Archive for Chamber News

America’s Best Communities: How Can YOU Support Wilkes-Barre?


Businesses, non-profits, community members, and college students in our area have been blowing up Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram with #ABC50 in support of Wilkes-Barre’s progress in the America’s Best Communities competition!

Leadership Class '15 PSU 1 ABCCoalCreative digital marketing agency and Terry Clemente’s Contemporary Business Skills class at Penn State Wilkes-Barre have been working with the Chamber to lead an engaging social media campaign to rally the community.

Downtown Business Association supporting ABC


Many have responded featuring pictures of their businesses with our America’s Best Communities signs, “selfies” with these signs, or text posts supporting our area and promoting the competition.

WNEP just published a great piece on local involvement, which can be found here.

How can YOU get involved? Make a post! Post to your Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram account to say that you are proud to support the City of Wilkes-Barre in their efforts to be named America’s Best Community, and include some of your favorite things about Wilkes-Barre! Just remember to set your post to “public” so that the ABC Social Media Team can see it too!

Visit our site to access downloadable images that you can include in your posts, learn about even MORE ways to get engaged, and find more information about the competition, and our revitalization strategy-which was shaped by the community!




Art and Entertainment in Wilkes-Barre: America’s Best Community

Arts, culture, dining, and entertainment are a huge part of Greater Wilkes-Barre. In Public Square alone, there are over 40 diverse restaurants within walking distance-including Asian, French, Indian, Italian, Mediterranean, and Mexican cuisine. Our area is also home to many great entertainment establishments like the F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts, the Wyoming Valley Art League, and the Little Theatre of Wilkes-Barre, to name a few.

Watch below to learn about the these establishments’  history and current projects, and see the wide array of dining options available downtown!

Thanks to the support of Frontier Communications and our local sponsor Scripps Network Interactive, the City of Wilkes-Barre was recently named a Quarterfinalist in Frontier Communications’ competition designed to identify America’s Best Community.

eBay Expands in the Wilkes-Barre Innovation District

eBay roomOn Friday, June 19th, eBay publicly announced the expansion of their space in the Greater Wilkes-Barre Chamber’s Innovation Center. This development increases their 3rd floor space from 8,500 square feet to 14,000 square feet, and will create 35-40 new jobs in the next 18 months. These jobs will be substantial, with a salary of over $50,000 a year. Mike Jones is actively recruiting recent graduates from our local world-class colleges and universities to fill these positions.

During the press conference on Friday, Mike Jones gave attendees a peek of the space, and revealed a renewed five-year lease in the Innovation Center.

The expansion announcement featured speakers Mike Jones, Head of Performance Marketing for eBay; Wico van Genderen, President and CEO of the Mike Jones eBay ExpansionGreater Wilkes-Barre Chamber of Commerce; State Senator John Yudichak; and State Representative Eddie Day Pashinski.

They spoke about eBay’s role in expanding our developing innovation district in the downtown area. With the added eBay space, the Innovation Center has now achieved 92 percent occupancy, with a total of 14 companies and approximately 140 employees.

An innovation districts forms from partnerships between close-quartered educational institutions, start-up companies, established businesses, office spaces, retailers, and incubators and accelerators. These districts become interconnected hubs of economic and entrepreneurial development, driven by collaborative advancement and synergistic networks.

eBay’s expansion and new job creation brings us one step closer achieving our revitalization goal of making downtown Wilkes-Barre an Innovation District, and claiming the City of Wilkes-Barre as one of America’s Best Communities.

Thanks to the support of Frontier Communications and our local sponsor Scripps Network Interactive, the City of Wilkes-Barre was recently named a Quarterfinalist in Frontier Communications’ competition designed to identify America’s Best Community.

For more information on eBay’s expansion, check out WBRE’s coverage of the event at

Welcome to the America’s Best Communities Competition

CSC_0056The City of Wilkes-Barre has recently qualified as one of 50 quarter-finalists in Frontier Communication’s competition designed to identify America’s Best Community. This gives our city the opportunity to compete for up to $3 million in support of a strategic revitalization plan that will spur economic growth and advancement in our region. The America’s Best Communities competition contributes $10 million over three years to support innovative plans for revitalization in small towns and cities across the U.S

Thanks to our sponsors Frontier Communications, DISH Network, The Weather Channel, CoBank, and our local partner Scripps Network Interactive, Wilkes-Barre has received $50,000 towards the development of our strategic plan during this quarter-finalist phase.

We will utilize a GoPro camera provided by our sponsors to document the impact that this competition has had on our community, as well as our progress towards implementing downtown Wilkes-Barre’s five year action plan. Our videos will focus on six core goals that will enhance and transform the downtown. Downtown Wilkes-Barre will be:

A safe, clean, and attractive place to live, work, shop, and visit

The region’s college neighborhood

The region’s “walk-to-everything” neighborhood of choice.

The region’s “Innovation District”: a setting for business growth and entrepreneurship

A great visitor’s experience, enhanced by our historic architecture, riverfront, colleges, and walk-ability

A regional center of arts, culture, dining, and entertainment

This downtown revitalization plan was developed through the support of our committee members, including the Diamond City Partnership, the City of Wilkes-Barre, Wilkes University, Kings College, Senator John T. Yudichak, and Representative Eddie Day Pashinski.

These goals align to form an accessible innovative hub that leverages the arts, entertainment, area businesses, and local colleges and universities.

Check out oCSC_0055ur video, which highlights the Greater Wilkes-Barre area as a great place to live, work, and experience at