Planning for the California Area Chamber of Commerce's Annual Dinner Meeting in late January is under way.
The Chamber president and members will gather for a night of fun, games, food and awards as they raise money for student scholarships.
The Chamber of Commerce will award Citizen of the Year, Volunteer of the Year and Business of the Year to nominees for the work they've contributed to the California community. Although nothing is confirmed, the Chamber is looking to add a fourth award to its ceremony.
"It kind of depends on nominations, but we also have the ability to award a Group of the Year," Chamber Vice President Becki Collier said. "Like, if an organization contributes to the community throughout the year by doing events or volunteering for different things as a group."
The meeting will take place at 7 p.m., Jan 28, at Sweet Chipotle Catering and Event Center. Activities for the meeting include a silent auction and a Piccadilly auction. Attendees will also be able to use the event's new Photo Booth. Spinnz Entertainment will provide music.
Collier said donations for the auctions could be dropped off at Mr. G's Liquor at 306 W. Buchanan St. and Grace Print House at 205 W. Buchanan St.
Last year the chamber awarded 14 scholarships and aims to increase funding for 2024.
"As far as the fundraiser part of the evening, I think that obviously that what motivates people to donate," Collier said. "When it truly is going straight back to the kids in the community, who, hopefully, will be our future business leaders."
Collier said the Chamber welcomes individuals and businesses who aren't members to join for the evening. According to her, the annual dinner meeting is an opportunity to celebrate those community members who are working hard throughout the year. She said it's also a way for non-Chamber members to really see what the chamber is doing for our local businesses.
"I think our chamber really does do a phenomenal job, helping our own businesses continue to grow," Collier said. "I think that's what Chamber of Commerces are all about...We have a very involved board made up of a lot of different business owners and employees from a lot of different industries. And so we're really able to come together and come up with ideas constantly that are going to be new ways to promote our own vendors or members."
Tickets for the event are $25 per person and can be found at the Chamber of Commerce at 500 S. Oak St. Ticket sales will close on Jan. 13.