Did you miss the January 8 breakfast hosted by the Bluffton Area Chamber of Commerce (BACC)? Here’s a recap of who, what and why.

I was especially excited to attend this meeting because it featured my client Beth Bish of Bluffton Pediatrics. Beth sponsored the breakfast to celebrate the “first birthday” of her business.

Music. Olivia Spallinger played the piano for us during the half hour when folks trickle in and fill a plate at the buffet. Olivia is a student at Krysti’s Music Studio, which provides many non-recital opportunities for public performance. The music really makes the occasion feel a little bit like a party!

Breakfast. I sure feel pampered when I’m being treated to a warm breakfast. Divine Interventions catered this meeting, providing us with mini quiches, luscious baked goods, and fruit salad. Christine Smith Clymer–who is also the Executive Director of Bluffton Pediatrics–was the smiling face who served us. So when I talk about getting up early, I’ve got nothing on Christine!

Announcements. The new Costco warehouse club in Perrysburg is now a chamber member and a representative talked about their interest in expanding service in our area. The SHANNON Service Club announced that its annual indoor garage sale (and chicken barbecue) at The Centre will be on February 26 and 27. The Bluffton Community Preschool reminded us about their March 11 Totes for Tots fundraiser.

Special Recognition. The chamber honored Bill Watkins on his retirement from Bluffton Hospital. Most of Bill’s four decades in health services have been at Bluffton Hospital, including serving as administrator. Is it true they’re renaming a street for Bill?

Chamber News. Among chamber updates was the news that 500 Blaze of Lights maps were distributed this year. Proof that the Blaze is more than parade day: it brings visitors to Bluffton for the whole month of December.

Eagle Scout Project. Misha Groman gave us a glimpse of the hard work that went into his Eagle Scout project, describing and showing pictures of the Benroth Bridge renovation. With the help of volunteers who put in over 170 hours of work, Misha oversaw the clearing of brush and weeds, power washing, and water-sealing of the covered footbridge at Buckeye Park.

Bluffton Pediatrics. This new medical practice–created by Beth and Jim Bish of Bluffton–is something special. It is the first pediatric practice in Bluffton’s history. As the primary medical provider and a Certified Nurse Practitioner, Beth has both specialized expertise and a special approach to children’s healthcare.

“I’m pediatrics!” Beth began, preparing us for her energy and enthusiasm. She went on to compare starting her own practice to being pregnant, giving birth, and growing as a baby does during its first year.

It was an unvarnished but entertaining account of the highs and lows of starting a business. Beth talked about transitioning from being an employee to an owner and about the incredible learning curve–especially dealing with the gap between billing and collecting. To help fund the new enterprise, Beth applied to and was awarded funds by the Bluffton Center for Entrepreneurs and Nationwide Children’s Hospital. She was also strongly supported by colleagues and patients who have experienced her model of patient care, which includes spending an hour with new patients and providing a “medical home” for children and their families.

Beth wrapped up by detailing the 17 local businesses that have helped her business grow. She uses an amazing number of products and services that are available right here in our village. We should all celebrate having Bluffton Pediatrics as a new medical provider and business in Bluffton, Ohio. Happy Birthday, Bluffton Pediatrics!

Why, What Workshop. After the meeting I shared the “why and what” of my upcoming online visibility events. The slots for the January 15 and 29 Hands-On Workshops at the Bluffton Center for Entrepreneurs are filling fast. Let me know if you are interested! Email me at pseditorialservices@gmail.com.

As a freelancer who works from home, I love the chance to mingle with Bluffton’s business leaders, entrepreneurs, educators, and nonprofits. The lively exchange of news and ideas is exceptional for a small town chamber of commerce. The next meeting of the BACC will be February 12, 2016.