It may have been the shortest yearly meeting on record, but this year’s Dyersville Area Chamber of Commerce yearly meeting was informative and productive, with an optimistic picture of the upcoming year for the organization.
Outgoing Chamber President Dan Deutmeyer passed the gavel to incoming President Carmen Knipper during the virtual meeting, and the pair highlighted the past year’s accomplishments and shared the group’s plan moving forward.
Deutmeyer thanked Executive Director Karla Thompson and Tourism Marketing Manager Kayla Horsfield for guiding the chamber through a difficult year.
“We hired Kayla as our tourism manager,” said Deutmeyer. “All of our tour buses for the year were canceled except for one — her first day on the job.”
The chamber remained active through the year, with August 2021 on the horizon.
“We assisted with planning and re-planning Beyond the Game activities for the MLB game at the Field of Dreams and hosted an Airbnb information session in preparation for the MLB game,” Deutmeyer said. “We also brought in a downtown consultant to assist in overall community planning and our Ambassadors welcomed 10 new businesses and held 15 ribbon cuttings.”
The chamber pumped plenty of dollars into the Dyersville economy as well.
“The chamber distributed $15,000 in chamber dollars to encourage spending in local businesses and distributed 100 $50 Fareway cards to local businesses affected by COVID,” Deutmeyer said. “We sold $77,965 in chamber dollars to be spent at chamber business as well.”
The organization distributed 110 new resident packets and partnered with Victory Ford to host Downtown Friday Night events.
“Look for that again on June 12, 2021,” Deutmeyer said. “We’ll have the Farmer’s Market from May through October. This year starts on May 20.”
Knipper focused on the upcoming chamber season.
“Even though the pandemic is very much real, the chamber staff and board are committed to develop and strengthen our area businesses,” she said. “Going forward, we will continue recruiting and assisting new businesses, continue education sessions, continue online job postings, as well as offering chamber dollars, government leader sessions, Downtown Friday Nights, Women’s Night and Battle of the Businesses.
“We have also added some new things, such as the Imagine 2030 Campaign, a digital job fair and the redesign of our website to make it more functional and easy to use. Although COVID slowed the tourist business, we are looking forward to bringing them back to our great area.”
This year’s Dyersville Area Chamber of Commerce officers are: President — Knipper; President-elect — Steve Bockenstedt; Vice President — Ashley Cosselman; Treasurer — Emily Soppe; Past President — Deutmeyer; Board members — Dr. Karen Runde, Melissa Otto, Mitch Tauke, Penny Offerman, Jennifer Recker, Josh Woodland and Lisa Maiers.