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Enmark Announces Speakers and Benefiting Nonprofit Organizations for the 2015 Encourage Health Educational Series

Posted by carriagetradepr on January 17, 2015

Enmark Announces Speakers and Benefiting Nonprofit Organizations for the 2015 Encourage Health Educational Series

(SAVANNAH, GA) Enmark’s Encourage Health Educational Series presents the 2015 lineup and benefiting nonprofit organizations. The series will feature four presentations throughout the year, from the area’s most respected experts sharing insights on nutrition, fitness and general tips for healthy living. Selected 501c3 nonprofit organizations will be awarded a $2,000 grant from Encourage Health Education Sponsors and will be allotted an Enmark Dollar Day, along with a chance to win a grand prize at the end of the series.

The lectures will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Auditorium of the Savannah Morning News, located at 1375 Chatham Parkway in Savannah. A healthy lunch will be provided by local business sponsors. Attendance is free and open to the public, but RSVPs are required at Healthy Savannah’s website, .

The first lecture, “5 Strategies for the Prevention and Treatment of Childhood Obesity,” will be presented on Tuesday, February 24 by Nathan Mikeska, BS Nutrition, CPT, CWC and Courtney Peterson, Certified Health Education Specialist and wellness coach at Ourlife Health. Childhood Obesity Prevention and Education (COPE) has been selected as the nonprofit organization to be awarded the Encourage Health grant during this lecture. The mission of COPE is to combat childhood obesity with a threefold approach – nutrition education, fitness and behavioral health.

On Tuesday, April 28, Drew McKenzie will present, “Crossfit, Why and How It Works in Weight Loss.” McKenzie is the owner and operator with Crossfit Hyperformance. At McKenzie’s lecture, the Encourage Health grant will be given to Georgia Bikes, a Savannah-based nonprofit organization working to promote bicycling for fitness, fun, and transportation. The group strives to help improve bicycling conditions throughout Georgia.

Robert Espinoza will present the third lecture of the 2015 Encourage Health Series on Tuesday, August 25. Espinoza and his wife Cookie are the owners of Fleet Feet Savannah. He will present “How to Train for a 5K.” During Espinoza’s lecture, the Encourage Health grant donation will be presented to the Effingham County Navigator Team, a not-for-profit support group and recreational program for children with special needs and different abilities. The group provides recreational activities such as basketball, baseball, soccer, cornhole and bowling.

The final lecture in the series will be “10 Yoga Tips: Hectic to Harmonious in 5 Minutes or Less” on Tuesday, October 27. It will be presented by Kelley J. Boyd, E-RYT500, founder and teacher at Savannah Yoga Center. At Boyd’s lecture, the Forsyth Farmer’s Market (FFM) will be awarded the Encourage Health grant. The FFM organization affirms it “envisions a sustainable, local food system that promotes the health of individuals, farmers and the community.”

The 2015 Enmark Encourage Health Education Series is sponsored by Healthy Savannah, the Savannah Morning News, Savannah Magazine, WJCL and GPB Savannah – WSVH 91.1/WWIO 89.9. Last year, Enmark Stations hosted the inaugural Encourage Health Education Series and in total, the series raised $7,200 for Savannah area 501©(3) associations.

Founded as Interstate Stations in 1963 by Robert Demere, Enmark Stations, Inc. is a family-run business committed to offering its customers top-notch service and superior products. Today the Savannah-based company, which celebrated its 50-year anniversary in 2013, operates 64 stores in Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina that offer high quality and competitively priced gasoline, food and beverages, lottery services and more. Enmark’s gasoline is filtered through a trademarked Double Filtered System, resulting in gasoline and diesel that is clean and 100-percent water-free. Enmark customers can save up to $.10 per gallon by using an Enmark Cash Card, a reloadable stored-value card that can be used directly at the pump. For more information on Enmark Stations, Inc., please call 912-236-1331 
or visit .

Matt Clements
Director of Marketing
Enmark Stations

Marjorie Young
Carriage Trade PR, Inc.


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Brandes’ talk is titled, “Walking on Water: Our Plastic Oceans.”

Posted by carriagetradepr on May 11, 2014

Skidaway Island, Ga. – University of Georgia Skidaway Institute of Oceanography scientist Jay Brandes will present an “Evening @ Skidaway” reception and lecture on Monday, May 19, on the campus of Skidaway Institute. The program will be an informative and visual detail on the problem of debris in the ocean. The program will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a reception at the McGowan Library on the Skidaway Institute campus to be followed by the lecture at 7:15 p.m.


Brandes’ talk is titled, “Walking on Water: Our Plastic Oceans.” Brandes will examine the growing issue of plastic and other trash and debris in our oceans. Most recently, floating debris patches in the search area hindered the search for the missing Malaysian airliner. Oceans around the world contain vast garbage patches within their centers. Marine debris on local beaches ranges from unsightly to unhealthy, despite the volunteer efforts to clean up the coasts. Brandes will profile the issue and discuss efforts that can lead to a cleaner ocean.


The program is open to the public and admission is free.


An “Evening @ Skidaway” is sponsored by the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography and the Associates of Skidaway Institute. 


For additional information, contact Michael Sullivan at 912-598-2325 or

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50-Foot Christmas Tree With Environmentally Friendly LED Lighting to Debut at Savannah Mall Nov. 15

Posted by carriagetradepr on November 16, 2013

50-Foot Christmas Tree With Environmentally Friendly LED Lighting to Debut at Savannah Mall Nov. 15
Georgia Power officials to be on hand to give away compact fluorescent lights, share energy-saving tips

(SAVANNAH, GA) A 50-foot Christmas tree decorated with environmentally friendly LED lights will debut at the Savannah Mall Friday, Nov. 15. The tree lighting festivities will begin at 7 p.m. in the Center Court. Georgia Power officials will be on hand during the tree lighting to give away compact fluorescent lights and share energy-saving tips. Festivities will continue in the Target wing, where children will have an opportunity to see Santa.

“Decorating our Christmas tree with LED lights is in keeping with our commitment to making the Savannah Mall an environmentally friendly space,” said Savannah Mall General Manager Phil McConnell.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, LEDs, or light–emitting diodes, can be more efficient, durable, versatile and longer lasting than other forms of lighting.

The tree lighting will coincide with Santa’s arrival at the Savannah Mall. Santa will be available for pictures in the Target wing from November 15-December 24. In addition, the Savannah Mall’s annual holiday train for children will open Nov. 15. Children and adults can ride the train through a winter wonderland for just $2 each.

About the Savannah Mall

The Savannah Mall, located at 14045 Abercorn Street, features anchor stores Bass Pro Shops, Dillard’s, Target, Burlington Coat Factory and A.C. Moore. The 960,000-square-foot, two-level mall, which opened in 1990, is also home to national retailers including Victoria’s Secret, Bath & Body Works, Gymboree, Game Stop, Champs, Claire’s, Hibbet Sporting Goods, Finish Line, Kay Jewelers, Marks & Morgan Jewelers, Shoe Dept., Zales Jewelers, Rue 21 and Cato. The Savannah Mall also boasts a growing number of locally owned businesses, among them Savannah Piano, LiveOak Orchids, Fitness Emporium, Aqua Swim Store, Relentless Records and Vapors Smoke Shop. Virginia College, located on the lower level of the Savannah Mall, offers a variety of classes in areas such as cosmetology, medical billing, culinary arts, business, healthcare and more.

The Savannah Mall’s Food Court features a diverse selection of eateries, including Chick-fil-a, Savannah Gyro, Sbarro Italian Eatery, China Max, Sakkio Japan, Cajun Café and Subway. Other dining options at the mall include Ruby Tuesdays and Texas Roadhouse, along with Savannah Candy Co., Cold Stone Creamery, Dear Cupcakes, the Nutty Bavarian and Pete’s Italian Ice. The Savannah Mall has a number of attractions for children, among them a double-decker carousel in the Food Court and soft play area on the lower level.

For more information about the Savannah Mall, please visit or call 912-927-7467. For leasing information, please contact Becky Orsi-Faircloth, marketing/specialty leasing manager at 912-927-9663

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Savannah Attorneys selected: Carlton Joyce, B.H. Levy, Jr. and Edwin D. Robb, Jr. of Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP have been selected for inclusion on the 2012 Georgia Super Lawyers list. Attorneys Greg Sewell and John B. Manly of Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP have been chosen as Georgia Rising Stars.

Posted by carriagetradepr on February 19, 2012

Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP attorneys honored
as ‘Super Lawyers’ and ‘Rising Stars’

(SAVANNAH, Ga.) – Carlton Joyce, B.H. Levy, Jr. and Edwin D. Robb, Jr. of Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP have been selected for inclusion on the 2012 Georgia Super Lawyers list. Attorneys Greg Sewell and John B. Manly of Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP have been chosen as Georgia Rising Stars. 
Only five percent of the attorneys in Georgia are chosen each year to be included on the Super Lawyers list. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement.
The Georgia Rising Stars are selected by the Super Lawyers rating service. To be eligible for inclusion in Rising Stars, a candidate must be either 40 years old or younger or in practice for ten years or less. No more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the state are named to the Rising Stars list.


Carlton Joyce of Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America, Georgia’s Super Lawyers and Georgia Trend magazine as one of Georgia’s top lawyers. He was selected by the Business Report & Journal as one of the top 40 business leaders in Savannah under age 40. His litigation practice concentrates in the areas of aviation law, insurance defense, and medical malpractice defense. He is admitted to practice in all federal and state courts in Georgia, the U.S. Supreme Court, and serves on the Federal Court Advisory Panel for the Southern District of Georgia. Joyce is a member of the State Bar of Georgia’s Litigation and Aviation Law Sections and the Defense Research Institute. He is past President of the Emory University Board of Governors. He graduated from Emory University and Southern Methodist University School of Law.
B. H. Levy, Jr. of Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP has previously been honored as a Georgia Super Lawyer. He concentrates in the areas of Workers’ Compensation and commercial transactions. Levy is a member of the State Bar of Georgia, the Workers’ Compensation Section of the State Bar, the Savannah Bar Association and the Defense Research Institute. He is a frequent lecturer at Workers’ Compensation seminars and at in-house seminars for employer clients. He graduated with a B.A. in history from the University of Virginia, where he was an Echols Scholar. He earned his J.D. from the University of Georgia Law School.
Edwin D. Robb of Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America and Georgia’s Super Lawyers. His practice at Bouhan, Williams & Levy concentrates in the areas of Admiralty, General Casualty, and Transportation Law. He regularly represents cargo insurers in recovery actions in Courts throughout the Southeast. He has also regularly represented marine terminals, stevedores, towing companies and their insurers in litigated matters, including personal injury, property damage and in toxic tort litigation. Robb is a member of the Maritime Law Association of the U.S. (MLA), is a member of MLA Nominating Committee, and is active in MLA Stevedores, Marine Terminals and Vessel Services Committee. He is also a member of the Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute and has presented papers and has lectured at various Admiralty Seminars. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and received his J.D. from the University of Georgia Law School. He served as an officer in the U.S. Navy on vessels in the Pacific and the Atlantic Fleet. He attained the rank of Lieutenant Commander.
John B. Manly is an associate practicing primarily in the areas of insurance defense, medical malpractice defense and commercial litigation. Prior to joining Bouhan, Williams & Levy, he served as an Assistant District Attorney for the Augusta Judicial Circuit in Georgia. Manly is a member of the State Bar of Georgia and is admitted to practice in the Georgia Supreme Court, the Georgia Court of Appeals, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia. Manly graduated from The University of Georgia and The University of Georgia School of Law.


Greg Sewell engages in a predominately civil litigation practice. He focuses his practice on medical malpractice defense, insurance defense, and commercial litigation including covenants not to compete and non disclosure issues. Sewell is a member of the State Bar of Georgia and is admitted to practice before the Georgia Supreme Court, the Georgia Court of Appeals, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia. He graduated from the University of Georgia and Georgia State University School of Law.

The selection process for Rising Stars includes peer nominations, a blue ribbon panel review, and independent research of candidates.




The current issue of Super Lawyers magazine features the list. Super Lawyers selects attorneys using a rigorous, multiphase rating process. Peer nominations and evaluations are combined with third party research. Each candidate is evaluated on 12 indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement. Selections are made on an annual, state-by-state basis.
The objective is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of outstanding attorneys that can be used as a resource for attorneys and consumers searching for legal counsel.
More information about the honor can be found online at .
About Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP:
Founded in 1886, Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP is a broad-based, general law practice with an emphasis in corporate, business and transactional law and civil litigation on the local, national and international levels. The firm provides services to a range of clientele including major corporations, small businesses, professional entities, insurance companies, financial and lending institutions, non-profit corporations, individuals and public sector boards and authorities. Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP and its attorneys have consistently been named to prestigious groups such as the 2011-2012 U.S. News & World Report’s Best Law Firms Rankings, Best Lawyers in America, Georgia Lawyers, Rising Stars, Georgia Trend’s Legal Elite, and the American Trial Lawyers Association’s Top 100 Attorneys in Georgia, among others. Bouhan, Williams & Levy LLP is headquartered in the Armstrong House at 447 Bull Street in Savannah, Georgia. . 912-236-2491.

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Savannah, Georgia: SPEED MENTORING CONFERENCE, MARCH 8, 2012 • 8:30AM-12:30 • $19.95

Posted by carriagetradepr on January 25, 2012

(SAVANNAH, GA) Savannah area small business owners are invited to attend a SPEED MENTORING CONFERENCE on Thursday, March 8 from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Savannah Morning News Auditorium, 1375 Chatham Parkway.

The conference is an invaluable opportunity for small business owners to learn about a variety of topics, ask questions and network with top executive who have decades of experience in the small business field.

Among the topics covered during the SPEED MENTORING CONFERENCE are Finding the Money, the Power of Social Media, Finding Your Niche, When to Outsource, HR Headaches, Cash Flow–Business Lifeblood, Pricing for Profit, Understanding Financial Reports, Preparing a Budget, and Which Product or Service to Keep and Creating Ads that Sell.

Participants will have 25 minutes to meet with their mentors about each subject. Members of the Savannah chapter of SCORE and the University of Georgia Small Business Development Center, along with top executives from area businesses, will be on hand to facilitate the Speed Mentoring process.

The event will also include lunch and a presentation by Dr. Timothy Mescon, president of Columbus State University. Dr. Mescon, who served as the dean at the Michael J. Coles College of Business at Kennesaw State University in Atlanta prior to becoming Columbus State’s fourth president in 2008, is the author of more than 200 articles and cases and has co-authored four books, including Entrepreneurship: Venture Initiation, Management and Development. Dr. Mescon has written extensively about retail banking, bank marketing and innovation and creativity in the financial services industry. He was the featured speaker at the AMEX/SCORE Speed Mentoring Conference in Atlanta.
“This is an excellent opportunity for members of the Savannah small business community to interact with and learn from high-level business professionals,” said Marjorie Young, president of the Savannah chapter of SCORE.

The cost of registration is $19.95 per person and $9.95 for additional parties from the same organization and includes the mentoring sessions, lunch and Dr. Mescon’s presentation. Participants will also have the opportunity to schedule a follow-up appointment.

The Savannah Morning News and Comcast are the event’s media sponsor.

Registration for the SPEED MENTORING CONFERENCE begins at 8 a.m. with coffee and refreshments, and the program runs from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. For more information or to register, please call SCORE at 912-652-4335, email or visit

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Mark Cutler, an experienced international business developer and management consultant has recently become Chairperson of the Greater Hartford Chapter of SCORE

Posted by carriagetradepr on January 22, 2012



Hartford, CT – Mark Cutler, an experienced international business developer and management consultant
has recently become Chairperson of the Greater Hartford Chapter of SCORE, the SBA sponsored provider of
counseling to small businesses.

Mr. Cutler worked for 32 years for The Gillette Company, a consumer goods company based in Boston
Massachusetts. Mark spent half of his 32 years with Gillette outside the United States when he lived and worked in
Panama, Peru, Spain and England. When he retired from Gillette in 2002, Mark was a Vice President for the
International Group.

Mr. Cutler has been an international business developer and a management consultant to scientists from the
Former Soviet Union since 2002. He has developed business plans, provided commercialization support, helped
attract investment and trained scientists in Russia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova, Iraq and
Libya. In executing these tasks, Mark has volunteered his time to several non-profit organizations as well as to the
United States Government (State Department).

In addition to the work in the Former Soviet Union, Iraq and Libya, Mark has been active in volunteer work
for SCORE, being incoming Chairman of Score’s Greater Hartford chapter, a nonprofit association dedicated to
entrepreneurial education and the formation, growth and success of small businesses nationwide, as well as in CDC
Development Solutions, a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization based in Washington DC providing innovative
and market-driven solutions that empower individuals, businesses, and governments in emerging markets. Mark is
also on the Board of Directors of SMS Audio.

In 2004, was recognized by President Bush with the President’s Volunteer Service Award. In addition, was
featured in a Time Magazine article in December 2003 on volunteerism in America and has received awards from
CRDF and US State Department for volunteerism.

Bernie Sweeney, District Director of the U.S. Small Business Administration, commented: “We are
delighted to have Mark as the new Chairperson of our chapter and are looking forward to using his leadership
and teaching skills in our workshops and seminars. We are particularly pleased to have another counselor who
is currently involved in international business as his presence in the chapter will help to insure that we stay
abreast of current issues confronting businesses.

According to Mr. Cutler, his interest in joining SCORE stemmed from his desire to share his entrepreneurial
drive with current and prospective small businesses owners. He also thinks that “… it is important to increase
the involvement of entrepreneurs in counseling and mentoring organization like SCORE because it helps to
insure that the organization and its volunteers accurately reflect the current business environment.”

FOR RELEASE: January 4, 2012

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Posted by carriagetradepr on August 5, 2011

(SAVANNAH, GA) Journeyman Austin/Hutchinson Hotel Holdings, the designated developer for the Trade Center Hotel, announces that Tommy Linstroth of Trident Sustainability Group will serve as a LEED consultant on the proposed convention center hotel on Hutchinson Island. Trident Sustainability will continue to enhance the local design team participation, joining CMMI Architects.


(SAVANNAH, GA) TEDX is connecting innovators and artists from locales around the globe.  Locally, the  Creative Coast is part of this movemen. Tom Kohler shared one view of Savannah, gleaned from 20 years of noticing hand painted signs around town, at the May 13, TED X at the Jepson. 
For a look at all TED X Savannah speakers go to!

(SAVANNAH, GA) Continental Shelf Publishing, Inc. is pleased to announce the launch of Savannah, Georgia, native and Asheville, North Carolina, resident Chris McMillan’s debut memoir, Backwards Off the Curb. The memoir tells the story of McMillan, who at 54 decided to take a chance of a lifetime and head out on a cross-country pilgrimage of self-discovery. For more information, please visit

(SAVANNAH, GA) Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce presents SMART Lunch Tuesday, Aug 2 at 11:30am at the Savannah Morning News Auditorium. Rick Monroe of Monroe Marketing will present “Repealing Murphy’s Law,” A humorous but instructive look at proper foundations for success in any business. RSVP to


(SAVANNAH, GA)  Celia Dunn Sotheby’s International Realty presents, 105 Whitaker Street by Agent Sarah Ross (912.655.6966). This two bedroom condo, was built in 1890, right in the heart of Historic Savannah, on the corner of Broughton and Whitaker Street.


(SAVANNAH, GA) Fundraiser at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse Aug. 25 to Benefit TV Mini-Series on Navy Ship with Local Ties

(SAVANNAH, GA) Spine & Sport is hosting a golf tournament to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project, Sept. 23 at the Cherokee Rose Country Club in Hinesville. Contact Beth Ann at 912.713.0777 


(SAVANNAH, GA) From vintage, retro and designer brands to popular household items, shoppers will find all kinds of amazing deals at their local Goodwill store. All the revenue generated from the retail stores support Goodwill’s job training, youth and community programs with the goal of helping people with barriers to employment find work.


(SAVANNAH, GA) Smart Women’s Expo & Luncheon on Wednesday, September 28, 2011 at the Trade Center.  Guest speaker is Giuliana Rancic with E! News and Fashion Police.


(SAVANNAH, GA) Interesting article about a natural cure for Autism


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Posted by carriagetradepr on August 5, 2011

(SAVANNAH, GA) Friends of Animals of the Coastal Empire, INC. will host its  13th annual auction and BEACH PAW-TY on Saturday, AUGUST 20, 2011, at Savannah Station (601 Cohen street) from 7:00 – 11:00 p.m.  COST is $45.00 per person – 3 DRINK TICKETS, food stations, SILENT AND LIVE Auctions. proceeds will benefit:

Bryan animal caregivers


Paws of effingham


second chance DOG rescue

the humane society FOR GREATER SAVANNAH





Shannon Wynn Downing
Investigative Assistant
Savannah Resident Office
Drug Enforcement Administration
Ph# 912-447-1035
Fax# 912-447-0231

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Posted by carriagetradepr on August 5, 2011

Distributed weekly on the CarriageTradePR Local NewsWIRE™
(AUGUSTA, GA) The Augusta Chronicle highlights efforts by the Housing Department to retain current residents as part of the Laney Walker/Bethlehem revitalization effort. For the full story:

(AUGUSTA, GA) New Bethlehem Community Center is now accepting applications for their After School Enrichment Program for children in elementary and middle school (grades K5 through 9).  The program is free of charge and provides valuable assistance to all participating youth.  Starting date is Monday, August 15, 2011.  Call (706) 722-0086 for more information.

(AUGUSTA, GA) The Woda Group and Parallel Housing, two of the pre-qualified developers for the revitalization of Laney Walker/Bethlehem, have recently submitted their application to build approximately four dozen mixed-income homes along Twiggs Street and Wrightsboro Road. Successful applications to Georgia’s Department of Community Affairs will be announced this coming November.

(AUGUSTA, GA) Entrances into Augusta will soon be transformed into beautiful gateways thanks to a $200,000 award from the Georgia Department of Transportation Enhancement Program (TE). The TE award will enable the Augusta Convention & Visitors Bureau in conjunction with Augusta Tomorrow to develop an Entryway Beautification Master Plan and to begin that plan at the Riverwatch Parkway gateway. and

(AUGUSTA, GA) Historic Augusta’s Preservation Awards Committee is currently seeking nominations for the 2011 Preservation Awards to be given at the organization’s annual meeting to be held in the fall. For more information, to check the National Register status of a building, or to nominate a property for a 2011 Historic Preservation, please contact Robyn Anderson by telephone at 706-724-0436, e-mail at or mail at P.O. Box 37, Augusta, GA  30903.

(AUGUSTA, GA) The Morris Museum is showcasing Artrageous!, a special performance of Civil War-era music by reenactors from the Eighth Regiment Band. Afterwards, create sun prints and decorate frames. FREE.Sunday, August 7, 2:00 p.m.

(AUGUSTA, GA) Verge Magazine showcases the revitalization of Laney Walker/Bethlehem in its July 2011 issue.

(AUGUSTA, GA) The East Central Georgia Regional Library, in conjunction with the Augusta Intertnational Raceway Preservation Society is sponsoring “The Tuskegee Airmen, Tuesday, August 2, 10:00 a.m. at Diamond Lakes Library. Meet Lt. Colonel Alfonzo Jackson and learn about the Tuskegee
Airmen, an elite group of African-American flyers during World War II. 


(AUGUSTA, GA) Subscribe to our weekly local BusinessWIRE™


Distributed by CarriageTrade Public Relations, Inc.
on the Local Augusta NewsWIRE(TM)
Marjorie Young, President
Enterprise Mill
1450 Greene Street
Augusta, GA 30901-5200

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Trade Center Expansion & Private Hotel Makes Sense for Savannah, GA – convention center hotel – Hutchinson Island

Posted by carriagetradepr on August 4, 2011



  1. Q.  Does Savannah need a dedicated convention center hotel?
    1. Yes, in order to maximize the Public’s investment in its Trade Center, the community needs a new convention hotel to help market to more and larger conventions. VisitSavannah (CVB) has undertaken numerous studies showing millions of dollars in lost business every year because we don’t have a dedicated convention center hotel.  Prior to engagement with a Hotel Developer, GIMTCA expended tens of thousands of dollars on nationally-recognized independent consultant studies to confirm the need for this hotel.
  1. Q.  Can this be done without the Public’s participation?
    1. No.  Although the private sector will invest the large majority of the resources needed to take our convention business to the next level, the Public’s participation is needed to expand the meeting space available for the Trade Center and new hotel. GIMTCA and the Developer team have attracted the best possible Private sector contribution. The result obtained is a PRIVATE Hotel with PUBLIC Trade Center Expansion space.
  1. Q.  Will the new development harm existing hotels or be unfair competition?
    1. Studies show that the opening of a Trade Center Hotel will have a marginal impact on the other hotels in the market, and only during the Hotel’s ramp-up period.  A Private-Public partnership for the Trade Center Hotel and Trade Center Expansion will have an overall positive impact on other privately owned hotels in Savannah as the new PRIVATE Hotel’s mission is to attract larger and higher spending group demand.  A formal hotel room block agreement at market driven “convention / meeting planner rates” rates will help our community attract bigger meetings than we can now.  None of the existing hotels have either the space or the willingness to enter into this kind of agreement with the Trade Center.  Therefore, the new Private Hotel will not directly compete with other hotels in Savannah.  Instead, the new hotel will enable and attract highly desirable business away from other cities and counties and bring them to Chatham County and Savannah.
  1. Q.  How much is being invested by the Private Sector and how much by the Public Sector?
    1. The financing plan anticipates the new hotel to be funded from Private sources ($115 million in private capital) with the role of Chatham County limited to funding only the Trade Center Expansion space with $30 million in incentive based financing and $20 million in incremental tax financing.  Chatham County’s participation is repaid with future Private Hotel operating income, taxes, and charges; all of which will be generated at the property.  Chatham County’s contribution will not come from taxpayers or the County’s general funds. The Private hotel will effectively lease the public space as a lease-purchase.
  1. Q.  What is the public participation paying for?
    1. Chatham County’s participation is funding only the Trade Center Expansion space that can be used in conjunction with the new Private Hotel.  The Trade Center Expansion space will include:
      • 30,000 net square feet of total meeting and banquet space;
      • 14,000 square feet of pre-function space;
      • 2,600 square feet terrace;
      • 11,154 square feet of back-of-house space;
      • Future connections to Trade Center with intent to allow function space supported by both Hotel and Trade Center kitchen;
      • Two sets of public men’s/women’s restrooms;
      • Function space FF&E that includes carpet, wall covering, special lighting, A/V, seating, tables, furniture, kitchen equipment, linens, utensils, etc;
      • Escalators and freight elevator serving Trade Center Expansion space only; 
      • 462 space parking deck with future expansion to 702 spaces.  Parking deck accommodates future Trade Center expansions with direct connections to Trade Center and Private Hotel;
      • Mechanical plant may involve expansion of Trade Center chillers to serve Trade Center, Private Hotel, and future Parcel 7 improvements.  This facility is expected to result in considerable operational and energy efficiencies for both facilities;
      • 13,000+ square feet of shell retail space at ground level will support Trade Center and other island businesses/residents;
      • The porte cochere arrival canopy will allow for the function space (“Chatham Conference Center”) to have its separate identity by an exterior entryway connected by signage through the public area to the ballroom and meeting space.
      • Potential bridge connections between the parking structure, the new space and the Trade Center.
      • For two years and out, the CVB and Trade Center control up to 80% of the rooms for group meeting business in a formal “room block agreement”

Benefits to Investment in a Private-Public Partnership
for the Trade Center Hotel and Trade Center Expansion

1)  Long-Term Benefits:


• Double Chatham County’s convention business

• Induce 83,000 new room nights in area hotels

• Create 1,170 new permanent jobs

• Add $83 million in visitors spending

• Provide $29 million in increased income earnings to the local economy

2)  Job Creation and Local Economic Stimulus:

• Create 924 construction/supply jobs over 2 years

• Provide 250-300 permanent jobs at the Hotel

• Maximize builder impact on local subcontractor/supplier/employment

• Deliver extensive Local Economic Impact Plan  with County M/WBE Staff

o Allows “Transfer of Technology” to participating local subcontractors

o Trains local subs in most sophisticated construction skills

o Maximizes local labor and subcontractor participation as a result of building

       design/local materials

o Offers collaborative programs for local colleges and institutions to work with hotel operations. For example,  Savannah Technical College, Savannah State, SCAD, Step Up Savannah  all have  tremendous potential opportunities to benefit from this project during development and ongoing.

3)  Most Efficient Financing for the Trade Center Hotel and Trade Center Expansion through Private-Public Partnership:

• Total cost of the development is $130.5 million. 

• Financing plan anticipates the Private Hotel to be funded from private sources ($115 million) and the role of Chatham County is limited to Public Trade Center Expansion space through a $30 million and a $20 million incremental tax financing, both paid for by incentives and revenues generated by the Private Hotel.

• Chatham County’s participation is repaid by the Private Hotel’s operating income, taxes, and charges. 

• Proceeds from the County’s participation will be used to fund Public Trade Center Expansion, Parking and other improvements that are public in nature.  The County would retain ownership of these improvements, leased to operations.

 • The County funded elements are considered an enhancement and expansion of the Trade Center, consistent with expansion plans for convention center over 10 years . 

This structure enables the Private Hotel Owner to guarantee a room block and meet other goals of the community, not to directly compete with other Private Hotels. 

5)  Poverty Reduction Initiative:

• The project would create an Opportunity Zone for employment targeted to elevate at least 200 households above poverty level with steady employment and with available health benefits.

6)  County Security – The following revenues are available to secure the County’s participation: 

• Annual Payments from Private Hotel Owner

An annual payment from the new Private Hotel’s net operating income will be delivered to the County. 

• Site-Specific 2.0% Facility Charge

A self imposed sales tax charged against the Private Hotel’s patrons

• Tax incentives

The new development is eligible for Tax incentives. Monies are first used to repay the County’s debt.

• Site-specific Hotel/Motel Tax

Hotel/Motel Tax generated from the new Private Hotel only. 

• Site-Specific Property Taxes

Incremental increase in property tax revenue generated by Private Hotel development pledged to County.

• Debt Service Reserve Funds

If they arise, revenue shortfalls will be funded from the Debt Service Reserve Fund.  The reserve will be immediately replenished with funds from the new Private Hotel.

7)  Private Sector Management:

• A Private Hotelier will be selected subject to a room block agreement that will position the Trade Center for larger and higher spending groups.  The Private Hotelier will work with VisitSavannah staff to attract more conventions.

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