Chamber Celebration postponed to March 11

Chamber Celebration postponed to March 11

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce to postpone its annual Chamber Celebration for the third time.

In 2021, the celebration was postponed from Jan. 29 to May 15, and then canceled for the year.

It was scheduled to return on Jan. 21.

But the event will be pushed to March 11, in hopes that the wave of COVID cases will subside by then.

Tuesday, the Green River District Health Department reported 849 new cases in Daviess County since Friday.

Candance Castlen Brake, chamber president, said the event and annual awards ceremony usually attracts 800 people.

“We want to be really mindful of the quality of the event,” she said. “The happy and bustling crowd of 800 people; the signature hors d’oeuvres and desserts by our own Moonlite Catering; the awards ceremony in Cannon Hall, where we join together to celebrate excellence in our community; the after party, where we stick around to continue the celebration, are all key components of our program that we do not want to compromise.”

The rapid rise in coronavirus cases and “our commitment to have the high-quality event that our members deserve” led to the postponement, she said.

“This decision is not made lightly,” Brake said. “It is made with the utmost regard for providing a safe and celebratory environment. We are optimistic, after consulting with health officials, that we will be able to do that on March 11.”

She said the chamber took a financial hit last year by not having the event, “but it’s small compared to what our small businesses have been going through.”

In the past, awards went to the chamber member of the year, ambassador of the year, director of the year, business of the year (one to 10 employees), business of the year (11 to 50 employees), business of the year (51-plus employees), emerging business of the year, nonprofit of the year, education & workforce development, the Rick Kamuf agri-business of the year and manufacturing business of the year.

The awards to be presented this year will recognize businesses for what they did in 2021, Brake said.

By Keith Lawrence Messenger-Inquirer