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Carthage Chamber shifts to annual sponsors for events

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CARTHAGE — Aiming for a more consistent income, the board of directors of the Carthage Area Chamber of Commerce will change its program for sponsoring events.

Treasurer Robert M. Sligar developed the strategy aiming not to “have to tap the well for each event.” The Chamber hosts numerous annual events such as Winterfest, Business Awards Dinner, fireworks in July, Holiday Parade, Memory Tree and Open for Business, for which it seeks member and community financial support.

Mr. Sligar reasoned that asking businesses for annual donations to cover all of the events would improve the Chamber’s cash flow and help businesses and community members to budget better for donations.

The Platinum level, a donation of $2,500, wins recognition as a main sponsor for all major Chamber events in all advertising, with a display of the company logo at events. Space also will be available at events to display materials about the business or organization. Platinum sponsors will receive a yearlong Chamber membership, a table at the Business Awards Dinner and a plaque.

Gold event sponsorship, at $1,500, earns recognition as a main sponsor of one event of the sponsor’s choice along with the benefits described above for the event, plus membership, an awards dinner table and a plaque.

The Silver level, at $500, bestows recognition as a sponsor of all events in brochures and flyers, a plaque and membership.

“You only have to ask the boss once,” Mr. Sligar pointed out to board of directors members who are affiliated with corporations.

“It’s a lot easier — write one check each year,” said board member Derek Davis, general manager of Slack Chemical Co. Inc.

Besides the new sponsorship levels, businesses and organizations still may serve as a main sponsor of any event for $500 or be listed as a sponsor for any amount.

Mr. Sligar said having a better handle on income could allow the Chamber to expand its events program and maybe bring back the community picnic that formerly had been held on or close to Patriot Day, Sept. 11.

After comparing two proposals, the board decided at its April meeting to have Christopher A. Lorence Public Relations and Marketing Services develop a new website for the Chamber. Board members felt Mr. Lorence’s approach was economical and user-friendly. Mr. Lorence plans to tie the website into the Chamber’s membership drive and the development of its directory. He will finance the website in part through the sale of online advertising.

In other business, the board changed its meeting to the second Thursday of the month at noon, meeting at the Carthage municipal building, 120 S. Mechanic St.

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