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Chamber Corner: Spring weather, Chamber meeting, and Walnut jobs

Sitting here wondering who will be first in the field with the blessed early Spring weather. I saw a plow South of Manlius going last week, and it’s not hard to see the Fertilizer companies are getting equipment out and putting application equipment in order. Walnut is fortunate to have three companies in Walnut to serve the input needs of our local Farmers. Between CPS, Ag View FS service, and Rock River, our farmers can get not only product, but great information and professional advice. I will speak of jobs and careers later in this note, all of our ag services certainly add to that number, and are very much appreciated. One last comment on these three businesses’. All three are active within our community for giving back. When it comes to volunteering, and or opening the check book, these people know it is important to be involved in the community. When you see the big applicators, or Floater Trucks coming down the road, slow down and give them plenty of room.

Chamber meeting is tomorrow, Tuesday night, at Konz. We will get membership reports, banquet reservations and planning, as well as more information on the mapping project. The Steering committee met last Monday night, and started working on our list of volunteers. It was great to see the different names young and old that different members of the committee came up with. A diversified group, as well as people that we feel can get something accomplished as a group. Letters of invitation will go out next week. Wait till you see the logo, and name of the project. It speaks loudly. Again, if you want to help and attend the Mapping meetings, we welcome your positive input and participation. Let a Chamber board member or our director Brent Jamison know. We will be getting started the first part of March, and will be done the first part of April, to accommodate our farmers.

One of the duties of this Chamber as well as any Chamber is to promote business, as well as the city, town or village it is located in. For the past two years, with our school situation one of the battle cries, is the constant comment “There are no jobs in our district for families to move here.” It is proclaimed at board meetings, and the immortal social media buzz to try to make a point, or move an agenda. I attend many meetings, just to listen and try to learn and understand. Every time this no jobs, no reason to move here is proclaimed, it makes me a little crazy. Some of my loved ones would say crazier?

This past week, I took it upon myself to look at what we have in Walnut for what I would say major employers. Employers who need skilled, long term employees that make a difference and pay taxes with in our town and district. I contacted what I would call our six major employers. Without names or divulging private information here are the basics of these six business. These businesses employ over 300 people and have an estimated average combined yearly payroll of over $13,000,000! This number does not include benefit packages often paid to the employees. This number does not include the many 1 – 15 employee business we have, the farms that have employees, as well as the seasonal workers some of the business’s employ. This is not a note to stir the problem pot. It is simply a note to inform and ask people to reconsider before proclaiming, there is no reason to move to our district or our town because of lack of good paying jobs. That is simply not true. We welcome all, that want to work, raise a family, and make their home in the Bureau Valley district.

OK people more February Food events!!!! Well, how did you like the 4-H Pancake breakfast last week? Pretty good, very good job by the 4-H and the parents that help put it on, thank you. This coming weekend, 2 more events. Saturday afternoon February 25th, the Walnut First Christian church will have the annual Spaghetti supper. Spaghetti, salad, bread, and dessert. Serving in house or take-out from 4:30 – 7 PM. If you want to stay home, yet support the dinner, no problem. Send the Old Man out for a carry out meal. He can call 815-379-2093, order your dinner, get out of his Wal-Mart pajama’s get dressed. By the time he gets to the church your order is ready. While he is gone, call Josh, set the table, call Josh again, BANG Saturday night supper. It’s all good. Do it people, it’s for the good of all. On Sunday February 26, there will be a benefit luncheon for Patty Puckett at St. Johns in Walnut. Patty is a Chamber member, and local business person that has been rehabbing from a stroke several months ago. Patty is recovering at home with Rehab assistance. Come to St. John’s Catholic church, this coming Sunday, enjoy some soup, chili and desserts, while making a donation to this family and her recovery. Thank you.

Yes, a little long winded, ya that’s a surprise? Lots to say, lots of good things and upcoming events and projects. All good, stay busy, stay positive, and help out where ever you can. Thanks for your efforts people, shop Walnut whenever you can. Have a great week.

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