Every year NTCNet hosts a customer appreciation picnic to give back to the community, and although it may have been a rainy day it didn’t stop members of the community from taking part in the picnic on Thursday.
The tradition of an annual began seven years ago when the West Canada Creek overflowed and flooded the surrounding area. Members of the community stepped up at a time in need and saved the communications company from possible flood damage.
NTCNet President Harley Rupert said without the community’s help NTCNet might not be where it is today.
“During the flood the community really came together and donated their time, manpower, machinery and even food to help aid NTCNet in anyway they could. It was amazing and we want the community to know that we greatly appreciate their help,” he said.
In conjunction with the picnic NTCNet celebrated 100 years of business through three generations.
On June 13, 1913, Leo C. Foss purchased the company and when he retired he handed it down to his son, Leo G. Foss, in 1952.
Tedd Foss was the last Foss family to run the business.
He started working part-time at NTCNet when he was 16. In 1968 he became general manager and in 1978 he took over for his father and became president.
“My family has been part of NTCNet for 100 years since it was started by my father, handed down to my father and handed down to me. There was never a time in my life that I didn’t live and know the telephone business,” said Foss.
Although Foss retired in 2000 he said, “NTCNet is still serving the foothills of the Adirondacks that once attracted my grandfather here 100 years ago.”
NTCNet Customer Service Associate Vallarie Yaworski said every year the annual picnic celebration gets bigger and bigger.
“We love it here and we are thankful for our customers. The annual picnic is a great way to show customers how much we appreciate them and their business. The picnic is also a great way to really get to know our customers and talk to them in person, because when they have any problems they usually call us and we don’t get to see them. The picnic really allows us to see them face to face,” said Yaworski.
NTCNet offers its customers telephone and long distant service, as well as Internet service. The telephone company covers 240 square miles and services 2,700 customers.
Mary Lee Dedicke, of Newport, said it was her first year attending the annual picnic.
“I’m here because my sister told me to meet here and I’m glad I came. It’s been fun and I’ve seen a lot of people I know. NTCNet is a great company. Not only do they do great things like this, but whenever I have a problem they are there to fix it,” she said.
Page 2 of 2 - Dedicke added everyone who works for the company is friendly.
“When I need help they are more than willing to assist me. When I’ve had problems in the past they fix things right away and even call a few days later just to make sure that everything is running smoothly,” she said.
Ed Falt, of Newport, said he and his wife Mille try to make it to the picnic every year.
“Their telephone service is excellent and it’s really interesting to see how well this company has done, because I grew up with Leo C. Foss and I knew all three Foss generation presidents,” he said.
Falt said in the past he worked for New York Telephone Company in Herkimer and while working there he would compare notes to those at NTCNet.
“I always got along with everyone at NTCNet and I’m glad we were able to have a great working relationship. NTCNet is a great company and I’m glad to see they are doing well,” he said.
“The Chamber of Commerce is made up of 99 percent of small businesses and these are the people who help pay taxes and these are the people we need to continue to support and use their services,” said John Scarano, executive director of the Herkimer County Chamber of Commerce. “Small businesses in this area are really paramount and most small business only stay in business for five years, so for NTCNet to have been successful for 100 years is wonderful.”