The Oconto Area Chamber of Commerce had a monthly meeting called to order by President Ron Hayes in June at the Carriage House with a picnic lunch provided for members and guest.
The announcement of the winners of this year’s scholarship contest and the crowning took place prior to the meeting. 2ND RUNNERUP – BECKY BERTH who is a student at Minnesota State University Moorhead where she will graduate in December 2020 with degrees in Audio Technology and Sports Communication. Her special interests are playing the saxophone, softball, and creating videos. After graduation she hopes to start a career in Broadcast Engineering. Her Chamber sponsor is Cain Accounting. She will receive $250 as 2nd Runner Up. She is currently an intern with the Green Bay Booyah.
1ST RUNNER UP – JENNA HORNBLAD who is a recent graduate of Oconto High School where she ranked 4th in her class. She was class Vice-President, a member of National Honor Society, All Conference in Basketball, Honorable mention in Volleyball, and All-Fox Valley Girls Basketball Honorable Mention. She plans to attend NWTC & then UW-Green Bay to pursue a Degree in Nursing and perhaps a Doctorate of Nursing at U W-Oshkosh. Her Chamber sponsor is Care Partners
“MISS OCONTO 2020” – KALISTA SUSA attends Oconto High School where she will be a senior in the fall and she is an avid softball player on the High School team and with River Rebels Team. Her interests also include painting, volunteering at the Humane Society, reading, and mentoring young softball players. She was the most improved softball player in 2019 and the Miss Copperfest 1st Runner Up in 2019. She hopes to pursue a career as a Dental Hygienist. Her chamber sponsor is BeYoutiful Boutique. The judges were Beth Larson, Kim Bronikowski and Kathy Hayes and the greeter during the judging was Sara Perrizo. Each of the 8 candidates we had this year were interviewed one at a time.
Each of the 8 candidates submitted their resume and responded to this year’s essay question: “What it means to be an American to you?” The 3 finalists presented their essay in about 3 minutes and then answered 10 personality questions and 5 history questions. Alayna Westenberg, Miss Copperfest 2019 did the crowning. The other candidates who did not place in the top 3 received $25 in Chamber Bucks. The other sponsors of the remaining candidates were: Crivellos, Machickanee Players, Sportsmans Club, Avon & Patsy Bake, & Wagner Shell. Mane Street Creative Apparel donated the sash.
The Chamber would like to welcome one of its newest members, John’s Johns which provides portable toilets to the surrounding area.
The Chamber will begin next month conducting a monthly drawing for a member in attendance at the monthly meeting. $25 in Chamber Bucks will be awarded.
The annual golf outing with Oconto & Oconto Falls has been cancelled for this year. Members are looking into a golf social sometime in the future.
Items are needed for the Chamber Welcome Bags which are given out to new residents at Oconto City Hall. These items can be dropped off at OCEDC ON Main St. Oconto or call Kathy at 920-373-7377 for pick up. These items that include coupons, menus, business cards, pens, and any info about your business or organization.
“Tunes on Tuesday” will begin on June 23 at the Gazebo behind the Carriage House from 6:00-8:00 p.m. Bring a lawn chair and enjoy a variety of music coordinated by the Oconto Tourism Committee & Steve Peterson. Thank you to an anonymous donor for defraying a great portion of the cost. If there is rain, the event will be cancelled. Watch for updates on Face Book.
The Chamber thanked Laura Cormier of Bellin Hospital on her retirement at the end of June. Julie Bieber, her replacement was introduced. Bellin Hospital is up and running and practicing social distancing and safety procedures. If you have any symptoms for Covid-19 you may call for an appointment at 920-834-1105 and obtain free testing between the hours of 6:00-10:00 a.m. at Bellin in Oconto. The hospital will celebrate its 15th Anniversary on June 30th. Laura thanked the Chamber and its members for their support of the hospital over the past 15 years.
Abrams Theatre had postponed its events due to Covid-19 but “My Fair Lady” is scheduled for its first performance on Sept. 17th and thereafter. Go to www.abramstheatre.com for more info, dates and tickets.
The National Walleye Tournament is coming July 23-24. The rules meeting will be virtual and OCEDC will present coupons to the fishermen. If you have something you would like included, drop these items off to Samantha at OCEDC. Micro Loans up to $10,000 are available and well as grants for small businesses. Please let Samantha know if you have any events that are cancelled and she will get the word out.
The City Wide Clean Up will occur on July 15 and July 18th. You may drop off items free of charge on those two days only at the City Recycling Center.
The Chamber is still planning to sponsor its annual Harvest Fest on Sept. 26th on Main St. If conditions change due to Covid-19, further info will be available. There is a great amount of space on Main St. and social distancing can be practiced. There will be form shortly on the Chamber website at www.ocontoareachamber.com The same fees as the last several years will apply.
Alayna Westenberg, Miss Copperfest 2019, Jenna Hornblad, 1st Runner Up 2020, and Kalista Susa, Miss Oconto 2020, Becky Berth, 2nd Runner Up was unable to attend crowning.