By Starrla Cray
WINSTED, MN Take the strength of one business or organization, and multiply it by 92.
That’s the Winsted Area Chamber of Commerce a group of 92 members working together for the growth, prosperity, and enhanced quality of life in the community.
“The chamber is an effective way for businesses to form relationships and gain exposure whether it’s for hiring purposes, or for promoting new products, services, or events,” said chamber president Jeff Campbell.
Anyone interested in joining is welcome to fill out an application online, or call (320) 485-2366 for more information.
The chamber has lunch meetings the third Thursday of every other month at the Blue Note in Winsted. The next meeting is set for Thursday, Nov. 21 at noon.
Several social events also take place throughout the year, including an annual banquet, women’s expo, children’s Easter egg hunt, civic barbecue, Bratbusters, and the Winsted Winter Festival.
This summer, the chamber started a farmers market on the street between Holy Trinity church and school, Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon.
Leadership classes in Winsted (through Ridgewater College) was another new undertaking in 2013.
“Those went very well,” Campbell said. “We had a series of four classes, with about 40 students in each class.”
The next big event is the Winsted Winter Festival, set for the first weekend in December. The citywide celebration includes a lighted parade, decorating contest, visits from Santa, a Christmas concert, vintage snowmobile show, free hayrides, a dessert social, and more.
The chamber is also planning to update its street banners along McLeod County Road 1 later this year.
Here are a few of the membership benefits listed on the Winsted Area Chamber of Commerce application:
• Shows that your business cares about the community it serves.
• Provides meetings every other month to hear educational speakers, and network with other businesses that may need your products/services.
• Offers a group to listen to business concerns, and guide you to helpful resources.
• Provides opportunities to have a spotlight on your business. Chamber of commerce meetings and special events are a time to announce specials, promotions, and newsworthy changes.
• Promotes your business via inclusion in Winsted Bucks, welcome packets, and other events exclusive to chamber members.
Applications to join the Winsted Area Chamber of Commerce are available on the chamber website.
The chamber can also be reached at (320) 485-2366 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Annual memberships are available for students ($10), retirees ($30), individuals/sole proprietors ($40), organizations ($60), small businesses ($100), mid-sized businesses ($150), and large businesses ($200).
Who’s on the board
The Winsted Area Chamber of Commerce’s current board members include:
• President Jeff Campbell of Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate
• Vice President Sarah Fasching of Flagship Insurance Services
• Treasurer Deb Boelter with the city of Winsted
• Director Joe Swanson of Jimmy’s Pizza
• Director Chip Guggemos of Ameriprise Financial
• Development Director Angie Hertel of Holy Trinity Schools
• Director Glen Weibel, Winsted resident
• Past President Tom Ollig of St. Mary’s Care Center