Through this month, the staff of the Buena Vista Chamber of Commerce will be moving their headquarters from the historic St. Rose of Lima church to another historic building.

Executive director Melissa Traynham announced the chamber would be relocating to the Wedge building at 111 East Main Street beginning April 1 and plan to be completely moved by May 1.

“We are confident that this move will allow the chamber staff to focus on initiatives to ensure we are a resource for our business community,” Traynham said. “You will also begin to see enhanced programs, advocacy, training, networking events and more. Our goal is to offer you more services and benefits that come to be expected from a chamber of commerce. You will be sure to see a larger return on your membership investment.”

Traynham said that the historic St. Rose church will be temporarily closed “while stakeholders consider how to best utilize the space for our community.”

The historic chapel, built in 1880, was initially destined for demolition in 1968 when St. Rose of Lima vacated the building. Those plans were held off by the efforts of Suzy Kelly and Grace Huff, The Times recounted in a 1977 issue. Kelly and Huff’s plan was to move the building to Forest Square Park.

The estimated cost of moving the building, however, complicated that plan. By May 1969, the building was fated to be used as “practice for the fire department.”

Marie Skogsberg, one of the people working to finance the move “responded with injunctions, television publicity and personal expenditures,” and the chapel was moved to its current site in June 1969.

The chapel is property of the town of Buena Vista.

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