We often underestimate the power of a single individual in shaping our community. Those who strive for better, who lend a helping hand, who go the extra mile without seeking anything in return – these are the hidden heroes who make our community a better place. That’s why the Community Award for Citizen of the Year isn’t just an accolade; it’s a recognition of the relentless efforts and selfless spirit of our community citizens. Being nominated is an honor in itself, signifying appreciation for one’s contributions, and winning this award is a testament to the significant impact one can make. Let’s continue to cherish and encourage these community trailblazers – their dedication and commitment are truly worth celebrating!
So, without any more delay, let’s announce the fine Tillamook County nominees for Citizen of the Year!
Patrick Zweifel: Patrick Zweifel has always been committed to helping the community grow and flourish through his many entrepreneurial businesses including The Hydrangea Ranch, OCF Decorative Concrete and his non profit organization Ultimook. Most recently Patrick spearheaded the rescue of Alderbrook Golf Course from closing forever, and reinvigorated this community asset through incredible cosmetic improvements, creating another outstanding destination in Tillamook County.
Lonnie Eggert: For over two decades Lonnie Eggert has served the Tillamook School District in a variety of roles including a teacher, the Athletic Director, the Dean of Students and the head basketball coach and wrestling coach. During that time he has mentored hundreds of students providing them with guidance, supporting their needs, and teaching them the values of hard work and accountability. Lonnie has made it his life’s work to ensure that all students have the opportunities and tools they need to be successful in sports and in life.
Justin McMahan: Paston Justin McMahan of Living Water Fellowship has been instrumental in fostering programs that reach outside the church and benefit the entire community. As a pastor who believes we lead by example, Justin is constantly finding ways to mobilize the Living Water congregation to serve the community. In his time here he has developed a reputation for providing support and mentorship for anyone aspiring to bring about positive change for Tillamook County.
Suzanne Weber: Suzanne embodies commitment to community, spending most of her life in service making Tillamook a better place to live and work. Starting in her early years as a teacher when she was busy shaping young lives. Then moving into public service, serving __ years on Tillamook’s City Council, eventually serving as mayor for __ years. Most recently representing Tillamook in the state legislature for the past __ years, ensuring that our rural needs and voices are elevated to Salem.
Rachel Koljesky: Rachel Koljesky is committed to removing barriers so that everyone in Tillamook County can access health and life saving information. As the Outreach and Engagement Coordinator, Mobile Clinic and Event Coordinator, and Syringe Service Program Coordinator for Tillamook County, Rachel works collaboratively and tirelessly across service organizations, businesses, churches, community groups and individuals to ensure everyone has the information they need to live happier and healthier lives.
John Holland: In his role working for the mobile crisis team for Tillamook County, John Hollard spends his days helping those in crisis with unwavering compassion and empathy, and is directly responsible for saving several lives in the community. John’s irreplaceable services are an asset to all three school districts, the Tillamook County jail, and everyone experiencing a crisis who needs a lifeline.
We are immensely grateful to all who nominated candidates in our various categories. Your contributions have played a vital role in acknowledging the dedicated individuals who tirelessly improve our community. Each nomination illustrates the remarkable work being done in Tillamook County, and for that, we are truly thankful.
Each year the Tillamook Chamber’s Community Awards is rooted in community nominations, a process that effectively determines the nominees for all five categories. The nomination process, which ran until December 1st of this current year, uses a questionnaire process for each submission. The task of deciding the winners for each category is entrusted to a special committee made up of esteemed community members and past award recipients, excluding any Chamber staff or board members. The nominees from all categories will be honored and the much-anticipated reveal of winners will happen at our prestigious Annual Awards Banquet which is set to take place at the Tillamook County Fairgrounds on Saturday, January 13th, 2024 at 5:30pm.
For past nominations please see our blog or Facebook for other category nominations.
Community Awards Nominations Part 4: Program of the Year
Director of Operations
We are thrilled to announce the nominees for Program of the Year. These nominations speak volumes about the passion, dedication, and hard work of everyone involved with a common goal of building and supporting our community in some aspect. These programs are the pulse of our community, fostering growth, nurturing relationships, and bringing about positive change each in their own unique way.
And without further ado:
Court 4 at the YMCA: has transformed an unused racquetball room into a hands-on space for youth over the age of 10 to gather and be creative. From virtual reality headsets to art supplies and even musical instruments, youth have a place to go to explore new hobbies, create something unique and even work together on public art projects.
Embrace Grace: Embrace Grace helps young women with unexpected pregnancies navigate this delicate time in their lives, providing a loving community for personal, spiritual and physical growth and support. Completely volunteer run, Embrace Grace encourages and supports these young women along their journey, giving them the tools, they need to build a happy, thriving family.
House of Grace: House of Grace provides faith based transitional housing for women who are ready to change their lives. Since they were established, they have housed over 50 women and 30 children. Every day they help connect women to local resources, organizations and offer wrap-around support to help them gain independence and become integral members of the community.
Many Hands Medical Supplies: Many Hands Medical Supplies provides medical equipment to those in need in Tillamook County – everything from syringes to hospital beds to wheelchairs they make sure no one who has a need goes without.
THS Drag Racing Club: THS Drag Racing Club is a hands-on approach to the technical skills needed to be ready for the workforce. Johnny Begin and parent leaders teach high school students more than just how to build and race cars; they teach the values of hard work, commitment, and community service, holding each of their club members and their cars to a high standard.
Tillamook Cowpies: Tillamook County Wellness is on a mission to increase financial literacy in Tillamook County and reduce the impacts of generational poverty. By partnering with local organizations like Tillamook Bay Community College, Helping Hands Outreach Center and all three school districts, these volunteer-led financial literacy classes are offered free of charge to students and adults of all ages in both English and Spanish as a direct way to improve the financial health and quality of life of both individuals and the community.
The process of community nominations plays a pivotal role in deciding the Community Awards nominees for all five categories. Nominees were selected via a structured questionnaires that were accepted until December 1st of this year. The determination of winners in each category is carried out by a select committee, composed of previous award recipients and esteemed community members, with the exclusion of Chamber staff or board members. The nominees from each category will receive recognition, and the winners will be unveiled at our distinguished Annual Awards Banquet, which will be held at the Tillamook County Fairgrounds come Saturday, January 13th, 2024 at 5:30pm.
Keep your anticipation high as we will be back next week for the prestigious and the highly esteemed “Citizen of the Year” nominations. In the interim, we invite you to follow our Facebook page for ongoing updates about the nominees. For a look at past nomination announcements, please visit our official website at tillamookchamber.org/blog.
Our 2024 Annual Community Awards Banquet set for January 13th, 2024 is officially sold out.
If you are attending the banquet please see details below:
Date: Saturday, January 13th, 2024
Location: Tillamook County Fairgrounds
Start Time: 5:30PM
Attire: Business Casual
For further information please contact the Tillamook Chamber at 503.842.7525
Community Awards Announce Nominees for ‘Development Project of the Year’
By: Jessica Meyer
Director of Operations
In our previous article, we highlighted the nominees for the ‘Business of the Year’ category. Comprehensive details about these nominees are available on our blog at tillamookchamber.org for anyone who might have missed it. We are now ready to unveil this year’s nominees for ‘Development Project of the Year’. Each of the following nominations are being recognized for the substantial impact they have had on our area, driving progress and contributing to the community’s beauty, growth and vitality.
These projects go beyond mere aesthetic enhancements to the local landscape. They play a vital role as the driving force behind economic growth, generating employment, housing opportunities, and ultimately, a promising future for the entire community. The nominated projects stand as a testament to the dedication and hard work of local visionaries and developers, making a difference in shaping our community’s future.
Now for the big reveal…
National Bank Building: The recent renovation of the National Bank Building in downtown Tillamook by Terry Phillips has dramatically changed the landscape of downtown for the better. By removing the dated metal siding, restoring the masonry, painting and adding new entries to the Second Street Plaza, this building is now a focal point of downtown.
Tie Breaker Restaurant: The Tie Breaker Restaurant in Rockaway Beach took a vacant property on a prominent downtown corner and transformed it into a family restaurant with a sports bar atmosphere. With 23 TVs indoors and outdoors, a focus on local sports and athletes, and a stunning mural that spans the entire side of the building, the Tie Breaker Restaurant is poised to be a long-time favorite for locals and visitors alike.
Willet Apartments: Willet Apartments is a stunning, 46-unit development in the heart of Tillamook that, through a collaborative partnership with several local agencies, is committed to addressing the housing crisis. Willet Apartments offers affordable units as well as project-based rent assistance and dedicated spaces for folks with mental health or addiction issues.
As a friendly reminder, community nominations for each of the five categories hold a great significance of the Community Awards process. Candidates were nominated through a nomination form questionnaire that concluded on December 1st of this year. The winners for each category are determined by a committee consisting of esteemed past award recipients and respected members of the local community, excluding Chamber staff or board members. The nominees for each category will be recognized and the winners will be announced at our prestigious annual awards banquet, which will take place at the Tillamook County Fairgrounds on Saturday, January 13th, 2024.
Stay tuned, as we’ll return with more nominees for Program of the Year as well as the coveted nominations for Citizen of the Year. In the meantime, keep your eyes on our Facebook page for further details about the nominees, or visit tillamookchamber.org to see previous nomination announcements.
Community Award Nomination Announcement: Part Two
By: Jessica Meyer, Director of Operations
In our last article, we introduced the contenders for Small Business of the Year. For those who may have missed it, comprehensive details can be found at tillamookchamber.org on our blog. This week, we’re excited to present the nominations for Business of the Year.
The nominations for Business of the Year shine a spotlight on companies with over ten employees, each playing a vital role in our local area. Their impact reaches far beyond the economic realm, as they wholeheartedly contribute to the growth and well-being of our community in meaningful and inspiring ways. Each nomination came accompanied with answers to qualification questions and often letters of support to highlight the unique qualities of each business in this category. We’ll be sharing some of the background information submitted for each nominee as we present them.
Now, let’s extend our warmest congratulations to this year’s Business of the Year nominees.
Pelican Brewing: Pelican Brewing Co. is a staple in our community, always supporting local events and programs and enhancing the enjoyment of living and visiting Tillamook County. They encourage tourism to the area and provide the unique venues where memories are made – all while continuing to invest and expand along the coast.
TLC A Division of Fibre Federal Credit Union: TLC has been committed to Tillamook for more than 50 years as the only credit union in the county, and last year gave back over $27,000 to the community supporting everything from the Tillamook County Fair to Habitat for Humanity to the senior class SAFE night. They also provide support to Adventist Health Tillamook for their Reach Out and Read Program and Tillamook Bay Community College for local scholarships. In addition, their staff spent over 80 volunteer hours at local community events.
Grocery Outlet: The friendliness of the owners and staff at Grocery Outlet makes grocery shopping in Tillamook County not only more affordable but a pleasant, social experience! The owners Rob and Marilyn offer alternatives to dairy, meat and gluten as well as low-cost health and beauty products. They’ve showcased their commitment to Tillamook County by donating to several organizations including the Tillamook Chamber, Tillamook Rotary Club, TAPA, the TBCC Foundation and the Tillamook Food Pantry, proving that their commitment to community goes above and beyond helping lower the cost of living on the coast.
Tie Breaker Restaurant and Sports Bar: Tie Breaker is a quality restaurant in Rockaway Beach for both locals, visitors and sports fans of every kind. When they aren’t busy supporting local sporting events and local student athletes for both Neah-Kah-Nie and Tillamook High Schools, they are always planning new and fun events for the whole community.
Community nominations play a pivotal role in identifying candidates in each of the five categories. We collected nominees through a questionnaire process until December 1st this year. The winners of each category will be announced and celebrated at our annual awards banquet, held at the Tillamook County Fairgrounds. Save the date for Saturday, January 13th, 2024! As a reminder, the winners of each category are determined by a committee of previous winners and local community members, excluding Chamber staff or board members.
We’ll be back with more nominee announcements soon. Until then, keep an eye on our Facebook page for more information about nominees, or check out past nomination announcements at tillamookchamber.org.
Let the Community Award Nomination Announcements Begin…Part One!
By: Jessica Meyer
Director of Operations
The anticipation has been building, and the eagerness to unveil this year’s extraordinary lineup of Community Award nominees has been almost unbearable!
With another round of impressive nominations this year, it is truly evident that the spirit of our incredible community shines through. These Community Awards are proudly presented by the Tillamook Chamber of Commerce. Each year, during our Annual Banquet and Auction held in January, we honor outstanding individuals and businesses with Community Awards across five categories: Business of the Year, Small Business of the Year, Citizen of the Year, Development Project of the Year, and Program of the Year.
The community plays an integral role in nominating deserving candidates by answering a series of questions and providing information that is vital to the nomination process. This year, nominations were accepted until December 1st, and all nominees will be celebrated at our annual Banquet and a winner from each category will be awarded. This is set to take place at the Tillamook County Fairgrounds on Saturday, January 13th, 2024. The winners for each category are determined by a committee comprising of past winners and community members (not Chamber staff or board members — a friendly annual reminder!).
Now that the nominations have closed and announcement cards have been mailed to each nominee, we can finally announce the nominees in each category!
For Small Business of the Year, the nominees are…
Living Water Fellowship: Living Water Fellowship benefits more than just their church family by organizing programs that positively impact the entire community including Many Hands Medical Supplies; Embrace Grace; First Love Marriage Conference; and House of Grace to name a few. They have mobilized their congregation to serve the community and lead by example.
Oregon Coast Dance Center: Oregon Coast Dance instructor Miss Lisa Greiner has a daily impact on so many children in Tillamook County, teaching a variety of dance classes and life lessons. Her studio serves both children and adults, and she is busy remodeling the upstairs portion of her downtown building into apartments to do her part to help the housing crisis.
Do It Better: Do It Better Physical Therapy provides top notch patient care to all ages in Tillamook County, and they recently purchased a building in Bay City to expand their physical therapy offerings. Do It Better Physical Therapy goes beyond just treating patients, also providing quality knowledge of physical health to improve their patient’s quality of life so they can do it better.
Burden’s Muffler & Towing: Whether you need a tow, help getting your keys unlocked from your car, a crane to fly a flag, or help moving a house, Burdens Muffler and Towing is there to answer the call, providing support and quality customer service to the entire community 24/7.
Kiawanda Community Center: In the last year the Kiawanda Community Center has become the “place to be” in Pacific City with a variety of events for all ages that are fun, exciting, informative, entertaining – and easily accessible. Run by a volunteer Board of Directors, The Kiawanda Community Center is increasing exposure and tourism traffic to Pacific City, and is poised to host even larger, more extravagant events in the future.
Clark’s Plumbing: From new construction to emergencies, Clark’s Plumbing always answers the call with friendly, hard-working staff and professional expertise. When they aren’t helping with a plumbing issue, they are supporting the community by donating to school clubs, athletic teams and community events as well as hiring youth from the community.
East on West: East on West provides mouth-watering food and a commitment to community by participating in Moonlight Madness in downtown Tillamook and helping make that event a magical experience for everyone. Tillamook County will soon be known for the best burger around thanks to their talented cooks and friendly staff.
Country Squire Kitchen: Country Squire Kitchen in Garibaldi not only provides artisan cuisine at affordable prices, but they are also committed to using sustainable ingredients – even working with local farms and started their own farm to provide healthy, seasonal ingredients to their customers. Their food cart offers vegan and vegetarian options, consistent hours, and top-notch dishes that are sure to bring in more tourism traffic to Garibaldi.
Thank to everyone who made a nomination, and congratulations to our nominees! We’ll be back again soon with the rest of our nominees in the Business of the Year, Program of the Year, Development Project of the Year and Citizen of the Year categories, so keep your eye out for more announcements in the coming weeks!
Shop Small Sweepstakes season is back!
As the leaves change and the air turns crisp, we can’t help but think about the upcoming holiday season. And guess what? The Shop Small Sweepstakes is just around the corner!
This is a golden opportunity to boost our local economy while reveling in the holiday shopping spirit. We would like to thank our generous sponsor, CHS Northwest Propane as it is their first year supporting this incredible community event, and they’re excited to be a part of it. With a wealth of incredible local retailers right at your fingertips, why not add a unique touch to your holiday gifts by patronizing locally-owned businesses?
**Here’s What You Need to Know:**
🛍️ **Shop Locally:** From October 1st to December 31st, every time you shop at a locally-owned business( yes even a restaurant that is locally owned) in Tillamook County, you’re one step closer to winning fabulous prizes!
🎁 **Weekly Gift Cards:** Keep your receipts handy to enter weekly drawings for gift cards. We’re giving back to you for supporting local businesses.
💰 **Grand Prize:** And the grand finale? A chance to win a $1,000 local shopping spree! Imagine the joy of exploring our vibrant community with a pocket full of Sweepstakes Bucks.
**How to Enter:**
You can enter in two easy ways:
1. Drop off your receipt at the Chamber HQ, located at 208 Main Avenue in downtown Tillamook.
2. Send a photo of your receipt along with your name to 971-410-7458.
Remember, you can enter one receipt per day, every day of the Sweepstakes.
Follow us on Facebook to stay updated on winners and exciting developments. Join the Chamber’s Shop Tillamook Facebook group to discover exclusive sales, special deals, and connect with fellow shoppers. Share your shopping adventures and finds, but remember to keep those gift surprises under wraps!
The Sweepstakes officially kicks off on Friday, October 1st. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to the Chamber at 503-842-7525.
Let’s make this holiday season extra special by celebrating our vibrant community and supporting our local businesses. Mark your calendars, and get ready for a fantastic shopping experience! 🌟🛒