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Blackduck Chamber members discuss Shop Local campaign; coming events

Six members of the Blackduck Chamber of Commerce met April 20 at the American Legion in Blackduck for the regular meeting.

Following the approval of the minutes and as the treasurer was not present to give her report, the group moved to old business.

First to be discussed was the Lady Slipper Scenic Byway Celebration.

Members were updated on a letter Shirley Gilmore. She had sent to Charlie Anderson and asked him to bring it to the meeting to discuss with the group.

The first thing she mentioned was the June 24 wine tasting at The Pond. She asked if the Chamber should advertise widely (TV, radio, direct mail) or locally. It was suggested to advertise locally as direct mail can be quite expensive. There are TV channels where she could advertise for free.

Chamber member Paula Bauman will put in an article on the event into the Blackduck American as well as submit articles to The Pioneer, to run if there is space available. Taco Night will be held June 24 and getting the word out will be done as usual.

Gilmore also asked if the Chamber could round up around 10 tables and 80 chairs for the hospitality tent June 25. Suggestions of where to get tables and chairs were the fire department, Zion Lutheran Church or possibly the school. Anderson said he would check into it and report back to Gilmore on her request. Chamber members will be responsible for setting up between 9-9:30 a.m. and then tearing down at 4 p.m.

The group thought it would be a good idea to get a list of people who would be willing to volunteer that day. They can be broken into two teams of people -- one to set up from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and one to tear down from 12:30-4 p.m.

Anderson suggested talking to Anchor Marketing and let them know this event is taking place. There is a possibility that they would want to be there to take pictures, etc. or may have some material that could be used that day in the hospitality tent.

Next on the agenda was the Shop Local project.

The 3/50 Project flyers were distributed in all the teacher's mailboxes at Blackduck School and a recent copy was submitted to The American which included Project Shop Local -- Top 10 Reasons to Shop Local, Small Business Saturday, City-Wide Garage Sale and the Chamber listserv.

The group is organizing a "Chamber After Hours" event to be held May 18 at 6 p.m. at the Blackduck Municipal Golf Course. Andra Vaughn from Blackduck High School will be giving a marketing presentation. The Chamber is giving the group $50 to spend on meat and cheese and vegetable trays. Beverages will be available.

The following events have been scheduled for the summer season:

• May 21 is the City-Wide Garage Sale and Crazy Days. Bauman is running an advertisement as well as small articles about these two events. She made up garage sale kits and will bring them to city call for anyone who comes in with an ad for the garage sale map.

The ads have to be prepaid and can be dropped off at city hall or Deerwood Bank's drop boxes or mailed to: Blackduck American, PO Box 100, Blackduck, MN 56630 by May 16.

The location for the Chamber's garage sale was discussed with the sidewalk on Main Street, which would be blocked off during the day, being the main area. Chamber members can drop off items at city hall. Anderson also has a building he said could be used to store items for the sale.

• July 30 -- Woodcarvers Festival

• Aug. 20 -- Backwoods Bash

• Oct. 24 -- Fall Bash

• Ditch Clean Up -- this is scheduled for May 3. Anyone who will be helping with this project should meet at Shamrock Storage at 5 p.m. Members should dress appropriately, wear boots and bring gloves. They were also asked not to park on the grass at Shamrock Storage.

Host wages continue to be an issue at the Tourist Information Center. Monte Sharbono will talk to Miriam Osborn and Bruce Meade about what is going on with that.

The next meeting will be held May 18 at noon at Wells Fargo in Blackduck. All Chamber members are encouraged to attend.