Lonsdale Chamber hosts annual members dinner

Both a business meeting and a dinner, the Lonsdale Area Chamber of Commerce held their annual meeting on Saturday, Jan. 19, at the Lonsdale American Legion. Pictured are Sandy and Scott Pelava showing off the singing deer head they received in the White Elephant gift exchange. (Lori Nickel Photo)

 

Networking, food, and a business meeting were all part of the annual dinner of the Lonsdale Area Chamber of Commerce on Saturday, Jan. 19, at the Lonsdale American Legion. The evening started out with the State of the Chamber report by 2013 Board Chair Terinee Stangler who spoke about the many changes over the past year, including the task of taking on Lonsdale Community Days, the renovation of the office and the hiring of a staff person. The chamber has been without office help since last October.

“We have a job description and we’re taking applications until the end of January, with plans to hire in February,” she informed the members, adding that it will be a different position than the previous Executive Director role. 

Board Treasurer Pastor Howard White, also the emcee for the evening, then gave his report, starting with: “We have money in the bank.” He explained that the organization made $13,000 from special events last year, which is more than half of the budget for the year. He added that the biggest events were Lonsdale Community Days, the Lonsdale Showcase and the Fish Fry Bail-Out Dinner. 

He told the members that the board is now taking better control of the finances for better clarity. “We’ll be able to see and feel good about how members’ money is being used,” he said. 

White thanked former Board Chair Jared Langhoff for being the key leader of the Fish Fry and Lonsdale Community Days events. Langhoff was unable to attend the dinner, so White added: “When you see Jared, express appreciation for his commitment to the Chamber, and to Lonsdale.”

Mayor Tim Rud followed White, delivering the State of the City report. He shared what each of the city boards and departments are working on, and added how the city council has worked hard to keep taxes at a zero percent increase. He reported that the biggest goal for this year is the construction of the business park on the east side of town. 

A pie auction was then held, with money being raised to offset the costs of the dinner, followed by a White Elephant gift exchange where everyone brought a small gift that they may not have been able to use (or were glad to get rid of). At the very end of the evening a wine rack filled with wine donated by board members, was given away.  

“I had a great time, and I think the other attendees did as well,” White later commented. “We used our own resources for entertainment ... and the American Legion provided us with great service, cooking up the prime rib and chicken from Lonsdale Country Market. I’m already looking forward to next year’s event.”