By David Rogers. January 24, 2017. BLOWING ROCK, NC — Many of the High Country’s most active and successful business movers and shakers converged on Appalachian Ski Mountain Tuesday morning, thinking they were only there to hear Dr. Harry Davis, the region’s most prominent economist and banking seer. But those in attendance received something more from the special event jointly hosted by the Boone and Blowing Rock Chambers of Commerce in the Snowcloud Room.
COVER IMAGE: Boone Chamber of Commerce CEO David Jackson presents the 2016 Large Business of the Year Award to Blowing Rock’s Cathy and Chris Robbins of Tweetsie Railroad.
Boone Chamber of Commerce CEO David Jackson described Tweetsie Railroad as a “signature business in the High Country” before recognizing the iconic attraction as the 2016 Large Business of the Year for his organization.
“It is an anchor attraction in the High Country,” Jackson declared before presenting the trophy to Cathy and Chris Robbins, owners. “It took root from the legacy and in some cases the (actual) equipment of the old E.T.& W.N.C. rail line. The park opened in the summer of 1957, when it was little more than a locomotive and a picnic area. Today we know Tweetsie as one of the largest employers of all of our attractions, as a destination for school groups around the region that want to learn more about the early days of transportation in America, and certainly we know Tweetsie as a tourism magnet that generates millions of dollars in our local economy, in both direct and indirect spending.
“Celebrating its 60th year in operation this year,” Jackson continued, “and the 90th year for the No. 12 engine, it gives us great pleasure to present our 2016 Large Business of the Year Award to Tweetsie Railroad.”
Jackson also presented the 2016 Small Business of the Year Award to Creekside Electronics. “Creekside is a third generation business that started out in Foscoe in 1976. They expanded over the years, starting first in audio-video and home theatre, to now expanding to offer fire and security systems, and ‘smart’ homes…This is a great testament to a local business that has found a way to expand based on what the economy and the business market have told them that they need. Their objective is simple: create a home or business that is safe and sound in the High Country.”
In addition to the awards presentations, Blowing Rock’s Kevin Troyer, owner of 4 Forty Four Construction, offered what amounted to a personal witness of his family’s experience in surviving the economic downturn from 2007 to 2009. Troyer’s brief talk was entitled, “Our Collective Piece of the Community Puzzle.” He applauded the business owners in the High Country for their generosity in supporting more than 200 non-profit and relief agencies while noting, “We’re all in this together.” He encouraged Chamber members to refer business to one another, citing several examples of how various members of the region’s business community do just that.
For a related story about Dr. Harry Davis’ presentation, CLICK HERE