To many, the backbone of every community is found in its locally owned businesses.
From the neighborhood barber shop to the family-owned convenience store, it's those establishments owned and operated by area residents which help to keep our communities going.
For 77 years, the Weirton Area Chamber of Commerce has existed with the goal of supporting our local business community through its various activities and programs.
With events to network, educate and assist local businesses, the chamber does everything it can to assist our business community and encourage residents to shop locally and support those businesses.
That support continued Tuesday during the chamber's annual membership dinner, which not only reviewed many of those programs but paid tribute to some of our area's most well-established businesses.
Weirton, and the Ohio Valley as a whole for that matter, is fortunate in having so many strong, locally owned businesses. Some have been around for decades, continuing to provide their products and services to generations of valley residents.
Some of those businesses have even been able to remain in the same family throughout its history, passing from parent to child as each new generation comes along.
During Tuesday's dinner, the chamber recognized some of those businesses, honoring 16 such businesses who are now in either their third or fourth generation of ownership under the same family.
Those businesses honored by the chamber on Tuesday included Assure America; Cattrell Companies; Charles Pappas Remodeling; DeNoon Lumber; Frankovitch, Anetakis, Colantonio and Simon; Ferguson Tire; Grae-Con Construction; Greco-Hertnick Funeral Home; Gus's Goodies; Iannetti's Garden Center; James White Construction; Mario's Italian Restaurant; Marsh Pipe and Supply; Newbrough Photo; Serra Village Retirement Community; and Waldorf Distributing Company.
It truly is amazing to see so many such businesses in our area. We wish them continued success and encourage our residents to support them and our other businesses as much as possible.