The Claremore Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Awards Banquet will be held Saturday, Jan. 26 at Rogers State University Centennial Center.
“This is an opportunity to recognize our businesses and thank them for their membership,” said Chamber President Dell Davis. “We also will recognize our outstanding businesses of the year.”
The “Business of the Year” honors one small and one large business.
“We did make the distinction with separate categories,” Davis said. “It’s hard for a small business to compete on a level playing field with a big company, and it’s important to be able to recognize both for their contributions to our local economy.”
The “Business Citizen of the Year” will also be announced.
“We look at their contribution to the workplace as well as their contribution to the community, like volunteering in their church, school, or with Scouts, or serving on a non profit board,” Davis said. “We want to honor those who go above and beyond, using their time, talent and expertise to make Claremore a better place to live.”
This year, the Chamber will once again present “Entrepreneur of the Year” awards in three divisions: service, retail and manufacturing.
“The criteria we look at includes how they started their business, how they’ve grown, and there’s also a lot of consideration given to ways they support the community, because as businesses it’s important to give back,” Davis said. “We’re excited to resume this program which honors entrepreneurs countywide and look forward to expanding it next year.”
The banquet includes recognition of Chamber board members, committee chairs, and ambassadors for their work over the past year.
“Then of course the fun part of the evening that everyone anticipates is Gridiron,” Davis said.
Theme of the 48th Annual Gridiron is “Survivor,” determining “you might be a Survivor if...”
The combination TV/radio show format will discuss newspaper headlines of 2012.
“Being mentioned in Gridiron can mean one of two things: you’re either famous or you’re infamous!” Davis said. “It’s our chance to poke fun at ourselves. The cast has had a hard time narrowing down the material this year — there’s plenty to work with!”
A special performance of Gridiron will take place Friday, Jan. 25 as a fundraiser for the Chamber scholarship program, sponsored by BancFirst, Central Plains Cement Company, Rice Funeral Service, Rogers State University, and Tiger Natural Gas Inc.
The performance is open to the public and reservations are not required. Donations of $10 will be accepted at the door.
The Chamber is gearing up for another busy year.
Upcoming events include the annual State of City Address with Mayor Mickey Perry and City Manager Jim Thomas on Thursday, Jan. 24.
The Outdoor Sporting Expo will be held March 1-3 at Claremore Expo Center. The Ladies Lifestyle Extravaganza is set for April 6, also at the Expo. For more information on Chamber activities as well as monthly luncheons and legislative breakfasts, visit www.claremore.org.
Reservations for Saturday’s banquet and the State of the City Address luncheon should be made by 5 p.m. Monday. Call the Chamber at (918) 341-2818 or email Chamber@claremore.org.