Relations between Sumner and the chamber gain strength in 2008

Puyallup/Sumner Chamber

The Board of Directors for the Puyallup/Sumner Chamber of Commerce started 2008 with only four goals and one of them was to strengthen the relationship between the Chamber and Sumner. As 2008 draws to a close, I am happy to take note of all the connections between the Chamber and Sumner that happened in November and December.

Chamber members were excited to help celebrate the grand opening of Sumner’s first hotel, the Holiday Inn Express and Suites, with a ribbon cutting ceremony on election day. The friendly staff at the hotel provided guests with snacks, room tours, and election results throughout the evening.

The Sumner focus for November continued since the featured speaker at the Chamber’s monthly luncheon was none other than the Sumner Downtown Association’s beloved Executive Director Shelly Schlumpf. Shelly entertained the sold-out crowd by unveiling Sumner’s new “brand” (Rhubarb Pie Capital of the World) and introducing all the Sumner dignitaries in the audience who played a crucial role in the rebranding process. Mama Stortini’s added flavor to the event by providing fabulous rhubarb pie to the attendees.

On Nov. 21, the Chamber’s Leadership Institute met for its third session of the year to learn about city and county government. They were lucky enough to have Diane Supler, Sumner’s deputy city administrator and Ryan Windish, Sumner’s senior planner, present about the challenges and opportunities that these emerging community leaders will need to understand in order to work effectively with local government officials.

On Dec. 3, the boards of the Sumner Downtown Association, the Puyallup/Sumner Chamber of Commerce and the Puyallup Main Street Association met for their second annual shared holiday party. These informal gatherings are helping to build connections between these three community organizations.

The Chamber Board will hold its final meeting of the year at The Old Cannery Furniture Warehouse on Dec. 17. It seems fitting since it is the only business around that is located half in Puyallup and half in Sumner. This symbolic meeting will be a great place to celebrate the successes of 2008 and to plan for the work of 2009. Working to support and foster a thriving business community in Sumner remains at the top of the Board’s 2009 to-do list.

Sally Zeiger Hanson is the Executive Director of the Puyallup/Sumner Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached directly at 253-845-6755 or Information about Chamber programs is available at