Turnout at Chamber’s awards banquet sets record

A record crowd at the annual Kingdom of Callaway Chamber of Commerce’s awards banquet Friday night jammed the main meeting room at Meadow Lake Acres Country Club.

Banquet emcee Bruce Harris said the turnout for the event was the largest to ever attend a Callaway County Chamber banquet.

“I think this is a testament to the fact that people are feeling pretty good,” Harris said. “We have been through a few years of rough times nationally, and certainly locally. And now we feel we are pulling out of it a little bit.”

Harris said 285 people attended Friday night’s event. Previously the highest ever turnout for a Chamber banquet was 235.

Marty Martin Forman, the new 2012 president of the Kingdom of Callaway Chamber of Commerce, said she hopes the turnout shows a renewed interest in the Chamber.

Forman asked members to promote the organization more and seek additional members.

“We need to educate the community on the benefits of being chamber members,” Forman said.

She warned the Chamber may have to cut its staff and other expenses if additional membership is not created during 2012.

She said the Chamber now has 345 active members and 42 friends of the Chamber.

But she said there are more than 1,300 business licenses in the county and the Chamber has a potential of much higher membership.

“During these difficult economic times, we need to work together. I would like for everyone to make a commitment to help the Chamber,” Forman said.

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