May 2016
Donations needed for Concert in the Park  
Join us for some great summer music at the Portage Concert in the Park Fireworks Celebration on Friday, July 2. Bring your lawn chair to Pauquette Park (corner of  Hwy 33 and Pierce Street) and listen to the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra. Enjoy a cold treat of Culver's Custard and Pepsi products during the performance. Stay for the terrific fireworks show over the Wisconsin River!! Reserve a table for you and your guests and be close to the music.

Donations are still needed to help cover the cost of the orchestra. If you can help, please call Marianne at the Chamber, 608-742-6242.
Wine Walk a success! 
The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce organized a Wine Walk that is one part celebration of wine and one part an opportunity to bring a great number of people into downtown to bring exposure to member businesses. Retailers can really showcase their products and services to a captive audience in a fun, relaxed environment.

The event, the fourth annual for the Chamber, was sold out. Downtown retailers and establishments totaling 19 stops offered a red and white wine selection at each location. This year, there was a little more hoopla attached to the affair as the walk was featured on NBC 15's Road Trippin' series. You can view it here. Reporter Saira Anwer covered the event for their 5pm and 6pm newscasts.
Portage Chamber Golf Outing
Tickets are on sale for the 34th Annual Chamber Golf outing to be held Wednesday, June 8 at Portage Country Club. Sign up a team and create memories, if not memorable shots, while networking on the links away from the office.

Foursomes are available. Call the Portage Chamber at 608-742-6242 if you are interested.
Welcome New Member

St. Croix Hospice
414 Broadway St., Suite 200    Baraboo, WI 53913  
Karen Lucey at 608-448-4200
Hospice services where quality of life and quality care are the highest priorities.  
Business Profile - Portage Rotary
For more than 100 years Rotary has united leaders: leaders from all continents, cultures, and occupations. As Rotarians, we leaders exchange ideas. We bring our expertise and diverse perspectives to help solve some of the world's toughest problems.

But we also take action locally. It is each Rotarian's goal to bring lasting change to the community in which he/she lives. Throughout each year, our Portage Rotary club raises money to invest in our future leaders. Each spring, the Rotary Club of Portage, provides $10,000 in scholarships to be awarded to three Portage High School seniors. It is estimated that the Portage Club has awarded close to $400,000 of scholarships over the years.

The 2016 scholarships were awarded to three incredible and deserving students. Four-year scholarships were awarded to Rose Warren, (daughter of Jackie and Doug Warren) and Emily Scharenbroch (daughter of Tim and Brenda Scharenbroch). A two-year scholarship was awarded to Samantha Ford (daughter or John and Lisa Ford). Portage Rotary is proud to be investing in their futures!

Business After 4 at R. Condon Studio & Gallery
Tuesday, May 10 from 4pm to 6pm (new time)
Come join us to see Roberta's studio and all the wonderful artwork she has created.   
Portage School Staff Appreciation Week
May 2-6 
Thank you to all Portage teachers and staff for your dedication during the school year!

Portage High School Career Fair
The Portage Chamber of Commerce, Portage High School (PHS) and the Columbia County Economic Development Corporation would like to invite you to participate in the 3rd PHS Career Fair highlighting local manufacturing, businesses and other industries on October 26, 2016 from 8:30am to 2:30pm inside the PHS gymnasium.

The career fair highlights the variety of career opportunities in your business and informs the students (high schoolers from Portage, Poynette, Pardeeville, Montello and Westfield) of the skills and education needed for positions with in your company. 

Booth size will be 8' wide with a few larger booths available upon request. Set up will be from 7:30am to 8:20am with PHS SKILLS USA and FFA members available to help load and unload.
There is NO COST to have a booth and appear at the event. This is a win-win for your company and for the students.

Please contact Marianne Hanson at 608-742-6242 with any questions or to sign up your business. Thank you for your support of the future leaders in business and manufacturing. Please sign up by September 1, 2016. 

Market Space is here!
Members are now able to post items they have for sale through our Chamber website on our Market Space page. Consider it a 'Craigslist' for Chamber members. There is no cost to list items that may fall outside of, but could also include, the realm of the usual type of products and services offered by a member. For example: A printing business may post an office desk it no longer has a need for. 
If you are interested in posting items you are looking to giveaway or sell, please call the Chamber office at 608-742-6242. View our Market Space page here.
ds healthcare DSH - Geranium sale; cancer screening; summer camp info
Geranium Sale Red, Pink, White, Martha Washington Geraniums, hanging baskets, tomato plants, springtime and garden decorations. Thurs., May 5, 9am-4:30pm; Friday, May 6, 9am-4pm. For more information contact Eileen Denman, Volunteer Coordinator, at 608-745-5166.

Caring for Sports Injuries
Caring for Sports Injuries - Lower Body Injuries      July 25-28
Divine Savior Healthcare, Café Classrooms A&B    9:30am-4pm       Cost $125
To Register: Visit, complete the registration form and return by mail to Matt Bekkedal or in person at: The Wellness Center - Suite 1; Divine Savior Healthcare; 2815 New Pinery Road; Portage, WI 53901
For more information, contact:
Matt Bekkedal, LAT at 608-745-6290 or 
Summer Program at Divine Savior Healthcare Child Care Center
Registration is now open for full day summer program for children ages 5 to 9 years old!
Children, ages 5 to 9, will engage in a variety of summer activities. From recreational, educational, and creative projects, our summer program is dedicated to providing a safe and fun-filled learning environment for your child.
DSH Employee Weekly Rate $160.00     
Community Member Weekly Rate   $165.00        
Daily Rate     $40.00
Learn more about the Divine Savior Healthcare Child Care Center at or contact Child Care Center Coordinator, Jenn Bilderback, at 608-745-5935 or email at

WisDOT 30/90/94 survey 
The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) is studying a 34-mile stretch of Interstate 39/90/94, from Madison to Portage, and seeks your input. The goal of the study is to create a long-range plan to improve safety and mobility on and near the Interstate, including intersecting roads that carry traffic to and from the Interstate.

Provide your feedback by completing this online survey about the improvement concepts and strategies being developed by the study team.  
Specials from Affordable Elegant Skin Care
During the month of May, three specials will be offered. Two of them are month long specials and one of them a limited time special for a week.
1) For the month of May, it's all about moms. All mothers get 10% off any 50 minute facial booked in the month of May.
2) For all those Prom Princesses, receive 15% off a 50 minute facial & a complimentary makeup. (*Note-Bring the makeup you would like used at the time of service).

During the week of May 16-20: A Mother/Daughter special. Buy one facial at the original price and receive a second facial 25% off the same visit.

For more information, call 745-0010 or visit their location at 242 W. Cook St. 

Help Support Portage K-9 Unit
The Portage Police Department is currently looking for donors for future fundraiser events to support the K-9 Unit, a huge asset to the police department and the community as a whole. The K-9 assists with drug/narcotic detection, criminal apprehension, tracking, handler protection, searches, as well as educational programs in the community.

Donations of any size are appreciated and will go toward ongoing training for the K-9 handler, equipment expenses, and major expenses that may arise for the K-9 Unit. Checks can be made out to the City of Portage and note the K-9 Fund in the memo line. Donations can be dropped of or mailed to: Portage Police Department; Attention Sgt. Ben Neumann; 117 W. Pleasant St, Portage, WI 53901.

For more information, contact Sgt. Neumann or Lieutenant Keith Klafke at 608-742-2174. 

Build Portage!
Realty Executives is a part of the Build Portage project, rewarding a deserving local family with home and property upgrades. Recently, Tammy Chapman and her family were announced as the first Build Portage recipients.

Donations are needed to make this program a success. Mail donations to 309 Dewitt Street, Portage, WI 53901. Find out more about the Chapman family and the project here
Grande Cheese Company now hiring
Seasonal employment opportunities are available for students at the Grande Cheese Company facility in Wyocena. The starting wage is $12.50, with night and weekend premiums, for 10-hour shifts, including weekends. Must be 18.

If interested, call Loretta at 608-429-2141, ex.4222.
Ribbon Cuttings & Bill Signings
A ribbon cutting was held at Seasons of Splendour Massage & Affordable Elegant Skin Care, 242 W. Cook St., to welcome this new business to Portage.

We offer a wide variety of massage and skincare needs/services: Swedish, deep tissue, hot stone,
hand/foot, chair, myofascial release, pregnancy massages, waxing, body treatments, and facials.

For more info, call 608-745-0010.

A ribbon cutting was held at Jack's Tap, 1207 Dunn St. to welcome this new business to Portage.

Jack's Tap is a new family owned and operated Bar and Grill, located next to the Amtrak Station. We feature a menu with an array of sandwiches, appetizers, and specials. However, our pride lies mainly in our homemade pizza. We strive to provide our customers with a comfortable atmosphere and a fantastic dining experience.

For more info, call 608-566-1666. 
Governor Signs Law, Keeps Chambers Promoting Tourism  
Portage Chamber Executive Director Marianne Hanson was on hand as Governor Walker signed Assembly Bill 714 into law, allowing Chambers of Commerce to continue promoting tourism in their communities for years to come. Changes to the room tax law adopted in the summer of 2015 would have ended nearly all local chambers' roles in encouraging tourism on January 1, 2017, but this new legislation, now known as 2015 Act 301, preserves the ability of chambers to currently function as tourism advocates.
Do you know...If your branding is speaking to your audience? Your ideal customer is specifically identified? Your sales funnel is converting effectively? If you don't know the answers - then attend our upcoming Branding, Marketing and Sales Classes.

Taught by branding, sales & marketing experts Megan Boswell, Spencer X Smith and Jenna Atkinson.
Marketing Your Business to Get Results - Thursdays May 19 & 26; 8:30am - Noon
Creating & Refining a Sales Process that Works - Thursday's, June 2 & 9; 8:30am-Noon
CLICK HERE To Check out Jenna's latest article on selling in IN Business Magazine
CLICK HERE To read How much money should you spend on marketing by Spencer

Register Today by Calling 608-262-3909
Harmony for the Homeless Music Concert
River Haven Homeless Shelter proudly presents Harmony for the Homeless featuring the Alleluia Quartet, a four-piece gospel quartet music group from Rockford, Illinois. Faith Gladem will be opening for the group at this concert happening at Portage Center for the Arts on May 20 from 7pm to 9pm.

Tickets are $10 each and are available at the Chamber office at 104 W. Cook St.
St. Mary's Best Fest     May 20-22 st. mary logo
Save this date for a weekend of fun, food, music, carnival rides and so much more!

Click here for the schedule of events! 
Portage Area Safety Training (Members discount!)

Annual Safety & Health Conference/Expo in Wisconsin Dells
May 16-18, 2016    Register Here
welcome home sew logo
Welcome Home Sew-N-Vac May classes
There are a number of classes to enjoy during the month at the Welcome Home Sew N Vac, 118 E. Cook St. 
For more information, call 608-566-1663

Click here for more May classes!

Blau Chiropractic offering Wellness Series
Blau Chiropractic is offering a free Wellness Series through the month of May:
Tuesday, May 3 - Move Well with Dr. Kevin Blau. Get some simple tips for incorporating healthy movement to create a healthy lifestyle.
Tuesday, May 10 - Eat Well with Dr. Todd Bauer. What we put into our bodies is incredibly important and plays a big role in our overall health. Learn to eat to beat chronic disease.
Tuesday, May 17 - Think Well with Dr. Jessica Tulachka. Discover the importance of our daily attitude in our health, and get some tips to help improve your thoughts!
Tuesday, May 24- Live Well with Rachel Seltzner, Naturopath. Make a plan to incorporate the keys to a healthy lifestyle and learn why your lifestyle is much more important than your genes.

Register through Parks & Recreation Department at 608-742-2178. Series is held at Blau Chiropractic, 641 Latton Lane from 6:30pm to 7:30pm.

hhu logo Grief Camp for Kids Scheduled for May
Registration is now open for Home Health United's Camp GLOW, scheduled for 10am-3pm on May 21 at Ochsner Park. Limited space is available, and kids across northern Wisconsin are invited. 
Camp GLOW - Giving Loved Ones Wings - is a grief support day camp for kids ages 10-17  that have been affected by a loss.

Whether it is the loss of a friend, classmate, parent, grandparent, sibling, or other loved one, kids and teens often experience and express grief in different ways than adults. The Camp is designed to give children a safe place to share their feelings and concerns, with a wide range of activities and enough counselors on-site to give individual attention if needed.

Activities include scrapbooking, writing letters to their loved one, and memory boxes that can be stained or painted, and are meant to hold items of sentimental value to the kids, remembrances of their loved one.

The Camp is being offered at no cost to the participants, with separate adult sessions for their parents or guardians who are also dealing with grief. Snacks and lunch are included. To learn more about Camp GLOW or to register, please call 877-356-4514 or visit

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!

ADRC of Columbia County offering driving classes
The ADRC of Columbia County is offering driving classes at thier location at 2652 Murphy Rd., Door #1. To register, contact Sarah Millard, ADRC of Columbia County Transportation Coordinator, at 608-742-9213.    

AARP Smart Driver classroom course   May 5, 8am-Noon; May 12, 12:30pm-4:30pm
Refresh your driving skills and knowledge of the rules of the road. Learn techniques for handling left turns, right-of-way and roundabouts. Discover proven driving methods to help keep you and your loved ones safe on the road. Space is limited.
AAA  RoadWise Driver    Thursday, June 2   8:30 AM-3 PM               
The AAA RoadWise Driver course includes topics about: car/driver fit, new driving techniques/technology, alcohol & medication effects on driving, distracted & drowsy driving, aggressive drivers, managing visibility & space and how to extend your driving career.  Space is limited. $30 registration fee.
Portage Chamber May Meeting and Events
4     Ambassador Meeting at Community Bank    8am
10   Business After 4 at R. Condon Gallery & Studio (4pm-6pm)
30   Chamber office closed for Memorial Day 
Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser for Portage United Way 
A Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser for the Portage United Way will be held on Saturday, May 14 from 5pm to 7pm at Northwoods, Inc. with music by Late 4 Dinner. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased at the door.  

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.

Got News?

What is your business up to? Pass along information and corresponding photos to 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. 

May Community Events
Spread the word about your events by posting them on our website!
3-31   Carnival on the River Styx Art Exhibit at Tivoli
3    Wellness Series "Move Well" talk by Dr. Kevin Blau
4    Career Planning Workshop at MATC
5    Portage Farmers Market
5-6   Partners of Divine Savior Healthcare Geranium Sale
6    Mittelstaedt Estate Sale to Benefit Columbia County Humane Society
6-28  Regional Art Program Exhibit at Portage Center for the Arts
7   Jack's Tap Kentucky Derby Party
7   City of Portage Spring Clean Up
7  Portage Police Department Bike Rodeo
7   Portage Presbyterian Spring Fling
10  Business After 4 at R. Condon Gallery & Studio (new time)
10  Wellness Series "Move Well" talk by Dr. Todd Bauer
12  Portage Farmers Market
14  Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser for Portage United Way at Northwoods, Inc.
15  Opening Day Celebration at Indian Agency House
17  Wellness Series "Think Well" by Dr. Jessica Tulachka
19  Portage Farmers Market
19  Career Planning Workshop at MATC
19  Get the Scoop on Retirement Workshop at Columbia County Aging & Disability Resource Center
20-22 St. Mary's Best Fest
20  Bingo at Our House Senior Living
20  Harmony for the Homeless Music Concert at Portage Center for the Arts
21  Monkey Business Institute at Northwoods Dinner Theatre
21  Camp GLOW of Home Health United
24  Wellness Series "Live Well" by Dr. Rachel Seltzner
26  Portage Farmers Market
26  Wellness Orientation Workshop at Blau Chiropractic
30  Portage Sharing Supper at Wayne Bartels Middle School

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