Imagine a crisp December night in Temple — streets adorned with twinkling lights; the air filled with festive tunes. In the heart of our community, a local shop buzzes with holiday joy. The bell above the door jingles as customers step into a world of warmth and unique treasures. Each gift chosen becomes a brushstroke in our community's vibrant story, a tale of resilience and unity. This holiday season, as you shop locally, you're not just buying gifts; you're becoming a part of our magical, hometown story.
As we approach the holiday season, the significance of Shop Local becomes even more pronounced. Choosing to spend money at local stores and services directly invests in our community, contributing to its growth and prosperity.
According to the Small Business Association, when you spend $100 at a local store, approximately $68 stays in the community, compared to $43 when spent at a national chain. Local business owners also create jobs, support families, and contribute more to local causes. Small businesses donate 250 percent more than larger businesses, showcasing their commitment to community support.
Beyond economic benefits, shopping local offers personalized service, unique products, and helps maintain the distinctive character of the greater Temple area and small businesses.
This holiday season, join the movement to Shop Local! According to the Nerdwallet 2023 Holiday Shopping Report, over a quarter of 2023 holiday shoppers (27%) plan to shop more at local and small businesses to support their community.
Holiday sales are a crucial time for retailers, accounting for as much as 30% of their annual sales, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). Projected retail holiday sales for 2023 are expected to increase between 3%-4%, continuing a trend of annual growth since 2009. Despite a slower growth rate compared to recent years, this increase aligns with pre-pandemic levels, with online sales expected to rise between 7%-9%.
Consumer behavior post-COVID-19 continues to shift, emphasizing the importance of supporting local stores. Individual spending is projected to be slightly higher this year, with an expected consumer average of $875 on holiday gifts, décor, and other items, according to NRF’s latest holiday survey.
Shopping is not just about the thrill of discovery; it's an investment in our community.
Let the joy of shopping become a collective celebration of our community's spirit and uniqueness this holiday season and beyond. Discover the hidden gems for shopping, enjoyment, and exploration in the greater Temple area by exploring the Temple Chamber's online Business Directory at bit.ly/ThinkTempleFirst.
As the cooler temperatures blow into town and the scent of pumpkin spice fills the air, our community comes alive with fall and Halloween festivities. From fall festivals, pumpkin patches, and haunted houses, there is something for everyone to enjoy the season.
Enjoy the season with The Robinson Family Farm
The 10th Annual Fall Festival is underway at The Robinson Family Farm through November 5, 2023. The Farm is open Saturday and Sunday, 10:00 am – 8:00 pm. Tickets can be purchased on their website.
Whether you are looking for a day out with the family or for a unique place to hang out with friends, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
They have over 20 attractions at the farm, located at 2651 Bob White Rd. in Temple. They offer everything from a Pumpkin Patch to a Wine & Biergarten to axe throwing, zip lines, a playground and more.
The Robinson Family Farm is family-owned and operated. They invite the Central Texas community to join them and make memories or start a new tradition with your family and friends.
Catch a Festive Show with the Temple Civic Theatres production of The Addams Family
Embrace the hilarity of family life with The Temple Civic Theatre's presentation of The Addams Family, A New Musical Comedy, from October 19-22 and October 26-29. Secure your tickets for a "comical feast that embraces eccentricity in every family."
Witness the original tale where "Wednesday Addams, the ultimate Princess of Darkness, has grown up and fallen in love with a sweet, smart young man from a respectable family." Join the Addams family for a dinner that could change their lives. For more details, visit their website or call the Box Office at (254) 778-4751.
Family-friendly Free Fun
There are many opportunities for free family-friendly festive fun with Trunk or Treat events or fall festivals. Here are a few ideas:
Carlson Cares Temple Fall Festival
Saturday, October 21, 2023 | 2:00 -3:30 PM
2010 SW HK Dodgen Loop #201, Temple
Kids of all ages are invited to the Carlson Cares 2023 Temple Fall Festival which will include free Kona Ice, sweet treats, giveaways, trunk or treat, a coloring contest and more! Those attending are encouraged to donate a canned food item for Feed My Sheep. All who donate will receive a pumpkin to decorate at the festival and enter one of TWO of the giveaways.
City of Temple - Fright Fest "Creep Thru"
Tuesday, October 31, 2023 | 5:30 – 8:30 PM
Santa Fe Plaza, 301 W. Avenue A, Temple
Are you ready for a spooky time? Join us as we celebrate Halloween at Fright Fest “Creep Thru” on October 31 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Santa Fe Plaza (301 W Avenue A). Come see our fantastic community partners and Temple Parks and Recreation at Santa Fe Plaza for a safe night of trick or treating, costume contest prize patrol, and our grand finale, a fire dancer show! This event is free to the public and does not require registration. Don’t miss it!
Wanna Scream? Don’t miss Silo of Screams Haunted Attractions
Celebrating its 7th year of “making you scream”, Silo of Screams Haunted Attractions offers over 30,000 square feet of horror. They have five full size haunts for the 2023 Halloween season located at 1511 Industrial Blvd. in Temple.
The haunted house is open every Friday and Saturday night in October plus Halloween night. Tickets can be purchased on their website.
Every year since 1987, the Temple Chamber of Commerce has asked the Temple area business community to submit candidates for consideration to Leadership Temple.
Leadership Temple is a professional development and education program designed to help current and emerging leaders understand the dynamics of the community and the role leadership plays in its long-term success. It is a 10-month program where graduates emerge with an unprecedented level of community awareness as well as insights they can apply in the workplace.
The Temple Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and Leadership Temple Advisory Council are proud to introduce the Leadership Temple Class of 2024.
2023-24 Class President - David Shine
David Shine is a Associate Vice President – Investment Officer, partner, and financial advisor at Shine Richardson Investment Group of Wells Fargo Advisors. At Shine Richardson Investment Group David is committed to offering clients a wide array of wealth management services. He currently holds Series 7 and Series 66 securities registrations, is licensed in 37 states and holds licenses in life and health insurance as well. He is a Baylor University graduate and has experience in politics, banking, new-venture coaching, and construction. David was born and raised in Temple, Texas and is focused on serving clients locally and throughout the country. In his free time David and his wife Morgan enjoy spending their time outdoors fishing, hunting, and hiking with their Malinois Ivy.
2023-24 Curriculum Chair - Tanner Johnson
Tanner Johnson was born and raised in Temple, TX. Tanner graduated from Salado High School with honors in 2007 and Texas A&M University with a degree in Finance in 2011. After graduation, he went to work for Goldman Sachs in Dallas as a commercial real estate loan officer until he moved back to Temple to join Central National Bank as Senior Vice President. He is happily married to his wife, Brittany Johnson, and has two small girls (Tess: 4 & Thea: 2).
Leadership Temple Class of 2023-24
A Central Texas native, Jennifer Avery joined Temple EDC in June 2014. As Director of Operations, she oversees the administrative and financial responsibilities in cooperation with executive staff, and she helps manage projects. Jennifer also oversees the Santa Fe Business Center, which houses the Temple EDC, Temple Chamber of Commerce and Workforce Solutions of Central Texas. Jennifer loves listening to live music, dancing, and hopes to run a marathon someday.
Shane Brooks is a Waco native and graduate of Austin College in Sherman, TX where he received a bachelor’s degree in business administration and accounting. At Austin College, Shane was a 4-year letterman of the Kangaroo football team. After graduation, Shane worked for First Financial Bank as Vice President, Commercial Lender in Fort Worth. He has received his Credit Risk Certification and is also a graduate of the Texas Tech University School of Banking. Shane returned to Central Texas in September 2022 when he joined Alliance Bank Central Texas as Vice President, Commercial Relationship Manager in Temple. In his free time, Shane and his wife Kylie enjoy fishing, hiking, camping, and playing pickleball.
Sydney Cable, MBA
Sydney Cable, MBA, born in College Station, TX, and raised in The Colony. A U.S. Marine Corps veteran, she progressed from electronics maintenance tech to Maintenance Manager. During her service, she earned an AA from Central TX College, a BS in Business Management from Park University, and recently, an MBA in Project Management. With her husband and children, Harlee (5) and Jasper (2), she relocated to Temple after her military tenure. Currently Warranty Manager at Kiella Homebuilders since 2021, she's elevating safety and quality, aspiring to a Project Management role after Leadership Temple.
Rachel Clemons, LMSW
Rachel is a Belton native and has lived in Central Texas for most of her life. She attended Belton High School and received a BA in Psychology from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. She is a Licensed Social Worker and obtained her Master’s in Social Work from Baylor University. After living in Waco for a few years, she decided to return to the Temple/Belton area and invest in the community that raised her. When not at work, she enjoys frequenting local coffee shops and spending time with friends and family.
Before living in Temple, William resided in Salado, TX. He attended Salado High School and earned his degree from Texas A&M University. Following graduation, he worked in the oil & gas industry in west TX. Hie returned to Temple with his role as a Risk Consultant at BKCW Insurance, focusing on risk management and commercial insurance for local and regional businesses. William looks forward to contributing to Temple's growth and community, aiming to support local businesses through initiatives like Leadership Temple.
Born in Washington DC in 1959, Tom relocated to Texas in 1965 due to his military parents. He completed his high school education in Waco and pursued studies at McLennan Community College and the University of North Texas. Tom is married to Marcy and has two daughters along with two grandchildren. With 21 years of service at Workforce Solutions of Central Texas, he has spent the last 14 years as a Center Manager, a role he has held since 2002.
McNeill (Mac) Fairey presently serves as the Patrol Bureau Deputy Chief at the Temple Police Department. With a tenure dating back to 2002, McNeill has engaged in remarkable special roles, including Traffic, COPS unit, K-9, and Narcotics. Currently, McNeill's responsibilities encompass overseeing the patrol division, a vital role involving the safeguarding of Temple's streets and the welfare of its 80,000+ residents.
Taylor Fitzner, JD
Taylor Fitzner is an associate attorney at Baird, Crews, Schiller & Whitaker, PC. Taylor graduated from Belton High School in 2010 and graduated from Texas A&M University in 2013 with a Bachelor of Business Administration – Finance. Shortly thereafter, Taylor married another Belton native, Kori. Taylor graduated from Baylor University School of Law in 2019 and after a short time in East Texas, returned to Bell County in 2020 where he currently resides with his wife and son.
Lindsay Francis hails from a small town near San Antonio. She embraced her Texan identity by pursuing an agricultural communications degree at Texas Tech University. As Communications Director for the Texas Peanut Producers Board, she excelled in the agricultural industry. Lindsay's marketing prowess extended beyond peanuts, promoting various agricultural facets before finding her role in Temple, TX. Joining the City of Temple in 2019, Lindsay, now Marketing & Digital Media Division Director, actively engages with local and state organizations, including the Texas Association of Municipal Information Officers. Enrolled in Texas Christian University's Certified Public Communicators program, she's committed to impacting Temple's future positively.
Ben Hammonds, MBA
Ben Hammonds serves the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor as the Director of Fundraising. Ben and his wife, Kendall, are both graduates of UMHB and moved back to Temple in 2020 after living and working in Austin upon graduation in 2015. They have a dog named Rosie and are expecting their first child in October. Ben enjoys playing golf, running, and traveling in his free time.
Hudson Kennedy, a commercial lender at Extraco Banks, embarked on his journey as a CPA in public accounting before transitioning to banking 2 years ago. A Belton native, he earned a BBA from Abilene Christian University. After 8 years in Houston, he and his wife returned to Central Texas, drawn by the ideal community to raise their 3 children. Now residing in Salado, they engage with Grace Community Church and are dedicated to keeping up with their energetic children.
Chase Kern serves as the General Manager of Paramount Wastewater Solutions, LLC. A native of Temple, TX, he has resided in Belton, College Station, and San Antonio before returning to his hometown in 2020. Chase's wife, Erin, hails from Holland, TX, and they welcomed their first child last year. When not engaged in work or spending time with their son, the couple enjoys trips to the mountains, hunting, and fishing.
Erin Kiella, Ph.D.
Dr. Erin M. Kiella is an executive VP and consultant at Real Property Analytics, Inc., specializing in real estate value impact analysis. Her skills encompass complex valuation methods, statistical modeling, and econometrics. Formerly, she was a Research Economist at Texas A&M's Real Estate Research Center. Erin holds a PhD in Agricultural Economics from Texas A&M and a BBA in Finance and Economics from Loyola University. She resides in Temple with husband Chris and their two children, George (2) and Jude (5 months).
Clarissa Martinez is a recent resident of Temple. She completed a BS in Business Administration at the University of Phoenix and went on to New Mexico State University to complete a MA in Educational Administration. Clarissa has over 24 years of experience in higher education. She currently serves as the Director of the Circle of Support and Alumni Relations at Temple College. Her most recent community involvements include the Pilot Club of Baytown and service on the Habitat for Humanity, and Lifeline boards.
Logan McClinton was born and raised an hour northeast of Temple in the small town of Hubbard, TX. He attended Texas Tech University where he graduated with a BBA in Energy Commerce in 2018. He continued to live and work in Lubbock until February of 2022 when he moved to Temple for the job at CentraLand.
Joseph Rela, an Operations Director at Materials Transportation Company (MTC), boasts 17 years of expertise in engineering, technical service, and management positions. A summa cum laude graduate from Texas A&M University Central Texas, Joseph obtained a bachelor's degree in software engineering, maintaining a remarkable 3.9 GPA throughout.
Robert Schilling, aged 36, is a local native. He's married to Mary and is a proud parent of two children: Bentley (12) and Miley (14). Robert graduated from Holland High School and pursued further education at Temple College, earning a certificate in applications specialist. More recently, he attained Supply Chain certification from the University of Tennessee. For the past three years, Robert has held the position of Operations Manager at Walmart DC6083, marking a 12-year journey with the company in August 2023.
Bobbie Jo Young
Bobbie Jo Young is the Director of Membership Development at the Temple Chamber of Commerce. Before joining the staff, she served as a Chamber Ambassador and has a background in marketing and newspaper advertising sales. Bobbie Jo serves on the Main Street Advisory Board and is Vice-Chair of the Promotions Committee. Though she grew up in a small town, she moved here 23 years ago and is now a firm advocate for the bright future of Temple.