By Bailey Faulkner
The Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce honored 4 Forty Four Construction with the Business of the Year award at its annual awards luncheon on Tuesday. The luncheon, held at the Chetola Resort in Blowing Rock, recognizes outstanding businesses and individuals that have made a positive impact in Blowing Rock and the High Country.
4 Forty Four received the Business of the Year award in front of approximately 14o attendees at the luncheon. Like in past years, the Chetola Resort was filled to almost maximum capacity with businesses and individuals that put the Blowing Rock community first in their priorities. 4 Forty Four embodies the vision for community participation that the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce values.
“4 Forty Four demonstrates high ethical standards and community spirit and is highly involved in the Blowing Rock community,” Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Charles Hardin said. “They care relentlessly about the people and causes in the community,” Hardin added.
4 Forty Four, which has been a silver partner of the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce since the beginning of the program, uses its increasing success to give back to the community. The construction company recently took its entire staff to F.A.R.M. Cafe in downtown Boone to serve with the restaurant on its mission to “build a healthy and inclusive community by providing high quality and delicious meals produced from local sources, served in a restaurant where everybody eats, regardless of means.”
Always one of the first to sign up and attend the annual luncheon, 4 Forty Four also invests in the Blowing Rock Young Professionals organization and utilizes a progressive employee profit-sharing model.
Many other individuals and businesses were recognized at the luncheon, including Jim McDowell for his efforts with after school programs in the area. McDowell, recipient of the Volunteer of the Year Award, has started a science project involving 3-D printing and other subjects with young students in Blowing Rock. The group recently took a trip to ASU to learn about the school’s solar vehicle and large-scale 3-D printer.
“Students, parents and teachers are energized by the project,” Hardin said.
The Chili Challenge Award, voted on by attendees of the Blowing Rock WinterFest, was given to Restaurant G at the Gideon Ridge Inn.
Customer Service Awards were also given to Take Heart and Vincent Properties. Take Heart, a “sweet little boutique” housed in a quaint purple house in downtown Blowing Rock, received the Customer Service Award for businesses employing fewer than ten people. Vincent Properties, a family-owned real estate, development and construction company, took home the Customer Service Award for businesses employing ten or more people. The awards were given based on customer feedback and ratings on Facebook, TripAdvisor and other sites.
Other award winners from Tuesday’s luncheon include:
Commercial Renovation Award: Blowing Rock Medical Park and Urgent Care
Commercial Construction Award: Appalachian Ski Mountain Welcome Center
Outstanding Business Award: Adam Hill, DDS
Service to Community Award: Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation
Jerry Burns Ambassadorial Award: Lynn Lawrence