Chamber To Host Annual Shop Local Fun Fiesta

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Get ready to party with the Greater Severna Park and Arnold Chamber of Commerce, as well as roughly 30 local businesses.

The seventh annual Shop Local Fun Fiesta will be held at Park Plaza on Saturday, May 4, from 11:00am to 3:00pm.

“The idea is to get them in front of the community and raise their visibility,” said chamber CEO Liz League. “It’s just a fun four hours of bringing the community together to celebrate small businesses.”

Some of the businesses in attendance include Park Tavern, Mathnasium, Servpro, Bulldog Bikes & Floats, Severna Park Community Center, Mosquito Squad, Franklin’s Toys, Park Mom Fitness, Chick-fil-A, Lisa’s Cakepops, Honey Baked Ham and many more.

“Every exhibitor is going to have something at their table, just ways to engage the people coming through,” League said.

In addition to the exhibitors, there will be a variety of entertainment and demonstrations. Annapolis radio station WNAV will broadcast live from the Fun Fiesta.

The festivities also include a DJ, musical performances, bowling, fast-pitch, pedal cars, face painting and a photo booth. Attendees can also look forward to K-9, karate and tai chi demonstrations.

As part of the “fiesta” theme to honor Cinco de Mayo, Mexican restaurants will offer free samples of their food, and Mi Pueblo II will have margarita samples.

The four Gold sponsors of the event — SERVPRO, Jing Ying Institute of Kung Fu & Tai Chi, Repke Fitness and Kogen Dojo — each get to present a charity of their choosing with an oversized check.

“It’s a visible way to remind the community that our businesses are very philanthropic, and they support organizations in our community,” League said.

Both Servpro and Jing Ying chose to donate to SPAN.

“Our donation is staying local in our community,” said Rikki Schneider of SERVPRO. “Recognition to organizations who invest in our community is very important to the culture of SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park.”

Over the years, Jing Ying has raised more than $55,000 for SPAN and collected thousands of pounds of food for its pantry.

“Jing Ying’s vision is to transform lives and build community, and SPAN fits that vision as a local charity that makes such a difference in our community and the individuals it serves,” said Nancy Greer, co-owner of Jing Ying.

Repke Fitness is donating to Opportunity Builders Inc.

“They do a phenomenal job with helping adults who have developmental disabilities find purpose through vocational training and employment,” said Louben Repke, owner of Repke Fitness who formerly served on the board at OBI. “The organization is making a big difference in the community, and they deserve recognition.”

Kogen Dojo is donating to Burgers & Bands for Suicide Prevention.

“It is a local charity that is trying to make a global impact by bringing awareness to the growing problem of depression and suicide with the message to individuals who suffer that ‘you are not alone,’” said Robert Van Valkenburgh, co-owner of Kogen Dojo. “Burgers and Bands represents light and hope for those who have or continue to struggle with darkness and despair.”

The fiesta is part of an overall shop local movement, League said.

“Our goal as a chamber is to keep small business in the forefront of the community’s mind,” League said. “We wouldn’t have the community we have now without our small businesses.”

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