I have much to report on from our Myrtle Creek-Tri City Area Chamber of Commerce. First, because of the recent resignation of President Paulette Jones, due to her obtaining new full-time employment, we’ve had a change in leadership. As vice-president, and in accordance with our bylaws, I am now president pro tem. It is my responsibility to recruit and recommend to our board of directors someone to fill the unexpired term of president through 2019. I have been interviewing several people and hope to make a recommendation to the board soon. I thank Paulette for her several years of volunteer service to our chamber and our community.
In the meantime, our chamber continues to serve and assist our 100-plus members efficiently and effectively. One recent example of that was during our annual Downtown Halloween Street Fair. Thirty businesses and organizations agreed to stay open late for the hundreds of trick-or-treaters of all ages who came downtown to participate in the event, which again this year included a safe corridor of cordoned off streets thanks to assistance provided by the City of Myrtle Creek Public Works and Police Departments. Thanks also to Donald Barrows, owner of Computer Solutions, for letting us set up our Halloween HQ in the foyer of the RIO Theater.
December is fast-approaching and with it comes several local events. On Dec. 1 we will have the Myrtle Creek Fire Department Operation Santa, the Grand Illumination of the Community Christmas Tree at 6 p.m. and the Christmas Street Fair. On Dec. 8 we will again co-host the annual Winter Festival with the Myrtle Creek Lions Club, where free chili, coffee, cider and cookies will be available while they last. This is the same day that the 25th Anniversary of the D.R. Johnson Memorial Timber Trucker’s Light Parade will depart from Riddle to arrive in Myrtle Creek between 6:30-7 p.m., with awards presentation to follow. Dec. 9 is the 20th annual South County Unorganized Bikers Toy Run. Meet at Pizza Palace at 9 a.m. for coffee, donuts and more. The ride begins at 11 a.m. with Santa leading the way.
There is also exciting business news for South County. Ground was recently broken for both a Grocery Outlet and a Dollar Tree store to be built on property just south of the Chevron Station/McDonald’s at the I-5 103/Pruner Road interchange. It was also recently announced by the Umpqua Economic Development Partnership that a South County Career Technical Education Center will be built on property near the WINCO Food Distribution Center. Completion dates for these projects are not yet confirmed.