Mar 19, 2024

Chamber Matters: A note from youCEO

Hello everyone,

As the Red River Chamber grows, we want to ensure you have access to the personalized support you deserve. To achieve this, we've implemented a new system for scheduling appointments.

Benefits for Your Business:

  • Focused attention on your specific needs through dedicated appointment slots.
  • Streamlined scheduling process for your convenience.
  • Improved preparation for our conversation to offer the most effective support.

Why a Scheduling System?

As the Red River Chamber grows, so do the requests for assistance! This system helps prioritize your concerns while guaranteeing you get the focused time you deserve. It also streamlines scheduling, making finding a convenient time to connect easier.

Scheduling Your Appointment:

Moving forward, I request that you schedule a 30-minute or 60-minute appointment for in-depth discussions or consultations, allowing me to prepare for our meeting and ensure I'm fully versed on your specific needs.

Scheduling with Calendly: Calendly makes scheduling a breeze. You can find a convenient time and book your appointment in just a few clicks.

  1. Find the Calendly Link: We'll use Calendly to schedule our meeting. Look for a link in my email signature or here (
  2. Choose Your Time: Click the link, and you'll see my available time slots. Pick a date and time that works best for you.
  3. Fill in the Details: Briefly describe the purpose of your meeting and add any other relevant information.
  4. Confirm Your Appointment: Once you've chosen a time and filled in the details, confirm your appointment. You'll receive a confirmation email with all the meeting details.

Simple and Convenient!

Looking forward to seeing you all soon!




Chamber Matters

We'd like to welcome our new members! Please click on their link below to learn more and to support them.


Networking Nights Social

Expand your network and catch up with colleagues at the Red River Chamber's Member Socials! These events are a casual and fun way to make new connections and reconnect with familiar faces in the community. Our next social is Tuesday, April 2nd. The location will be announced on our Facebook page:


Board of Director Elections

Our annual Chamber board of director elections are nearly upon us.

  • March 19 - Nominating Committee selected
  • April 16 - Nominations for board submitted
  • May 26 - Board elections
  • June 25 - Executive Committee appointments




Community Column

We all know the challenges with healthcare - rising monthly premiums, sky-high deductibles, and limited choice. We also understand these national trends adversely impact rural communities as well. That’s why organizations like the Red River Chamber of Commerce and many others, local, state, and national, have been partnering with the Small Association Leadership Alliance (SALA) to offer members another option - the SALA Healthcare Program.

SALA led the effort to craft a healthcare program that would emphasize monthly cost savings, controlling out-of-pocket costs, and national availability. A year-long effort of analysis and due diligence culminated with the launch of the program in 2018. Since then, hundreds of organizations have offered the program to their members with thousands of people participating; most at less cost than insurance on a state exchange.

So how does the program work? The SALA Healthcare Program pairs preventive care plans with medical cost sharing to achieve a complete healthcare solution. It’s a different approach than traditional insurance and it’s important that members understand how it works, why it works that way, and who to use for which aspects of your care, but it’s proven to reduce monthly costs by as much as 60% when compared to traditional group insurance or state exchange insurance plans.

A positive aspect of the program is containment of out-of-pocket costs. When you enroll, you select an Initial Un-shareable Amount (IUA). The IUA is what you agree to pay yourself, before the balance of your bills handled by the cost share and there are 5 choices. They are $500, $1000, $1500, $2500, and $5000. There is a maximum of 3 IUA’s applicable to your household per year, so you’re expected out-of-pocket would be no more than 3 times your IUA. So, for example, if you selected the $1,500 IUA, your max out-of-pocket would be $4,500, no matter how bad a year you or your family experienced.

In addition to the preventive care plans which have cover the 80 ACA-mandated preventive care services and medical cost sharing for the big stuff, there’s a robust virtual care benefit provided at no additional cost. There are three aspects to the virtual care benefit, and these are virtual urgent care, virtual primary care, and behavioral health. Telehealth has really expanded as a result of the COVID pandemic and our vendor is doing some pretty innovative stuff. The primary care telehealth service is a good example. If you live in an area of limited choice, or just prefer a virtual approach, you can select physician, do a home test kit for your basic labs, and handle many of your preventive care needs remotely.

We’re often asked, “What’s the catch?” The “catch” if you will, is some restrictions on pre-existing conditions. Pre-existing conditions apply to the medical cost sharing side of the program, which is used for the big stuff – anything in the hospital and serious accidents and illnesses. It doesn’t mean that you can’t enroll, it just means there will be restrictions applied to any health condition that had symptoms or treatments in the 36 months prior to enrollment. If you do have a pre-existing condition, you’re subject to a 3-year phase in. It’s important to understand this aspect of the program if you’ve had a health issue that qualifies, and we always recommend a call prior to enrollment to discuss the impact. We don’t want anyone participating if there’s going to be a negative financial outcome.

There’s a lot of aspects to the program to consider, and we’ve only touched on a few here. The best way to learn how you can save money on your healthcare is to participate in an upcoming Chamber webinar or set up a one-on-one call with the SALA team. All the program materials can be found on the Chamber’s website or by visiting If you’d like to dig into the details of the program, please email us at or request a meeting at

We appreciate the opportunity to partner with the Red River Chamber of Commerce and to serve the members.

- Rich Lawson, Small Association Leadership Alliance





A Toast to Tradition: The Rich History of New Mexican Wine and Cuisine

Did you know that New Mexico was the very first place in the country to cultivate wine? Did you know that there are seven distinct culinary regions in our state, each with its own unique flavors and traditions?

If you knew neither or both, you are invited to experience the past, present, and future of New Mexican wine and food with us at the 2024 Vino in the Valley: the Red River Valley's Premier Art & Wine Festival.


A Legacy of Wine: New Mexico's Resilient SpiritNew Mexico's wine-making heritage boasts a rich and enduring history, tracing its roots back to the early 1600s. In fact, New Mexico is the oldest wine-producing region in the United States. The credit for introducing viticulture to the New World goes to Spanish settlers* who saw the immense potential of this land for cultivating vineyards and crafting exceptional wines.The history of New Mexico's wine production, however, is not as widely celebrated as it deserves to be. This hidden gem of American wine making endured significant challenges, which, in turn, contributed to its relative obscurity on the national stage. Two pivotal events in the early 1900s, both metaphorical and literal, took a toll on the wine-making community, temporarily halting its progress.Prohibition, a nationwide ban on the production and sale of alcoholic beverages, drove alcohol production underground and cast a shadow on the wine industry. Simultaneously, massive and destructive flooding wreaked havoc throughout the state, literally ripping vineyards out of the ground and delivering a blow to an industry that was still finding its footing.Despite these setbacks, the resilient spirit of New Mexicans prevailed. Over the decades, families across the state tenaciously retained their wine making skills and kept the flame of this ancient tradition alive. Around two decades ago, a renaissance in grape growing and wine production emerged, breathing new life into this time-honored craft. Just as the people of New Mexico have persevered through challenges, so too has the art of wine making.Today, this enduring legacy lives on in the local vineyards that continue to produce wines with a distinct and captivating character. The unique influences of history, terroir, and culture converge to create vintages that are not only delicious but also a testament to the spirit of resilience that defines New Mexico.At Vino in the Valley, we invite you to savor these historic influences and celebrate the indomitable spirit of New Mexico as you sample some of the state's finest and most unique vintages and peer into the future of wine making in our incredible state.


A Tapestry of Flavors: New Mexican Cuisine

New Mexican cuisine is a vibrant tapestry woven from a diverse range of culinary influences, including Spanish, Native American, Mexican, and American frontier traditions. It's a cuisine known for its bold and flavorful ingredients, with red and green chiles often taking center stage. Each dish tells a story of New Mexico's history and cultural fusion. At the festival, you can embark on a culinary journey through our state's seven distinct regions, sampling everything from hearty red chile enchiladas to savory green chile stew.

As you explore Vino in the Valley, you'll discover that New Mexico boasts several distinct culinary regions. Each region showcases its unique flavors and ingredients. From the pueblos of the North to the borderlands of the South, from the fertile Rio Grande Valley to the rustic heartland of the East, New Mexico's diverse landscapes inspire equally diverse cuisines. Our festival celebrates this rich tapestry by featuring food vendors representing these regions.


Vino in the Valley: Where History and Flavor Meet

At the 2024 Vino in the Valley, you'll have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the fascinating history and diverse flavors of New Mexican wine and cuisine. From the wine cellars to the tasting tables, from the farm-to-table dishes to the spicy salsas, you'll experience the essence of a state steeped in an incredibly rich, and sometimes even ancient, culinary tradition.

Join us in raising a glass to the enduring legacy of wine and the mouthwatering wonders of New Mexican cuisine. Vino in the Valley is more than a festival; it's a celebration of our past, a toast to our present, and a glimpse into the flavorful future of New Mexico.

Don't miss out on this extraordinary event in the heart of the Red River Valley. And we’ll see you at Vino in the Valley, where history and flavor meet in a fusion of wine and cuisine!


- Naoma Staley 




As a member, you can use your Wild Apricot login to post and manage job vacancies on the Red River Jobs Board. Job announcements can be posted for 30, 60, or 90 days.

The job board is also open to non-Chamber members, so if you get to the payment page and it is not $0.00, you forgot to log in. Job postings are free for Chamber members.

To access the RR Jobs Board, go to our website at and click on Work > RR Jobs. Alternatively, you can click here:

If you have trouble logging in, please email us at




RDC Micro-Grant Fund Info Session

Tue, Apr 16 | Online - RDC Micro-Grant Fund Info Session
Small Business Owners! Learn how to apply for a grant up to $3,000 to move your business forward.


WESST QuickBooks Online Training

Wed, Apr 10 | Online - ROS 2024 Part 1 & 2 QuickBooks: A Cool, Focused Dive Into What You Need To Know For Your Business.

The upcoming session is designed to be interactive and will cater to the specific concerns and queries that you may have regarding QuickBooks. As every small business has unique requirements, it is quite possible that not every task provided by QuickBooks is useful at the initial stages. Hence, the upcoming session will focus on a targeted dive into your specific queries and issues to provide you with the appropriate guidance.


Artist INC Express Workshops

Multiple Dates | In Person - Artist INC Express Workshops for Taos, Questa and Peñasco

The Taos Arts Council will be hosting three Artist INC Express workshops this spring, in Questa, Peñasco and Taos. Open to artists and makers of all disciplines, all three workshops are free and open to Taos County residents. To register, follow the links below.



Volunteer Training Schedule

Apr 24 5:30 - 7:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working Security At An Event

May 22 5:30 - 7:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working A Gate At An Event

Jun 5 4:30 - 5:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working A Gate At An Event

Jun 5 5:30 - 7:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working Security At An Event

Aug 28 5:30 - 7:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working Security At An Event

Sep 25 5:30 - 7:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working A Gate At An Event

Oct 2 4:30 - 5:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working A Gate At An Event

Oct 2 5:30 - 7:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working Security At An Event



Visitation Data

Jan 1 to Mar 10, 2024

Estimated visits: 199.8K

Average length of visits:  9 Hours




Mar 4 4:00 - 5:30 P Vino in the Valley Planning Meeting at RRBC

Mar 12 1:00 – 2:00 P Finance Committee Meeting at Chamber

Mar 19 10:00 – 11:00 A Monthly Board of Directors Meeting: Board Nominating Committee at Chamber

Mar 25 4:00 - 5:30 P Vino in the Valley Planning Meeting at Sheehan Winery

Mar 27 noon - 1:00 P Local Employees: High Fives & High Fills thank you lunch at Community House



Apr Mondays 4:00 - 5:30 P Vino in the Valley Planning Meeting at various locations

Apr 2 6:00 - 8:00 P Member Social: Celebrating a Successful Winter Season at TBD

Apr 3 4:00 - 5:00P Membership Committee Meeting at Chamber

Apr 9 1:00 – 2:00 P Finance Committee Meeting

Apr 10 9:00 A – 2:00 P Member Training: Subject TBA

Apr 16 10:00 – 11:00 A Monthly Board of Directors Meeting: Board Nominees Announced

Apr 24 5:30 - 7:00 P Volunteer Training - Event Security



May 1 4:00 - 5:00 P Membership Commitee Meeting at Chamber

May 3-17 Voting Period for Chamber Board of Directors

May 13 4:00 - 5:30 P Vino Planning Committee Meeting at TBA

May 14 1:00 – 2:00 P Finance Committee Meeting

May 17 9:00 – 11:00 A Volunteer Opportunity: Roadside Cleanup (Orientation given on-site)

May 21 10:00 – 11:00 A Monthly Board of Directors Meeting: Board Elections

May 22 5:30 - 7:00 P Volunteer Training: What You Need To Know About Working a Gate at an Event

May 27 4:00 - 5:30 P Vino Planning Committee Meeting at TBA

Upcoming Events

Vino in the Valley

July 4th Parade & Celebration


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