The Boyne Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual meeting was Thursday Jan. 22 at Boyne Mountain. (PICK UP THE JAN. 28 BOYNE CITY GAZETTE FOR THE FULL STORY AND MORE PHOTOS)
During the annual banquet gala, Boyne Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Jim Baumann announced this year’s chamber award winners.
The Volunteer of the Year award goes to Nancy Cunningham. Nancy’s patient determination over several years on behalf of the Friends of the Boyne River has given the community the new Boyne River Nature Area, which can be accessed from Lexamar Drive in the Boyne City Industrial Park.
Nancy found grant funds to construct a beautiful hiking trail, complete with boardwalks and an erosion-prevention rain garden.
Community Pride Award
The winner of the Community Pride Award is the Boyne Thunder Committee.
Over the last 10 years this committee, through organizing and managing this July event, has raised more than $300,000 for Camp Quality and more recently Challenge Mountain.
Boyne Thunder has become the third largest boating poker run in the nation and one of the greatest summer tourism events in Northern Michigan.
Young Entrepreneur Award
The winners of the Young Entrepreneur of the Year award are four young people who have in the past year or so started working for their parents’ businesses and thus are the heirs apparent to keeping the business going, and keeping it in the family.
“We thought that was a unique coincidence,” Baumann said. “And, it is interesting that they are all young women.”
The award winners were Asuka Barden, Jessica White, Jennifer McAndrew and Shantel Erber.
“We are not giving these award winners plaques, however. We got ‘em all a book,” said Baumann. “We checked around with our friends at the Boyne City and Charlevoix libraries and everyone recommended ‘Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead’ by Sheryl Sandberg. It is described as ‘an inspiring tutorial on how women can lead, even if that means learn to juggle the responsibilities of work and a family.’
Baumann then introduced the award winners:
Asuka is, I believe, the fifth generation of Bardens to work at of F.O. Barden & Sons, which is now the only lumberyard in Charlevoix County. left town for awhile and came back a year or two ago to help run the business. Dad and Grandpa both work at the store, which was founded in 1922.
Last year at this time Jessica White worked here at Boyne Mountain as an event planner – in fact she helped plan and organize of our Annual Meeting in previous years. But about a year ago, she came to work for her parents, Jim and Sharon White, at Boyne City Hardware.
Jennifer McAndrew has the perfect background to work for her father Tim at the Boyne Co-op True Value hardware store. She studied music education – getting her bachelor’s degree from Eastern Michigan University and a master’s from Central Michigan University. Then she went on to become the assistant director of the strings program at Crooked Tree Arts Center.
Shantel Erber is the manager of BC Lanes, our local bowling alley that just reopened about a year ago after her parents Chris and Sandra Nelson bought it and spent a year refurbishing it. A new challenge for Shantel is that she had a baby boy (Caden) just one month ago – and as you may have noticed, Caden came along to see Mom get this award.
Entrepreneur of the Year Award
The award goes to Chris and Sandra Nelson. They took the long-neglected and closed bowling alley and brought it back to life as BC Lanes, located conveniently right next to their highly successful BC Pizza.
They have done a wonderful job of totally remodeling the building and bringing more entertainment and recreation to Boyne City.
Winner of the Heritage Award:
Bruce Janssen of The Wood Shop has been in business since 1974, and has always been generous with his time and resources.
He is an ongoing cheerleader for all things Boyne City – not to mention contributing greatly to the appearance of our area with his artistic sign creations.
The Sally Roselli Business Leadership Award – (Presented by Sally’s sister, Julie Wellman)
The winners of this year’s Sally Roselli Business Leadership Award are Tony Williams and Robin Lee Berry of Freshwater Studio, who put in long hours keeping their business open year-round.
Their concert series has brought nationally-known talent to Boyne City.
The artists’ websites and their tour stops include places like Ann Arbor, Austin, Boston, Toronto and Boyne City.
They are active in many civic events, including the Mushroom Festival and SOBO Arts Festival.
They are great ambassadors for the Boyne area—welcoming, full of information, enthusiastic about all Boyne has to offer.