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Sean with firewandsSean McGoey interview 4-2017 p1Sean McGoey interview 4-2017 p2



v. Baras Architects

License Plate

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If reporters are sworn to tell the truth, then I cannot lie; after the Chamber finished its interview with v. baras Architects partners Hector Munoz-Baras and Joe Kandoth, this would-be reporter wanted to be an architect. Indeed, passion underscored our entire visit with the firm, as it was abundantly clear that Hector and Joe love their work. This passion is revealed in the very design of their Port Jervis office, which is itself a work of art.

A teaching tennis pro and student of history, art, and music, Hector indicates that he came to his chosen profession relatively late (despite an admitted affinity for Lincoln Logs as a boy). “I was always interested in the backs of things, the recesses,” Mr. Munoz-Baras recalls, beginning with his familial home in Cuba, the floor plans of which he could recreate from memory even as a child. Following Fidel Castro’s rise to power, Hector brought his penchant for architecture and design with him (and his family) to the United States.

Hector’s philosophy is one in which physical space translates into form, giving the observer an ineffable sense of the quality of the of the architect’s good design. Simply putting things together is not design; design is art, and architecture is, according to Joe, “the most public of the all the arts.” Hector adds that “star-chitects,” celebrity creators of iconic designs, can transform a mere location into a destination. [Think of the Guggenheim in Bilbao, Spain.] Communities that embrace real architectural design show pride in their hometowns, continuing the tradition of architects of generations past who were schooled holistically, exposed to a world of great art and design as part of their education. Hector laments that modern structures rely more often on the builder’s craft than the vision of an architect. “The client is the most important part of this,” he continues, noting that a client with vision elevates his process of design. A successful project is a project about which “the client says, ‘This is beautiful.’”

“If you get an emotional reaction, that’s the definition of architecture,” say the gifted partners of v. baras Architects. Their award-winning work, which we are lucky to have right here in the Tri-State area, fits that definition perfectly.

Hector with Cigar

(Profile Story by Dave Bever)


IMG_0195 compressedSummitReheis

I have lived in this area most of my life and I am continually amazed at some of the corporations we have right here in our Tri-State Area.  Summit Labs is a privately held company that employs 125 people and it has been right here in Huguenot for 53 years.  SummitReheis was born in 2008 from the acquisition of the antiperspirant business of Reheis, Inc. by Summit Research Labs, Inc.  Richard Hooper, CEO, is a chemical engineer that was hired to modernize this antiperspirant actives company. Richard is refining business procedures, software and policies and preparing for expansion.  They just opened a facility in Walkill, on February 24th, to meet the increasing demand for existing and new, more effective antiperspirant powder active ingredients.

SummitReheis is a “soup to nuts” research laboratory. They are the largest producer in the world for antiperspirant actives and they employ developers and researchers that create and formulate. With two state-of-the-art, FDA-registered manufacturing facilities in New York and a JV manufacturing facility in the UK, SummitReheis stands ready to serve our valued customers.  They work with companies such as, Unilevel and Procter & Gamble, creating ingredients for sticks/soft solids, aerosols, roll-ons, creams/clear gels and other applications.

Their mission at SummitReheis is to be the global market leader in antiperspirant technology and manufacturing.  They are committed to continuous enhancement of our operations and capabilities through:

  • capital investment to upgrade equipment,
  • constant review and improvement of production procedures,
  • exacting quality control standards,
  • strict adherence to Good Manufacturing Practices, and
  • dedication to leadership, innovation, and customer satisfaction.

We are so thankful that we have companies like Summit Reheis that continue to support our local economy and give many people from our area employment for years.

(Profile Story by Robie Mackerley)


IMG_0220 compressed IMG_0227 compressedCanale’s Gift Gallery

We had so much fun perusing all of the special item’s at Canale’s Gift Gallery.  Charlene Canale, opened this awesome gift store in November 2012 where she features many local artists and has a wonderful assortment of gifts for all occasions.

If you haven’t had the chance to stop in and see all the great items, you must do it before you buy another gift!  She is constantly running specials and changing up the inventory, so even if you have stopped by in the past, I am sure you will find new items when you come in again.

Charlene is ingenious with coming up with new incentives to help move products for the local artists. One of her clever incentives from March was to have mystery items throughout the store. If you chose to buy one of these items they will be free at the register.  Almost like a treasure hunt!  It adds a whole new level to shopping.

If you are looking to fill gift baskets or get gifts items for family you should see what she has available and check out her facebook before you go to see what specials she is running that day. https://www.facebook.com/CanalesGiftGallery   They will also SHIP items if you would like to purchase something you see online. Shipping fees will be based on the item. They accept check, paypal, credit or debit card. What a great way to share local artistry with friends and family around the world!

If you are a local artist, Charlene would be happy to talk with you about putting your items in her store.  You can put them in on consignment or just rent space in the store itself.  I thought it was awesome that some of the featured artists are local children.  What a great way to promote entrepreneurism at a young age!

We are happy to have Canale’s Gift Gallery as a chamber member.  Be sure to stop in and tell them the Tri-State Chamber sent you!

(Profile Story by Robie Mackerley)


Rob Schultz, CPA IMG_0008 compressed

For more than 150 years, members of the Schultz family have been serving the Orange County community, and Certified Public Accountant Robert Schultz of Port Jervis is continuing that tradition.

Schultz’s great-great-grandfather was the minister at Drew Methodist Church in Port Jervis. His grandfather raised dairy cows on his Sunnyside Farm and delivered milk to homes around the county.  Schultz’s father delivered too. He was a doctor who served Port Jervis through World War II and built Sunnyside Hospital on Hammond Street in the city. He made house calls until he died in 1988.

Rob Schultz chose a different path, studying accounting at Syracuse University. After graduation he returned home and took a position with established accounting firms in Port Jervis before opening his own practice in 1994. It was just a one-room office, but it grew quickly and now Schultz has staff of two that doubles during tax season.

Schultz offers general accounting services for personal as well as business clients and specializes in estates and trusts. On his current client list are two municipalities, school district public libraries and area businesses, as well as more than a hundred personal accounts.

Rob says he is seeing a turnaround in local economy and while Port Jervis has lost a lot of businesses over the last 30 to 40 years, he believes the city is experiencing a renaissance.

Tri-State Chamber's  2016 Hall of Fame

Tri-State Chamber’s
2016 Hall of Fame

Schultz says an accountant may be just what a business owner needs to take business to the next level.  Rob evaluates a business’ accounting records, comparing years to determine the best way to go forward financially and can help set fees and determine cost models. Working with the owner, Rob can implement a good accounting plan, determine what to pay employees and how to spot problems, all with the goal of making that business strong.  It’s that hands-on approach that has helped make Rob Schultz one of the most respected accountants in the county.

Some business owners may think they can save money by skipping the services of an accountant, says Schultz, but they may find themselves in over their heads. While they know their business, they may not have the accounting skills needed to get the most out of their business. Schultz encouraged owners to consider working with an accountant to set up a business plan and continue with monthly bookkeeping services, including payroll and sales tax services. He adds that kind of attention will likely save a business money in the long run.

Rob and his team also handle income taxes for corporations and private clients and consult on estate planning and trusts. He says the best part of his business is getting to know his clients and working with them year after year.

When Schultz isn’t crunching the numbers, he sits on the Boards of Directors for the Tri-State Chamber of Commerce and the Neversink Valley Historical Association. He is also an active member of the Rotary Club.

Rob’s appreciation of history influenced his choice of an office. The unique wood paneling, original woodwork and beautiful renovation of the 1915 four square home that now houses the offices of Robert W. Schultz CPA immediately strike clients.

If you’re interested in speaking to Rob about your accounting needs, contact him at 845-858-8448. Office hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at his office at 7 West Broome Street, Port Jervis.

(Profile Story by Eileen Kennedy-Hudson)


R.C. Lain InsuranceIMG_0819 compressed

Risk is one of the most difficult and critical things to define and manage for individuals and businesses.  George Harper and his sons Brett and Clayton at R C Lain build client relationships “one at a time”.  They understand the complexity, necessity and importance of insurance as part of our business and personal lives.  This family team has brought honesty, loyalty, expertise and savings to clients for over 50 years in the tri-state area, helping clients assess their needs and their risk.  


When we visited their office located at 92 East Main Street in Port Jervis, we talked with George, Brett and Clayton about how they approach clients and build lasting relationships.  In order for them to provide the very best product match to minimize exposure and risk, they focus on an in depth analysis and assessment of your business and personal needs.  Afterwards, they are able to recommend a portfolio of insurance products that are tailor made for you from over 15 National and Regional companies. 


R C Lain has been an independent agency in Port Jervis since 1927 and George Harper purchased the business in 2010.  George’s interest in purchasing the agency came from his experience in the tri-state area for over 25 years as the owner and founder of Tri-State Insurance Agency located in Augusta, NJ.  He grew the agency from one to over 20 employees prior to selling it to Sussex Bank Corp in 2001.  George remained with the agency until 2009.  One of the signature programs he developed and managed was a campground liability program serving 27 states and over 400 campgrounds from 1984-2000.  The campground program he developed was purchased in 2000 by Evergreen Indemnity.  George knows how to grow a very small business into a thriving and highly profitable enterprise…treat everyone like family! 

With George at the helm, one of R C Lain’s specialties is commercial business insurance, providing everything businesses need to manage risk for executives, employees, plant & equipment, just to name a few.  Approximately 70% of their business is commercial clients with one to twenty employees.  They understand the needs of small business owners.  R C Lain is licensed in 20 states and has a long history in serving the needs of tri-state area businesses for decades. 


They also provide all your individual insurance needs with homeowners, auto, umbrella, life, health and flood insurance, RV, campgrounds.  They pride themselves in being a “Trusted Adviser” for all your insurance needs.  They are extremely knowledgeable, they roll up their sleeves, immediately put you at ease and get down to the business of working hard to protect you and grow your future. 


Thank you George and your family for selecting Port Jervis for your business and for providing the highest quality of service and products to our residents and businesses.  You are a valued Chamber member and we know you will continue to protect and enhance those who trust your expertise and leadership. 

R C Lain

92 East Main Street

PO Box 1117

Port Jervis, New York 12771

845.856.5378 phone

845.856.8599 fax 




 (Profile Story by Charlene Trotter)



Riverview Inn Riverview Inn

It was amazing to see this 42 acres of land nestled right in the “crook” of the Pennsylvania corner of our NY/NJ/PA Tri-State Area.  Speaking with Judy Shay about how the Riverview Inn came about was such a great treat and a perfect example of opportunity created by drive and determination.  Charlie and Judy Shay hale from Dingmans Ferry, Pennsylvania where they met at a much younger age. After getting married and starting their family, they did what they needed to do not only to survive but to thrive.   This year marks the Riverview Inn’s 26th anniversary and over those years they have hosted over 700 weddings for local brides and grooms.  Judy is such an amazing woman with such a huge heart!  She keeps up a schedule that would run a 20 year old ragged!  She remembers all of her bride and grooms and occasionally hosts a reunion for them to celebrate the memories with good food, laughter and dancing. Charlie is a musician and loves to dance.  He says “I created the Riverview Inn so I could dance with my wife!”  Charlie, among many other husbands, has had the opportunity to dance with their wives at the Riverview Inn over the last 25 years.  It is a place of celebration!

On the 42 acres, located at 400 Shay Lane, Matamoras PA, they also run the Tri-State Boating & Recreational Vehicle business as well as Charlie’s seasonal BBQ Grill & Grog.  This family owned and operated facility specializes in good food and good times! When the weather is a bit warmer you should stop by and enjoy some outdoor BBQ along with great scenic river views and fun music and people!

If you are looking for a great location to have your wedding or next special event, contact Judy at 1-800-988-7941 and check out their website at www.riverviewinninc.com to see what great events they have coming up.


New York YMCA Camp

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What happens to a child who has never seen grass, let alone a deer in the wild, when he goes to sleep-away camp in upstate New York? Wheaton Griffin will tell you he will flourish, explode with self confidence and look at life in a whole new light.

Griffin is the executive director at the New York YMCA Camp in Huguenot, just outside of Port Jervis. The 1,150 acre gem is a haven for thousands of children throughout the summer. Most are from New York City, but there are many from our area and even some from around the world.

They come to camp to experience life in the “wild.” Griffin says the first few nights can be difficult because the children hear the owls, trees in the wind or rain on a cabin roof, all things they have never heard before. But give them a few days, and they are in their element, one with nature.

The New York Y provides day camp and sleep-away camp for some 3,000 children every summer and even more throughout the year. They come from wildly diverse backgrounds but live as equals during their stay. Day campers come for one-week sessions and the sleep-away camp runs for two weeks. Campers hike, swim, ride horses, do arts and crafts, water ski, gymnastics, judo and create music. You name it, they’re doing it at camp and as they’re doing it, they are gaining skills they will have the rest of their lives.

IMG_1134 compressedThe camp is comprises of two “villages.” Children are divided in age groups, 6 to 12 years old at Camp McAllister and 12 to 16 years at Camp Talcott. The facility, which is open year round, also offers programs for adults and businesses interested in team building retreats. (A men’s weekend is scheduled for September 27 through the 29).  The Greenkill Outdoor Education Center fosters outdoor education and focuses on building relationships with humans and nature.

Griffin’s background is the perfect fit for the Y camp. He began his career as a psychologist in a consulting capacity and went on to work with children as a school psychologist, before making the decision to work with the YMCA. Visitors to camp will find him joining in on activities and taking the time to interact with campers on an individual basis.

While the YMCA began as a way to promote health, growth and religion, today’s Y is more secular and focuses on promoting respect, responsibility and youth development.

Griffin said a stay at camp is life changing for most, if not all, campers. They learn new skills, explore nature, interact with wildlife and make connections with friends that will last a lifetime.

The Y Camp is located at 300 Big Pond Road, Huguenot, NY, 12746. For more information contact them at 845-858-2200 or nyycamp.org.


Formula H Motorworks

IMG_0002 compressedThis was an inspiring interview!  Brian Baker has such passion about what he does that you can’t help but get excited talking with him.  We at the chamber are very familiar with Brian because he has run our Tri-State Classic race from the beginning.  Formula H Motorworks has been a supporter of our chamber for years.

Brian’s two passions in life are running and Honda. Brian started working with Honda’s in the 1970’s.  He bought his first car at 14 years old and fell in love with Honda.  After working for a Honda dealership, in 1988 Brian and his brother Jeff decided to go into business for themselves. On June 1st, 1988 they opened the doors to Formula H Motorworks at their old Middletown location on Monhagen Ave.  They quickly realized they would need more space to do everything that they wanted to do with this business.  They purchased the building at the current location at 794 Rt 17M in Middletown and they have been doing “Everything Honda” ever since.

They currently have 12 employees, including Jeff and Brian. Last year they celebrated their 25th anniversary.  They continue to provide all services for all Honda and Acuras.  They also do engine restoration work on older cars. They have lifelong Honda customers because they are honest and experts in their field.  I can tell you from personal experience that they go above and beyond for their customers.  While I was there doing this interview, Jeff noticed that my inspection sticker had expired.  They brought it right in to their “immaculate” shop and took care of me right away.  Everyone from the mechanics to the front desk employees were super nice and made every effort to make my wait time comfortable.

IMG_0003 compressedThey are also an independent dealer of Honda Power equipment, such as generators, snow blowers, lawn mowers of all sizes and trimmers.  They refurbish Honda tractors since Honda stopped making them back in 1998.  They buy and sell within all 50 states. Brian has even traveled to locations across the country to fix antique Honda’s!

It is very apparent when you speak to Brian that his life revolves around Honda!  If you love your Honda, like I do, I recommend you bring it to Formula H Motorworks.  They provide the best service for your car and for you as a customer!  Check out their website at http://www.formulah.com/welcome/index.php or stop by and chat with them.  They are very welcoming and have a wealth of knowledge to share.



KOA / DeerparkIMG_1155

You may not know but we have an AMAZING camp ground right here in our Tri-State Area that is an awesome place to bring your family and enjoy the day, a weekend or a week.  The KOA campground, located in Cuddebackville on 108 Guymard Turnpike, is right on the Neversink

River.  It has all the things you look for at a vacation spot for a family.  They have playgrounds, activities for the kids, jumping pillow, blow up slides, a pool, a pond, bike rentals, WI-FI and more.  This is a little paradise in the middle of our Tri-State Area!

As I was visiting with Shelly, the property manager for this Deerpark campground, I was watching the kids bouncing on the jumping pillow while others were riding on 2 and 4 seat bicycles.  It really looked like they were having a great vacation.  With a full schedule of themed activity weekends it is great fun for the whole family!

IMG_1141 compressedWe toured the 70 acre property and I noticed that each camp location was private and peaceful, each in a wooded setting.  Deerpark KOA has full hookup, pull-through sites, secluded tent sites, Camping Cabins & new family bathrooms. They have recently added 4 new Camping Lodges and 3 new Camping Yurts.

This is not just for the New York City escapees but it is also a great place for local families that just want to step away from chores and day to day life and relax.  If you are looking for fun outdoor activities, discover miles of hiking trails next door at the 550-acre nature preserve or enjoy fishing in the river.  If you are just looking for a quiet place to reclose this is a great place to go and get reunited with nature.

They also have a meeting/banquet area on the river that can accommodate up to 80 people for rent.  So if you are looking for a place to hold a meeting or have a banquet go by and check out their facility.

KOA campground is open from April 1st through November 31st.  Take a look at their website for special offers http://koa.com/campgrounds/deerpark/ and book your stay.


Kolmar Laboratories

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Kolmar is a long time member of our community.  They are one of the largest employers in the Tri-State area and have a 92 year history of being one of the top custom formulators and manufacturers in the cosmetics, skin care and personal care industry.  They currently employ over 400 full time employees and are proud to boast that this includes generations of local families, some with 40+ years of service with Kolmar.

We had the pleasure of meeting with Rob Edmonds, President and CEO of Kolmar for the last three years.  He comes to our privately owned, community business with a strong background in the manufacturing industry and is helping to lead the effort to elevate Kolmar’s reputation as North America’s premier custom formulator and manufacturer in the cosmetics and skin care industry.

For those who are not familiar with Kolmar’s expertise, they work closely with all of the major cosmetic and skin care brands to develop and manufacture new product formulations to launch in the marketplace.  Kolmar does not retail their own line of products; rather they develop products for brands that currently exist in the marketplace.  Their highly talented and skilled staff creates innovative textures and new technologies that are ahead of the trends and ultimately shape the landscape of the beauty industry.  Staying ahead of the trends and consistently putting forth new innovation and creativity is key to Kolmar’s success as well as their customers.

Ultimately, their mission is to be the best supply chain partner by providing excellent customer service, quality products and on-time delivery.  Kolmar is continuously trying to improve in all areas of their business and this is evident in a number of the current projects that are underway.  Currently, they are making a significant capital investment to expand their 264,000 square foot facility, constructing a dedicated manufacturing area for non-colored skin care products.  They have also just completed an upgrade to the outside of the facility by repaving the parking lot and adding a security building to ensure the safety of their employees, as well as their customers.

Kolmar cares about our community.  They have been a long time member of the Tri-State Chamber and continue to support local business by supporting our organization.  They offer local high school scholarships to Kolmar employees and their families, as well as a continuing education program to help employees advance their careers.  They also sponsor many other programs within the community, such as the Soap Box Derby and National Night Out.  They are investing in us and we are glad to have them as part of our organization and our community!


Tom McCarronTD Bank

We had the pleasure of speaking with a long time director of our Tri-State Chamber on our visit to TD Bank.  Tom McCarron has been with the bank for 40 years! He is a local resident that has raised four daughters in our community and truly cares about his customers. He made our community his own when he moved up here from the Bronx in 1981.  Even though the bank has changed hands a few times since he started, Tom has remained constant and reliable for all of us.

TD Bank controls the largest market share in the area. With 10 employees, they are more like family then staff and they really support each other and our community.  This way of showing concern and caring for each other truly starts from the top with TD Bank.  It is one of the few companies that still recognize service and treat their employees as individuals with care.

As we got the “private” tour of the Port Jervis location, we could tell that it was a friendly place to work and they support the community as well as our troops.  Being the lead sponsor for the annual Rick Drew Holiday Parade, all the employees pitch in and really make this event such a huge success every year.

I am sure that you have all seen the commercials for TD Bank regarding banking with people, not computers.  This is truly the case at our local bank.  When you walk in you will be greeted and welcomed.  The big difference is their customer service! They know their customers and are able to meet all their banking needs AND be friendly and helpful! It is such a pleasure working with Tom and his staff.

TD Bank is open 7 days a week with longer hours, Thursday and Friday until 7pm, just one more way that they accommodate us as customers.  They do have all the “e-Services” available to complement their friendly customer service just in case you want to do your banking in the late evening hours.

You will find TD Bank branches from Maine to Florida.  They are one of the top 10 largest banks and rated MONEY Magazines 2013 “Best Big Bank”.  They were also recognized by JD Power as “Highest in Customer Satisfaction with Small Business Banking in the Northeast Region”.  Stop by and visit TD BANK at 205 E. Main and see what we are talking about.  Tell them the Tri-State Chamber sent you!


IMG_1120Richard’s Military Surplus

What a pleasure it was visiting an old friend of mine, Joe Tarbell, at Richard’s Military Surplus.  Joe has lived his whole life in Port Jervis and when he and his mother took over the business after his father passed, it was a great opportunity to serve his community doing what he loves to do.  If you have not had the opportunity to go into what us locals refer to as Joe’s Military store, you definitely need to do that.  It looks small from the outside and I am sure you have driven by it a thousand times, but when you go in you will be amazed!  There is so much in there that you are bound to walk out with the very special gift for someone you know that served in our military.

Joe worked for his father, Richard Tarbell, since he was seven years old.  After he graduated college he came back and started his own business selling knifes and doing engraving for specialty items.  He can engrave just about anything that you need or want customized.  (metal, wood, plastics, ceramic, picture frames, aluminum, etc….)  Joe is the person that we at the chamber use for all our engraving needs.  He has done all of our special awards and plaques for years.  We so appreciate having him as one of our members.  He provides great personalized service and a quality product.

About 20 years ago they added embroidering to their list of specialized services.  They can customize any apparel making that special gift even more special!  Tom Faggione, of T-Bone Design, does all the custom embroidery for Richard’s Military Post Exchange today.  We had the pleasure of talking with him while we were there and he shared some amazing stories of some special embroidery jobs that he has done since working there. He was the one who created the customized hats for the astronauts that went up in the Discovery with NASA.  I was so impressed with the specialty of this that I got my father one of their special wool caps, available only at Richard’s Military Post Exchange, embroidered with the ship that he served on when he was in the Navy in 1966.  My dad was thrilled! If you would like to order your own specialized embroidered item, you can do that at the store or online at http://www.militarygifts.com/ and I can tell you from experience that you will not only be happy with the gift but the service is excellent!

So, if you have a couple minutes as you are going through Port Jervis, take the time to stop in and meet Joe and his family along with Tom and peruse all the great items that they have in their shop.   Don’t hesitate to ask for a personal gift for that special person in your life.  If anyone can help you with this it is the team at Richard’s Military Surplus.


Aileen-Sullivan-Cropped-300x278Orange & Rockland Utilities

It seems that if you live in the Northeast you know who Orange & Rockland is and what they do for our communities.  Where would we be without the power supplied by them?  They quietly do their job and make sure that we all have the energy that we need to do our day to day “stuff”.  But for our Chamber Orange & Rockland is much more than that!  As a integrate part of our chamber for20+ years, we know how much they do for the community.  We know that they truly care about the people that they service.

Meeting with Aileen Sullivan, one of our chamber directors, gave us some more insight on all that they do and who Orange & Rockland is as a company.  Aileen started as a contractor in 1996 and became a permanent employee in 1999.  She is just one of the fortunate employees that have been provided an opportunity to grow within this organization.  Currently as the Public Affairs Manager, Aileen is keenly aware of how much the organization does within the community.  Living in this area for over 20 years Aileen cares about her community and through O&R has the opportunity to be actively engaged in the improvement and growth provided by this company.

Orange & Rockland research and development departments are always looking at how to improve and promote alternative energy services. Covering such a large area, including the counties of Orange, Pike, Sullivan, Rockland, Bergen and Passaic, which include such rich natural resources, allows them to provide solar, gas and electric services for us as their customers.

The Green Team, energy efficient experts, provide O&R customers incentive and rebate opportunities along with education on how to make our planet a better place to live.  Take a look at their website, www.oru.com, to see what savings and opportunities might be available to you.

As demands change due to storms and weather changes, O&R has made changes to improve their service.  You might see them along the roads cutting trees away from the lines or digging to put their lines underground.  This is all to improve the service they provide to us!  They also continue to improve the communication to the local community to make sure that we are always informed of the status of any outages or any changes.  Thank you Orange and Rockland for continuing to care for us as a community!  We are happy to have you as part of our chamber.


IMG_1098 Aliton’s Pharmacy

Aliton’s Pharmacy is more than just a place to find prescriptions and medical supplies—it’s a genuine part of the tri-state area’s history. Founded as St. John’s Pharmacy in 1876, the business was renamed Aliton’s Pharmacy in the 1950s when George W. Aliton took over, ultimately passing it on to his daughter Emily. Current owner Carl Braunagel purchased the pharmacy in 1991 following the death of its previous owner, Robert Bauman.

Carl brought a marketing background and extraordinary vision to a long-trusted community business. In 1994, he added medical equipment and supplies to his sales repertoire. That year, Carl also purchased a building in Sparrowbush for a drive-through pharmacy, which has since become a location for medical equipment sales. In 1997, he secured an exclusive contract for hospice needs in Orange and Sullivan Counties, a service he continues to provide to this day.

In 1998, Carl sold the Pike and Sparrowbush locations and created his second business: Aliton’s Long-Term Care, a “closed-door” (not open to the public) pharmacy with an innovative business model offering greater discounts to long-term care facilities below cost. Carl eventually sold his interest in this partnership in 2002, retaining the rights to the Aliton’s name. Two years later, Aliton’s Managed Care, another closed-care pharmacy, opened its doors to supply hospice, long-term care, and retirement facilities. Through 2011, Carl focused on rebuilding his corporate infrastructure, including enhanced information technology, marketing, billing, and administration, culminating in the purchase of the Milford location which opened in October 2012.

Carl stays local because he enjoys helping people and wants to make a difference in the tri-state area. His weekly radio program, “Health Care  & You,” which airs Saturday mornings on WDLC, reflects his commitment to wellness in the community. Aliton’s has supported local charitable efforts and offers aid to uninsured customers through a discount program. In terms of business support to the region, Aliton’s employs 95 individuals at its Port Jervis locations alone, with hospice medical equipment contracts in four counties regionally.


Walmart-logoMilford Walmart store manager Rocco Fasulo knows well the philosophy of the world’s most famous retailer and its founder, Sam Walton, whose ideas about community-based retailers attracted him to join the company 15 years ago. According to Fasulo, the company’s famous “commitment to price” began with Walton, and Walmart’s goal today remains bringing manufacturing back the U.S.A. One way Walmart is meeting this challenge is through e-commerce, a growing way for customers to access the company’s low prices. In this way, Walmart remains forward thinking by investing in technology to “trailblaze to bring in the next best item at the next best price,” according to Mr. Fasulo.

What makes the region’s Walmart special is its commitment to community. Through efforts coordinated by the store’s Community Involvement Coordinator Jackie Walker, this store alone raised over $12,000 for the Children’s Miracle Network; this accomplishment would not have been possible without the hard work of associates volunteering to help with assorted fundraisers, including a cookout, a bike ride (with the help of the American Legion), and a softball tournament. Walmart also supports Easter Seals and National Night Out, as well as locally-based events such as the Black Bear Film Festival and the Tri-State Chamber’s Summer Street Fair & Arts Walk. Rocco and his associates also helped out with the recent Tri-State Classic 10K/5K Race, supplying water and Gatorade and operating water stations for the race participants.

Rocco FasuloAccording to Fasulo, “It takes a lot to fulfill the slogan, ‘Save money, live better.’” But the 430 associates employed at the local supercenter are doing just that, providing a low-price shopping experience while giving back to the community.

Indeed, Mr. Fasulo believes that his store stands out among other Walmarts in the region because his associate are local people, which makes for a more comfortable shopping experience for inhabitants of the tri-state area. In fact, the retailer provides 190 local residents with full-time employment. The company is always seeking local people to become store associates; learn more at www.walmart.com/careers. Likewise, the store is seeking to build relationships with local growers, who are welcome to stop by the store and speak to Mr. Fasulo to learn more about partnering with Walmart.


Royal Furniture Compressed

Royal Furniture

Back in 1929, Sam and Netty Rosenstein started Royal Furniture.  With the help of two of their brothers they had 3 local stores, one in Port Jervis, one in Ellenville and the third in Ottisville.  Now after 84 years in business and two generations later, this is still a family owned business in our Tri-State area.  Sam and Netty’s granddaughter, Robin, married Jim Radeloff and he has decided to continue in the family business and stay at the current expanded Port Jervis location.  Sol Ganz bought 126 Pike Street building in the 1970’s along with the two connecting stores and combined these to create one of our largest retail stores in Port Jervis.  With 3 floors covering over 30,000 square feet, the Store features a Craftmaster Furniture Gallery in addition to many of the highest quality furniture manufacturers in the country. They also have hundreds of top brand mattresses to choose from and outdoor furniture as well. You name it, they have it!

We are so proud to have them as a longtime member of our Tri-State Chamber. With their friendly sales people and access to personal home designers, Royal Furniture can meet all your furniture needs for the home or the office.  They provide quality furniture at competitive prices. They provide free delivery and setup in your home, so why would you buy somewhere online and pay for delivery and set it up yourself when you can buy local and get free delivery?

Royal Furniture Jim at MirrorSix years ago Jim decided to open up their outlet store on Front Street in Port Jervis.  Here they provide you with the same great quality service and product at a discounted price.

Royal Furniture is an exclusive furniture provider for Buyer’s Edge members.  Simply call them at (800) 631-0286 with the make & model/style numbers of the furniture or mattress you desire and you will receive a Buyer’s Edge price quote including delivery & set up in your home.  If you are not a member yet and you are a business with 10 employees or more, sign up today and start getting your discounts.

I recommend you stop by and take a tour of their main facility on Pike Street and the outlet store on Front Street.  You will be amazed at all that they have available and the great deal you will get on it!  Their staff is very friendly and would be happy to answer any questions that you may have.


DoubleM compressed

Double “M” Vending

The heart of this story is two friends.  Lenny & Dick met through business, but have remained friends and business partners because they admire and respect the qualities and heart of the other.  They laugh easily, take nothing for granted, help those in need, continue to expand their business model, look to no one for a handout, expect the very best from themselves, never give up, and love life.  They are brothers.

How do we “toot the horn” of someone who is always there to help, but never wants to brag about themselves?  This is the challenge with Dick and Lenny at Double M Vending.  If you have not met Dick McKeeby and Lenny Miglionico you are missing out on a couple of Port Jervis treasurers.  These guys have been in business for 33 years and are truly the heart of our area.  Dick moved to our area from Trenton, NJ when he was 14 years old, and later served in the Army.  Always the entrepreneur, Dick started buying up candy, snack and cigarette vending machines and arcade games and hit the road running!  The Thru-Way market in Walden was his first customer. Dick met Lenny, an electro mechanical engineer, retired from the Airforce, when he needed someone to help him fix his machines.  From there the friendship started along with Double M Vending and they have been together ever since. They currently employ 5 people and have continued to be one of our many chamber supporters for decades.

Double “M” Vending takes its name from both owner’s last names.  The company owns, leases and restores vending machines of all types as well as providing games, candy, soda and snacks.  It is one of the largest vending companies in the area and is licensed to provide small games of chance to nonprofit organizations.  Their mechanical-technical team that restores machines is second to none – they can make anything work again!  The core business has expanded dramatically in the last couple of decades and now includes investments in property and businesses in the area.  In 1984, they bought Hotel Minisink, now Park Plaza, and turned it into affordable senior housing.  They bought the Erie Depot train station when there were talks of tearing the building down, and renovated it renewing one of our many great historical land marks.  Since then Double M has purchased and renovated many other properties in our area. In one way or another, as a resident of the Tri-State area, you have been affected by Dick McKeeby and Double M Vending.

They also support many other local organizations, such as the local Fire department and Bon Secours Community hospital.  These two men can entertain anyone! But what impressed us the most was how much they truly care about our Tri-State Area and its residents.  Dick was instrumental in creating a wellness and healing garden for St. Joseph’s Place located at Bon Secours Community Hospital in Port Jervis.  They have invested their own time and money to help make our community a better place.  Every time we turn around, they are holding fundraisers for members of the community that are going through extraordinary hardships.

Their stories brought us to tears during our visit.  Tears of pride and tears from laughing so hard that we didn’t want to leave.  We left feeling they were our brothers.  So, to our “M” brothers, thank you for being you!


Industrial Hose and Supply photo

Industrial Hose and Supply

We met with Steve Vill, co-owner of Industrial Hose and Supply, and were proudly introduced to his lovely staff of ladies, of which half were family.  This is a tight knit group that really aims to please their customers.

According to the website for Industrial Hose & Supply, “if you don’t see what you’re looking for, just give us a call—we can get it!”  From household to industrial hoses, motorcycle/racing applications to firefighting equipment, Industrial Hose & Supply offers a broad spectrum of products for a wide variety of customer needs. The Tri-State Chamber was fortunate to learn more about this local supplier and actually meet some of their customers.  It is easy to see how satisfied their customers were as they spoke casually to the staff and were so grateful that they were finally able to have a place where their custom hoses could be made for them.

Steve started as an industrial rubber worker in New Jersey, until his father-in-law convinced him to start his own business. 16 years ago, Industrial Hose & Supply opened in Milford, where it remained until it moved to its current location in Shohola, PA seven years ago. This certified Woman Business Enterprise (WBE) holds seven other certifications and maintains a staff of four employees.

Industrial Hose & Supply’s customers represent a number of diverse business interests. The firm supplies Summit and Kolmar in the Tri-State area and Topps Bubble Gum in Scranton, PA. In addition to hydraulic hoses for machines, the business continues to supply wholesale hoses to some of Steve’s customers in New Jersey from over 16 years ago. No order is too small, apparently, as he reports, the firm fulfills special orders for friends and family, including specialized cars, garden and washer hoses.  When we pulled up to the company parking lot, we saw luxury sports cars and learned that they often come for hoses and fittings.  IHS supplies to the antique and collectible car and truck owners as well.

Industrial Hose & Supply 2

No order is too large!  From smaller applications to the largest, IHS supplies custom hosing and fittings for the Port Authority of NY and NJ, major bridges around metro NY area, Continental Airlines and large commercial and industrial applications.  Steve told us that the U.S. Government searched for an expert and found IHS to supply break hoses for cannons in military applications for the Army and military aircraft.  This company is a perfect example of a small family business with the expertise to reach into a global market with the quality of product and service.  Much of their businesses is referrals from happy customers and from the trade that refer them for the level of expertise and highest of customer service.

To better reach its customers, Industrial Hose and Supply recently launched a website; the firm also connects with the community via mail advertising to a target audience.

The Tri-State Chamber of Commerce is proud to showcase this vital local firm as a featured member!

Visit the website: http://thehosepro.com/contact_us

Industrial Hose and Supply – 805 Route 6 – Shohola – PA – 18458

PH:  570-296-5551
Fax: 570-296-5557
E-Mail: Ihas@ptd.net



Pauls Photo compressedPaul Brislin, E.A.

Paul Brislin, principal of Paul Brislin, E.A., is licensed as an enrolled agent, which allows him to represent taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service. He worked as an Accounting Analyst prior to serving as an Internal Auditor for Prudential, managing his own firm full-time since August 1992. Mr. Brislin proudly provides personal service: in other words, “You pay for Paul, and you get Paul!” His focus is income tax return preparation and filing of any type. In fact, 80% of Paul’s clients are individual or personal accounts, and the remaining 20% are small businesses with 10 or less employees. For these clients, he provides monthly filings, tax planning and preparation.

Raised in Montague, NJ, from age six, Paul maintains close ties to the community as a volunteer and supporter of many organizations. Since 1995, he has offered his time and talent as Treasurer for the Montague Grange Historical Society. A member of the Port Jervis Council for the Arts since 2001, Paul is a fundraising volunteer for the Tri-State Spelling Bee. Since 2002, he has served on the Bon Secours Community Hospital Foundation Board. He also serves on the Montague Township Committee and is Chairman of the Finance Committee and Public Safety Committee. For the past 16 years, Paul has conducted tax counseling and a “volunteer instructor” training in Orange County, instructing other volunteers on how to assist in preparing Federal and NYS returns for the elderly.

Moreover, Paul is no stranger to the Tri-State Chamber of Commerce. 21 years ago this September, he began to make his mark on the chamber, previously serving as its president and presently a member of the Board of Directors. Paul appreciates the social and networking opportunities provided by the chamber, which helps him to make some of his initial business contacts.

Be sure to check out Paul’s website, http://paulbrislinea.com/


Approved Image for Linda compressedSEDORE & COMPANY, CPAs

For thirty-one years, Sedore and Company, CPAs has been committed to employing partners who are the best in their field, representing a diverse range of accounting and professional experience. Founding partners James Sedore, Jr. and Mark O’Sullivan have established a firm rooted in the core values of integrity and respect, teamwork and partnership, continuous learning and improvement, personal and professional service, and community service. Linda Hannigan, CPA, who was kind enough to discuss Sedore & Company with the chamber recently, represents those values well as a partner at Sedore; she cites that her experience in government auditing is what brought her to the firm in 1993 before she became a partner in 2000. In fact, Linda’s expertise has been tapped for various training seminars and keynote speaking engagements.

It is the vast experience of each of its seasoned partners and the professionalism of its staff that has made Sedore one of the largest and most respected accounting firms in the region. Sedore’s commitment to quality and timely service include tax preparation, accounting, bookkeeping, retirement planning, consulting, and audit services to Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Ulster, and Westchester Counties. Last year, Sedore began offering an online portal for clients to do their taxes online.

The firm counts among its many clients local hospitals, small businesses, individuals, non-profit firms, and municipalities. With three offices located in Poughkeepsie, Fishkill, and Port Jervis, NY.

Sedore’s commitment and service to our region is well-known. Numerous organizations throughout the Hudson Valley have benefitted from the firm’s long-standing tradition to “give back” to their community, not only with their financial support but also with their personal dedication and involvement.


Jannotti Insurance Jannotti

What a pleasure it was to meet with Todd Jannotti and his father Frank along with the entire team of specialists they employ at their New Windsor location.  Our chamber has been working side by side with Jannotti Insurance helping chamber members get insurance since 1985. The business was started in 1976 by Frank Jannotti out of his New Windsor home and they continue today at that same location with his son Todd at the helm.

A lot has changed for the Jannotti team over the last 30+ years but they continue to grow and expand their business.  They are still leaders in their industry that provide group benefits to businesses of all sizes.  They not only work with our chamber but also with Goshen and Blooming Grove chamber members as well.  They are expanding their lines to include Life and Long Term Care.

They offer a wealth of experience, commitment, along with personal service.  When you call Jannotti you will always speak to an experience professional.  They are interested in what is your best interest for the long term.  They really care!

Because they work with all the major insurance companies offered in this area, they can provide you with the right fit for your needs.

With all the changes in health care you really need a professional to help you understand what you will need for your employees.  Give Jannotti a call at 845-564-2942 and let them know how they can help you.


Access PTW Steve AlbaneseAccess Physical Therapy & Wellness

“Access your mobility – Access your strength  – Access Physical Therapy” 

It just needs to be mentioned, that when we met with our Member, Access Physical Therapy & Wellness owner Steve Albanese, he and everyone in the office looked happy, fit and healthy!  That’s a great starting point for our conversation about health and wellness.  Steve and his brother Chris have been athletes their entire lives and coupled with the wonderful influence of their father, a science teacher, they were naturally fascinated with health, movement, physics and overall body health.  During high school Steve volunteered at an Orange County physical therapy office and there his passion grew.  The brothers knew that they wanted to help others, lead by example and physical therapy was a perfect fit to turn their passion into a great business.  They met their physical therapist wives, Shannon and Janet, and now all team with the skills and mission to really improve the lives of others through their business partnership.

Access PTW is passionate about their profession.  “We have an evidenced based practice”, said Steve.  What are the best outcomes?  They work hard to measure the success for every client.  The physical therapists are up to date with the industry and practices.  The company is committed to learning and sharing.  The PTs participate in industry continuing education and Access PTW is a host provider for many CE courses.  In 2011 and 2013, Access has been named as one of the Best Companies to Work for in New York State, by the NYS Society for Human Resource Management and the Best Companies Group.  Now, that’s something to brag about!

The Tri-State Chamber will join Access on Thursday, November 14, 2013 for another Grand Opening Celebration of the latest office in Dingmans Ferry, PA.  We welcome everyone to come out and see the facility, meet the team and congratulate Access on their expanding business.  Click on the link to view the invitation: Grand Opening Invite.  They have four offices in Orange County, one in Sullivan County, one in Rockland County (20+years), one in Ulster County (15+years), three locations in Westchester County (10+years) and two locations in Pike County (Milford 10+years) and the newly opened Dingmans’ Ferry.

It would appear to us and certainly should to you, that Access is all about movement – moving up, moving on, and moving near you!  Congratulations on your continued success and we are proud to have you as part of our Chamber family.

Visit Access PTW’s Website: http://accessptw.com/index.html


SONY DSCSafe Homes of Orange County

I had the pleasure of meeting the Executive Director of Safe Homes of Orange County, Kellyann Kostyal-Larrier.  The mission of this organization is to eliminate all forms of domestic violence.  We are fortunate enough to have this great organization as part of our chamber of commerce.

Safe Homes provides;

  • 24 Hour Domestic Violence support
  • Shelter for Victims
  • Advocacy and support when navigating the system
  • Legal Aid
  • Individual and group support
  • Education/Outreach programs
  • Support and services to victims of human trafficking

Their belief is that, “Every home should be a Safe Home.” They do their part in making that a reality by educating people about prevention of violence in homes and schools. Helping people recognize abusive attitudes and behaviors can help stop abuse from happening in the first place.

Safe Homes offers free education on domestic violence and healthy relationships to community groups, schools, workplaces, law enforcement, government and service agencies.  If you would like more information on how to get involved please reach out to Safe Homes at communityoutreach@safehomesorangecounty.org.  I am sure Kellyann and her staff would be more than happy to chat with you.

Thank you Safe Homes for your commitment to making our community a safer place to live!


DSCN0356 compressedTri-State Pools

Tri-State Pools has been supporting  our community for 40 years!  This family owned business started with Gary Weyant back in 1973 out of his home.  This is a great success story of a small business with “Stay Power”!  They have made it through the ups and downs of our economy and continue to provide top quality service and products.  We met with Carol and her son Ric, who now run the business in the Port Jervis location on 172 Jersey Avenue.  They service a radius of 25 miles from their location and the owners come out to every location.  They do not hire subcontractors.  When you hire Tri-State Pools you get Tri-State Pools! They are honest and forthright and have a great relationship with their customers.  They install pools from start to finish, including all accessories. They have worked in this area for many years and know how to handle all the weather and ground challenges that they will come up against.  Once they start a job they stay until it is complete!

They can test your water and service your pool and provide quality chemicals and accurate information to help your pool and spa last a long time.   Their specialties include chemicals, local delivery w spa purchase , free cover, hot tubs, in ground and above ground pools, liner replacements, Saratoga spas and supplies.  With this kind of service it is no surprise that most of their business comes from referrals from other customers!

They provide “Competitive Pricing for Better Quality Products” and take great pride in their personal service that they provide to their customers!  These are your local experts in pools.  If you have a pool or are interested in getting a pool take some time and stop in and talk with Carol or Ric.  They are open year round. You will see why we are so proud of our long time member and your local experts!


Two Rivers Grille Chef Daniel Weber_compressedTwo Rivers Grille

We met with Chef Daniel Weber at his fabulous restaurant, Two Rivers Grille on Pennsylvania Avenue in Matamoras, PA.  Dan is a local resident from Matamoras and loves being a chef in his hometown.  Chef Dan, a graduate of the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute has been a chamber member since he had his first restaurant in downtown Port Jervis, Restaurant at 20 Front, a new American cuisine grill. For the last 3 years at his new restaurant, Two Rivers Grille, located at 611 Pennsylvania Ave in Matamoras, he continues to serve our community great food at a great price.

Dan is a hands-on chef.  He employs 20+ full time and part time employees that he works side by side with, along with his wife Christina.  They are a team in this adventure and enjoy working side by side serving good food consistently!  The restaurant is comfortable and elegant and is suitable for casual and relaxed dining. The 60-seat bistro was named best restaurant in the Hudson Valley in the “Best of 2011” issue of the Times Herald-Record.

They have seasonal menus reflecting local produce. Daily features include a selection of fresh fish, a vegetarian dish and a pasta.  Chef Dan has a special skill for creating awesome sauces and soups!  The flavors are unbelievable!  Anything you order with a sauce is going to be amazing!  In 2012 they were awarded “Best Soup”  by the Times Herald Record.

Two Rivers Grille offer delivery for $20+ purchases to Matamoras, Port Jervis and Milford. They can host exclusive parties on-site or offsite.  If you haven’t yet stopped by and tried out their Sautéed Sea Scallops with Asparagus, Roasted Peppers with Sherry wine cream sauce with Goat Cheese, you really have to take the time to do that!

They are open Tuesday through Saturday from 11am to 9pm, (9:30pm on Friday and Saturday) and from 9am to 2pm on Sunday for Brunch.   You can also purchase gift certificates for friends and families.  I know I would love to get that as a stocking stuffer for Christmas!


Gurian TaxGurian Tax & Business Services

What a pleasure it was meeting our long time member, Gurian Tax.  Elliot and his lovely new bride, Bessy, sat down with us and showed us not only what they are doing for their customers but what they are doing for their community.  They offer free counseling for local businesses to help them with business finances.  They offer services to help businesses set up files, get organized and give them the strategies and tools that they need to be successful.

This team is truly invested in making our local businesses and our community a success!

They offer services, such as online accounting and payroll to their clients.  This allows you as a small business to have the support of their firm when you need them the most.  Their work is transparent to their customer through their online tools.

Elliot has shown his customers that “Accounting services are a necessity to running a successful business.”  He is their advocate when needed for IRS issues or concerns.  Offering year round accounting services to 300+ customers they are still looking to expand.

They are now offering a special service to the Elderly individuals who might have difficulty managing the payment of their bills.  They will work with families to ensure that their loved ones finances are organized, managed and automated.  With the online service, the families can monitor the transactions from afar and rest easy knowing their loved ones are taken care of financially.

If you are a small business in our area or have accounting needs it will definitely be worth your time to stop in and see the team at Gurian Tax and see what they can do for you!


Gray Parker Funeral Home compressedGray Parker Funeral Home

We had the pleasure of meeting with Shaun Parker of Gray-Parker Funeral Home located at 100 East Main Street, Port Jervis.  One of the oldest family owned and operated businesses in Port Jervis serving the people of Port Jervis and the Tri-State area for over 90 years.

First known as Gray Funeral Home, founded in 1924 by Arthur Gray and Elizabeth Brown Gray, the business began conducting services from their home located at 69 Ball Street, Port Jervis.  The business was later taken over by their son E. Arthur Gray and his wife Helen Hart Gray and moved in 1948 to 77 Ball Street, Port Jervis where it remained for the next 19 years.

In 1963, Donald and Esther Parker became a part of the funeral business both as licensed funeral directors.  In addition to funerals, an Ambulance Transport Service was operated from this location.  Then in February of 1967, construction was completed for the current location on East Main Street.   In addition to the funeral home operations, E. Arthur Gray Memorials, Inc. a headstone and monument business is also operated from this location.

Shaun is the fourth generation of the family owned business, born and raised in Port Jervis, he continued his education after high school at SUNY Cortland receiving a degree in Communications.  He chose to continue his education working to become a funeral director following in his father’s footsteps.  He resides in Port Jervis with his wife Lisa and two children.  Shaun believes in commitment to his community and through his business, he contributes to many local organizations and events.

Shaun along with his mother Esther and Lisa Tufano Eagan are all licensed funeral directors providing their services to our community.  They serve all religious faiths and also provide funeral pre-plan counseling offering free consultations.

The goal of Gray-Parker Funeral Home is simple Shaun stated, “To make difficult times go as smooth as possible for our customers.”  When asked what advice he would give to people in regards to funerals, Shaun told us, “Write down your wishes and make your funeral or after death plans known to help assist your loved ones in the decision making process.”   For more information on Gray-Parker Funeral Home and their services visit their website at www.grayparkerfuneralhome.com or call them at 845-856-5191.


Dr Ralph Bowman

Dr. Ralph Bowman

Dr. Ralph Bowman is one of our local Family Physicians that truly care about his community.  He has been in practice for over 20 years and has been treating local families for generations. Working closely with Bon Secours he can care for his patients during any emergency and continue with follow up care.  A word of advice from Dr. Bowman,  “Have routine check-ups so you stay healthy!  Once you are sick it is more expensive and difficult to get you back to a healthy state!”

Dr. Bowman is a big proponate to living a healthy lifestyle.  You might see him out walking or riding his bike around the area.  I know he would love to see more of us out their being healthy and exercising!

The majority of Dr. Bowman’s patients are 40 and up but he does care for the entire family.  So, don’t wait until you are sick, come in, bring the kids, and visit today and stay healthy!


Town of DeerparkTown of Deerpark

Deerpark is the second largest township in Orange County.  90% of Deerpark is residential. Karl Brabenec is one of those residents.  He moved to Deerpark with his family in 2005.  With a life of politics, starting at 13 years old, he was an excellent addition to the Town of Deerpark local government official.  As the Supervisor, sworn in to office in 2008, Karl was anxious to get to work in cutting costs and improving the services that were provided to the residents.  He brought back the Community Development Committee to help with this huge endeavor.

The town government provides many services, including police coverage, recreation, and road maintenance.  With limited resources, each day is a new challenge when he has the desire to make an impact and a difference for the children and residents of the community that he cares so much about.

Karl’s belief is that an improved quality of life makes for a model community.  He sees the potential through the challenges.  He is constantly making improvements to the area to improve the quality of life for his residents.

With such a large area, Karl has implemented Tax Incentives to encourage new businesses to come to Deerpark.  His vision is to see more businesses along the main roads in hopes to add more value to all the residents who reside in Deerpark.  He was a key person in bringing in “The HUB” which holds Planet Fitness and other businesses right off of Rt 84 at Exit 1.

We are honored to have someone like Karl investing his time and energy into making our community a better place to live.  Take a look at townofdeerpark.org website and see all the great things that Karl has done lately.  I know you will be as impressed as we are!


Laurel GroveLaurel Grove Florists & Greenhouses

It was such a pleasure meeting Eileen and Gary at their lovely home located directly across from their beautiful Laurel Grove Florist and Greenhouse.  What a beautiful view they have of the Delaware River and conveniently located directly across from their place of business.

Laurel Grove has been serving our tri-state area since 1912, over 100 years!

We learned that Gary and Eileen bought the business from Jill Deal in 2000.  They were both working at Pepsi in Newburgh and this young couple decided to dream big and start on an adventure of a lifetime!  Eileen was already working in the flower shop for Jill on the weekends and loved it!  In the last 13 years they have grown the business and their family!

They currently employ four full time employees and 2 part time.  You can call them directly for any flower need you might have for any special occasion. Their staff is extremely helpful when planning events and/or ordering flowers for any event.

I recommend you go by their place, any day of the week, they are open 7 days a week, and check out the flowers, trees, bushes, baskets and gifts.  It is a great place to browse and smell the roses!  They even have a fish pond in their outdoor patio area that is peaceful to hang out by.

Another item that they just added in 2012 is Christmas Trees.   They offer delivery and set-up if you are interested.  It is just one more service that you can get at our local florist, Laurel Grove.


Jeff's Garden Shop Family 2Jeff’s Garden Shop

“The best thing about being in business and certainly the most rewarding for me, is to have fun and keep my family close,” owner Jeffrey Mance told us when we stopped by for a visit.  His wife, Donna tells him that “there are three of us in this marriage” – her, him and the Garden Shop.

Located in Matamoras, PA, they have 16,000 square feet of flowers, shrubs, plants, materials and everything that goes into the ground.  The original structure is over 100 years old and over the years has seen major expansion.  It is amazing how they could fit 8 green houses on an acre and a half of land nestled within the community, but what a treat it is for all that surround them.  Jeff is the 3rd owner of this business and started on this quest at 21 years old in 1978.  Even though he went to school for surveying, he chose to plant his business roots in his home town where he can employee local residents along with his family members for the past 30+ years.

They are not the typical growers with plants like you would see in the big “box” stores but these are educated growers with a wealth of knowledge and hands on customer service that go above and beyond for each customer.  They not only provide flowers but many vegetable plants.  These have been their #1 seller for the last year.  It seems our community is finally getting healthy.  If you would like to start your own garden just bring a picture in of your plot of land and let Jeff and his team help you plan out it out.  They will even start specialty plants for you if you can get the seeds.  Their customer service really goes above and beyond.

Even if you aren’t the gardening type, Jeff’s Garden Shop can assist you with lawn maintenance and landscaping.  They will come out to your property and provide you with an estimate for landscaping your area.  If you choose to by your plants from Jeff and have them plant them in your yard, he will guarantee them for 1 year.

Jeff's Garden Shop Jeff in Greenhouse smallWith all this, you can imagine that Jeff is very busy….. well you are right!  But he still finds time to give back to the community.  He helps with local plant sales for CDD, donates to the Port Jervis Food Pantry – Community Garden and decorates the stage for the Soap Box Derby.  He is dedicated to his community and continually shows it.

Jeff told us with pride, that more than 10 local area businesses have been started by former employees that have worked and trained with him over the past 35 years.  Now, that’s a true gardener – plant the seed, nurture, provide the right environment – to make things grow and thrive.  Mentors are essential not only to enrich the lives of others, but play a critical role in keeping economies strong.  Thank you Jeff, for your love of place, your love of family, your love for your business, your love for helping others and thank you for inspiring others to emulate your successful business model.

We recommend you go by and visit Jeff’s Garden on Ave M in Matamoras and roam through the great selection of annuals, perennials, shrubs, trees, holiday specialties, and all fabulous growing things!  Tell them the Tri-State Chamber sent you.Like us on Facebook

Jeff’s Garden Shop – 400 Avenue M – Matamoras – PA – 18336 – (570) 491-4008


Snips N Tails OwnersSnips-N-Tails

As we approached the front door of Snips-N-Tails in Port Jervis, we could hear the laughter and the happy barks.  The owners of Snips-N-Tails in Port Jervis are a special breed indeed!  Cheryl Salerno and Marsha Polan are sisters that started this business over 7 years ago.  Cheryl came from a banking background and Marsha had a grooming business called “Marsha’s Animal Kingdom”.  One day Marsha asked Cheryl, “do you really like your job”?  That was the question which prompted the answer which created Snips-N-Tails.  The sisters found the synergy of customer service and a passion for animals to be the perfect path to career happiness and personal fulfillment.

For those of us who have dogs and cats, we know they hold a special place in our hearts and homes for them.  In the relatively short amount of time we were there, we could tell that these ladies and their talented staff really love what they do, are serious about pet health, and have a compassion for pups & kitties in their care.  These animals are cared for like their own – with love, tenderness and lots of laughing and playing.  They not only groom the animals and provide daycare while you are at work but they take special care of them.  They will brush their teeth, clip their nails, help with ear infections, and the list goes on.  As we visited with them, surprisingly, everyone got along beautifully.  One pup was having a bath, one getting a hair cut, one was in “day care”, and others (owned by Marsha & Cheryl) were there to greet us and show us around the place.  We couldn’t stop petting and loving these wonderfully happy pups.  They posed for pictures and seemed thrilled to have such great caretakers.

Each one of these ladies has their own “litter” of foster dogs.  Cheryl with 5 big dogs and Marsha with 5 little dogs. As they say, “We are Foster Failures!”.  They hear about dogs that are going to be put down and they foster them trying to find them a home but they fall in love!  They just have big hearts and lots of love for our furry friends.  Marsha commented, “Any bad experience…they live with that forever.  We save as many dogs as we can.”

Snips N Tails Puppy & girlCheryl and Marsha hire all their staff locally.  They expertly train their staff, then each person will “Pay it forward” and train the next.  They keep a very close eye on each employee and how they work with the animals.  They won’t tolerate any hatred or unkindness of any kind toward any animal in their shop. You should see some of the cutting and color creations the staff does on the pups to make them even more adorable…some have won competitions for their styling. They also help the community by grooming the pets at the Port Jervis Humane Society, in hopes that they get new homes quicker!

They proudly carry products that are USA made!  From great pup treats, to shampoos, specialty products, toys, they have a great selection.  Snips-N-Tails has been a chamber member since they opened and residents of our community their entire lives.  They love their work and their community and we truly appreciate their kindness and compassion!  Stop by and visit Snips-N-Tails anytime so you can meet the puppies and buy your own pets some awesome treats!  I am sure you will fall in love and bring your pets in for all their grooming needs.

Keep an eye out for them in the Tri-State Chamber’s 42nd Annual Rick Drew Holiday Parade on December 8, 2013…they always dress up and proudly march in the parade!

Snips-N-Tails – 8 North Maple Avenue – Port Jervis, NY 12771 – 845-858-8245


Phils Ford Photo 2013
Phil’s Ford

In August of 1969, Phil Kuperman, a World War II Veteran and CPA in Brooklyn, NY, always wanted to purchase a car dealership and he found the perfect location in Port Jervis, New York.  He moved his family after purchasing the Ford Dealership with three locations in Port Jervis from Hamilton Ford.  After forty four years of business in our Tri-State area, Phil’s Ford is still employing local people and selling Fords and used vehicles.

In 1988, Phil retired and his son, Howard Kuperman, took over the business.  Currently Phil’s Ford is the oldest Ford dealership in the Hudson Valley.  According to Howard, they have the top technicians on the East Coast and are always training and keeping up with the latest technology.  The relationships they develop with their customers are for a lifetime.  They know them by name and are always taking care of them and their vehicles as if they were family!  As a small local business, they can continue to be competitive and successful by controlling their overhead and expenses.  They are dedicated to their community and want to continue serving local consumers for years to come.

In 2008, Howard was elected Chairman of the New York Automobile Dealers Association, where he had served on the executive committee for close to 20 years, representing 1,200 NY State car dealers.  He is personally involved in many community clubs and organizations, including the Tri-State Chamber of Commerce, the Elks Club, the Rotary Club, Bon Secours Community Hospital Foundation Board, The Salvation Army, Soap Box Derby, PBA and the PJ Fire Department.  He continually donates to these and other local events in support of this community that he loves!  He is “woven into the Fabric of this community”!  The showroom has three Soap Box Derby cars that Howard and his team keep in tip top shape for each year’s race.

Howard is one of the first Director Emeriti of the Tri-State Chamber of Commerce.  He started with our organization in 1976 and was president in 1992, 1993, 2002 and 2003.  He is proud to tell us that he started the Tri-State Classic race 18 years ago and it is still running strong today.  As with everything he is involved in, he has made a difference and touched the lives of our chamber members.  Thank you Howard for remaining strong and true to our community!

Phil’s Ford – 257 E Main Street, Port Jervis, NY 12771 – Visit the Website


Wells Fargo Group 1Wells Fargo – Matamoras, PA Branch

The morning that we were meeting with our member, Wells Fargo, I was finishing up with a fabulous hair cut and mentioned that I was on my way to see Janet Bright, the store manager.  My hair dresser excitedly said, “Tell Janet I said hello – she’s great!”  It didn’t take me long to realize why others thought so highly of Janet and their relationship with the talented team of professionals at Wells Fargo.

When we sat down to talk with Janet, it was like talking to your best friend – relaxed, warm and engaging. Janet has strong ties to the tri-state area raising her family and being part of the fabric of life here.  “It’s all about our team!”, she commented.  She feels it important to hire locally and support local businesses and residents.  Not only is Wells Fargo a valued member of our Chamber, but they continue to support tri-state community events such as Arts Walk through our Chamber.  You will often see the Matamoras Wells Fargo team volunteering at local community activities…it’s a win-win for employees and the communities.  Through the “Community Partner Program” they donate to local 501c3 non-profit organizations every year.
Some fun facts that Janet shared with us, that you may not know about Wells Fargo, founded in 1852;
  • They have something for EVERYONE’S financial needs!
  • They are #1 SBA Lender
  • They are #1 Small  Business Lender in PA
  • They are #1 Mortgage lender in the USA
  • The vast majority of Auto Dealers in Orange County use Wells Fargo
In this small but busy Matamoras location they have 6 full time employees and 4 part time staff.  Two Real estate Lending Experts, Two Regulatory Representatives, One Fully licensed Broker Partner, One Mortgage Representative Partner.
They have the best of both worlds at this small local bank.  They have the small home town feel when you walk in and they greet you by name but they have the big bank expertise and service that all the local residents and businesses need to thrive!
Stop in and say hi to Janet and her staff, you are guaranteed to enjoy the experience!
Wells Fargo
1001 Pennsylvania Avenue
Matamoras, PA, 18336
Phone: 570-491-4151

IMG_0583Ronald Schultz, DDS

It was such a pleasure to have the opportunity to speak with Dr. Ron Schultz.  He gave us a tour of his office and talked about the ladies that are more like family than a staff of 20+ years. He has two full time hygienists that are awesome with children and great at helping young mom’s help their kids practice brushing and flossing.
Dr. Schultz shared with us how he graduated from Dental School in 1973 and how after working for another dentist for awhile he knew that he needed to go out on his own and how he came back to his home town area of Port Jervis. He has many patients that have come to him through referrals from other patients.  Which is easy to believe when he has some families that he is already on the 3rd generation of family dentistry care!
During the tour we got to see his panoramic x-ray machine that allows him to see much more than the old fashion s-rays with a less invasive process. This helps him isolate issues in the teeth, gums and the jaw that might be missed otherwise.
Even though Dr. Schultz has many long time patients he wants everyone to know that he is indeed ACCEPTING NEW PATIENTS!  So if you are looking for a kind, soft spoken dentist with the latest technology to help you stay in good oral health, you should give Dr. Schultz a call.
While you are there you should check out his “Antique Dentist Room”.  It is amazing!  He has collected many different antique dentist items, from the chair and lighting to the x-ray machine and much more.   It is very cool!

DSCN0075 (2)Neversink Media Group

You know the expression, “they treat me like family”.  When we met with our member, Neversink Media Group, that certainly was the case…we felt like part of the family.  They greeted us with big a big hello, a tour of the facility and then we sat down to talk with them about the business.  Owner Bud Williamson, his wife Julie and talented team are certainly part of our Chamber family and the tri-state community business family.  Bud has been part of the fabric of our area all his life and has a real love for our people, businesses and communities in the tri-state area.

Bud started his career in radio in the Port Jervis location in the 1970s with owner and operator, Oscar Wein and son Bob Wein and family.  He learned much during those first months with the station and finally was able maneuver his way around radio production and fell in love with the business.  He started his own business about 30 years ago, Digital Radio Engineering, which provides engineering services to the industry and radio stations in the northeast.  Since 2003, Bud has been the President of Digital Radio Broadcasting operating FM and AM stations in the tri-state area.

Platinum Media Sponsor

In 2012, through his company Neversink Media Group, he purchased the Port Jervis station location and along with that now has three FM and two AM signals, with a broadcasting area truly representing the tri-state region from Stroudsburg to the Catskills.  A large investment of talent, time and financial resources went into the purchase, upgrades to the station and the latest in digital technology in order to deliver top quality transmission.  Bud felt that our area was neglected in recent years as far as radio was concerned and it was the perfect time to step into this market to support our area.

Bud is passionate about local radio and stressed the importance of programming content that not only delivers entertainment, music, sports and news from the region and nation, but programming that support local businesses, community events, local residents and things we care about every day in the tri-state area.   When you tune in to Country 107.7 WDLC, 106.9 WYNY and Pocono 96.7 (as well as the AM broadcast stations), you will hear the very best mix of programming.  Neversink Media Group is a regular at events in the area – CruzinPort, SoapBox Derby, Tri-State Chamber events, sporting events, and everything in between.

Neversink has a professional team like no other in the area.  They have a great sales and production team as well as on-air personalities on all stations.  The station is located at 15 Neversink Drive, P.O. Box 920, Port Jervis, New York.  Stop by and say hello to our family at Neversink or give them a call at 845-856-6000.

Every time we think of Neversink Media Group, we think of a great team of local talent, always here for our Chamber, always here for our businesses, always asking how they can support and help our area.  Isn’t that what a family does?  Thank you for bringing our area great local radio programming.  Thank you for investing in our communities and our future.


compressedMiddletown Community Health Center

We met with Jack Boyle and Theresa Maloney at the Middletown Community Health Center.  With a staff of 162, including 22 doctors, they service the uninsured and under-insured residents of our Tri-State area.  Theresa explained how MCHC provides that “Continuity of Care” that a large portion of our population is in  need of when their doctors go to the hospital to support their patients.  At their new location at 140 Hammond St., Port Jervis, NY they provide much needed care and support in the areas of  Primary Care, OB-GYN, Pediatrics, Internal Medicine and Dentistry.

This $11 million organization has been in business for over 40 years in Orange County. They have 10 Access Point locations and a Mobile Health Van that goes to local community events.  They offer education services and do health fairs, local blood drives  and many other much needed services for  residents in the tri-state area.

MCHC Ad #3

They support the growing health care industry by providing a $500 scholarship to a Middletown H.S. student going into the healthcare field of study and they also offer internship opportunities to local students in BOCES and Colleges as one of their many ways of giving back to our community.

If you have an opportunity,  visit them online at www.MCHCcares.org or stop in to one of their many locations in Middletown, Port Jervis, Goshen, Pine Bush and Montgomery.



IMG_0561 compressedFellenzer Engineering, LLP

“The devil is in the details.”  According to John Fellenzer, this is what distinguishes Fellenzer Engineering from their peers in the industry and has been the cornerstone of their design philosophy for generations.  We met with owners and brothers, John & Mark Fellenzer and Amador Laput, Project Manager at their office in Middletown and explored the success behind the company for almost 60 years.  The company was formed by their father, Archie D. Fellenzer, with his principals of integrity, innovation and client-focused quality service.  Mark graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY with a BS in Electrical Engineering and a MS in Computer and Systems Engineering.  John also graduated from Rensselaer with a BS in Mechanical Engineering and received his MBA from Marist College, following in the footsteps of their father, who graduated from Purdue University with a BS in Electrical Engineering.  Amador Laput met Mark in High School in Middletown, furthered his education at Stevens Institute of Technology obtaining a BE in Mechanical Engineering.  Amador joined the firm years later in his role of Project Manager.

Although Fellenzer Engineering is a nationally recognized, award winning firm, they remain a family owned local business. Mark & John talked at length about the importance of not just talking “local”, but really supporting local area businesses.  More often than you would think, firms outside our area are hired for local area projects, when the talent and experience is right in our own backyard.  They feel that Chambers have influence in buying practices, assist in making the area more viable for business growth and can intervene at leadership levels in local government to promote and encourage using local products and services.  They emphasized that it is critical we all make these connections and provide support to local businesses to keep jobs here at home.

Fellenzer Engineering has a tremendous body of work including residential, commercial and industrial projects.  Their services include Engineering Analysis & Studies, Engineering Design (mechanical, electrical, building heating, ventilation, air conditioning, plumbing, fire protection, power, lighting, alarm, security, control and life safety systems, site, subdivisions, land development), and Construction Management.  Certainly their commitment to details is critical to the design, building and ultimate success of each and every project.  Fellenzer is a LEED Certified Design Firm and their projects place great emphasis on conservation, intelligent design, and maximizing the performance of each system while reducing the costs of operation.

It was our pleasure to talk with Fellenzer and to be reminded of the many reasons we are proud of our members.  Fellenzer is more than a successful company – they are leaders in their communities, they are passionate about their profession, they are committed to a better future for our region – by design!


 Zitone Construction

When we stopped by Zitone Construction in Montague, NJ for a chat with George Zitone & Bill Zernhelt, the front door had several Tri-State Chamber of Commerce stickers that were posted over the last few decades, which brought big smiles to our faces.  It was great talking with George & Bill about all the residential and commercial projects they have been part of in the tri-state area for more than 50 years.  From large commercial and industrial projects such as municipal projects, shopping malls, water treatment plants, bridges, schools, firehouses, libraries to residential projects, Zitone has consistently delivered superior service and product.  This is what keeps their clients coming back and referring their business.

A family owned business for a half century; they have a “hands-on” policy when it comes to clients and projects.  You will see George and Bill at the job site during every aspect of construction.  Their extensive experience provides them with a major edge for competitive pricing on any size project.  Current noteworthy commercial projects include the Milford Library in Milford, PA and SCARC (residential home development) in Sussex County, NJ, and Project Self Sufficiency in Newton, NJ.  As for residential projects they are very busy with everything from delivering dirt, installing septic systems, house additions, renovations and new construction.  They feature Butler products, which are pre-engineered building systems and integrated products. Zitone is located at 261 Clove Road, Montague, New Jersey and you may call them at 973-293-3436 or email georgezitone@optonline.net or zernhelt@optonline.net.

Visit their website at http://www.butlermfg.com/find_a_butler_builder/your_local_butler_builders.

George & Bill embody the spirit of a true family success story and they are very proud of their legacy and their superior service…and they’re really great, nice people!  And we are proud that they are long time members of our Chamber and supporters of the communities in the tri-state area.




Therapeutic Horseback Riding Center

When first arriving at the G.A.I.T. stables, we were greeted by founder Martha Dubensky with a warm smile and a sobering reverence.  “We just lost a very special member of our family,” she said.  Initially we thought that Martha was speaking about an employee or volunteer and then she led us to Laura’s empty stall.  Laura was the matriarch of the healing herd.  She was 26 years old and had been instrumental in leading the other horses to understand the special needs of children.  Martha’s heartbreak and concern, was not only for losing Laura, but for Laura’s children that had come to trust Laura, depended on her talents and truly loved her as a family member as well.  Since our meeting, G.A.I.T. held a memorial service for Laura so the children, families, volunteers and staff could honor her and say goodbye and thank her for her talent, devotion and love.  During our visit, Martha led us to each stall and were told about the special characteristics of every horse and their place in the team.  When we arrived at Laura’s stall, her bridle and blanket were laid out and a photo of her in memory.

GAIT TRC is a Therapeutic Horseback Riding Center for people with special needs. The word “GAIT” started out as an acronym for “Genuine Alternative In Therapy”. The word itself refers to the strides of the horse which are similar to the normal walking gaits of a human.

GAIT is celebrating 18 years of service in our Tri-State area and horses have been a part of Martha for her entire life.  The movement of the horse provides the physical component or stimulus to therapeutic riding. GAIT is a Federal Non-Profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization. With PATH international certified instructors and highly trained volunteers side by side with specially trained horses they complete their mission “To improve the quality of life of children and adults with special needs resulting in a more independent life in society.” The services and programs teach the participants to interact with others in positive ways, to communicate more effectively, and to improve their social skills.


We invite you to view the video (click on the link above) from the G.A.I.T. website and also on YouTube, that explains more about the program and shows the talented horses at work with very special children.  Please contact Martha if you would like to volunteer and please consider making donations, whether financial, food or supplies to support the important mission of empowering and improving the lives of special needs people. If you haven’t visited GAIT yet, we highly recommend you stopping by and observe what great work they are doing. We know that you will be inspired as well!  Thanks Martha for your life long mission to make our communities a better place, our families stronger and our lives better.


IMG_0549Tri-State Auto Body

On a snowy day in Port Jervis, we went to visit owner, Kerry Hughson, his daughter Wendy and son Jack.  This is a true hometown family owned and operated business that cares about its customers and community.  Kerry bought this business back in 1982 after working at the shop since he was in high school. When they say that they are “Committed to Excellence” they truly stand behind that commitment!

A perfect example of their effectiveness in satisfying customers was when we asked if they solicited feedback from clients.  Wendy went over to a drawer and pulled out 2012 client survey cards they mailed that were sent back completed.  There must have been over 200 recent response cards in the stack – which is an astounding response to any mailing where clients are asked to fill something out and put in the mail.  What we discovered was an absolute treasure!  Rave reviews for the quality of work and service.  Outstanding reviews for their professionalism and timeliness when interfacing with insurance claims.  Almost every card had a written comment, most of which was a huge thank you and a promise for future business and referrals!

Tri State Auto Body PBA 1st Quarter donation checkThey have decades of experience with Insurance Claims process and are a “One Stop Shop” when it comes to your auto repairs.  They support other local businesses like Superior Glass and Bud Williamson at Neversink Media Group.  They donate time and energy to support local community events like the local Soap Box Derby by fixing the cars for free!  This year they are supporting the Port Jervis Humane Society, the Salvation Army and Port Jervis PBA by creating a New Charitable Campaign called, “It All Adds Up”, where 1% of every customer bill will be donated to one of these local organizations.  As of today, the 1st & 2nd quarter 2013 donations were over $1,500, made possible by their customers!!!

If you have any auto body work that you need, take a tip from TSAB’s happy customers an call them for a free estimate.  As as soon as you walk in you will see what their customers are RAVING about!


IMG_0536Galleria at Crystal Run

The Galleria at Crystal Run, perfectly located off I-84 and Route 17 in Wallkill, is privately owned by The Pyramid Companies. We met with Bradford Freeman & Heidi Schuessler and they shared with us the history of The Pyramid Companies, formed in 1970 in Syracuse, New York and is still a family owned and operated business.  The spectacular Galleria Mall is an important part of their portfolio, which includes over 17 properties in New York and Massachusetts, producing over $4 billion in annual retail sales.  They are the largest privately owned developer of shopping centers in the Northeast.

In the local tri-state area, they are important contributors to the economy, providing residents and tourists with the very best shopping and entertainment experiences.  The Galleria is the second largest mall in the Hudson Valley region. It covers our tri-state area attracting shoppers within 100 mile radius. The mall, which opened in 1992, has an area of 1,100,000 square feet with 250 shops and restaurants as well as a 16-screen AMC Theatre. The Galleria has been members of our chamber for many years and we were thrilled to see our “Tri-State Chamber” logo on the window leading to their offices!  This great team is continually looking to partner with tri-state area communities and organizations to support the local residents and improve the quality of life for all.

The Galleria, located at 1 Galleria Drive in Middletown, NY, is open Mon-Sat 10am-9:30pm and Sun 11am-6pm. We hope that you will take the time to bring your friends and family over to the Galleria to see the new stores and restaurants that are opening.  They are always adding to the great line-up of retailers, so make sure you visit them often.  Whether free music, exhibits, shopping, eating, entertainment, relaxing or family activities, they have something for everyone.

Thank you Galleria and The Pyramid Companies for your loyalty and support of our Chamber.  We love that they are family owned – family operated – family oriented!


PJCA LogoPort Jervis Council for the Arts

We met with our member, Port Jervis Council for the  Arts and talked with 2013 President, Ann Keller and 2013 Secretary, Linda Bostinto, two hard working volunteers to this organization.  PJCA was formed in 1986 by the late Dorothea Solomon, who had a passion for the arts and for all things Port Jervis.  The mission of PJCA is to “foster the fine and performing arts in the tri-state area by producing and/or supporting specific artistic events.”

The PJCA is currently having a 2013 Membership Drive and this is a great opportunity for you to support this wonderful organization.  Some of the events on tap for this year are a Thank You get together for members, artists and volunteers on May 5, 2013 at UpFront Gallery, scholarship to a Port Jervis High School graduating senior continuing their education in the arts, 2nd Annual Historic Homes and Garden Tour, “Hands-On” Art for Kids Day, major sponsor of the 15th Annual Arts Walk presented by the Tri-State Chamber of Commerce, and maybe an organ concert in the Fall.

PJCA is a 501c-3 non-profit organization and welcomes those interested in supporting the arts to contact them to volunteer to be a Board Member, Advisory Board Member or volunteer for events.  In addition to Membership, you can also support PJCA through sponsoring their events.   The annual membership is $25 we encourage you to visit their website at www.portjervisarts.org to download an application and be part of the rich history of arts in our community.  Not only can you feel great about supporting the arts, but your membership and sponsorship are tax deductible!

 Thank you PJCA for continuing the rich heritage of arts in Port Jervis.


Dave Bever CroppedSafe Haven of Pike County

It takes very special and expertly trained people to assist those that are confronted with domestic and sexual violence. Safe Haven of Pike County has been helping individuals and families for more than twenty years with crisis intervention and support as well as education and prevention. When we met with Dave Bever, Executive Director, we learned some of the reasons he is dedicated to the mission of Safe Haven; having spent a lifetime of advocacy for victims.

As part of a long term strategic plan, Safe Haven is proud to announce that they have purchased an office in Milford where they will be moving the operation in July 2013, expecting a seamless transition and continuity of service. In 2012 alone, they provided shelter to 61 women and children in flight, provided over 1,100 hours of crises intervention and support, 24 hour hotline, and continue to educate local area students about non-violence and individual dignity. Another strategic initiative that Safe Haven has recently implemented is to be a legal advocate, attend court with victims, and guide them step-by-step through the legal process to protect them going forward. Their new location is conveniently and strategically located next to the courthouse to better serve the needs of victims.

To offer these services to victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse, it takes a team of professionals, many trained volunteers, a committed Board of Directors, and community support and involvement to make a real difference. The staff understands their critical role to victims. They must be ready to intervene, protect, shelter, educate, and help those who have no one to turn to in time of real crisis and life and death situations. The shelter currently has two apartments, providing short term housing for two families until they are moved to permanent locations.

There are many ways that you can support the important work of Safe Haven. You can contact them to become a trained volunteer on the 24 hour hotline, you can visit their thrift store “Haven’s Treasures” located at the Upper Mill Complex in Milford and buy some fabulous treasures, you can refer someone to the services of Safe Haven, and you can donate at their website any time! Please take a moment to see some of the upcoming fundraising events that support their mission. Visit their website at http://www.safehavenofpikecounty.org/.

Thank you for protecting families and strengthening our communities.


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Statewide News Network

He has a velvet voice, a brilliant mind, a nose for news and perfect business timing. That’s our member, Hank Gross, President of Statewide News

Network/Mid-Hudson News, the largest online news in the Hudson Valley. When we sat down to chat with Hank, we learned that he started out after college

as a public speaking teacher in the New Jersey school system until they terminated the program. He decided to move into broadcasting and journalism and has not looked back for more than 40 years. The twinkle in Hank’s eye is one of great pride when he talks about the tri-state area, our businesses, our people, our lives and his role in linking together our place in the world through information.

An award winning journalist with more than 30 years of experience at the time, Hank started his own company in January 2000. He realized that he could create a niche market in online local and regional news in the Hudson Valley. Most of the news outlets were weekly print publications and local area radio news coverage was shrinking due to outlets being taken over by larger players that disseminated national news, not local or regional. He started Midhudsonnews.com, with up-to-the-minute news content for our region, and expanded into other online markets with Empirestatenews.net under the umbrella of Statewide News Network. In addition to online news articles, you can watch videos and listen to online radio news stories through his websites. Hank is now in the 13th year covering the Hudson Valley and now the Catskills and is truly the most comprehensive news outlet for online content in the tri-state area. His advertisers are truly impressed with the reach and value that they receive from his online sites. Online news may not seem like a big deal in 2013, but in 2000, this approach of all internet news was anything but industry standard.

When we visited Hank, he took time away from “command central”, where news was breaking, things were happening, emails were flooding in, NYS politicians were calling, everyone seemed to want to reach him. Hank confessed to us that he doesn’t sleep a lot, because there’s always news and he can’t wait to share it with everyone! No one is more proud of our area than Hank Gross…he thinks living and working here is the very best of all possible worlds. He was thrilled to take time to talk about his business and our Chamber and the important partnership between us and our joint role in the tri-state area to businesses and communities. Please visit his website at www.midhudsonnews.com and we challenge you to find a worthy news story that he hasn’t covered in our area! And if you need to reach Hank by phone: 845-537-1500, 845-695-2923 or fax 845-692-2921.

Hank is a pioneer in his industry and continues to be instrumental in keeping us all informed and like every great journalist…his timing is perfection! Thank you Hank, for choosing our area and our Chamber.



Port Jervis Free Library

America’s Public Libraries face real challenges. With the internet providing information at our fingertips, the question needs to be asked, why go to a library? In our meeting with Beverly Arlequeeuw, Director of the Port Jervis Free Library, we heard why our libraries are here to stay. Major studies have shown that the public as well as civic and community leaders throughout the country believe that a well-functioning, safe public library is an absolute must for communities to remain healthy and strong. When it comes to rating other public services, libraries rank at the very top in terms of value to the community. They are a major player in increasing the equity and access to all in the information age.

The PJFL is a “Carnegie” Library, one of only 1,689 in the country. Philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie offered to build libraries if communities would contribute land, furnish money for annual maintenance, and exercise governance and oversight. Communities across America were provided with incentives to participate in the effort to build public libraries to bring enlightenment to every citizen between 1881 and 1917, at the cost of over $3 billion. We are very fortunate to have a beautiful, well maintained, accessible, functional, state of the art Carnegie Library in historic Port Jervis. PJFL has 3 floors of learning among beautiful fireplaces, woodwork, flooring and the smell of great books.

Public libraries are beloved institutions, not just part of our nostalgia because they provided essential services to everyone. One of the many things we learned from Beverly was the programs for children that the Port Jervis Free Library offers. Children need a safe, good and community oriented gathering place, where literacy is not only encouraged, but is made fun. They have a meeting room that holds about 50 people, where local area artists are encouraged to display their artwork. In addition, they have innovative programs for teenagers, seniors and every group in between. They work with local area schools to support and promote literacy with programs offered in the library. Beverly stresses that The Port Jervis Free Library is a “gathering place”, not only for individuals, but for families. In case you haven’t heard, the PJFL has over twenty computers in “The Hub”, offering the use of computers and e-services for training, employment, digital literacy and education. “The Hub” is there to help you with individual instruction or in groups as well as ongoing programs including free internet access.

We encourage you to “Check it Out”! They have the latest NY Times Bestsellers each month, movies, books on CD, books for the blind, the internet, educational programming, and a knowledgeable and friendly staff to get you started. So, what are you waiting for…go get your library card today and take advantage of this FREE wonderful resource for you and your family.


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Smith Plumbing, Heating Kitchens & Bath

We met with our Member, Smith Plumbing, Heating, Kitchens and Bath, located at 66 Jersey Avenue, Port Jervis, NY. In talking with husband and wife owners, Tom Smith and Debbie Valentine in their beautiful showroom, it was clear that they take a great deal of pride in the quality service and products they provide customers in the tri-state area since 1955. The company is a second generation family owned business offering the very best in two divisions: Plumbing and Heating and Kitchens and Bath. President Tom Smith is a Master Plumber, licensed in NY, NJ and PA with over 30 years of expertise in plumbing, heating, air conditioning for both residential and commercial clients. Smith is committed to service excellence and the highest quality products – all with their guarantee of your satisfaction that they have addressed your needs!

Debbie Valentine is an architectural designer with over 20 years of residential design and project management and heads up the Kitchens and Baths Division. They offer full service design/build for your kitchen and bath remodel. From the design process to the finished product, their clients receive the highest quality service and a beautiful and functional finished product. Clients can be assured that when Smith comes to your home or business, it is one of their employees, not a sub-contractor. Your project is treated with the utmost importance and they live up to their promise to deliver your project on time, on budget and with a one year warranty for labor and materials. Smith’s “Customer Care Staff” will service extended manufacturer’s warranties.

Tom and Debbie have served our Chamber and our communities for decades and we know from experience that they are true professionals, extremely reliable and wonderful people. It’s no wonder that they have earned a reputation for excellence and clients for a lifetime. Visit their website at www.smithplumbingandheating.com or call them at 845-856-5325.

“We will strive for a reputation for dependable service, consistency and reliability of service.

All people will be treated with dignity and fairness…Customers, Employees, Suppliers and Competitors.” Tom Smith and Debbie Valentine (excerpt from website)



Law Office of Matthew Witherow

We met with our Member, attorney Matthew Witherow, in his Port Jervis office. On first arriving, we were met with a big smile and a warm handshake, feeling as if we were the most important meeting of his busy day. Matt has a way of making others feel comfortable and relaxed and in “good hands”. Matt grew up in Port Jervis attending PJ High School and there met an English Teacher, Miss Hill, who would change the direction of his life by encouraging him to consider the law as a future profession. While still in high school, he contacted Port Jervis attorney, Bill Bavoso and began an internship with his office and found this experience to be critical in his decision to pursue his education and expertise in the law.

Matt was an Assistant District Attorney in Orange County from 1999-2008 and opened his practice in his hometown of Port Jervis in 2008. He is licensed in New York and Pennsylvania and offers legal services in real estate, wills, estate administration, criminal matters, foreclosures, and personal injury. In addition to his law practice, he was appointed to City Court Judge in Port Jervis with a 2009-2015 term. Matt is a firm believer in supporting children through activities and programs that will enrich their lives and help them on the road to a bright future. He is an active supporter of many local area organizations that promote children’s activities both academic and athletic. Through his experiences, he knows the value of supporting and encouraging children, realizing it is our responsibility to help nurture and support their futures.

As a Chamber Director, Matt offers a warm and composed demeanor, keen intellect, enthusiasm and support to our organization. We are proud and humbled by his commitment to our organization and our mission to our members and communities we serve. We invite you to visit his website www.port-jervis-law.com and consider a free consultation with him for your legal needs.

Law Office of Matthew D. Witherow – 845-856-5900, 41 Sussex Street, P.O. Box 1005, Port Jervis, NY 12771 or email him at witherowlaw@frontier.com.



Best Western Inn at Hunt’s Landing

We met with our Member and Chamber Director, Suparmanto, GM of the Best Western Inn at Hunt’s Landing in Matamoras, PA. The hotel sits on 23 acres of lush green land conveniently located off I-84. The property has 10,000 square feet of meeting and banquet rooms, perfect for weddings, dinners, special events. The spacious rooms are well appointed with all the home away from home luxuries you need…cable satellite TV, desk, room service, and a complementary hot breakfast. The hotel has a steam room/sauna, fitness center, indoor pool, gift shop (Nana’s Nook), restaurant, bar & lounge, outdoor patio overlooking the pond, and an outdoor Pavillion which is perfect for your summertime event.

The award winning Edgewater Restaurant & Lounge serves up breakfast, lunch and dinner and on Friday and Saturday, features the famous “Lobster Seafeast”…all the lobster & seafood you can eat! Suparmanto proudly told us that the record so far for the most Lobster in one sitting was 23 by one of his guests. Annie’s Lounge features Happy Hour from 5-7pm and DJ & Karaoke every Saturday from 9pm-1am.

Best Western_inn

What makes this hotel a treasure for the tri-state area is the professional staff and their commitment to superior service and customer satisfaction for every guest and visitor. Suparmanto has been the GM at Best Western properties for more than 20 years and in the Matamoras property since 2008. His experience as Maitre D’hotel with Holland American Cruises, his Hotel & Culinary professional training, his certification as Hotel Administrator by American Hotel & Lodging Association, his love for cooking and teaching, culminate in the unforgettable experience we all have when we stay, play or dine at the property. Suparmanto smiles broadly and proclaims, “I consider each person we serve special and a member of my family.” We consider him a jewel and are proud to call him friend and our family.

Visit the BW Inn at Hunt’s Landing and see everything they offer – www.bestwesternhuntslanding.com. Thank you for supporting our businesses and communities in the tri-state area.



Johnson & Conroy Agency

On January 23, 2013, we had a very informative meeting with our long time Member, Johnson & Conroy Agency located in Port Jervis, NY. Meeting with President Lisa Van Inwegen & Vice President, Richard Hugel, Jr., was wonderful and we learned more about why they are a powerful team of insurance professionals providing superior service for their clients in the tri-state area.

Licensed in NY, NJ & PA, the firm has been in business for more than 50 years and currently have staff with over 80 years of combined expertise in all types of insurance for your home, auto, business, life & personal insurance. The company was founded by Lisa’s father, Hank Conroy and and Al Johnson in 1962 in Port Jervis. When speaking with Lisa, she shares her father’s passion and commitment to clients, the best product for the client’s needs, and always puts relationships first. This firm is another great example of the legacy of our local businesses that continue to do business face to face and one client at a time. We appreciated Richard Hugel’s comment, “We fix 15 Minute Quotes”, as a reminder that while some are attracted to the “online” insurance, they are there to meet with clients and tailor make policies for your specific needs…and they are there when you need to talk with them…face to face.Johson & Conroy have an informative website with additional information about products and services (www.jandcins.com) and please take a moment to visit and “Like” them on Facebook.

Thank you Johnson & Conroy for your Chamber membership for decades and for supporting our communities, our residents and our businesses.



Gillinder Glass

Charlie & Allyson Gillinder

We had an incredible meeting with our long time Member, Gillinder Glass on Friday, January 18, 2013. This year they are celebrating 100 years in Port Jervis and in 2011 they celebrated 150 years in business. In talking with Charlie and Allyson Gillinder, it was abundantly clear that they are proud of their family’s legacy and the technological and engineering advances that have enabled them to become the world leader in industrial glass markets. Gillinder has a skilled team of engineers, chemists and highly skilled craftspeople working in a state of the art facility.  We not only met with Charlie & Allyson, but received an enlighting tour of each station in the factory.  They even make their own tools needed for maintaining their machinery in the factory.

Did you know that Gillinder Glass is a world leader in the manufacture of hand-pressed soda-lime and borosilicate glass products for lighting applications…such as airport runway lights? Next time you’re at an airport, take a look and you’ll see Gillinder Glass products on the runways and on the planes. They also manufacture highly specialized products for the lighting industry, rail, marine, military, architectural, state, spa/pool/fountain and many others.

Founded in 1861, owners Charlie & Allyson Gillinder can be found round the clock in the plant and in the Gillinder Glass Store. The Store features many of their beautiful art pieces Gillinder Glass Sign 100 Years in Port Jervisthat are coveted by collectors and reflect the long history of glass art. Some of their creations are in the Museum of American Glass, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The firm also recreated historic lighting glassware for the Library of Congress.

It is our pleasure to celebrate 100 years in Port Jervis with the historical and world famous Gillinder Glass.  Here’s to another 100 years!

Visit their websites:

Gillinder Glass – Website & Gillinder Store – Website


Jim Reyle, Agent - State Farm Insurance

State Farm Insurance – Jim Reyle

Talking with Jim Reyle is spending time with a good friend.  His relaxed manner, warm smile, easy laugh are just a few of the ways that Jim relates to everyone.  When we talked with him about his business and the insurance industry that he has been in for more than 3 decades, he’s all business. He certainly must make State Farm proud that he embodies their motto, “Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there.”  Jim is our neighbor, our friend and our advocate.  He is in the select group with our Chamber of Directors Emeritus…serving more than 25 years as a Director on our Board.  In addition, he is a Past President and a member since 1979.  Jim has made numerous contributions to us and we seek his advice and council on an ongoing basis.  Jim has been a long time member of the Rotary Club of Port Jervis and the Elks Club of Port Jervis and has generously contributed his time and support to many tri-state area organizations’ causes.

State Farm Logo

Over the years, Jim has found that networking and referrals with the chamber has been invaluable to strengthening his business in the area. Jim and his long time staff take the time to tailor make packages and policies for all your insurance needs. In addition, State Farm offers mutual funds, checking accounts and many other services. Jim’s business card has his home phone as well as business phone number…so he can take client’s calls anytime they need him…you can’t get dedication and top quality service like that from the internet! Take a moment to contact Jim today at 845-856-7212 or stop by the office at 20 East Main Street, Port Jervis, NY.  They also have office hours on Saturday for your convenience.

Jim is a mainstay of our communities and we thank him for his loyalty, expertise and service to our Chamber and our businesses.



William F. Carroll Agency

On occasion we all have the pleasure of meeting and knDeg Carroll compressedowing people that have made a real impact on the business community and residents…this is certainly the case, with Declan “Deg” Carroll. His passion for his life’s work in the insurance industry was formost in our meeting with Deg. His expertise and knowledge is set in motion with each and every client. Deg laughed and said, “People are surprised that I answer my own phone and talk with every single client.” Isn’t that the way it should be? With over 40 years of experience in this family owned business, Deg has certainly earned the respect of his peers and his clients. Our Chamber was formed in 1951 and his firm has been a member since 1952! He has been a major advocate for the tri-state area and is not shy about putting his words into action. When asked why he joined our Chamber, he quickly responded that it is his responsibility as a business to support a strong environment for every business – what better way than with our Chamber. Deg is admittedly “old fashioned” when it comes to social media and the internet spreading the message of his business, as most of his business is referrals from happy customers. He has done business one-one-one for decades and it is of the utmost importance that he knows each and every customer and their needs. So, you won’t find a website, or facebook page for his company, but you will find clients in 3 states that know and trust him. Deg, we hope you won’t mind that we will share your success and brag about your company via social media! We encourage you to visit our Member, Deg & Mary Carroll of William F. Carroll Agency, Inc. in their office located at 169 Jersey Avenue in Port Jervis, NY or give them a call at 845-856-5125. They are licensed in NY, NJ & PA, and are able to help you navigate all your insurance needs – personal or business.


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