Chamber celebrates 125th anniversary
Oct. 9, 2013 — The Lassen County Chamber of Commerce has been supporting local businesses and promoting economic development for the past 125 years.
Community members gathered for a celebration Friday, Sept. 27 on the lawn at Roop’s Fort on Weatherlow Street.
Tony Jonas, Lassen County Historical Society President, described Roop’s Fort as the first place of commerce and said the gathering was the most he’s seen on the pavilion.
Lassen County Chamber of Commerce Board President Jessika Johnson thanked everyone for attending and celebrating the Chamber’s 125th anniversary. She introduced the current board members and said they are volunteers dedicated to the business growth of Lassen County.
She highlighted some of the activities and promotions the Chamber supports including the Think Local First campaign.
“We have a great committee that’s heading that up, and we’re really trying to make sure that everybody is thinking local first. It benefits all of us to grow your businesses, welcome new businesses in the community and keep you strong so that Susanville grows as whole. We are always looking for any suggestions that the local business community has to be able to give you the value of what the Chamber of Commerce does for you,” Johnson said.
She also briefly shared about the events the Chamber sponsors during the year including the annual Main Street Cruise, A Magical Country Christmas, scheduled the first Saturday in December, and the Home and Garden Show, which allows the Chamber to highlight businesses and draws people from out of town.
Lassen County District 2 Supervisor Jim Chapman, shared some history about how and when the Chamber began, and described it as one of the leaders that guides the development and growth in the community.
Chapman also shared a story he found “quite fascinating,” when back in 1910, the train was going to finally come through Susanville and create an “economic bonanza” for the region.
That year, the Chamber proposed to re-name Susanville because it was felt towns ending in “‘ville” had an association with hamlets and villages, according to Chapman. However, after some discussions and recommendations between the Chamber and a committee, the city trustees rejected to accept a ballot proposal and refused to give further consideration to renaming the town.
After sharing the story, Chapman said, it demonstrates the Chamber is a proactive force in the community.
“This is just one example of hundreds that exist in the history of the last 125 years with the Lassen County Chamber of Commerce. (It) has been a part and a force within the community that has shaped the building of our parks and our facilities and our community that we know today,” he said.
Jonas briefly shared about town founder Isaac Roop and the trade of the early days.
Chris Ulrich, representing the Federal Correctional Institution in Herlong, presented Johnson and Chamber Director Patti Hagata with a plaque honoring the Chamber’s 125 years of service to the community.
Hagata and past Chamber directors Theresa Phillips, Sue Eide, Carrie Satica and Kristin Volberg were also introduced.
Local restaurants generously donated food for the “Taste of Lassen County,” buffet and the band, Fourgery, provided the musical entertainment for the evening. Some of those in attendance, as well as current and past board members and the Chamber directors had souvenir pictures taken by Treasured Moments Photography.
Guests also took the opportunity to visit the neighboring Lassen County Historical Society Museum which featured a special exhibit featuring old businesses that were in the community.
The museum is open Tuesdays through Saturdays.
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