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Chamber NewsBreak - January 2013

   Expose your business in 2013! Use the Chamber to advertise!  
The Chamber wishes everyone a Merry Christmas and happy and healthy New Year. As you think about your resolutions for the year ahead, consider the advertising for your business. Are you taking full advantage of your Chamber membership in getting the word out about your business? The Portage Chamber is a source for advertising your business. Members are free to submit announcements of new product lines, employee advancements or new hires, company milestones and anniversaries, sales events and more in this Chamber newsletter--periodic submissions, at no cost! All you have to do is let us know and we'll get the word out.

The Chamber is expanding the advertising possibilities in 2013 and is offering our members a choice among 3 great options to expose their business. Members can place an ad in this monthly newsletter for just $250 for the year. Don-Rick Insurance continues as a long-time sponsor of the monthly newsletter and now we welcome Community Bank of Portage. Their ads, serving as clickable links to their websites, appear below. (You will also notice a large ad for Glacier Rock of West Baraboo, also a regular sponsor of this newsletter. A similar ad, also serving as a clickable link to a website, is $70 per month.)  

Members can choose to advertise on our homepage,, with a rotating ad--choose this option for only $500 for the year and we'll throw in a year-long run of monthly newsletter ads for $200. 

The third option is purchasing a permanent ad on the Chamber's homepage. Be the star and enjoy an ad that is always on the front page of the website for a year. Take this option for $1,000 and we'll even throw in a year-long newsletter ad. Regardless of which option you choose, all ads serve as clickable links to your own website.

We want to expose your business in 2013. Take advantage of the Chamber site now--each year we receive more than one million hits. Call the Chamber today at 742-6242.
   Chamber Annual Meeting & Awards Banquet announced   
The 2013 Chamber Annual Meeting & Awards Banquet will be held at Suzy's Steak & Seafood on Thursday, January 31 with a cocktail hour at 5:30pm and dinner at 6:30pm. The Chamber is coordinating entertainment for the event and will announce it at a later time. To register for the dinner, click here.

Save the date and be thinking about your nominations for the Chamber Annual Dinner and Awards Banquet Nomination forms will be sent out in the near future. Here is a list of nomination categories with respective abbreviated criteria: 
Business Excellence Award for a Chamber member business in existence for at least three years that has overcome adversity, grown, remodeled, demonstrated support in the Chamber or community.
Rising Business Star Award for businesses in existence for at least one year but less than five years that have started strong and exhibit potential for continued growth.
Community Service Award recognizing member businesses and or individuals that have made an outstanding contribution in service or leadership.
Educator Commitment Award recognizing an educator within the Portage School District who has demonstrated great skills in their educational field. 

Click here for a nomination form.

We are looking for sponsors for this event. Take advantage of this advertising opportunity. Get an ad in the event program: A gold level sponsorship is $500 and includes a full-page ad in the program along with 6 dinner tickets; a silver sponsorship is $250 and includes a half-page ad in the program plus four dinner tickets; and a bronze sponsorship is $100 and includes a quarter-page ad. Please call the Portage Area Chamber of Commerce.

         remedy intelligent staffing           portage national bank

                 community bank logo
   Cookie Walk, Culver's Breakfast see record numbers
cookie walkers
Kaytlin Taylor, 5, and her big brother Austyn, 11, of Portage choose their cookies wisely during the Cookie Walk. 
The Portage Chamber was glad to contribute the community's holiday events again this year. The warm December weather encouraged a record 128 cookie boxes to be purchased during this year's Cookie Walk. Proceeds of the walk will go toward the Portage Mural Project. 

With the help of a beautiful interior remodel at Culver's that added seating capacity, a total of 260 guests enjoyed a delicious breakfast from Culver's during the Breakfast with Santa event. Thanks to those families for generously bringing plenty of items for the food pantry. Thank you, too, to Culver's and Santa for making this a great event!

santa with scoopie culvers brkfst w santa 2012   

   Welcome New Chamber Members   
Grean Carpet Care LLC
409B E. Albert St.   Portage, WI 53901
David Green at 608-566-3851
Carpet and upholstery care and cleaning

2500 W. Wisconsin St.   Portage, WI 53901
Brian Frost at 608-742-5386
We microencapsulate a wide range of materials from solids to liquids to powders

community bank web
   WMC offering courses     

Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce, through its Safety Council, will host safety training in the Madison area in the New Year. Please register at least 5 business days prior to course date. 


A MSHA/OSHA 8-hour Refresher Course will be held on January 16 and February 26.

Fulfill your 8hr MSHA refresher requirement, satisfy your OSHA refresher requirement, Site inspections: what to look for, Fatality reviews, methods for accident prevention, Tips on handling inspections, Refine your hazard recognition skills, CPR/First Aid refresher, DOT and fleet safety updates, Mobile equipment safety/pre-operation inspections.

OSHA Construction Breakfast - "Cranes & Aerial Lift" held on January 17. Speakers will devote most of the workshop to best practices for developing and implementing pick plans. An overview of aerial lift safety will also be covered.

Fundamentals of Industrial Hygiene (part of NSC's Advanced Safety Certificate) held January 28 through January 31. Create and maintain a hazard-free work environment that keeps employees healthy and productive. You'll learn terminology, principles and actual practices in terms you can understand. Educational and interactive learning activities are led by experienced facilitators.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Janie Ritter or Barb Deans with the Safety Council, (800) 236-3400. 

   PHS counseling staff hosting Junior Conferences            
portage community schools Portage High School Counseling Staff are hosting individual Junior Conferences through the months of December and January. The purpose of the Junior Conference is to have an in depth personal discussion with 11th grade students and parents about each students academic strengths, career goals for the future and course selection for their senior year . Conferences benefit families by helping them navigate and carry out the post-secondary process of admission tests, college applications, scholarships and financial aid.

The goal is to have our high school students well prepared to launch their career goals. For more information, please contact the Counseling office at 742-8545, ext. 1015.

   Author to speak at Historical Society Annual Meeting       
The Portage Historical Society is hosting its Annual Meeting on Monday, January 14, 2013 at Trail's Lounge Supper Club. The evening begins with a social hour at 5:30pm and dinner at 6:30pm. 

The evening's featured speaker, Jim Draeger, author of 'Bottoms Up: A Toast to Wisconsin's Bars & Breweries', will begin at 7:30. Call Peg at 608-429-9214 for menu selections and reservations. 


Don rick web


   Portage Center for the Arts events   
portage center for the artsArt That Blooms will again be presented this year on Friday, June 7, 2013.  It consists of original artwork and the floral arrangements and poetry they inspire. Please submit your original art for consideration by sending a digital image via email (preferred) or a CD along with the medium and size of the work and your contact information.  It is important that we get an image that portrays the colors correctly. Artwork submission deadline is Friday, January 25.

Join us at the Opening Reception for "Off the Road", an exhibit and sale of the work of Paul Huebner and Lisa Hutler, on Friday, January 4, 2013 from 4pm to 6pm. Meet the artists, enjoy refreshments and marvel at the talent we have in our community.  The exhibit is on display in the Drury Gallery from January 4 through January 26, 2013.

Great news! A photography interest group is forming in our area, and the first meeting will be on Tuesday, January 8 to set the agenda for the year. Topics might include types of cameras, printers, framing and more. All skill levels welcome. You are invited to join us! Come and let us know your needs and wants! The first meeting will be held at the VFW Hall (behind Walgreens), 215 Collins St., from 11:30am to 1pm. For more information, call Fred Baewer at 608-742-4691. 

"A Visual History of the Badger Ordnance Works" by Verlyn Mueller will be presented on Thursday, January 10, 2013 from 12pm to 12:45pm. The cost is just $5 at the door. Verlyn Mueller, president and archivist for the Badger History Group, will present a history of the Badger Ordnance Works.  Once the largest ammunition plant in the world, Badger had an indelible impact on the people and the landscape of Sauk Prairie.  


Portage Center for the Arts is delighted to partner with Tivoli at Divine Savior Healthcare in bringing original art to the community at large. From January 11 through April 30, 2013, we will feature the Watercolors by Chris Dreyer of Dreyer Designs. Join us for the Opening Reception on Friday, January 11, 2013 from 4pm to 6pm to meet the artist. The Tivoli is located at 2805 Hunters Trail, behind the hospital off Highway 51 North.


The Stellanovas, featuring Café Jazz, will be presented in the Zona Gale Theatre on Saturday, January 26, 2013 at 7:30 pm. Reserved seats are Adults/$15 and Students/$5. 


For more information on these events or to reserve a seat, contact Portage Center for the Arts, 301 East Cook Street, Portage,  608-742-5655.

glacier rock flyer
   Red Cross to receive funds from Hurricane Sandy fundraiser  
The Portage community raised $1200 during a Hurricane Sandy relief fundraiser held on Dec. 9 at the VFW Post 1707. Thank you to all those who baked and bought delicious baked goods and to the businesses and individuals who donated items and those who bought raffle tickets or bid on silent auction items.

A big thank you to members of Maestro Fuzz, the Portage High School Jazz Ensemble with Jeff Good and Tom Shaver, and Michelle DuVall and Doug Brown for performing at the event.
   AmericanWay donates flags    
american flags wi bridge AmericanWay donated American flags that will adorn the Highway 33 Wisconsin River bridge on special occasions, like their debut on Pearl Harbor Day. The flags will enhance this entry to our city and make a nice addition to the banners (seen below the flags at right), which AmericanWay also contributed.

Thank you to AmericanWay for giving visitors an inviting welcome to Portage.
americanway 2 logo
   Event at Mirror Lake State Park   
Join us for a fun winter evening at Mirror Lake State Park during our Candlelight SKI-HIKE-SNOWSHOE on January 5, 2013 from 6pm-8pm. The event features two easy 1-mile trails lit by torches--One for skiers and the other for everyone to enjoy. The Friends will have hot food goodies and hot drinks for sale to enjoy around the roaring bonfires.

A Wisconsin State Park Sticker is required and the new 2013 stickers will be available for purchase. 
For more information contact, Mirror Lake State Park, E10320 Fern Dell Rd., Baraboo, 53913, 
   Portage Chamber helps local residents bundle up   
big bundle up

The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce is inviting residents to drop off new or gently used coats, sweaters, hats, mittens and other warm clothing items as part of the Wisconsin Department of Tourism's "The Big Bundle Up" campaign. "The Big Bundle Up" is a statewide collection program that runs through January 4, 2013.


Last year's first-ever mitten collection program was an enormous success. The state's tourism industry collected more than 3,100 mittens and winter items to help warm up thousands of needy families throughout the state. To date, more than 75 chambers of commerce, CVBs, visitor centers, the eight Travel Wisconsin Welcome Centers and other business locations around the state have committed to serving as donation sites for this year's expanded collection.


With the spirit of the holiday season upon us, donating winter items is the perfect way to give back to Wisconsin families in need. A box is located in the Portage Chamber office, 104 W. Cook St., for donors to drop off warm clothing items from Wednesday, Jan. 2 through Friday, Jan. 4 from 9 am to 4:30pm. All items donated at this location will be given to the Portage Community Clothes Closet.

   Catch the Silver Lake Fisheree!  
Riley's Bar & Grill is hosting the Silver Lake Fisheree on Saturday, January, 26 from 7am to 3pm on Silver Lake. Registration will be held at Riley's the week prior to and the day of the event. There is a prize for the biggest fish as well as raffle, food and refreshments immediately following the event.

The cost is just $5 per person and $10 per family. Riley's is located at 1314 W. Wisconsin St. For more information, call 608-742-1004.
   Enjoy a Christmas Day Dinner        
Join us for a Free Christmas Day Dinner at Portage Presbyterian Church, 120 W. Pleasant St. We will be serving turkey breast & gravy, ham, mashed potatoes, vegetables, cranberries, rolls, dessert and a beverage from Noon to 1:30pm. For more information, call 608-742-6006.
   Upcoming Business After 5

Business After 5 - Days Inn

Tuesday, January 8th from 5pm-7pm

Join fellow Chamber members for networking, conversation and refreshments at our monthly Business After Five. Hosted by Days Inn.    



February Business After 5 - Markent Solutions

March Business After 5 - United Country Hamele Auction & Realty

April Business After 5 - U.S. Cellular


Reserve a month in 2014, yes 2014, for your business before they're taken!!


Community Events

   January Chamber Meeting & Event Dates
1st     Chamber office closed for a Happy New Year
2nd    Ambassador Meeting at Community Bank  8am
8th     Business After 5 - Days Inn      5pm-7pm
31st   Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet at Suzy's Steak & Seafood

   Ribbon Cuttings
studio k web rc
A ribbon cutting was held at Studio K Hair Design, 226 W. Wisconsin St., to welcome this new business to Portage. Katie Blankenheim owner/stylist has worked in the Madison Area at an Aveda Salon for the last five years. She will continue her business as an Aveda Salon servicing men, women, and children's haircuts, perms and color. For more information, please call 608-745-9011.
clc ribbon cutting web A ribbon cutting was held at CLC Sports World, 118 W. Cook St., to welcome this new business to Portage. Come in and give the sports fan on your list something they will really appreciate. If you collect, let us try and help you. For more information, call 608-566-6760.
   Give Portage Green Gift Certificates this Holiday Season!  
Portage Green Gift Certificates make an excellent gift. Used just like cash, the certificates can be purchased from the Portage Chamber in $5 and $10 increments. Recipients of the Portage Green may redeem them at these participating Chamber member businesses. By buying Portage Green Gift Certificates, you are helping to boost local business by keeping thousands of dollars right here in Portage. Don't get worked up over figuring out what to get someone; make it easy on yourself and give them Portage Green Gift Certificates! For more information, call the Chamber at 608-742-6242.


The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce is providing leadership for
 building a healthy economy and a high quality of life in the Portage Area.
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NEWS BREAK is a monthly publication of the Portage Area Chamber of Commerce.  Please contact the Chamber if you have news about your business that you would like to include in the next issue. 
 Our deadline is the 20th of the month.  Email your news to