchfield are partners in the new salon, which will be the third for William Henry Signature Salon, which also is located in Belmont and Mount Holly. They are targeting a February opening for the business. Thomas Kinkade Gallery owner Jay McCosh told the crowd about his recent move to a new space just south of his former location.

Pharr Yarns CEO Bill Carstarphen spoke about the McAdenville revitalization project under way and about the  town's history. Bob Clay of Coldwell Banker Commercial MECA is looking for the right business for several available spaces on Main Street, including the future restaurant. 

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 Jay McCosh, Somer Wilson and Lindsey Burchfield cut a ribbon to celebrate the recent relocation of the Christmastown Thomas Kinkade Gallery and pending arrival of William Henry Signature Salon in downtown McAdenville.


Cramerton cuts ribbon for 2nd ABC Store

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Cramerton ABC Board Chairperson Carolyn Helms cut a ribbon Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2016, to open the town’s second ABC Store at 4701 S. New Hope Road. With her are Cramerton Mayor Ronnie Worley (left) and store general manager Sam Carpenter. Eager to see inside the new 5,200-square-foot store and to check out the special holiday bottles on display, a large crowd of Chamber members and Cramerton officials and residents attended and enjoyed food by H&M Catering. N.C. Rep. Dana Bumgardner and County Commission Chairman Tom Keigher were among elected officials on hand along with Cramerton Mayor Pro Tem Will Cauthen and Town Commissioners Susan Neeley and Donald Rice. Other members of the ABC Board are Rick Houser, Gil Aguirre, Mark Wilks and store manager Greg Matthews. Holding the ribbon are Chamber Board members Jennifer Church of the Chronicle Mill and Jason Ramey of PSNC Energy.

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Creative Solutions Special Events

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Shannon and Brad Thomas cut a ribbon to celebrate opening of a large new warehouse at Creative Solutions Special Events on Wilson Road in southern Gaston County. The ceremony, which included the entire staff of the business, plus Belmont Mayor Charlie Martin and Chamber representatives, took place just before about 250 guests arrived for "Network After Work GONE Wild" on Nov. 10, 2016. Creative Solutions Special Events provides tables, chairs, tents and every other possible need for weddings, concerts, conferences, parties and all kinds of large and small public events throughout the region. A fourth warehouse is being planned for the rapidly growing local business. Call them about your next event at 704.825.8701, or visit:

Network After Work GONE WILD

Thursday, November 10, 2016

 Being introduced at the event are the sponsors: Brad and Shannon Thomas of Creative Solutions Special Events, Carey Roberts of Carey Roberts Design, Megan and Hans Kanal of H&M Catering (Hans is in the photo below) and Mark and Jo Magda of Hogzilla BBQ.

Networking extravaganza draws 250 at Creative Solutions

Billed as Network After Work GONE WILD, the Chamber networking extravaganza hosted by four sponsors at Creative Solutions Special Events lived up to its name. Joining Creative Solutions in sponsoring the event were Hogzilla BBQ, Carey Roberts Design and H&M Catering. Popular area band "Coming Up Brass" played, and at least 250 Chamber members and friends had a blast under a large, enclosed and heated tent on the grounds at Creative Solutions on Wilson Road in southern Gaston County. The four outstanding Chamber members went all out to display their incredible skills in preparing amazing food and creating beautiful and exciting special events. 

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Belmont Executive Offices Grand Opening

Thursday, November 3, 2016

J.C. and Maria Vargas prepare to cut a ribbon officially opening Belmont Executive Offices with members of their family, staff and Chamber representatives. The photo below shows a pergola and fountain in the courtyard in front of several office suites. 

Chamber members and other guests at the Grand Opening of Belmont Executive Offices were astonished to see how J.C. and Maria Vargas have transformed a crumbling 1940s motor court on Wilkinson Boulevard in Belmont into upscale business office suites. Enjoying food from H&M Catering, music by the Doug Burns Jazz Band and the soothing sounds of a bubbling fountain under a pergola, more than a hundred guests filled the courtyard and strolled in and out of the one, two and three-room office suites, each with its own restroom. There's a shared conference room and mail room.

Originally opened in the 1940s as Bishop's Motel, the 12-room motor court later was known as Delux Motel. It had been vacant and deteriorating for many years, when J.C. and Maria recognized the property's potential and began restoring the buildings.

A former residence and motel office at the front of the site has been beautifully renovated to serve as the business office for the company and also as an office for Maria's consulting practice. 

Lease rates for office suites range from $475 to $1375 per month. For information, call 704.825.0061, or visit

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Chambers members soak up history at Brevard Station Museum

Thursday, October 27, 2016

N.C. Rep. John Torbett (center) with Pat and Barry Smith during Network After Work at Brevard Station Museum. Barry Smith is the director of the museum. On the banner, are photos of Barry Smith's parents, who were among the founders of Brevard Station Museum. (Photos by John Jacob)

Stanley museum hosts "Network After Work"

Surrounded by history, Chamber members, friends and guests made business connections, enjoyed refreshments and absorbed knowledge about the Town of Stanley, the textile industry, the railroad and more at Brevard Station Museum in Stanley on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016. They also heard from Pat Smith, one of the authors of a new history of Stanley that’s just gone on sale at the museum and other locations. Joyce Handsel and Ruth Wood are the other authors. An autographed copy of ”Images of America – Stanley”  was one of the prizes awarded during the Chamber “Network After Work” reception.  Begun in 1991, Brevard Station Museum features a wide variety of historical artifacts and exhibits on town history, the textile industry, the railroad, farm life, vintage clothing, the military and other collections. Brevard Station Museum Director Barry Smith, standing beneath a banner with photos of his late parents who were instrumental in starting the museum, spoke about some of the many exhibits on display and the importance of preserving the history of our communities for future generations.

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Prize winners at the event are (from left) Buck Roberts of Selah Media Productions, Karen Jacob of Belmont Abbey College and Freda Hall of Belmont Realty. With them is Pat Smith, who presented the prizes, including a new Stanley Images history book that she authored along with Joyce Handsel and Ruth Wood.

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