Category Archives: Chesapeake Bank

Karen Podd - The Poddery

Shop Local Day Profile – The Poddery

Leading up to our next Shop Local Day event on Saturday, November 8, we’re highlighting some of the participating merchants throughout the region who are offering shoppers a little extra to come out and support their community businesses.

 

Chances are you’ve seen the work of the Podds, whether it be at a local restaurant, a neighbor’s house, an art gallery or strolling the grounds at Monticello. Their handmade pottery – Karen and Robert Podd are owners of The Poddery in Mathews County – has a way of standing out.

 

For more than 40 years, the Podds have been offering unique pottery pieces out of their home/studio. A couple pieces – a cylinder-shaped dish that has proven versatile (customers have been known to bake foods, place candles, plant bulbs or pot plants in it) and a chip-and-dip platter – have been big hits: “We’ve sold thousands of them,” Karen Podd said. But the one-of-a-kind pieces, says Karen, are the cream of the crop. “As an artist, I just have to do them.”

 

Learn more about The Poddery in the profile below.

 

Business Name: The Poddery
Contacts: Karen or Robert Podd
Contact information: Website or by phone at 804.725.5956.
Shop Local Day Deal: Mention Shop Local Day and receive 10 percent off all purchases.

Store information: The Poddery is located at State Route 660, Foster, VA, 23056 (a quarter mile past the Foster post office). Visit the studio from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. seven days a week.

 

Chesapeake Bank: What does shopping local mean to you?

Karen Podd: It means keeping the money in the county…The domino theory: If we can keep the money in the county, it can give someone a job and promote the business and help them spend money. Considering the gas prices today, it really is more economical to shop in the county instead of getting in your car and going somewhere.

 

CB: What is one of the biggest challenges you face, and how are you dealing with it?

KP: One of the biggest challenges is just to get people here. We’re not in downtown Mathews. Just getting people to come and see what we do. Once we get them here, they usually buy something. Because we’re high-quality crafts, we’ve been known in the Tidewater area for the past 45 years. We’re part of Made in Mathews, 12 artists who joined together and open their studios. We also have our work in the Bay School in town and a small display of our work in the information center in town.

 

CB: What has been the greatest success in your business?

KP: Disney World has some of our work at their convention center in Orlando. Our garden pots are in the garden at Monticello. Berret’s restaurant in Williamsburg has numerous pieces of ours, including a 24-foot piece behind their bar. Just a general statement, nobody does what we do; nobody does the designs that we do, really unique takes on regular stuff, like fireplace fronts, kitchens and mosaic walls. That’s what we’re known for.

 

CB: How did you get your start?

KP: We got started because clay ceramics was one of my classes, part of my curriculum at Northern Illinois University. Robert was in the Navy at that time. The Navy brought us to the area, and I became an art teacher for the Mathews Public School System. We lived in Norfolk for about five years, and I became more and more proficient with my clay work and started entering local shows. Robert got out of the Navy, and we decided to stay in the area. By that time, studios had started to carry my work…We kept looking and looking and looking and found this old place here. I was teaching at Granby High School and teaching a lot of Granby wrestlers, who came up here on weekends and helped us gut our house and build our studio [in 1972]. We started doing art shows along the East Coast, and our work was featured in galleries in Norfolk, Virginia Beach and Richmond. The rest is history: Now people come to us.

 

CB: How many art shows do you think you’ve done over the years?

KP: Oh, lord. I would say easily over 500.

 

CB: What made you take the entrepreneurial plunge?

KP: There was passion there, but we were outdoors people. We were always going to what was called at that time Seashore State Park. Most of my designs, I was really interested in nature… [Starting the business] it just seemed like the right thing to do. We always felt that if it didn’t work out, we could go back to the city and get our jobs back. And we had the support of our families. It was the right move at the right time.

 

CB: Do you have a favorite piece?

KP: I’m proud of a lot of the one-of-a-kind pieces that I’ve done. The ones that have given me the biggest thrill were Disney World buying a piece and doing work for Monticello. It’s a thrill when you’re looking at a garden magazine and see a picture with our pots from Monticello.

 

CB: How do you stay involved or give back to the community?

KP: We have always donated work for any group, the fire department, silent auction for PTAs. Also, we have donated reproduction tiles at Tompkins Cottage in the style of the 1800s. We’ve demonstrated at local events. We’ve talked to women’s groups and garden groups. We’ve always been involved with our community.

Anne Paparella

Shop Local – Meet Anne Paparella

Anne Paparella has been serving as the executive director of the Lancaster by the Bay Chamber since the spring of 2014. A previous small business owner who participated in Shop Local Day as a merchant, Paparella has a great perspective on the importance of shopping local.

 

Chesapeake Bank: What is your role with the Chamber? How long have you been there and are there any facts about the Lancaster Chamber you would like to share?

Paparella: I am the executive director of the Lancaster by the Bay Chamber of Commerce. I started working for the Lancaster Chamber this spring. I have lived and raised four children in this county for the last 22 years. The Lancaster by the Bay Chamber has about 245 members and is growing. We have several events we put on each year from RiverRide, a bicycling event, to Taste by the Bay, a food, wine, craft beer and artisan event at the Tides Inn, and The Parade of Homes, showcasing our local builders. We host Kandy for Kids, a trick or treating event, and the Lighted Christmas Parade is in its 36th year. It is a very active chamber of commerce!

 

 

Chesapeake Bank: From your experience in small business as well as your current work with the Chamber, I’m sure you have some perspective on the impact shopping locally has on businesses and the overall community. Why do you think shopping local is important?

Paparella: I have worked in retail most of my working career. I co-owned a gift shop call The Box Boutique in White Stone. We called ourselves a hardware store for women with all kinds of girly gifts including lingerie, pajamas, and purses. If it was fun and funky, you could find it at The Box. We also specialized in affordable gifts. I loved every bit of it, from the buying to the display. I especially loved the interaction with our customers. Often, our customers would just stop by to have a conversation or tell us something that was exciting or sad in their lives. We were a gathering place for people. Most of my customers became my good friends.

 

I definitely understand the impact of shopping local. The summer months, in this area especially, are filled with visitors and river guests, but the spring and winters can be very quiet. I think the Shop Local campaign reminds people how important it is to shop local businesses first before you go out of town. Being a small business owner is challenging. It is not enough to have cute things or great food, you had to have great displays and great customer service. Quite often one person has to do it all for their business. The Shop Local campaign helps you to realize you are not in it alone.

 

 

Chesapeake Bank: What kind of impact has the Shop Local initiative had in the Lancaster community and on the Chamber? Do you think it has helped generate more awareness and support for local businesses? Do you see more local businesses working together and supporting each other? 

Paparella: I definitely think you have the merchants working together. Often the merchants will direct their customers to other businesses to help them find what they are looking for. I have, as chamber director and a business owner, been part of discussions with other merchants to generate ideas on how to create excitement and bring more business to the area.

 

I love that my job allows me to promote businesses in this area. The more unusual shops we have the more attractive the area becomes for visitors. We have such a unique shopping and dining culture here; adorable boutiques and gourmet restaurants. There is something for everyone in this small area. I am grateful that Chesapeake Bank has promoted this shop local campaign. I think it shows the businesses that they are not alone. We are fortunate to have local banks that are so invested and care so much about this area.

 

The Velvet Rocker

Shop Local Day Profile – The Velvet Rocker

Leading up to our next Shop Local Day event on Saturday, November 8, we’re highlighting some of the participating merchants throughout the region who are offering shoppers a little extra to come out and support their community businesses.

 

The Velvet Rocker, a home goods store that focuses on re-imagined home décor, is a dream turned reality for Williamsburg Shop Owner Laura Tayman.

 

With a background that includes nearly 30 years as a criminal prosecutor, her day-to-day is much different now that she spends her time interacting with clients and helping them update their homes. Tayman has turned a creative hobby into a vibrant local business. Learn more about The Velvet Rocker in the profile below.

 

Business Name:  The Velvet Rocker
Contact: Laura Tayman
Contact information: Website, Facebook or by phone at 757-208-0300.
Shop Local Day Deal: Mention Shop Local Day and receive a 20% discount on a Paint Workshop or home decor item of your choice. Paint demonstrations and refreshments will be available throughout the day!
Store information: The Velvet Rocker is located at 5525 Olde Towne Road in Williamsburg, Va. Visit the shop Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m.–6 p.m. and Monday and Sunday by appointment.

 

Chesapeake Bank: What does shopping local mean to you?

Tayman: Before opening The Velvet Rocker, I enjoyed shopping at locally-owned shops because of the warm atmosphere, the chance to enjoy unique and original inventory and to visit with shop owners that had become friends. It was always a pleasure to enter a shop and be welcomed by the owners, who often made the effort to remember my name.

 

Since opening The Velvet Rocker, shopping local means all of the above and more. I am now the shop owner that has the joy of getting to know her clients and update their homes while getting in touch with their creative side. I love welcoming clients into the shop and helping them select paint and finishing products to update their home décor.

 

Ensuring that local revenue stays local plays an important role in building a strong financial community. It is a way of investing in our local economy and helping to keep the local community strong. I hope people understand that supporting local businesses allows local residents to engage in a business they feel passionate about. It really is about helping local residents to achieve their dreams.

 

Chesapeake Bank: What is one of the biggest challenges you face, and how are you dealing with it?

Tayman: Because The Velvet Rocker is so different from a typical retail store, one of the biggest challenges we’ve faced is finding a way to communicate to local residents what we offer. We’ve tried to develop a website and Facebook page that can explain our unique products and services. We’ve also begun advertising, but it is challenging to explain in a short advertisement the unique properties of our two paint lines, opportunities for creative paint workshops, and our unique home décor.

 

Chesapeake Bank: How did you get started in the industry you are in? We’d love to hear any details on your business story. 

Tayman: My first career as a federal criminal prosecutor could not have been more different from my second career with The Velvet Rocker. The concept for The Velvet Rocker was born out of an attorney’s desire to turn a creative hobby that she was passionate about into a vibrant local business. I’ve painted and refinished furniture for years as a hobby.

 

Chesapeake Bank: It looks like there are some great things offered at The Velvet Rocker that might not be available at other places. Can you tell us about them? 

Tayman: At The Velvet Rocker we carry American Paint Company’s all natural clay/chalk paints and finishing products that allow clients to paint furniture and home décor without any sanding or priming. We also carry the award-winning General Finishes milk paints and finishing products. All of our paints require no sanding or priming, and can be used over existing wood finishes, but also on laminate, metal, plastic, glass, and fabric. The paints that we carry are not available anywhere else in the Greater Williamsburg community. We’ve also made the effort to bring in other unique home décor items. For example, we are thrilled to carry a line of high quality aromatherapy candles that are hand-poured in Ohio.

 

Chesapeake Bank: We see you do upcycling. Can you explain that to us?

Tayman: The process of restoring furniture is often called “upcycling.” It’s a concept that is taking root in larger communities and slowly spreading. Much of the older furniture here in Williamsburg is good quality, solid wood furniture. It is a shame for this furniture to land in landfills because it is dated. Painted furniture is the new style; often referred to as ‘Pottery Barn inspired.’ Because the paints are so easy to use, they are a great alternative to stripping and sanding old furniture. Plus, the furniture can be painted in your favorite current color so it blends with your personal style and complements your existing décor. It is a great way to update and freshen up, hence our slogan, “re-imagined home décor.”

 

Chesapeake Bank: How do you stay involved/give bank to your local community?

Tayman: One of the things I enjoy most about being a new locally-owned business is giving back to the community. We are engaged with Habitat for Humanity, Hospice House and Housing Partnerships, Inc. Williamsburg’s thriving philanthropic community was one of the things that motivated us to open a small business. We know Williamsburg is a place where people understand the importance of supporting the local economy.

 

[Photo credit: Jim Goodridge of JPG Portraits]

Gloucester Chamber of Commerce

Shop Local – Meet Makalia Records

Makalia Records, who has served as executive director of the Gloucester County Chamber of Commerce for nearly five years, weighs in on shopping locally.

 

Chesapeake Bank: Why do you think shopping local is important?

Records: I can think of a handful of reasons:

  • Locally owned businesses build strong communities by working together towards a common goal. Relationships are built and these members contribute to local causes.
  • Keeping dollars in the local economy recycle a much larger share of their revenue back into the local economy. Local businesses are more likely to purchase from other local businesses. This impact results in the local tax base growing.
  • Entrepreneurship ignites Americans’ economic innovation and prosperity while helping the middle class into better paying jobs.
  • Business owners select products based on their own interests and the needs of local customers and create more choices for local customers. They offer unique options because they provide products and services from local artisans and craftsmen.
  • Local ownership ensures that important decisions are made locally by people who live, work and play within their own community.
  • Creates local jobs, cutting back on commuting times and benefits the families. You don’t have to shop local all the time to make an impact in your community. Just remember getting in the mindset of shopping and doing business locally will improve your community two-fold.

Chesapeake Bank: What kind of impact has the Shop Local initiative had in the Gloucester community?
Records: The impact has been measurable. We know when “The Buck Stays Here” initiative was introduced with the first Shop Local Day event in September 2012, 45 businesses in Gloucester participated; double that amount are participating now.

 

Chesapeake Bank: Do you think it has helped generate more awareness and support for local businesses?

Records: It has definitely created awareness for local patrons and business owners. As a Chamber, we know it has directly impacted the community. As Chesapeake Bank has gained new customers, we have gained new members. We believe 100 percent that achievements can be made in a partnership far easier than going at a project alone. We are so gracious to Chesapeake Bank for allowing us to work with them and local business owners in making the importance of “shopping local” a priority!

Virginia Oyster Trail

Virginia is for Oysters

Did you know that Virginia is the largest producer of oysters in the United States? The word is about to get out…in a big way.

 

In August, Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced the creation of the Virginia Oyster Trail, a tourism development project to connect visitors with Virginia’s love of oysters – the trail highlights seven regions in the Chesapeake Bay that contribute to a harvest of more than 500,000 bushels. McAuliffe recognized Virginia as the “Oyster Capital of the East Coast” and tabbed November as Virginia Oyster Month.

 

“The Virginia Oyster Trail’s genesis came out of our own Visions Economic Development Committee,” said Jeffrey M. Szyperski, president and CEO of Chesapeake Bank. “With some strong work by several local individuals, this idea was pitched to the State, which loved it and took the ball and ran with it.”

 

“As the development of the Trail occurs over the next 12 months, there will be tremendous potential for our region to benefit economically from this great natural resource that we have. This initiative will touch harvesting, retail, workforce development and tourism and hospitality. It is a great long-term play for our community.”

 

Virginia’s love for the oyster dates to Jamestown, and we still love to celebrate the oyster – nearly two dozen local and statewide oyster tasting events and festivals fill the calendar before the end of the year. Next up on the calendar, Berret’s Seafood Restaurant and Taphouse Grill, in Merchants Square Williamsburg, will host its 4th Annual Virginia Oyster, Wine & Beer Tasting Sept. 27 from 5-7 p.m.

Save the Date

Shop Local Day Returns Nov. 8

Mark your calendars – Shop Local Day makes its return Nov. 8.

 

It’s hard to believe this is our fifth Shop Local Day since launching the campaign in the fall of 2012. And it’s been inspiring to see the growth in support of local businesses in the Middle Peninsula, Northern Neck and Greater Williamsburg over the years – more than 350 local businesses participated in May’s Shop Local Day, up by about 50 merchants from the previous year.

 

Chesapeake Bank again is partnering with area chambers of commerce and local businesses on this special day to remind shoppers that shopping locally not only can save money, but it also ensures “The Buck Stays Here,” meaning our dollars stay in our community and create a stronger local economy.

 

Be sure to check back often to view the growing list of merchant offers in the online directory. Merchant registration is now open and will continue through November 5, 2014.

 

Chesapeake Bank at Mathews Market Days

Out and About: Mathews Market Days Festival

Not quite ready to let go of summer?

 

Join us at the 40th Annual Mathews Market Days Festival, which takes place Friday, Sept. 5 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.) and Saturday, Sept. 6 (9 a.m.-5 p.m., with the Saturday Night Street Dance from 8-11 p.m.) at the historic Court Green in downtown Mathews. Chesapeake Bank is a sponsor of the free event, and we’ll have terrific giveaways to promote our upcoming November 8th Shop Local Day at our Market Days Festival booth. 

 

Besides coming to see us – and about 12,000 other friends – there’s a bevy of fun things to enjoy, ranging from a 5k run/walk to benefit the Mathews YMCA and annual pet parade to the Show ‘N Shine Car Show and continuous live music. Kids can enjoy bounce houses and pony rides, and their parents can visit dozens of arts and crafts vendors. And there will be plenty of food – including fried donuts – games and contests for the whole family.

Back to School

Making Back to School a Little Better

Chesapeake Bank is aiming to send area students in need back to school with full backpacks. We’re hoping you can lend a hand.

 

We will be collecting school supplies and monetary donations at each of our branches to supply more than 350 children in Williamsburg, the Northern Neck, Gloucester and Mathews. The bank will match every dollar donated up to $1,000 for each of our four beneficiaries: the R.F. Wilkinson Family YMCA’s Bright Beginnings program; the Northern Neck Family YMCA’s Bright Beginnings program; and the Departments of Social Services in Gloucester and Mathews.

 

Drop off crayons, pencils, washable magic markers and notebook paper at any of our branches – a complete list of needed supplies can be found at our branches or on our website. And while you’re at it, check out our Facebook page to vote on your favorite donation box, which were decorated by our employees at nine of our branches and our operations personnel.

MyMobile poster

Banking Whenever, Wherever

Since our founding as Lancaster National Bank in 1900, we’ve focused on our community.

 

And through the years, from Lancaster National Bank to Chesapeake National Bank to Chesapeake Bank, we’ve been committed to personal and innovative customer service (did you know we launched the nation’s first floating bank to better serve workers at the oyster packing plant in Irvington in 1969?).

 

Banking with us never has been easier. Here are four ways you can bank with us wherever life takes you.

 

  • Mobile Banking – Mobile banking continues to be on the rise. A third (33 percent) of all mobile phone users (and half of all smartphone users) have used mobile banking in 2013, up from 28 percent in 2012 and 21 percent in 2011, according to the Federal Reserve. We’re here to help you deposit checks while sitting on the beach or check your account from your living room – just download the Chesapeake Bank myMobile app to get started.
  • Text Banking – Looking for another fast, safe and easy way to bank from your cell phone? Give text banking a try to check account balances or transfer funds in your enrolled text banking accounts. Text “ENROLL CHESBANK” to 39257, and we’ll call within two business days to set you up. You also can call 800.434.1181.
  • Online Banking – We’re proud to offer free online banking that enables you to access your accounts from anywhere in the world. We have three tools to make that happen – myBank gives you an up-to-the-minute glance of your accounts; myFinance syncs all your financial accounts for total money management; and myMobile provides access to your online banking. For businesses, we have e-Services, which allows you to view your accounts and take advantage of free online bill pay.
  • Identity Theft Protection – Did you know that someone’s identity is stolen every 2 seconds? We offer free personal checking accounts with ID Theft Protection. For a small monthly fee, we also offer IDSafeChoice Plus, which includes annual credit report and credit score, continuous credit monitoring with email alerts, free online ID theft assessment test, monthly newsletter with protection tips and reimbursement of ID theft recovery expenses up to $25,000.
American Flag

Fun for the Fourth

Travel over the Fourth of July weekend has increased four of the past five years, according to AAA – an estimated 41 million will hit the roads, rails and air this weekend, up 1.9 percent over last year.

 

If you’re staying close to home, there are plenty of ways to have fun for the Fourth right around the corner. A few festivities to consider:

 

  • Fireworks over the water highlight the Fourth at Gloucester Point Beach Park, where you can spend the day swimming, fishing or boating.
  • The Town of Irvington will celebrate the holiday with its annual “Hometown Parade” from 10-11 a.m. on July 4. More than 100 entries, including antique cars, The Kilmarnock & District Pipe Band and children on bikes, will wind down King Carter Drive and around Irvington Road. School board member Alexander Fleet is this year’s Grand Marshall.
  • Colonial Williamsburg has a daylong (10 a.m.-10 p.m.) celebration at Market Square North that includes a reading of the Declaration of Independence and performances by the Colonial Williamsburg Fifes and Drums and Virginia Symphony Orchestra. Fireworks begin at 9:20 p.m.
  • Historic Yorktown kicks off the Fourth with an 8K run and 5K walk at 8 a.m., and a parade on Water Street starts at 9 a.m. At night, a bell-ringing ceremony beings at 7, and the United States Army Training and Doctrine Command Band (Dixie Band) will entertain before fireworks over the York River begin at 9:15.
  • The Yorktown Victory Center (free for residents of York and James City counties and city of Williamsburg; otherwise $9.75 for adults, $5.50 children 6-12, free for children under 6) will host “Liberty Celebration” July 4-6 from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. each day. Visitors can watch tactical and artillery drills, take part in military exercises and learn about our nation’s founders and the challenges they encountered.