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The California Area Chamber of Commerce discussed its upcoming annual dinner meeting and scholarship fundraiser at its Jan. 9 board meeting.

The event, which will be hosted at Sweet Chipotle Event Center, will take place Jan. 25, starting with a social hour from 5:30-6:30 p.m. This will be followed by the presentation of the Chamber's yearly awards from 6:30-7 p.m., with dinner immediately following. The evening also includes a piccadilly auction, benefitting the Chamber scholarship fund. The evening will be closed with the Chamber's annual meeting.

The Chamber is also accepting donations for the scholarship auction, both items from businesses and other auction items. Those interested in contributing may call the Chamber office at 573-796-3040.

Chamber president Blake Howard said the Chamber Awards Committee met last week to officially make its selections for the Jan. 25 meeting.

For this month, the Chamber welcomed the following new members: Sydenstrickers Implement, in Tipton; Winding Road Gifts & Interiors, owned by Julie Bolinger; Leathers Insurance, owned by Jerrod Leathers; Genesis Inspection LLC, owned by Lance Althoff; and Massage by Whitney, owned by Whitney Crawford. Chamber Executive Secretary Sandra Ratcliff also reported the newly-opened Hollon Family Chiropractic had expressed interest in joining as a Chamber member. In addition to its new members, the Chamber received 79 membership renewals to start the new year.

The Chamber also discussed some other recently-covered business, such as a request from community members to consider some sort of community calendar for all area organizations. Chamber members agreed many events were already broadcasted widely to California citizens via the Chamber website and disseminated via the Democrat's events calendar from week to week, and decided there wasn't a need to create another calendar.

Additionally, there was some discussion to wrap up last month's first annual Christmas in Proctor Park. Chamber members agreed the first year went well, despite some late sign-ups making things more hectic for the Chamber and city employees that helped to make the nearly month-long lighting display run smoothly. For next year's edition, Chamber members discussed improving the signage indicating the viewing route.

Also wrapping up from last month's meeting, the Chamber clarified, in its Lighting/Decorating Contest, the decision was made to not judge the displays in Proctor Park, since the intent for that event in particular was not to make it competitive.

The Chamber's next regular meeting, following the annual meeting later this week, will be Feb. 13 at 8 a.m.

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