Awards dinner to have new look
Chamber, Baker to still honor Baldwin citizens
There will be a different look to this year's Annual Awards Dinner, which honor some of Baldwin City's finest citizens, but it's something organizers hope will make the event even better.
The Baldwin City Chamber of Commerce and Baker University have sponsored the annual event every year and it's been in Baker's cafeteria. This year, the Feb. 27 get-together will be at The Lodge.
Connie Deal, Baker's representative on the chamber, explained that the change is a boost for the chamber.
"The chamber decided to make it more of a social event than what can be in a cafeteria that is used for so many things. This will be nicer," said Deel. "We're still doing what we've done before. We want the focus to be more on the chamber.
"We're stepping back from it being a Baker-chamber awards dinner to simply more of a chamber event," she said. "We're still very supportive. We're not backing out or backing down. We just want the focus to be on the chamber."
Diane Niehoff, vice president of the chamber, is also looking forward to the change and said it's the result of a stronger organization.
"The chamber has stepped up and taken a more active role, now that we have a more active chamber," said Niehoff. "We couldn't do everything we do without Baker's support. We're going to try it this way."
Baker is still providing everything it has before, such as invitations and catering, the dinner just won't be at the cafeteria. There will be a social hour starting at 6 p.m., followed by the dinner at 6:30 p.m.
This year's award winners are Becky and Danny McMillen for community service and Sara and Riley Winkler as business person of the year. The McMillens have been active in a host of community projects and events over the year, including the reading program at the library. The Winklers own and operate Tires & More on U.S. Highway 56.
Cost of the dinner is $15 per person. RSVPs need to be returned to Baker. For more information, contact Baker's Kathy McCrary at 594-4555 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Another feature of this year's event will be recognition of businesses and individuals who have helped with the efforts to get the word around the state about Baldwin. These businesses and individuals have donated $1,500 each to the chamber for the project.
"There will also be some recognition for businesses and individuals for those who have been involved with promoting Baldwin," said Deel.