Manhattan Chamber of Commerce Meeting Minutes
255 South State Street, Unit B, Manhattan, IL 60442
February 12, 2020
Present: Donna Bateman, Becky Bouck, Kristy Byers, Joe Cerullo, Mary Kay Cooper, Shari Fiocca, and Temporary Administrative Assistant Shelly Lewis.
Absent: Tim McGrath and Kevin Sing
Shari called the meeting to order at 3:30 pm. Kristy moved and Becky seconded a motion to approve both of the January minutes. Motion carried. Donna’s treasurer’s report showed a January checking account balance of $ 17,642.71. Mary Kay moved and Kristy seconded a motion to approve the report. Motion carried.
Membership: To date 68 members have paid their dues and 31 from the past year have not. Shelly will begin to make calls to those who have not paid. If they are not going to renew, she can hopefully gain some insight into why they are not renewing. Encouraging Joes Red Hots and Annie’s Pretzels to join would be beneficial since they both have food trucks for events.
Admin Assistant Report: Shelly has been learning Constant Contact, posting on social media and liking other members’ posts as the Chamber. She has made 30 Welcome Bags, which Becky will deliver. Next she will tackle updating events and members on the website.
Administrative Assistant Position: Thus far there have been 10 applicants. The deadline to apply is Feb. 29.
Trivial Night: Having a Trivia Night was discussed with awards for the best themed table and the night’s trivia winner. Shari will check with her Trivia Night Contact for availability and cost. The Library currently hosts a Trivia Night and rotates between locations. Roadhouse 52 was considered the best place to host the event.
Pub Crawl: A Pub Crawl in June or July was considered the best time. Kevin Sing should meet with the three in-downtown taverns to see if they would like to participate.
Expo: It was not considered a good match for the organization to help businesses grow based on past experience and our size.
Softball games: Mary Kay will write a letter to local restaurants to see if they are interested in providing a food stand every Tuesday evening from 6-8 pm in the summer at Central Park. Kristy will check on the Park District’s position on such an event as well as pavilion kitchen rent and possibly Health Department inspection.
Fireworks: Dates for fireworks were Dec. 5 Christmas on State, Family Fall Fest Day @ Sept. 26 at the Round Barn or Labor Day on Sept. 6. Shari will contact Kevin Malloy to see how the Super Bowl squares turned out to support the fireworks. She will also find out how far his suggestion of a business round table has progressed. Once the Park District decides on if their fall event will be on Friday or moved to Saturday with the family event on Sunday instead of Saturday, then the Chamber can decide if that is a good match for fireworks. If the family event is Sunday, with the next day a school day, then that faces the same complaints about Labor Day fireworks. Also we would need to see if the Park District would allow fireworks to be shot off at the Round Barn Farm. Shari will contact the fireworks provider to see cost and availably for the above dates.
Irish Fest: Having a Chamber presence was discussed. Doing a corner of the tent or a smaller tent for children’s activities until 7 pm was suggested. However, this should not hurt the Park District’s Hansen Center events. Mary Kestel is one of the main contacts. In the past other groups such as the PTO handled events for children at a cost much less than what the Park District is proposing. Kristy will find out more details at the Park Board meeting. Past unsold Irish t-shirts, hats, scarves, etc. will be sold by Becky at Village Realty since the Historical Society does not want to sell the items this year. Several sales to board members decreased the limited size inventory of t-shirts.
Networking: For the Feb. 19th luncheon, Shelly will contact Tina’s Tear Drop Café. The speakers will be the Village on the topic of housing. For March Dr. Scott Tingley from Lincoln-Way will speak on the state of the school district. April is available for a speaker.
October’s Annual Dinner meeting: Since the Village no longer gives out a business or citizen of the year award, the Chamber could continue this previous practice at their dinner event.
Scholarships: Kristy has contacted Lincoln-Way, Providence and Peotone High Schools. Essays on leadership will be submitted to the student’s school from which the top winner will be submitted to the Chamber for the final selection of the one scholarship. Kristy has emailed St. Joseph to let them know that there will be no monetary awards this year. She will also contact Manhattan Junior High.
Insurance: Shari will contact the insurance company to add the other local entities to the policy.
The next meeting will be Wednesday, March 11 at 3:30 in the Chamber’s office. The meeting was adjourned at 4:50 pm.
Mary Kay Cooper, secretary