With the 75th edition of the Carmi Chamber of Commerce annual dinner in the books, the last of two business of the year awards per dinner is complete. The Chamber opted to make some changes to its by laws to kick off the get together. We’ll dive more into that later, but one of the changes will allow the Chamber board to move the date of the annual dinner away from a Monday, but still hold it in October. This years dinner also broke tradition by being hosted at the Carmi VFW instead of the First Christian Church. People’s National Bank rewarded that change by covering an open bar during the 30 minute social hour to open the evening.
Among the winners of awards were Troy and Sally Weber for Weber Auto Repair for Small Business of the Year. That announcement was followed by an emotional speech given by Abby Barnard, daughter of Heather Talley, awarding Large Business of the Year to The Taco Factory. We’ll have audio from that segment of the meeting later as well.
Mayor Jeff Pollard gave the annual “State of the City” address mentioning the newly born Learning Trail at Burrell Park, the 22 businesses utilizing the city’s Facade Improvement Grants, and announcing some new businesses coming to Carmi which include a new Whetstone Oil building east of town, Brian Bryant’s Beck Seed, First National Bank of Allendale, Complete Well Service, and Horizon Healthcare Carmi (a branch of Fairfield Memorial Hospital). Pollard also spent some time discussing infrastructure improvements, thanking the community and his team of city officials before turning things over to the key note speaker, Scott Wylie.
We’ll have much more on Wylie later as well. He spent his time talking about his deeds and misdeeds as a youngster in Carmi reminding folks that anybody from Carmi can become anyone and how the opportunities and experiences helped mold him into the man he’s become.
The evening was a farewell of sorts to outgoing Chamber board members as well including past president Toby Brown. Other outgoing Chamber board members were Abbey Gholson, Sheri Stevens, Katelyne Wolff, & Michelle Winters.