Letter to the editor: Rock-N-Ride is a community success

Rock-N-Ride Cleveland 2020 was a great success.  Each year we’ve seen a substantial increase in bicycle riders (47 in 2018, 81 in 2019 and 132 this year).  Riders this year came from areas Santa Fe, Austin, Wichita Falls, Beaumont and even Louisiana.  I foresee Rock-N-Ride Cleveland growing into a signature fall event for the Cleveland area and expect 200 riders next year. 

Embarrassingly, many people complimented me personally for the event’s success.  I explain that the success of all Chamber events, as well as that of our Chamber’s standing in the community, cannot be attributed to any one person.  I refer to it as a “village” effort. 

Board members understand that being a board member of the Greater Cleveland Chamber of Commerce is not a “resume builder” — it’s hard work!  This is demonstrated by the fact that 7 of our 12 board members volunteered at Rock-N-Ride this year.  Camille Landry, a member of the Chamber Board, chaired Rock-N-Ride Cleveland committee this year.  She and her team did a fabulous job and is the reason for its success. 

Camille broke down the task into manageable pieces.  She delegated segments of the committee’s goals to specific individuals.  For example: Kari Duggar coordinated all the rest areas.  That included everything from getting rest area sponsors to ensuring that portable toilets were delivered on time.  Regina Vollmer solicitated, coordinated and assigned tasks to volunteers. Our committee meetings for planning the event began in June this year.

Another key reason for the success of Rock-N-Ride is the business sponsors that show their confidence in the event and continually support our chamber. The sponsor, volunteers, city and county are all a part of our “village.”

Our Outdoor EXPO Cleveland, chaired by John Hart and his team, our Annual Awards Banquet chaired by Juliet Douglas and her team are other examples of our “village.”  They are the reason for the success of the Chamber and our events.

The Chamber’s primary goal is to make Cleveland a better place to shop, work and live.  Greater Cleveland Chamber of Commerce is successful because of our hard-working, dedicated business members, committed volunteers, support of our membership and the officials in our community— The Village!

This year’s event was sponsored by Emergency Hospital Systems, Anne Vickery and Associates Realty, City of Cleveland, CBS Furniture, Veritex Community Bank, Oliver J. Bell Unit, First America Homes, Livingston/Cleveland Pediatric Clinic, Austin Bank and Vulcan Materials Company.

Thanks for your support,

Jim Carson
VP and Chief Operating Officer
Greater Cleveland Chamber of Commerce

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.

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