Akron Chamber celebrates 2012

Posted January 24, 2013 at 6:00 am

By Julie Ann Madden

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The 2013 Akron Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Board includes (l-r:) Rodney Anderson, president; Denise Loutsch-Beitelspacher, member at-large; Connie Blake, treasurer; and Brenda Groon, member at-large. Not present were Nicole Harding, secretary; and Mary Lou James, member at-large.

Akron Area Chamber of Commerce members and guests noted the successes of area businesses at their annual banquet Saturday evening at the Akron Golf Course.

After a banquet meal, catered by Akron Jo’s Cafe, the crowd of about 45 was entertained by musician Michael Oetken, an Akron-Westfield alumnus who sang 1970s and 1980s hits.

There was no “passing of the gavel” from the current Chamber President Rodney Anderson to a new president as Vice-President Brenda Groon declined the presidency; therefore, Anderson will continue as the 2013 president.

In 2012, the Chamber held ribbon cuttings for Akron Lanes, which is now owned and operated by Tim and Amie Lovrien of Akron; and Larson Design Boutique, owned and operated by Alesia Larson of Akron.

Also recognized were Bob and Dara Witzka of Chatsworth who opened R & D Tire & Auto in Chatsworth; and new social members, Roger and Angela Price, owners of the Baker Mansion in rural Akron, S.D.

Other Chamber 2012 highlights were:

• The revised City of Akron website, which the Chamber pays one-third of its maintenance cost. City employees Nicolle DeRocher and Kourtney Nicholson maintain the website.

Website features include free advertising for Chamber members; a notification system to alert community members by text or email of such things as the closing of S.D. Highway 48; and a groups formation where people can create groups for online forums through the website.

• Annually the Chamber sponsors an Easter Basket Hunt, Farmer’s Markets in the Akron City Park, the Halloween Parade, a Thanksgiving Turkey/Ham Giveaway where Chamber members hold drawings and giveaway turkeys/hams or they choose to donate the meats to Mid-Sioux Opportunity Inc.’s Akron Food Pantry; and Santa Claus visits.

A new Chamber event this year was the return of the Watermelon Day celebration, which included a charity auction and watermelon feed.

Chamber event advertisements in the local newspaper contain a list of current Chamber members.

• Welcome Bags are presented to new Akron residents. The bags are filled with promotional items from Chamber member businesses and hand-delivered to new residents.

• At noon the first Thursday of each month, Chamber members meet at Akron Jo’s Cafe. They hold a meeting and enjoy dinner Dutch treat and a guest speaker presentation. Anyone wishing to be the guest speaker is asked to contact Chamber President Rodney Anderson at (605) 565-3168.

The Chamber’s Executive Board meets at noon the third Thursday of each month at the Akron Pizza Ranch.

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