SYRACUSE — Chamber Assistant Director Kristi Martin shared the bicentennial committee’s progress during the Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce’s regular board meeting Wednesday, March 2.
“I think we’ve officially changed the route so it (the torch) will go through Syracuse,” Martin said, noting the torch would pass through Thursday, Sept. 29.
Torchbearers have been narrowed down with finalists set to be sent to the committee in Indianapolis. Locally, a party is being planned for after the torch relay; it will potentially occur in one of the parks.
To continue the celebration, the chamber’s bicentennial committee is hoping to work with Wawasee High School to have its football game versus Warsaw Community High School, Sept. 30, be homecoming. The committee would then have a parade that would mark both homecoming and the bicentennial.
In “Bison-tennial” news, Syracuse will be home to a fiberglass bison. The committee has received permission to place the bison at the corner of North Huntington Street/SR 13 and West Main Street, near Down Under. As far as what artistic theme will be used, Martin said they are still trying to narrow it down.
“We want it to represent the town,” Executive Director Tammy Cotton said.
Ideas included a mural on the bison that depicts Syracuse’s past, present and future. Board members also expressed interest in representing the lakes on the bison. Those with suggestions should approach the chamber.
Sponsors for the bison include Parker Hannifin, town of Syracuse, Chautauqua-Wawasee and Oakwood. Sponsors will be noted on a special placard that will be placed with the bison.
The chamber’s website was also discussed during the board meeting, with board members expressing the desire to see the website kept up to date. Ideas included training Cotton, Martin or someone else, a volunteer or board member, to do updates; the latter would help with Cotton’s and Martin’s tight schedules.
The board also invited Teddy Pieper with Velocity Concepts to speak at the April meeting about how his company could help redo and update the website. Pieper had approached Cotton about doing so at a discounted rate. Website discussion was tabled until the next meeting.
In other chamber news:
- OneCall Water was announced to be the Business of the Month for March. They will be setting up a display in the chamber office.
- Three new chamber members were approved: Picket Fences, Indiana Factory Outlet Marine in Larwill and Stoelting Law Office.
- The biscuit and gravy cook-off raised $250 for Teen Parents Succeeding while the Polar Plunge brought in more than $600 for Boomerang Backpacks during the Syracuse-Wawasee Winter Carnival. The carnival itself — despite cold temperatures — had good attendance, and plans are already underway to improve on it for next year.
- Cotton will be filing for a permit to replace the northern “Welcome to Syracuse” sign, located at US 6 and SR 13, with a new one while also moving it closer to the road.
- It was announced Jeri Yoder of Lake City Bank will serve as the chamber’s vice president for 2016. Yoder stated she is eager to aid the chamber with its QuickBooks and get finances more organized, utilizing her experience as a banker.
- The chamber will be hosting a Business After Hours from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. March 23. The event is sponsored by Waverider Marketing and will feature Man Cave Brewing Company and M the Market.
Next chamber meeting is Wednesday, April 13, in the chamber office.