About 2017-09-22T21:03:55+00:00

About the Chamber

The voice of Muskoka Lakes

The Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce is the voice of the Muskoka Lakes and area business community. A non-profit, member-driven organization, the Chamber is governed by a 12-Member Board of Directors with input from almost 300 members.

The Chamber offers a variety of opportunities for business to engage in events ranging from workshops to Business After Hours networking evenings.

The Chamber offers services and products to its members and the broader business community, including:

The Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce serves the Township of Muskoka Lakes and Wahta Mohawk Territory in Muskoka and businesses doing business within the Chamber’s geographic area.

VISION

Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce will endeavour to improve economic prosperity in the Township of Muskoka Lakes through connectivity, education, and advocacy for our membership

MISSION

Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce serves the Muskoka Lakes community, driving economic prosperity by connecting with our members to benefit, promote and support their businesses.

Board of Directors

Chelsey Penrice, Chamber President

Chelsey L. Penrice

Board President

Harvey Kalles Real Estate

email

Greg Knight, Clear Lake Village Resort, Muskoka Lakes Chamber

Gregory P. Knight

Board Vice President

Clear Lake Village Resort

email

Spencer Morland

Board Secretary

Golf Professional

email

Sheila Overbeek, Overboard

Sheila Overbeek

Board Treasurer

Overboard

email

Matt French

Past President (Ex-Officio)

Johnston’s Cranberry Marsh

email

Patricia Arney, Muskoka Lakes Chamber, Bala Chamber

Patricia Arney

Retired

email

Lance DeCaire

Wahta Mohawk First Nation

email

Iris Ellis, Port Carling, Chamber

Iris Ellis

FCA Insurance

email

Bala and Port Carling Garden Centre

Kristan Farlie

Bala and Port Carling Garden Centres

email

Johnston's Cranberry Marsh, Muskoka Lakes Winery

Wendy Hogarth

Johnston’s Cranberry Marsh & Muskoka Lakes Winery

email

Alexandra MacDonald

Royal LePage Lakes of Muskoka

email

Nicole Richard

The Hook & Ladder Restaurant

email

Township of Muskoka Lakes

Corey Moore

Economic Development Officer,
Township of Muskoka Lakes Liaison

email

Staff

Norah Fountain, Muskoka Lakes Chamber

Norah Fountain

General Manager

705 762 5663
Cell: 705 706 2122

email

Annette Procunier

Member Services

email

Kylie Myers

Summer Administrative Assistant and Tourism Ambassador

email

Earlene Simpson

Tourism Ambassador, Port Carling Visitor Information Center

History

The Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce traces its history back to 1961 when the Bala and District Chamber of Commerce was incorporated. It became more active in the early 1980s when it started as an association for Bala and area businesses.

In 1990, it became the West Muskoka Chamber of Commerce. In 1999 a FedNor grant made it possible to hire Jane Templeton on a part-time basis. Jane’s role grew and she continued on as General Manager for 17 years until 2016. Membership grew as well from a few dozen members to almost 300. In the mid-1990s, the Port Carling business community began considering joining the Chamber.

As the Chamber had been serving a wider business area of Muskoka Lakes for several years, the membership changed the name to the Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce in 2003. The Chamber’s year round office is located in Bala Pines Plaza at 3181 Muskoka Road 169 in Bala. A second, seasonal Visitor Information Centre is operated in Port Carling.

Timeline

1961: Bala and District Chamber of Commerce incorporated

Early 1980s: Bala and Area Business Men’s Association formed

1985: Name changed to Bala and Area Business association

1987: Membership fees were $25.00 with 51 members

1990: Changed to West Muskoka Chamber of Commerce (WMCC). Visitor information booth built at Windsor Park

1992: Helped develop Hardy Lake Provincial Park and active in setting up Bala’s 125th anniversary

1993: Bala, Wales twinned with Bala, Muskoka

1999: Jane Templeton hired as Tourism Promotion Coordinator. Chamber website developed.

1999: First ever “Business after Hours” held and “Heritage Walking Tours” created

2001: Chamber created first ever Bala Farmers’ Market

2002: Chamber took over Santa Claus Parade

2003: Changed name from West Muskoka Chamber of Commerce to Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce

2003: Chamber awarded $30k grant to build broadband business plan, creating the Muskoka Lakes-Wahta Community Broadband project

2003: Chamber logo produced

2004: Chamber grows to 12-member board of directors, with by-laws and had 50 volunteers

2005: Produced the first ever Visitor Guide and Member Directory. Developed Seasonal Accommodation inventory project.

2007: Township purchased the Duke House and a Visitor Information Centre was established there

2008: Chamber moved into their present office space in the Bala Pines Plaza

2009: Chamber starts an annual Christmas Market in Port Carling

2013: Chamber joins Canadian Chamber of Commerce

2013: Finalized the ‘Choose a Chamber Member First, Keep it in Muskoka’ Campaign

2014: Hosted first ‘Spotlight on Muskoka Lakes’ Event

2016: Jane Templeton retired after 17 years; Norah Fountain begins as General Manager

2017: Chamber joins the Ontario Chamber of Commerce

We’re looking forward to welcoming you to the Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce.

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