A sensational time was had by all at Saturday’s sold out Mardi Gras Ball event.

Gloucester Chamber of Commerce

In a celebration of “Fat Tuesday,” on a Saturday night at the Abingdon Ruritan Club, you could find attendees dressed in formal and festival wear, with bright Mardi Gras Masks and Beads, enjoying a night of dinner, dancing, recognition, and celebration. The Gloucester County Chamber of Commerce celebrated 2015 accomplishments, acknowledged nominees, and awarded the five recipients of the Business Awards to local businesses and individuals at their grand “Mardi Gras Ball.” The fine New Orleans fare was provided by Chef Juan Carrillo and Elegant International Catering, and the 11-Piece Dixieland and Jazz Ensemble, “The Good Shot Judy little BIG Band” provided the dazzling entertainment.

In his remarks, Chamber Board of Directors President, Aaron Candella of Grand Rental Station stated, “As the owner of a small business in Gloucester I have a million excuses as to why I did not have enough time to devote to serving as Chamber president. Fairly quickly however my thoughts changed. Instead it became apparent to me that I could ill afford not to take advantage of this opportunity.” He later added, “Through the many chamber sponsored events, business after hours, educational seminars, and volunteer opportunities, being an active chamber member is in my opinion the most cost effective marketing tool available to the small business owner.”

In her remarks, Executive Director Gloria Mazzella Williams encouraged local input and participation, “As a Chamber Member and business owner, I understand many of the struggles that you all face. But each organization has a unique perspective. We want to harness that, and use the collective voices to help raise up our local business community as a whole, and increase the positive impact on our community. We are excited about the future. The Chamber is moving and growing, and we are so proud to be a part of this ride with you all.”

Candella and Williams acknowledged and thanked the current Board of Directors, and the outgoing Board members for their service to the Chamber.

Event Committee Co-Chairs, Lisa Little of Comfort Inn and Marsha Weatherwax of Allstate Insurance, recognized all nominees, and awarded the five 2015 Recipient awards to the following representatives: Bobby Polk of Bobby’s Auto Service Center, Small Business of the Year; Kay Bradley of Gloucester-Mathews Care Clinic, Nonprofit Organization of the Year; Allyson Bridges of Up South, Best New Business (1-3 years in operation); Gary Ward of Olivia’s in the Village and Scoot’s BBQ, Professional of the Year; and Jay and Denise Hutchins of Brent and Becky’s, the LOVE Gloucester Award (Recognizing a business which exemplifies what it means to live and do business in Gloucester.) To be considered for the awards, businesses and organizations located in Gloucester were not required to be Chamber Members.

The Chamber will be hosting its first Quarterly Breakfast Session in partnership with the Gloucester County Economic Development Authority at Good Life Kitchen on Tuesday, February 18th, from 8:00am-10:00am. The program will be entitled “Retailing: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow,” with Marc Willson.
Register online at

The Chamber is excited to kick off their Business After Hours calendar at the York River Oyster Company in Gloucester Point on March 17th, 2016 (St. Patty’s Day) from 5:30-7:00pm.

For more information or questions on Chamber activities or membership, please contact Gloria Mazzella Williams, Executive Director, at or 804.693.2425.

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