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Chamber News

Spencer RAGBRAI "Fandango Fridays"

Spencer Mayor Reynold Peterson has declared each Friday through July 21 as "Fandago Friday."  Residents and businesses in Spencer are encouraged to wear their Spencer RAGBRAI T-Shirts each Friday.  In addition, everyone wearing the t-shirt can enter the t-shirt contest by posting a fun photo of them or their group on Facebook  using the hashtag #kickyourwheelsup and sharing it on the Spencer RAGBRAI Facebook page.
Spencer RAGBRAI T-Shirts are just $15 and available now at the Spencer Chamber of Commerce at 1805 Highway Blvd., Bikes, Board and Shades in downtown Spencer, Squire Shoppe in downtown Spencer and Buena Vista University located at Gateway North.  Adult and Childrens sizes are available.


Entry Rules:
Must be wearing your Spencer RAGBRAI T-Shirt in the photo
Photo must be hashtagged #KickYourWheelsUp and shared to the Spencer RAGBRAI Facebook page
Have Fun
Encourage others to participate


Spencer Named One of 20 Best Small Towns to visit in 2017

Smithsonian Magazine has named Spencer one of the 20 Best Small Towns to visit in 2017.  The article takes note of our "fantastic trail system" as well as the amenities that we have come to enjoy by living in this great part of the state.
Other highlights from the author include the public art piece in East Leach Park, the beauty of the Little Sioux and Ocheyedan Rivers as they merge near Grand Avenue, the art deco buildings located throughout the downtown area and of course the "World's Greatest County Fair," the Clay County Fair which celebrates its Centennial Year in 2017.
Other communities named by the magazine include; Talkeetna, Alaska, Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, Rockland, Maine, Kent, Connecticut, Makanda, Illinois, Grand Marais, Minnesota, Ojai, California, Snowmass Village, Colorado, Abilene, Kansas, Mineral Point, Wisconsin, Hana, Hawaii, Bell Buckle, Tennessee, Oakland, Maryland, Rincon, Puerto Rico, De Smet, South Dakota, Cheraw, South Caroline, Page, Arizone and Hill City, South Dakota.


2017-18 Spencer Chamber Community Guide Now Available

Hot off the press is the NEW 2017-2018 Spencer Chamber of Commerce Community Guide and Member Directory.  Each spring the Chamber partners with the Spencer Daily Reporter to publish this popular informational guide tailored to meet the needs of those new to the community, those visiting and for those who simply are in search of a resource guide on the Spencer Community.

In addition to information on attractions and important city services, the guide features a complete directory of members supporters of the Spencer Chamber of Commerce listed by category.  The smaller size and format introduced last year allows for easy storage of the guide in a glove compartment, magazine rack or at home.

Businesses and Organizations wishing to have the guide available at their should simple call or email the office and we'll get them delivered to you.


Spencer RAGBRAI Website Features Online Signup

If looking to become a Vendor, Volunteer or offer housing during the Spencer RAGBRAI Overnight Stop in Spencer on July 23rd, signing up is now easier than ever. 
The new Spencer RAGBRAI site is now up and running offering the most up-to-date information for both the general public and the registered riders.
If looking to become a Food or Non-Food Vendor you must fill out the online form which will then be directly in the hands of the Spencer Vendor committee.  Those looking to volunteer we ask that you please indicate your preference of committees to serve and submit the online form.  Over 400 volunteers will be needed to host the event in over a dozen seperate areas from entertainment to shuttles.
Housing requests from Riders of RAGBRAI will be accepted beginning May 1 and that online form will be LIVE beginning on that date.  All requests must be made from the Spencer RAGBRAI website.
As more information, maps and area attractions become available, all will be available on the Spencer site.
Please visit:  www.spencerragbrai.com


Spencer RAGBRAI 2017 Announcements

The Entertainment and Publicity Committees have announced the headline band, 2017 Spencer RAGBRAI Logo and theme for the Spencer overnight stay on July 23rd.
The Johnny Holm Band will take the stage as the headline act when riders stay in Spencer on Sunday, July 23.  Johnny Holm is the most entertaining entertainer performing today.  The show is dedicated to the fans, and they do most of the entertaining.  Mostly impromptu, the show moves with the speed of lightning and changes direction as soon as "the pied piper" notices a lag.  "Never a Dull Moment" was never a more true description.  Surrounding himself with the finest musicians in the Midwest, the band rocks, picks, and thunders along for 3-4 hours, almost non-stop from the first song to the last laugh.
"The Johnny Holm Band is the ultimate entertainer in the Midwest," says Ryan Odor, Executive Committee Co-Chair.  "He performed for Spencer RAGBRAI 2007 and we knew we wanted him to be a part of our event again this year."
The Spencer RAGBRAI committee also released the theme and 2017 Spencer logo at a recent Spencer Chamber Business After Hours held at the Clay County Fair.  The theme "Kick Your Wheels Up!" and the logo were inspired by the Centennial of the Clay County Fair, which will be held September 9 - 17 of this year.
"Most of the RAGBRAI activities are held at the fair, and the tower gates are an iconic part of Spencer," says Spencer RAGBRAI Executive Co-Chair Kevin Brown.  "We knew we wanted to work at least part of the fair into our design, while still making sure we included RAGBRAI elements, I think we've done a great job of that!"
Stay up to date with Spencer RAGBRAI Information on the Spencer RAGBRAI Facebook Page or on the website at www.spencerragbrai.com


Spencer Chamber "Community Patron" Memberships Available!

Did you know that as an individual, you can still support the community by being a member of the Spencer Chamber of Commerce?  Enjoy the many benefits of being a Chamber Member with our "Community Patron" Individual Memberships.  Several in the community have already discovered the benefits of knowing what's happening in the community and by being able to attend Chamber functions and events.  As a "Community Patron" you are entitled to the same opportunities as any other member of the Chamber.  Attend Business Before and After Hours, participate in events such as the Golf Outing, Bowling Outing, Annual Celebration and much more.  The best part is that your commitment is just $124!  Your name will appear in the newest Spencer Chamber Community Guide as well as the Chamber Online Membership Guide as being a supporter of the Chamber.  No business name or business relationship can be attached to this membership.

 For more information please contact the Chamber Office at 712-262-5680, or email at: info@spenceriowachamber.org
or go to our online membership application at: http://spenceriowachamber.org/jointhechamber.php


Spencer Selected as Overnight Stop on RAGBRAI

At the Official RAGBRAI Route Announcement Party on Saturday, January 21, it was announced that Spencer will again be an overnight host for the ride which will begin in Orange City on Sunday, July 23.
This will be the fifth time Spencer has been selected as an overnight stop for the thousands of riders as they take a far northern route in 2017.  After Spencer, the ride will continue to Algona followed by Clear Lake.
An Executive and Advisory Board is in place to begin the planning for the ride with other assignments to follow including those who will be in charge of housing, publicity, food, entertainment, public safety and much more.
The last time the ride spent the night in Spencer was 2007 with the theme "License to Thrill".  One of the first tasks of the committee as they begin planning for this year will be to develop a theme and corresponding logo.
As you can imagine this massive undertaking takes many volunteers.  If you would give of your time to assist in the planning of the event as well as working in many areas the day they arrive please fill out a Chamber Volunteer Form at:
http://spenceriowachamber.org/volunteer.php


Members Assemble for 2016 Spencer Chamber Annual Celebration

The Board and Staff of the Spencer Chamber of Commerce held its Annual Celebration on October 13 at the Clay County Regional Events Center.
This annual event highlights the activities, accomplishments and goals of the Chamber over the past fiscal year and is capped off with the presentation of the Chamber Business of the Year and Jack Wedel Volunteer Service Award.
The keynote address of the lunchtime gathering looked at Leadership in Business and was presented by nationally known speaker, trainer and author David Aaker.
The meeting is also a time to recognize those dedicated individuals that are leaving the Chamber Board and those Directors taking new positions.  Outgoing board members were:  Jarrett Smith, Melissa Cunningham, Tony Niese and Rod Meendering.  Those elected to the board from the recent election include:  Kevin Brown, Mike Carlson, Mary Faber and Nate Schmidt.

This year's award recipients were:
Solutions - Chamber Business of the Year
Kelly McCarty - Jack Wedel Volunteer Service Award


Jack Wedel Volunteer Service Award Goes to Kelly McCarty

A highlight of the Spencer Chamber of Commerce Annual Celebration is the presentation of the coveted Jack Wedel Volunteer Service Award.  Each year nominations are accepted for an individual or group that has dedicated themselves to volunteering with community agencies and organizations.
This year, Kelly McCarty, who serves as the Regional Director of the Northwest Iowa Small Business Development Center of Iowa Lakes, was the recipient of the award presented by last year's winner Rod Meendering.
Kelly has given an unselfish amount of time to the Spencer Daybreakers Kiwanis Club, the Y's Men's Club, Spencer Betterment Committee, Spencer Sacred Heart Church, Clay County Heritage and serves in a managing role for the Clay County revolving loan fund and the Rose Retail Revolving Loan Fund.  Kelly has also assisted the Chamber many times over with those interested in opening new small businesses in the community.


"Solutions" receives Chamber Business of the Year Award

As part of the Spencer Chamber of Commerce Annual Celebration, Solutions of Spencer received the Chamber Business of the Year Award following a nomination process.  In business for 30 years, Solutions, a privately-owned technology business located in west Spencer, has seen continued growth since their beginning in 1986.  The business and its employees have  given back to the community in many ways including the support of the Chamber and Spencer Mainstreet, SPACE, Shayla Bee, Upper Des Moines Oppportunity and many other agencies and organizations.


Home Base Iowa - Clay County

in 2015 Clay County was officially designated a Home Base Iowa Community following an effort by many Spencer City and Clay County agencies and organizations. 

With around 300,000 military men and women leaving active service, communities in Iowa are encouraging these retirees to relocate and fill job opportunities matching their skill sets.  Over 100 Clay County businesses made a pledge to hire returning military veterans if a job opening takes place that matches their skill levels.  In addition, Clay County has developed an incentive package as part of this process including housing and rental assistance, hotel, gas,  food vouchers and much more.
Clay County was the first in the northwest Iowa region to receive this important designation and stands ready to assist those seeking to relocate to Spencer and Clay County.


For more information on the Home Base Iowa program and detailed information on opportunities in Clay County please visit the Home Base Iowa website and click on Clay County.

https://www.homebaseiowa.gov/clay-county-community-information





Spencer Chamber Young Professionals

Young Professionals of the Spencer area are invited to learn more about the many Spencer area opportunities and activities available to them through Spencer U.S.A., the Young Professionals of the Spencer Chamber of Commerce.
Spencer U.S.A. is made up of a core group which organizes social activities such as the popular "Lunch Gig," held monthly at various restaurants throughout the community.  Recently, the group introduced a new evening social gathering "Thirsty Thursdays," held the the first Thursday of each month from 5 - 7 pm at various Chamber Member lounges. 
In addition, Spencer U.S.A., in 2015 introduced the "Chamber Chill," a Friday night community social event that is open to the entire community.
There are NO dues associated with being a member of Spencer U.S.A., just your willingness to promote and be active in an effort to better the community.

For more information on Spencer U.S.A., the Young Professionals of the Spencer Chamber, visit their webpage at:
www.spenceriowachamber.org/youngprofessionals.php or join them on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/SpencerUSA

Along with their mission statement and event schedule, you will find an online submission form to obtain more information or to join the group.  You can also email the group at:  spencerusa@smunet.net.


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