Author Archives: Mary Van Keuren

Chamber Welcomes New Members

Canal Connection Chamber of Commerce is growing! We’ve welcomed six new members in the past few months. If you see them at a Chamber meeting or event—or anywhere else—please introduce yourself and let them know we’re glad they’re with us.

Intuit Marketing

Debbie Smith of Intuit Marketing offers a broad range of marketing services that are affordably tailored to meet the needs of small businesses. Her mission is to help businesses leverage cost effective marketing strategies including social marketing, collateral design, creative campaign development, content marketing and website design to strengthen your brand and support your business goals. Her client-centered support will enable you to create a more holistic, comprehensive approach to marketing.

Jenn’s Hair Care

Jenn’s Hair Care is a premier hair salon in the Macedon area, offering you a wide range of hair care services to give you the look you want. With an extensive selection of Matrix color and perms, Jenn’s got you covered for whatever you need. If there’s a wedding, party or event in your future — or if you’re simply ready to get pampered — give her a call today!

Monat Global

Monat GlobalMonat is a revolutionary hair care line of naturally based products that are pure, safe, non-toxic, cruelty-free, gluten free and vegan. They deliver incredible moisture, renew life to the hair and eliminate brittle texture. The products have been scientifically proven to increase hair growth, replace hair loss, protect hair from environmental toxins, and maintain a youthful appearance. Whether you want to get healthy hair or you are looking to start your own “work at home” business, give Monat a try.

North Star Auto Electric

North Star Auto ElectricNorth Star is an electrical specialist specializing in starters, alternators, generators, distributors, magnetos, traction, pump motors & 110v to 220v AC generators. Covering auto, truck, industrial, farm, marine, antique restoration & material handling customer. After the sale it’s the service that counts.

Roxy’s Salon and Spa

Roxy’s is a full service salon/spa that offers the best services with high quality sustainable products, and with a focus on the health aspect with all that they do. Eight years and counting here in Walworth, and ready for all the growth coming here.

Unique Automation LLC

Unique AutomationUnique Automation offers fully-engineered automated solutions. Whether your needs are mechanical, electrical, pneumatic, hydraulic, or software development, Unique Automation has the experience to deliver the highest quality and most reliable systems available. Their automation specialists are ready to discuss your needs in detail and formulate a system solution that’s right for you. With the use of 3D Solid Edge CAD software for mechanical design and autocad for electrical design, Unique Automation can provide fully documented drawings and schematics with each project.

Become a Leader

The Canal Connection Chamber of Commerce is looking for a few good men and women to led our trusty troops into a bright future! Do you fit into one of these categories:

  • You’re a member of the Chamber and want to play a more active role in the organization.
  • You own a business, large or small, in the Macedon/Palmyra/Walworth area and want to see it grow.
  • You’re a resident who believes in the power of small businesses to make our region strong.
  • You love the sound of “president” before your name.

if so, we want YOU to consider joining us in a leadership position. What are we looking for? Here are the dets:

President: you’ll run the monthly meetings and guide the Chamber on a solid and seaworthy course.

First Vice President: You’ll share the president’s duties as needed. If the president is away, you’ll get to run the monthly meeting in his or her place.

Second Vice President: You get to be the sergeant-at-arms (which is an great job title) at meetings, and help out the prez and 1st VP.

Secretary: You get to write any important letters and are in charge of official documents and communications. You have the awesome task of taking meeting minutes.

Treasurer: You’re the money guy (or gal). You keep our financial records and receive/dispense funding as needed. Everyone loves you.

Want to find out more, or throw your hat in the ring? Contact Shelly Conboy for more info on what the positions entail and how you can be a part of this growing organization. Or just join us at our next meeting: Tuesday, February 20 at 5:30 p.m. at Lyons National Bank’s Macedon branch, 359 Route 31, Macedon (just east of the rt. 31/Wayneport Rd. intersection).

We hope you’ll join us!

Business of the Month: A.E.Y. Enterprises

“Quality on time, on budget. Work done right the first time. Great employee attitude and cooperation on the job.” — from an online review of A.E.Y. Enterprises.

If you are building or renovating a space, or just repaving your driveway, A.E.Y. Enterprises, Inc. is a company you’ll want to have in your contacts list. They have been serving the Wayne County region—and beyond—since 1989. Founded by Michael Young, A.E.Y. provides site development services to clients large and small. Their approach is simple, and heavily focused on customer service and satisfaction. They employ between 35 and 45 people at any one time.

Three Divisions for Commercial and Residential Work

A.E.Y. is divided into three divisions, each with their own role to play in the company:

The Site Development Division can handle everything from mass earth moving to fine grade and detailed shaping. This can include all aspects of work needed for a turn-key site development package. That includes clearing and demolition, erosion control, bio-retention devices, earth moving, storm drains, underground storm control structures, water and sewer, fine grading, base and paving as well as striping and signs. But they do more than that. Working with development teams, they can assist in value engineering, building critical path schedules, assisting in pre-development budgets, and planning on how to phase the project to eliminate conflicts.

walkwayThe Paving Division is a “one stop shop” that specializes in commercial and residential paving, residential driveway paving, complete resurfacing, patching, milling and restoration, shimming, overlays and asphalt paving and maintenance.

The Masonry Division offers a wide range of masonry and concrete services in both commercial and residential construction. Their specialties include complete foundations, slab on grade, retaining walls, and commercial construction including traditional structural shells, load bearing block work, elevator cores, and all sidewalks and patios. They also have a dedicated crew to take care of stone veneer, stamped concrete, stacked stone walls, and finishing hardscape features.

Customer Service is the Focus

According to Michael Young, what sets A.E.Y. apart from other companies is their focus on customer service. “The customers are everything,” he says. “We wouldn’t have much of a business without them.” Building a relationship with his customers leads to repeat business and referrals, which Young credits as being one of his most successful marketing attempts. “Word of mouth is big,” he says. “We’ve been doing this for 29 years, and we’ve built quite a customer base — and customers refer other customers.”

Young says he started the business because he had a passion for construction work. If he could change one thing about the early years, he says, it would be to have had more knowledge of the science of running a business. “I wish I would have had a bit more education,” he says. “I knew construction, but not the business end of it.

As A.E.Y. continues to grow, Young sees a bright future ahead of the company. With a renewed focus on their commercial customers, they plan to continue to do what they have done so well for nearly thirty years. “Our goal is to be the best,” says Mike Young. “Not the biggest, but the best. Even if our price is higher than a competitor’s price, we want to get hired because our customers know they will get nothing but great service and our best efforts every time.”

Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting

Category : Updates

annual meetingCanal Connection Chamber of Commerce, the business organization for Western Wayne County, will hold their annual meeting on Tuesday, January 16 at 6 p.m. at Lyons National Bank’s Macedon office, 359 NYS Route 31, Macedon, N.Y., 14502. The meeting will be in the bank’s conference room. All business owners, employees, and interested individuals are welcome to attend.

Items on the agenda include the election of officers for the coming year, as well as strategizing and a discussion on programming and events for 2018.

The Canal Connection Chamber of Commerce brings together businesses and customers along the Erie Canal in Macedon, Palmyra, and Walworth. It offers educational programming, networking opportunities, marketing and promotional assistance, and other benefits designed to help members grow their businesses and contribute to the economic health of the region.

Helming to speak at Chamber Holiday Party

The Canal Connection Chamber of Commerce will hold its annual Holiday Party on Friday, December 1, 6:00-9:00 pm at The Golf Club at Blue Heron Hills, One Country Club Drive, Macedon, NY 14502. NYS Senator Pamela Helming with be our speaker and special guest for the event.

Helming to Speak at Holiday Party

Pamela Helming, Holiday PartySenator Helming, who lives in Canandaigua with her husband, Gary, has more than 30 years of private business experience. She has worked in commercial building, regulatory affairs, and land use planning. Before her election as senator for the 54th District, she served as a Canandaigua town board member and Canandaigua town supervisor.

Reserve Tickets by November 20

Tickets are $35/person; $60/couple, available by contacting Shelly Conboy at 315-986-9681 or In addition to Senator Helming’s presentation, there will be a silent auction and 50/50 raffle to benefit chamber programming. Auction items can be viewed at the Macedon Public Library the week before the party.

A buffet-style dinner will include appetizers, chicken French, pasta, vegetables, coffee, and dessert. A cash bar will be available.


Chamber Sponsors Medicare 101

Medicare image: pills and moneyMedicare can be a life-saver for people over 65 and those with disabilities. But it’s just as famous for being difficult to figure out and use. The Canal Connection Chamber of Commerce wants to help YOU gain a better understanding of Medicare.

Medicare 101

On Wednesday, November 8, from 6-7 pm, the Chamber is sponsoring a talk by Kathy Coler, a Medicare specialist with ROC Insurance Services. It will be held at Lyons National Bank, 359 Route 31 in Macedon (next to Walmart). Kathy’s talk is free and open to the public, and light refreshments will be served. There will be an opportunity to ask questions at the end of the talk. Since space is limited, we are asking you to reserve your spot by calling Chamber president Shelly Conboy at 315-986-9681 or

Our Medicare Speaker

Kathy Coler is an independent broker who has a degree in healthcare management from University of New Hampshire and an MBA from LaSalle University. She has more than 15 years of experience in health care, and is licensed in life, accident, and health insurance in NYS.

Silent Auctions Build Brand Awareness

Looking for a fun and inexpensive way to share the word about your business? Silent auctions are popular, and they can give your business a boost at a minimum cost. A great place to start is with the Canal Connection’s silent auction. It will be held at the Chamber of Commerce Holiday Party, December 1 at the Gananda Pub at Blue Heron Hills.

How does a silent auction work?

Silent auctions feature desirable services and products that are displayed beforehand for potential bidders. People bid by writing their name and bid on a piece of paper (increasingly, silent auctions are held online, and bidding is via an interactive web option) and placed in a box. At a predetermined time, all the slips are opened and the highest bid wins the object or service. Some silent auctions are less “silent”—the bids are public, and bidders can see what the highest bid is at any given time, helping to drive up prices. Silent auctions are usually held to benefit a non-profit organization, with all funds raised supporting that organization or charity.

How can it work for your business?

Business donate frequently to silent auctions. It’s a great place to be creative. Do you run a garden center? Fill a wicker basket with hand tools and colorful seed packets. Are you the owner of a hair salon? What about donating a coupon good for a free haircut rolled up and placed in a mug along with a few flavored teabags? An auto center could give a gift certificate for a free oil change—tied to a wrench.

The best part of silent auctions? You’ll be gaining exposure in two ways. First, everyone who views the items to be bid on will see your name and have the chance to explore (and want!) your offering. Your business’s name will be announced publicly when the winning bid is pulled. Second, you have the chance to gain a steady customer with your bid winner. Show him or her your best, and they’ll come back as a paying customer long after their coupon or product is used up.

There’s even a third benefit: you’ll feel great about helping out a worthy cause or organization through your donation.

How do I donate to the Canal Connection’s silent auction?

Bring your donation to the Macedon Public Library, the Macedon branch of the Lyons National Bank, or Macedon Auto Center during their regular hours. Mark your item with your name, the name of your business, your phone number, the approximate value of your donation and a short description of what you’re donating. You don’t need to be a member of the Chamber to donate—all are welcome! All items will be displayed at the Macedon Library in the weeks before the auction—providing even a broader reach for the businesses participating. Questions? Want help brainstorming ideas? Contact Chamber president Shelly Conboy at Lyons National Bank at 315-986-9681 or


Fall Events in our Region

As the seasons move from summer to fall, you’ll find a wide range of fall events in Western Wayne County to delight you and your family—and some of them offer opportunities to promote your business as well.

Canaltown Days

The parade at Canaltown Days.

Come experience some Erie Canal history at the 50th annual Canaltown Days in Palmyra, one of our favorite fall events. You’ll find everything from a historical canal walk to an art show; horsedrawn wagon rides to beef on weck sandwiches. There’ll be a parade (with emcee Scott Hetsko)  and music throughout the festival’s two days: Saturday, Sept. 16, 10 am to 6 pm, and Sunday, Sept. 17, 10 am to 4 pm. Events will take place on and around Main Street in Palmyra, and most are free. You’ll also find free parking at the Wayne County Fairgrounds on W. Jackson St., with shuttles to take you to the festival area.

Spooktacular Specials in Palmyra

Get in the mood for Halloween with an Historical Ghost Walk Tour on September 15 from 8 to 10 pm in Palmyra, sponsored by the museums of Historic Palmyra. Park at the Alling Coverlet Museum on 122 William St. for a tour of the darkened streets that will bring on the chills. The tour is $10 and you won’t want to miss this opportunity to explore one of the most haunted towns in upstate New York. Can’t get enough of Palmyra’s poltergeists? Mark your calendar for October 14, at 6, 7:30, or 9 pm to join a walk through Palmyra’s cemetery. Tickets are $15, second one for half off; and children for $8.