NEWSBREAK   October 2015 
Request for 2016 Event Dates
For those of you organizing events in 2016, the Portage Chamber is asking to send in your event information and dates by November 1.
The community guide will include events, however, due to space limitations, not every event we receive will appear in the guide.

We are requesting event dates earlier than usual because we want to get the guide out earlier in 2016. Your event will appear on the community calendar on our Chamber website. There is also a good chance your event will appear in our weekly news email and be mentioned on our morning radio show with WPDR/WDDC as your event date draws near.

You can submit an event directly to our website here or email your event information to [email protected] or call our office at 608-742-6242.  
City of Portage Director of Business Development and Planning Steve Sobiek addressed concerns about the proposed sign ordinance at a meeting attended by more than 40 people at the Portage Enterprise Center in September.

Portage Chamber advocates for its membership

As the sign ordinance is a work in progress, the Portage Area Chamber of Commerce remains at the forefront, bringing together those who are concerned about the proposed sign ordinance and attending the September Planning Commission meeting.

"One of the things a Chamber does is advocate for member businesses," said Portage Chamber Executive Director Marianne Hanson. "With the many individual phone calls and emails we received about the ordinance, naturally the next step was to arrange a gathering of members as a unified voice."    


The proposed sign ordinance is the latest in a string of recent instances where the Portage Chamber has advocated for businesses. In September, Hanson twice testified before a committee at the State Capitol in support of Wine Walks. Earlier this year, the city tackled garbage pickup, setting forth new guidelines; Hanson fielded calls from members, attended meetings, informed members about proposed changes to garbage pickup and solicited feedback.    


The Portage Chamber will remain steadfast in advocating on behalf of membership on future issues that are important to them.  "That is one terrific benefit of being a Chamber member," Hanson said. "As a group we are a unified business voice coming together to voice concerns on issues.  We keep our members informed of the issues pertinent to them and invite them to the table to hopefully reach an amenable resolution."    

Holiday Shopping Giveaway 
The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce along with Downtown Portage Inc. and the Business Improvement District are again organizing the Portage Holiday Shopping Giveaway contest to encourage shopping at participating businesses this holiday season between November 27 and December 18.

The contest is simple: Shoppers who purchase goods and services at participating Holiday Shopping Giveaway businesses can bring their receipts to the Portage Chamber during the contest time frame. Based upon the amount of a receipt, the shopper will be awarded chances to win the three prize drawings held on various days during the contest. Two $100 Portage Green drawings and one $500 Portage Green drawing will be held this year.

Last year, more than 40 of our Chamber member businesses participated in the contest. If you are a business interested in participating this year, please call the Portage Chamber at 608-742-6242 by October 23.
Welcome New Chamber Members 
Avon Independent Sales Representative - Susan Fischer
928 South St.    DeForest, WI 53532
Susan Fischer at 608-217-4896
Avon is a world leader in anti-aging skin care products, fragrance and color cosmetics.
Its product line includes beauty products, fashion jewelry and apparel.
plastic-place-ware.jpgOctober Chamber Business Luncheon
The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce is offering another way to network with your fellow Chamber members and make those important connections that can help you in your business or career. Bring your business cards, brochures, or anything you wish to share with other members. 

Tuesday, October 6 at Dino's
A panel of Chamber Members will be talking with us about retirement and what it means for you. 
- Will you be able to retire when you want? 
- Will you have enough money to last through your retirement?
- Will you need to work part-time while retired? 
- How will Social Security effect my retirement?  
- What steps should I be taking now towards my retirement?     

Talking about these and many more retirement plans is our
panel of experts: 
Edward Jones Investments, Klay Vehring          Waddell & Reed, Kathy Houzner & Julie Groves
    Northwestern Mutual Insurance, Ian Dumbleton             Schmidt Boucher Investments, Eric Boucher 
Location: Dino's Restaurant           Time:  Lunch at 11:30AM, Presentation at Noon
Cost: pay for your lunch at the restaurant

Please RSVP to [email protected] if you are planning to attend.   

Looking for a Hot Deal? See our list!   

Check out our Hot Deals webpage for deals our Chamber members are offering. Have a Hot Deal of your own you want others to know about? Post your deals on our webpage and join the Hot Deal brigade! There is no charge for posting a Hot Deal, so post away!  If you have questions, call the Chamber office at 608-742-6242 to get started.

Click here to see the specials that are currently running!
Manufacturing Career Tour Day
The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce is partnering with Columbia County Economic Development (CCEDC) and Portage High School to celebrate October as Manufacturing Month by hosting a Manufacturing Career Tours Day for students at Portage High School. The tours will take place at various locations in Columbia County and Sauk County on Wednesday, October 21.

"Students need to be exposed to career opportunities right here in our community. Creating a partnership with CCEDC and Portage High enables us to showcase local businesses," said Portage Chamber Executive Director Marianne Hanson. "We are excited for this great project that has such a positive influence on students."

The Portage Chamber, CCEDC and Portage High partnered together last fall to organize the Career Fair at Portage High School. The plan going forward is to have the Career Fair and a manufacturing touring day alternate each year.

This year Rayovac, St. Gobain, EK Machines, Flambeau and Anteco are the tour destinations where students will see the wide varieties of quality vocational opportunities available in manufacturing.
Business Profile
Rolling Woods Estates 
Rolling Woods Estates, under the management of Augusta Housing Management Company (AHMC Properties), is a new development on Airport Road in Portage. Phase one of the project, which will include seven buildings with 12 units in each building, will be completed next spring. The second phase, which will include four buildings with 12 units in each building, will begin in the spring. Two buildings, 24 units, are ready to be leased now, with another building opening up each month for the next five months.
AHMC is a full service property management firm presently managing over 3,000 multi-family units and 55,000 square feet of commercial space in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa. Founded in 1971, AHMC has a portfolio exceeding $125 million in asset value.
Everyone needs a home - and AHMC provides tenants a quality place to call home, realizing each tenant is unique. With quality property management, look to Rolling Woods Estates for good service, good people and good value.
The entire AHMC staff, including property managers and maintenance teams, are committed to the integrity of the company, taking great care to make people feel right at home.
Our formula to success is built around our AHMC mission statement to be a premier property management company that makes reliability a reality. We ensure growth by reinvesting in the business each year and keeping our properties well-maintained.
We try to get involved in each community we manage, recently becoming members of the Portage Area Chamber of Commerce. For more information about Rolling Woods Estates, 2552 Airport Rd., Apt. 3, call 608-745-2391 or 608-566-1567. Come see where you could be living next!

Bridal Pond fountain update 

Funding for a new fountain at Pauquette Park is nearing the halfway point, reaching $2900 with a recent $100 donation from Just Me - Monique Warnke and a $200 donation from Jerry & Claudette Braun, and with past contributions from Charlie Mantey, the employees of Don-Rick Insurance, BMO Harris Bank and a matching donation from the Portage Service Club Association.


The Portage Chamber thanks the individuals and businesses for their generous support. Members of the Service Club Association are Kiwanis, Lions, Rotary, Optimists and Chamber. Estimates for a new fountain are just over $6,500. The Portage Parks & Recreation Department offered installation and maintenance.     


Contributions can be sent payable to the Portage Area Chamber of Commerce (memo: fountain) and mailed to 104 W. Cook St., Portage, WI 53901. Call the Portage Chamber at 608-742-6242 for info. 

 St. Mary's School celebrates 150 Years!   
Please join us for our 150th Celebration on Saturday, October 3, 2015.We will gather for Mass at 4:00 pm followed by festivities in the St. Mary School Gym.
Entertainment will be provided by fellow Alumni Madison Malone! Hors D'euvres and Cash Bar-$10 per person at the door.

Portage receives ABC check   

Frontier Communications presented the Portage community a check for $50,000, representing a quarter-finalist's share of the America's Best Communities competition, at a reception hosted by Frontier at 205 Vino in September. 


Ribbon Cuttings 
A ribbon cutting was held at Johnson Chiropractic, 1512 New Pinery Rd., to welcome Dr. Tom Considine, DDS in joining the practice. Tom grew up in Portage, graduated from Palmer College, and was practicing in Watertown, WI.

He is looking forward to not only providing excellent chiropractic care, but also becoming involved in the community. For more information, call Johnson Chiropractic at 608-742-5578.

A ribbon cutting was held at Fresh Indulgence Bath & Body, 216 W. Wisconsin St., to welcome this new business to Portage. Indulge yourself in the joys of life!

Try their soaps, moisturizers, bath salts, shower tabs, bath bombs, lip balms, luffas, chocolate face masks and more.

For more information, call 608-742-3473.


Portage Chamber October Meeting and Events 

6   Business Luncheon at Dino's   11:30 lunch, speakers at 11:45
7   Ambassador Meeting at Community Bank    8am
13   Business After 5 at Rhyme    5pm-7pm
15 Ribbon Cutting for R. Condon Gallery & Studio 10AM
21 Manufacturing Career Day Tours with PHS students
Halloween at the Portage Theatres
Portage Theatres is planning a great Halloween themed event for the kids on Saturday, October 24. All you have to do is bring a non-perishable food item for the Food Pantry to participate. There will be a costume contest at 10:10am (registration at St. Mary parking lot at 10am) and sidewalk costume parade leaving from St. Mary parking lot (next to the Theatre along Conant St.).

Downtown businesses are encouraged to be out on the sidewalk and pass out promotional items, brochures and goodies to the kids. Following the parade, there will be a free movie with non-perishable food item donation. Kids will receive a goodie bag at the Costume Contest to take with during the parade. For more details, call 608-742-6678 or visit or visit 322 W. Wisconsin St. in downtown Portage.
Give Portage Green Gift Certificates
Portage Green Gift Certificates make an excellent gift. Used just like cash, the certificates can be purchased from the Portage Chamber in $5, $10 and $25 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. For more information, call the Chamber at 608-742-6242.
welcome home sew logo The Welcome Home Sew-N-Vac classes
Click here for a schedule of September classes at The Welcome Home Sew-N-Vac, located at 118 E. Cook St.  Call 608-566-1663 for more information.


portage center for the arts Portage Center for the Arts happenings 
Oct. 3  Varshavski & Shapiro    7:30pm
 One piano, four hands: one of the most renowned contemporary piano duos, dubbed " orchestra all its own!" -Madison Magazine

Oct. 24   Die Freistadt Alte Kameraden Band    7:30pm
What began in 1942 as a group of friends who loved to play music has evolved into a musical organization now in its seventh decade, sharing the sound of traditional German music!

For more information, please call the Portage Center for the Arts, 301 E. Cook St., at 608-742-5655. 

Rendezvous at the Fort
The Fort Winnebago Surgeons Quarters has planned an event for October 10 & 11. On Saturday, October 10, highlights include Menominee finger weaving; Irish folk fiddling; Ho-Chunk dance class and music; Blacksmith and Longhunter re-enactments. Throughout the day there will be staged readings of the children's book "The Little River That Could." The day concludes at 6pm with the improv comedy hit "How Geography and Geology Conspired to Create 'the Portage.'"
There is even a Pie Bake Off and pumpkin painting!

Sunday's highlights include a dedication by the Boy Scout troop that designed and installed new interpretive signs at the historic site along with flag retirements. Look for a special frontier presentation at 2pm with Cheryl Michler, the direct descendant of the fur traders who built the 1820 log cabin now called the Surgeons Quarters. She is also a descendant of Glory of the Morning, first woman to be chief of the Ho-Chunk. The Shabazz High School Fiddlers will stroll the grounds as prologue and epilogue to Michler's genealogy story.

The Surgeons Quarters Historic Site is owned and operated by the Daughters of the American Revolution, and is located at 1824 E State Rd 33, Portage, WI 53901. Events and canoe rides are free; food is available for purchase on Saturday. Bake Off contestants are asked to bring pies to the Surgeons Quarters on Sat. by 10:30am for judging. Pumpkin painting supplies will be provided - bring your own pumpkin or buy one on site. For more information, call 608-742-2949 or email [email protected].
Breast Cancer Awareness Event at DSH 
No one wants to hear that their mammogram came back abnormal. Join us to educate yourself on the options available to you when time, accuracy and compassion matter most.
Divine Savior Healthcare General Surgeons Dr. Eric Anderson and Dr. Joshua Pogorelec will walk you through the process, explain your options and answer your questions. Plus, the night kicks off with fun breast cancer awareness activities that you won't want to miss out on!
Event Details:
Date: Wednesday, October 14th, 2015
Time: 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Place: Divine Savior Healthcare
Caf´┐Ż Classroom, Lower Level
Call: 608-745-6405 to register
Light refreshments will be served.

Mammogram Screenings from 5:00 - 7:00 pm Call 745-6405 to make an appointment in advance.

Make an appointment for your next mammogram  

March for Mammograms Wellness Walk at 5:30 pm Pink attire/costumes encouraged
Pink shirts will be available for purchase. Proceeds donated to the Pink Ribbon Angels.
Presentation and Refreshments at 6:15 pm  
First 50 attendees to the presentation will receive a complimentary pink ribbon tote bag!

Got News?

What is your business up to? Pass along information and corresponding photos to [email protected] and let us help spread the word about the great things your business or organization is doing. The deadline is the 20th of each month. 

October Community Events
Spread the word about your events by posting them on our website!
1-18  Salvation Army Coat Drive Collection
1-31  Words/Images - poetry & photo competition at Portage Center for the Arts
2-31 Fiber Artists Coalition at Portage Center for the Arts 
2       Euchre Card Party at Portage Presbyterian Church
3       150 year celebration at St. Mary's School
3       Haunted Wisconsin Presentation at Portage Public Library
3       Varshavski & Shapiro at Portage Center for the Arts
6       Chamber Business Luncheon on Retirement at Dino's
8        Handbuilt Pottery Class at the Mercantile
10     Fiber Demo at Historic Indian Agency House
10     River Haven Bowl-a-Thon
10     Portage Fire & Police Department Open House
10     Columbia County Humane Society Open House
10-11    Rendezvous at the Fort
13     Business After 5 at Rhyme
14     Breast Cancer Awareness Event at Divine Savior Healthcare
16     Bingo at Our House Senior Living 
16-18    Janet's Pool Tour Final at the Ball Room
17     The Mercantile Customer Appreciation Day
19     How money works in retirement seminar at Portage Public Library
21     Second Annual Ladies Night Out at HealthSource Chiropractic
22    Silkscarf Painting Class at the Mercantile
23-24     Salvation Army Coat Drive Distribution
23     Soup Dine & Dash at Our House Senior Living
24     Halloween at the Portage Theatres
24     Die Freistadt Alte Kameraden Band at Portage Center for the Arts
26     Portage Sharing Supper at Wayne Bartels Middle School
29     Autumn Arts Dinner & Auction benefiting Portage Center for the Arts at Pardeeville Sports Club
30     Halloween Party at Our House Senior Living
31     Citywide Trick or Treating

Last month for the Farmer's Market - every Thursday through October.

For more information about these and other events, go to 

Organizing an event or having a sale?

Submit your event or sale to us and have it appear on the Chamber website calendar of events.You may enter your event by clicking here. Please note: Your submission will take a while to appear as the Chamber office first reviews the submissions before approving them to appear on the web calendar. For more information, please call our office 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 [email protected].