By Greg Ritchie
CROCKETT – The Crockett Area Chamber of Commerce held its annual awards banquet Tuesday, March 21 at the Crockett Civic Center. The banquet serves to honor local businesses and residents who have made an impact in our community and receive donations for the chamber’s scholarship fund.
The theme this year was the “Groovy ’60’s” and the civic center was decorated in high style with groovy music, old television clips playing on the screens, many people decked out in tie-dye and bellbottoms. Local students and the Leos were on hand to enhance the mood by giving out flowers and peace signs and serve the meal at the VIP tables.
As the crowd entered, there were drawings including silent auctions, a live auction and a ‘dessert dash’ where each table bid on the opportunity to get to the dessert table first and choose one of the several dozen tempting pies and cakes.
The event was well attended, according to the chamber’s Executive Director Liza Clark, who said it was the best-attended event since before COVID. County and city officials were present along with many local businesses and charity organizations.
The food was prepared by Cattleman’s County Cafe and was chicken fried steak with all the traditional fixings. During the live auction, State Representative Trent Ashby, unable to attend, called in donations for the scholarship fund. Houston County Judge Jim Lovell committed to baking two of his famous wine cakes to increase bids during the auction, led by emcee Ansel Bradshaw.
The chamber touted its accomplishments over the past year, from events to welcoming new businesses. Membership stood at 237 businesses, with 30 ribbon-cuttings for new businesses, 42 new members, a retention rate of over 90% and reaching almost 80,000 people on social media.
The chamber shared the many events they hosted during the past year including the candidate forum held with The Messenger in October, eight “Lunch and Learn” seminars, 11 “Mid-Morning Coffee” events, $7,000 awarded to local students for scholarships, along with the major events including “Christmas in Crockett.”
Awards were presented to individuals and businesses who have made an impact on our community during the previous year:
- Volunteer of the year: Ricky Yrlas
- Citizen of the Year-: Robin Ogg
- Non-profit of the Year: Piney Woods Lions and Leos Club
- Business of the Year: Bella Gifts From the Heart
- Rising Stars:
- Bear Hall
- Easy Pickens Resale
- Filthy Gringos (FG Metalwork)
- Heavenly Esthetics
- Mustard Seed Soap Co.
- Old Crockett Wine Emporium
- Stestí Beer Garden
- Texas Family Doctor
Greg Ritchie can be reached at [email protected]