Ribbon Cutting/Grand Openings
Ribbon Cutting Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Ribbon Cutting
A ribbon cutting is the ceremonial opening of a brand-new or newly-renovated/relocated business that has opened within the last six months. It can inaugurate an organization’s first day of business or it can take place weeks after the business’ soft opening.
Because the ribbon cutting marks a very significant moment in the business’ history, this is also a great photo opportunity. The ceremony gives the business owner or manager a chance to say a few words to those gathered. Business owners have used this time to publicly thank their financial backers, their employees, their friends and family, and/or their business partners. They also take the opportunity to talk about what their business does.
You must be a new or current Chamber member in good standing (including dues paid) for the Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce to participate in your ribbon cutting.
Who qualifies for a ribbon cutting?
The Virginia Peninsula Chamber of Commerce is available to assist with your ceremony if your business has:
- Current or new chamber member
- Opened its doors within the past six months
- Moved to a new location due to expansion
- Has been remodeled or has expanded its current location
- Is celebrating a milestone anniversary
What are the benefits of holding a Chamber ribbon cutting?
By hosting a ribbon cutting, you can:
- Introduce both the public and Chamber members to your business
- Announce your ribbon cutting on the Chamber’s Website Calendar
- Familiarize the public and Chamber members with your product/services
- Familiarize the public and Chamber members with your physical location
- Begin a customer base
- Generate leads and sales from attendees
- Publish a photo of your ribbon cutting on Social Media sites.
Is there a cost to have the Chamber participate?
There is not a fee for the Chamber to participate in your ribbon cutting.:
Is the ribbon cutting my business’ event or a Chamber event?
It is both, however the focus will be on promoting your business with the chambers assistance. The Chamber will assisting promoting your ribbon cutting in the following manner:
- Notify the Chamber’s Board of Directors and Ambassadors Committee members of your ribbon cutting, encouraging their attendance
- List your ribbon cutting on the Chamber’s Calendar and ribbon cutting page of our website
- Have a member of the Chamber’s Leadership Team provide congratulatory remarks and present the certificate of appreciation
- Provide a media list for you to send a press release to the local media
- Provide a list of Chamber member caterers
- Bring the ceremonial ribbon-cutting scissors, the ribbon and certificate of appreciation from the Chamber
- Take pictures at the event and publish a photo on our Social Media sites.
- Provide you with copies of the photos for your use
While the Chamber will extend the above mentioned invitations and list your ribbon cutting on our Calendar, we strongly encourage you to conduct your own PR campaign to increase the attendance and awareness of your business’s opening. You should also consider personnely inviting the city officials, your business partners, financiers, contractors, employees, customers, friends, and family to be with you to celebrate this momentous occasion in your business’s history. Please understand that you should not rely solely on the Chamber to attract your audience.
What do we do?
Because your ribbon cutting is your event, there are no set rules. To make your event successful, carefully consider the following:
- Schedule your event using our Ribbon Cutting Reservation Form at least two weeks in advance. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays are usually best days during the week for business people, not earlier than 8:00 a.m. and avoiding later evening functions unless this is the type business you have. We’re sorry; the Chamber cannot assist with ribbon cuttings on weekends and holidays.
- Determine who will cut the ribbon. The owners or top executives most frequently do the honors, but each business is different and can pick whomever they like.
- Who will be in the photo(s). Some businesses will take multiple photos with various groups of people before actually cutting the ribbon. Photos might include employees, family, Chamber members, business partners, and Ambassadors for example.
- Your remarks or speech. This is usually done when everyone is gathered before cutting the ribbon.
- Invite everyone you know! Invite your family, friends, past, current and potential customers, business associates (including your accountant, banker, and property owner,) suppliers, your employees, the media, neighboring businesses, and government officials.
- Consider having giveaways, especially logo items that guests can take back to their offices. The Chamber is happy to provide you with members who can help you create gifts.
- Food and beverage should be offered. Upon request the Chamber is happy to provide you with members who can help you with catering.
- Prepare a quick speech and be sure to have plenty of brochures available.
Other details to enhance your event
Refreshments, drinks, door prizes, and decorations are optional and up to you. Many businesses add these extra touches when conducting a public grand opening in conjunction with the ribbon cutting.
A special invitation. The Chamber can provide you a member mailing list ( at a nominal fee), if you would like to mail an optional special invitation to the entire membership. This is especially encouraged if you are conducting a grand opening with prizes, business specials, and refreshments.
Organize a separate PR campaign. If you would like to invite the general public, you should explore other advertising avenues and/or consider sending a press release to the local media. You can do this yourself or hire a marketing company to help you with this. The Chamber can provide you with a list of the local media contacts and a membership directory to locate a marketing firm.
Complete and return the Chamber’s Ribbon Cutting reservation form. Click here to complete the Ribbon Cutting Reservation Form and email it to email@example.com. Please note: Pre-registration with the Chamber for Ribbon Cuttings is required with two weeks advance notice. Events are scheduled based upon availability during business hours only (Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.) If you wish to host a ribbon cutting after 4:30 pm, please call our office to discuss.
Note: The Chamber cannot guarantee the number of guests in attendance. Pre-registration with the Chamber for Ribbon Cuttings is required with two weeks advance notice. Events are scheduled based upon availability.
Contact Jackie Shapiro at (757) 325-8162 for more information.
2017 Ribbon CuttingsClick on the Date to pre-register for the event.Click on the Business name to learn more about the business hosting the event.1911 Saville RdHampton, VA1900 George Washington Memorial HwyYorktown, VA1072 W. Mercury BlvdHampton, VA11818 Rock Landing Dr., Ste 207Newport News, VA15435 Warwick Blvd.Newport News, VATech Center12090 Jefferson Ave.Newport News, VA