Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Springtown Chamber Gala is hands-down success

Businesses, organizations, individuals awarded at Kentucky Derby-themed event

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SPRINGTOWN — Springtown Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Terri Toone has a college education in event planning, and her skills showed during Friday’s annual gala.

The chamber’s Annual Awards Gala brings Springtown business leaders together to celebrate the best of the best in the community. This year’s event took place at the Covered Bridge Venue, was hosted by Brooklynn Hatton and was catered by Corn Fed Catering, which provided southern classics like cornbread, black-eyed peas and fried chicken.

The “Run for the Roses” gala was Kentucky Derby-themed, and as such, horse racing motifs were present throughout the event — from the table settings that featured checkered runners and little gold horses sticking up from the centerpieces to the horse racing game played during the gala.

Women wore a variety of hats and fascinator headpieces to the event to mirror Kentucky Derby fashion. Hats came in all sizes, and some were decorated with feathers and flowers. The hat contest winner, Jill Sebik, wore a hat that looked like a bouquet.

The main event of the evening was the awards ceremony, which celebrated some prominent figures in Springtown. The Corn Fed Club restaurant left the gala with the title of Business of the Year while the Pastoral Fellowship of Springtown took home the Organization of the Year award. The chamber named the grocery store Brookshire’s its Member of the Year, and Springtown native Mistie Rivera won the Judy Smerud Spirit of Springtown Award. Springtown’s Santa Claus and educator William “Bill” Foster was posthumously honored with the Hometown Hero Award.

The chamber also recognized Cpl. Weldon “Chip” Procter as the Springtown Police Department’s Public Safety Employee of the Year and public works staffer Josh Crager as the city’s Extra Mile Award recipient. Jenifer Jones was named Springtown Independent School District’s Teacher of the Year.

Toward the end of the night, the chamber honored those who are taking a step back from the chamber, including former Executive Director Amy Walker, former administrative assistant Marcia Garcia and outgoing President Jennifer Conway.

Toone was satisfied with how the event turned out and gave credit to those who made the gala possible.

“It was worth every bit of 12-hour days and shopping and folding 300 napkins,” she said. “Without our ambassadors and our other volunteers, it wouldn't have turned out like this. I think it was fabulous. I got a lot of good feedback. Everybody, I think, had a good time.”

In the end, Toone hopes that gala attendees left the event with “a sense of community.”

“It's just all of us getting together and having a good time and just enjoying each other's company and celebrating,” she said.

More information about the award winners will be available in The Tri-County Reporter’s special section dedicated to the Springtown Chamber’s Annual Awards Gala. This special section will be available in the March 21 newspaper.