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Chamber Bucks

What they are:

Chamber Bucks are a valid bank check that spends just like cash and can be used at any Wetumpka Area Chamber member business. The program is designed to promote community members to "Shop Locally First."


Why Chamber Bucks?

Chamber Bucks make great gifts! Consumers can purchase Bucks for birthday gifts, wedding gifts, gifts for moms, dads, grads, college students, and for holiday gift-giving. The Bucks can be used to purchase merchandise, products, and services at nearly 250 businesses.


How Does the Program Work?

Chamber Bucks are like super gift certificates that are purchased at the Chamber office and spent at a Chamber Member business. After receiving a Chamber Buck check for payment of products or services, the Chamber Member processes it for deposit as they would any other check.

These are certificates that can be used the same as cash. They can only be purchased through the Chamber and redeemed at participating Wetumpka Area Chamber of Commerce businesses. They can only be used for goods and services. The certificates are good for 6 months from date of purchase. If you have any additional questions, please contact the chamber office at (334) 567-4811.

We are in the process of creating a brochure and a listing of Chamber member businesses that will accept chamber bucks!



by James Rivera, SBA Official

  • Created: March 12, 2014, 1:36 pm
  • Updated: March 12, 2014, 1:40 pm

Following a tradition begun by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1943, President Barack Obama has proclaimed Marchas American Red Cross Month.

Since July 2011, the U.S. Small Business Administration has supported a partnership with the American Red Cross, participating in events to promote the importance of disaster preparedness for individuals and businesses.  Getting the word out about the Red Cross Ready Rating program has been a focus of the American Red Cross/SBA relationship.

Ready Rating is a free, self-paced, web-based membership program that helps a business measure its ability to deal with emergencies.  All you have to do is answer the questions, based on what you know about your company and its operations, and Ready Rating gives customized feedback on how to start or improve your business continuity planning.

A recent report by the Small Business Majority and the American Sustainable Business Council estimates the average cost of downtime from small businesses affected by an extreme weather event is $3,000 per day.  Since small businesses don’t have the resources of large corporations, it’s a good idea to build a resilient organization by creating a solid disaster preparedness plan.  And Ready Rating is a great, easy-to-use emergency planning tool.

At the Ready Rating site (www.readyrating.org), you can:

  • Complete an assessment to measure the overall preparedness level of your business
  • Create a custom-made emergency plan for your organization
  • Access tools to help you complete a hazard vulnerable assessment
  • Get tips on implementing your emergency response plan
  • Download the Free First-Aid app

Red Cross Month is a good time to take a step to protect your employees, customers and your community by joining Ready Rating, becoming an organization that’s prepared to save both lives and livelihoods.

In the aftermath of natural or man-made disasters, the SBA provides recovery assistance in the form of low-interest, direct loans to businesses of all sizes, homeowners, renters, and private non-profit organizations.  Visit the website for more information about SBA’s disaster loan program.


For Immediate Release

Media inquiries contact: Lydia Rollins

843.853.2070 x191


Meteor Town Hit by New Local Book

Authors erect literary temple to Alabama’s “Little Corner of Greece”


Celebrating a city once paired with Chicago as one of the “two most promising cities of the West”, a new local book entitled Wetumpka conveys as much town pride as that of any metropolis. The book is the newest release in Arcadia Publishing’s iconic Images of America history book series.


Authors Joe Allen Turner and Jan Wood beam with pride at this paperback monument to their town. “I really want people to realize the importance of preserving every piece of history possible.,” Jan Wood said.


Back when dinosaurs roamed Alabama, a meteor created a horseshoe of hills, and Wetumpka has been lucky ever since. Worshiped as Alabama’s “Little Corner of Greece,” Wetumpka offers tales of the Creek Indians, destructive floods, French forts, and a replica of the Greek Temple of Hera, all chronicled in more than 200 captivating vintage images.


Highlights of Wetumpka include:

  • An entire chapter devoted to Wetumpka’s vibrant commercial history
  • Illustrations of Wetumpka’s prehistoric history, courtesy of the Wetumpka Impact Crater Commission
  • A photograph of the assumed only swayback bridge in Alabama
  • A history of Julia Tutwiler Prison, the only maximum security women’s prison in Alabama and the nation’s first with an all-female staff
  • Photographs of still-standing and still-occupied historic homes, one of which was featured on the HGTV show If Walls could Talk
  • Images of painter and Wetumpka native John Kelly Fitzpatrick


Available at area bookstores, independent retailers, and online retailers, or through Arcadia Publishing at (888)-313-2665 or online


Arcadia Publishing is the leading publisher of local and regional history in the United States.  Our mission is to make history accessible and meaningful through the publication of books on the heritage of America’s people and places.  Discover more than 8,500 small towns and downtowns at http://www.arcadiapublishing.com.




by Jan Wood and Joe Allen Turner

Images of America Series

Price: $21.99

128 pages/ softcover

Available: January 13, 2014

Meet Jan Wood and Joe Allen Turner

Authors of Wetumpka

Jan Wood, a native of south Mississippi, has lived here since 1968.  Jan’s interest in the history of Wetumpka and the surrounding area began with extensive genealogical research on family members.  She was educated at Millsaps College in Mississippi, and her advanced degree was received from Southern Methodist University, Perkins School of Theology.


Her working career began with ten years in various leadership roles in Community Action and Head Start.  It concluded with nineteen years as Executive Director of the local chamber.  During those years, she gave extensive service to many volunteer organizations.  Prior to retirement, she served as Chairman of the Board of Chamber of Commerce Association of Alabama.


She has served her church as teacher, pianist and board chairman since 1969.  She and her husband have two adult children and two grandchildren.

Joe Allen Turner has made his home in Wetumpka with relatives around the county.  He received his education in the schools of Wetumpka and the University of Alabama.  Joe Allen worked for Civil Service for 32 years at Maxwell Air Force Base, Montgomery, AL before his retirement in 1985.


A charter member of Elmore County Historical Society, he has served since 1971.  Currently he is the curator and archivist for the Elmore County Historical Society and Museum. 


He has been a member of several local and state historical organizations and has traveled extensively, observing the work of other historical societies and organizations.  His most intimate knowledge about Wetumpka comes from having been a lifelong resident of the city and being related to so many of its citizens. 


What lasting impact do you hope your book will leave?


I personally want book purchasers to be curious enough to learn more detail about our history and these images; and excited about the people who are pictured in the images.  I wish them to be inspired by the history of Wetumpka and the courage of the people who struggled and grew and made Wetumpka the impressive (small) city that it is.  It has maintained the integrity of a small town close knit community, while continuing to grow in population almost in spite of itself.  I really want people to realize the importance of preserving every piece of history possible.  I trust that we have done our part in this preservation effort.







Visit the KFMG Kelly Fitzpatrick Memorial Gallery located at The City Administration Building, 408 South Main Street, Wetumpka, AL. Open Monday - Friday 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM. The KFMG is dedicated to promoting local and regional visual arts. The Kelly Fitzpatrick Memorial Gallery is a project of the City of Wetumpka in conjunction with a group of local volunteers. We are a non-profit organization in the process of applying for 501 (c) 3 status. Admission is free; however, donations are appreciated.Through our programs and exhibitions, our goal is to make art more accessible to the public at large and to engage, inspire and educate both the public and local artists. For more information, visit www.KFMG-Online.org or call Hope Brannon at (334) 300-3779 or Mark Harris at (334) 262-8061.



Wind Creek Wetumpka Casino & Hotel

330 Wind Creek Blvd.

Wetumpka, AL 36092



Opening in March 2014, Wetumpka will be the home of a brand new hotel,  Wind Creek Casino & Hotel featuring 283 luxurious rooms, 5 amazing restaurants and a pool where you can lounge the day away. Also on display will be a 16,000 gallon shark tank designed by the crew from the Animal Planet show, "Tank". 




Wind Creek Wetumpka casino to open in December; hotel to open in early 2014 
Oct. 29, 2013 2:06 PM   | 
Wind Creek nears completion  
 Wind Creek nears completion: Property manager Cody Williamson leads a tour through Wind Creek Wetumpka on Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013. The Casino portion is on track to open in Dec. 17. (Montgomery Advertiser, Amanda Sowards)
    Written byMatt Okarmus
    • Filed Under

    Work continues on Wind Creek Wetumpka on Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013. The Casino portion is on track to open in Dec. 17. (Montgomery Advertiser, Amanda Sowards) Work continues on Wind Creek Wetumpka on Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013. The Casino portion is on track to open in Dec. 17. (Montgomery Advertiser, Amanda Sowards)  /  Amanda Sowards/Advertiser Facts and figures

    •  At maximum, there have been 810 workers involved with construction with 1.4 million man-hours logged.
    •  There will be 283 rooms in the hotel. An average price for a standard room is estimated to be $99 to $129. Penthouses and suites also are available.
    •  The 2,520 machines on the casino floor is an increase from the 1,182 currently at Creek Casino Wetumpka.
    •  The parking garage will increase from 500 to 2,500 spaces.

    WETUMPKA — The casino floor of Wind Creek Wetumpka soon will be filled with flashing lights, celebration bells and lots of people as casino officials prepare for an upcoming opening.

    Wind Creek Wetumpka, the Poarch Band of Creek Indians’ hotel and casino, officially is scheduled to open its casino floor Dec. 17, replacing the current Creek Casino Wetumpka at the same location. A new 20-story hotel  is set to open in January or February.

    “We think it’s been a long time coming,” said General Manager Cody Williamson. “We are very excited to have a great place to play and stay.”

    Williamson gave a tour of the property Thursday as workers made preparations for the operation of electronic bingo machines. Williamson said the casino has 2,520 machines on the 85,000-square-foot gaming floor, five restaurants and a state-of-the-art, 16,000-gallon shark tank. The casino floor will feature only gaming machines, Williamson added.

    The overall cost for the project is about $250 million, Williamson said Thursday, with the casino portion estimated to cost $150 million to $200 million.

    Along the tour, Williamson pointed out special features of the casino, such as an air system designed to help clear away cigarette smoke and electronic connections that will help employees adjust settings such as temperature, music or television entertainment from mobile devices.

    “We think it will make the guest experience better in real time,” Williamson said, adding the new technology will decrease the time it takes to address a guest’s concern.

    Williamson also pointed out a dining space that overlooks the Coosa River, a guest area with a fireplace that sits near an outdoor pool, and a “fast food to go” option for quick meals.

    Since starting construction in August 2012, casino officials have reached out to the local community and recently held a job fair at the Wetumpka Civic Center. Williamson said the job fair resulted in 580 job offers. Currently, about 100 to 150 positions are available, and officials expect to have about 1,000 employees at the casino’s opening, including the current workforce.

    “The main thing with 1,000 employees is those people will infuse a lot of money into the local economy,” Williamson said. He added that Wind Creek Wetumpka officials hope to attract guests from  Atlanta, Birmingham and Huntsville with the expanded hotel and casino.

    After the opening of the new gaming facility, the current Creek Casino Wetumpka will be closed. The front portion will be turned into a convenience store and the back portion will become a special events center.






    Wetumpka is embarking on a master revitalization plan that will involve community input and architectural planning by a firm that worked with Montgomery's riverfront development, says Barry Mask, executive director of Elmore County Economic Development Authority.


    The ECEDA is project manager, and the final plan is expected to be ready for public review in March or April 2012.

    Wetumpka is also moving ahead on a science-based interpretative center that would attract visitors from throughout the region. Wetumpka has the only authenticated impact crater in the eastern U.S., and just one of 200 worldwide.


    The center would be part of the state's "trail" of science and space related attractions. The Elmore County Economic Development Authority, Wetumpka city officials and Auburn University school of architecture have been working on the development.


    In September 2011, the Wetumpka Impact Crater Commission was awarded a $20,000 grant to help study the potential economic impact of the center. Funded by the Appalachian Regional Commission, the University of Alabama's Center for Economic Development will conduct the study.


    The grant also includes developing a website, and local agencies are matching the grant finds.



    Lynch Steps in as Chamber Director

    News Article Posted: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 9:30 am  The Wetumpka Herald updated: 9:52 am, Tue Jan 3, 2012.


    Vanessa Lynch is eager to start her first day at work on Tuesday.  She also knows she faces a challenge and welcomes it with open arms. Lynch will begin her first day as the new executive director of the Wetumpka Area Chamber of Commerce. The challenge is stepping into a position which was held by Jan Wood for nearly 20 years.

    “I’m not intimidated of that fact, but I also recognize and want to honor the fact that Jan put so much of her life into the chamber,” Lynch said.


    Lynch, 36, is a 1997 graduate of Lee University. After graduation she spent three years working in the public relations and marketing section for an outdoor recreation company that was later purchased by Patagonia – an outdoor clothing, apparel and gear company.


    She later moved to Nashville and spent a decade as a song writer while also developing a well-followed blog.

    While as a song writer she sat around coffee houses and fast food restaurants writing songs with fellow writers, including Jason Aldean, Lynch remained an outdoors enthusiast.


    “She comes to us with a great knowlege in the tourism industry, and her experience in the music industry will help jump start the downtown revitalization,” said Dennis Fain, chamber president. “She is very entergetic and a creative person, and I’m excited to have her come on board.”


    Lynch is an avid runner and kyacker, and recently competed in the Attack on Swayback.

    “I think Wetumpka could easily capitalize on Swayback and the Coosa River,” she said. “The Coosa River is a gold mine.  ... I could see Wetumpka being one of the top places to live in the Southeast for recreation lovers.”

    But at the top of her list, Lynch said the first few weeks on the job will be spent observing and listening.


    “I want everyone to know that I will have an open-door policy and look forward to listening to every chamber and non-chamber member’s needs,” she said.