The year 2014 is off to a good start for the Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce with five new members being accepted during its Feb. 12 meeting. New members included Y & S Designs LLC, Syracuse; Westmain Tavern, Syracuse; Pizza Hut, Syracuse; K21 Foundation, Warsaw; and Big Brothers Big Sisters, Warsaw.
Renewals are continuing to come in as well. Chamber executive director Tammy Cotton stated she would prepare a list of businesses that have yet to renew so board members and ambassadors can make contact with them.
The chamber’s annual banquet was a major success with 183 confirmed reservations and 174 people served. The silent auction had approximately 40 items, and banquet task force member Sylvia Gargett noted next year they hope to try a live auction, which would include larger items. Next banquet is slated for Jan. 27, 2015.
To continue positive growth and formulate a clear direction, the chamber will be working with Phil Penn to create a strategic plan in May. Board member Chad Jonsson suggested the chamber survey chamber members to see what they want from the chamber
Cotton stated she already had a survey drafted and sent to board members via email; she just needed the board’s approval. The board will discuss the questions and get back to Cotton.
In other chamber news:
• The chamber is working on putting together a Young Entrepreneur Group to bring together young entrepreneurs in the Syracuse-Wawasee area.
• Work continues to be done on the golf outing, occurring June 18 at Maxwelton. Lutheran Health Network KCH has agreed to sponsor the event. Ticket cost is $275 for teams of four, but the cost will go up $25 after March 1. The chamber hopes to have 36 teams participate.
• Board members hope to put together a team to participate in the Kiwanis’ trivia night, March 6. Proceeds benefit the Harold Schrock Athletic Complex.
• The events task force is currently working on the May 16 car show and is considering other ideas for special events.
• The chamber will be writing a job description to line up a WorkOne intern.
The next meeting is at noon Wednesday, March 5, in the chamber office.