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Chamber News

Spencer Chamber 85th Anniversary Celebration

2017 marks the 85th Year of the Spencer Chamber officially named and designated a Chamber of Commerce.  This milestone was reached due to the progressive spirit of the Spencer Community and most importantly the member supporters who have stood by the Chamber for all these years.
A celebration of our decades of accomplishments will be held on Thursday, October 12 from 11:30 am to 1 pm at the Clay County Regional Events Center.  All members of the Chamber, along with their staff, are invited and encouraged to attend.   Cost is just $35 per person and reservations are required.  Please contact the Chamber by phone or email to make reservations for this very special luncheon.
Our special guest at the Annual Celebration is Gary Berg, President of GL Berg Entertainment.  In addition to operating a very successful business, Gary travels the country with his words of
motivation.  Gary is a successful business owner, coach, former college administrator, and a really regular guy. His presentation at the Spencer Chamber Annual Celebration is entitled “Simple Truths in the Workplace and in Life.” This presentation challenges all who participate to look at their own lives more closely and with more focus. It challenges you to consciously examine how you can be better at what you do on a daily basis at work and in life. Gary has presented this talk from coast to coast to diverse audiences with great success. Besides challenging people to think – he also makes sure all audiences laugh hard as well and do not forget how important it is to remember his last simple truth – It important to laugh often and laugh loud! 
In addition to our featured presenter, we will announce the recipient of the Jack Wedel Volunteer Service Award as well as the Chamber Small Business of the Year Award.  The changing of the Chamber guard will also take place as we recognize retiring board members and welcome those new names to the board.

 


Spencer RAGBRAI Gives Back to the Community

The Spencer RAGBRAI 2017 Executive Committee hosted a Thank You Reception on Tuesday, September 12th at the Clay County Fair.  Hundreds of volunteers stepped up to be a part of this very successful event on July 23rd.  It was due to the efforts of the Committee and its volunteers that hosting the thousands of riders was such a huge success.
As part of the celebration, the committee gave back to the community monies raised during the event.  It was revealed that nearly $32,000 was raised through vendor fees and the beverage garden.  The Committee had made the decision early on that vendor fees would be returned to all the non-profit groups if the hosting was a success.  That committment was carried out with the remaining funds of $27,000 going to groups and organizations selected by the committee.
Recipients of Spencer RAGBRAI funds were:

  • Clay County Trails Association  $10,000
  • Pedersen Park Lighting Project  $7,000
  • Spencer Main Street Lighting project  $5,000
  • Clay County Fair Centennial Plaza project  $5,000


A Record 335,670 Attend the 100th Clay County Fair

With nearly perfect weather, the 100th Centennial Edition of the Clay County Fair brought huge crowds. Total Attendance for 2017 was 335, 670 making it one of the largest attended Clay County Fairs.   After 9 nine days of family fun, the Fair was capped off by the Centennial Birthday Bash at the Grandstand Sunday night.  Local high school bands, high wire acts, motorcycle stunts, comedians, the Karl King Band and the area High School Mass Choir brought the fair to a close highlighted by the largest Fireworks display ever in northwest Iowa.This year a milestone will be reached for the World's Greatest County Fair.  The Clay County Fair in Spencer, the 2nd largest tourism event in the state of Iowa, will be celebrating its 100th Year!
The 2018 Clay County Fair will be held September 8 - 16.


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 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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In addition to our website, check us out on facebook:  www.facebook.com/claymutual

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