End-of-year celebrations are deeply ingrained traditions in many cultures. In the workplace, they are memorable and exciting occasions that can help boost morale and forge stronger relationships as the successes of the past year are celebrated; members, workers and volunteers are shown appreciation; and, exceptional individuals are recognized.
However, as the workplace has become increasingly more diverse the need to be sensitive to the beliefs of others has become an important consideration. Moreover, holidays can be stressful times as people generally invest themselves in preparation for their own celebrations at home or attending parties elsewhere.
Cognizant of these changes, the Chamber traditionally celebrates end-of-year holidays as early as possible, usually on the weekend preceding Thanksgiving Day or the first weekend in December, and in a religion-neutral fashion. Our holiday symbol is the poinsettia—Euphorbia pulcherrima, "the most beautiful Euphorbia"—a colorful ornamental plant of Meso-American origin that over the past 150 years has become extraordinarily popular in the United States. Our choice has created an opportunity also to commemorate National Poinsettia Day, a December 12 date, which was declared by the U.S. Congress in 2002.