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Business Briefs

Chamber meeting

By Larry Sparks

Thank you all who joined us on March 1 at our monthly meeting at Grace Community Church. This well-attended meeting began with engaging conversation and networking over breakfast, which was brought by Grant Winger and donated by Tito’s Burritos.

Our breakfast sponsor, Grant Winger, spoke briefly about the Fresh Start Center. He said more than 240,000 pounds of food has been distributed by Fresh Start Center to help many local families over the last year. Over $36,000 was donated to provide medical support, especially low or no cost dental care. He also spoke of the Round Up Fund that Mountain View Electric has to mitigate rising utility costs to families in need. This is important because, as he shared, 26% of Coloradoans are cutting essential expenses like food and medicine to cover the cost of utilities.

During a brief Q&A, Grant was asked if the center could accept Elk meat. He responded that as long at the meat was processed by a government-inspected facility, he would be glad to accept it. Fresh Start Center continues to be a blessing to our community and to families in need. The center is donor-driven and, as a 501c3, can receive contributions of both food and cash. 

The main presentation of the morning was from Dan Lanotte of Falcon Personal Security. Dan is a Navy veteran with 31 years in service. Dan trains individuals, companies, and nonprofits, like churches, on security issues. Churches have a low bar for admittance. Everyone is welcome inside a church, which can make security a challenge. Dan’s philosophy, having trained many church teams, is that proper training allows for adequate security and a relaxed environment for families.

Fire arms training focuses on two categories: skill attainment and practical training. His basic skills training addresses how to aim, hold the weapon, breathe and trigger safety. He spoke at length on situational awareness. He suggested that the unaware, armed or not, are at risk. Being aware of one’s surroundings is key to personal safety. The skills training will address muscle memory, a mental attitude of awareness, unconscious competence and a comfortable mindset.

During the Q&A session, he was asked about response times by local law enforcement officers. Because that can be several minutes, even in Colorado Springs, he recommends that people adopt the mindset that they are responsible for their safety. Other questions included the best type of firearm, his Defensive Shooter class, and other classes he offers. There was also a brief discussion of Automated External Defibrillator equipment. The conversation was enhanced with comments by Jeff Petersma of the Falcon Fire Department and by El Paso County Sheriff Joe Roybal, who were both in attendance.

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