2020 Brainerd Lakes Chamber Celebration of Excellence - POSTPONED
Out of deep respect and responsibility to our community, we have made the difficult decision to postpone our 2020 Celebration of Excellence due to the current COVID situation. We fully intend to host a live event in the future, hopefully next spring.
The Celebration of Excellence is the Chamber's largest attending event honoring several outstanding businesses, congratulating our future leaders and thanking the many volunteers who help us throughout the year. We look forward to the day when we're able to honor Close-Converse (Lakes Proud Small Business of the Year), Lexington Manufacturing (Business Excellence Award), and Ron and Al Lindner (Business Legacy Award) in true Chamber fashion.
Recognition and relationships are extremely important, and this event represents far more than a fun night out. Honoring others not only celebrates their individual success but inspires others to pursue excellence, invest in people, and give back to the community. And our business community is only as strong as the personal relationships we're able to build with each other.
We'd like to thank Cragun's Resort for graciously allowing us to postpone the event indefinitely as well as working with us to create a comprehensive COVID safety plan. We also thank all of our sponsors and guests for your understanding.
Those who have already paid for sponsorships or tickets will retain their reservations and join us on the rescheduled date, which will be announced at least one month in advance. Please let us know if you'd prefer a refund. Contact Sue Galligan email@example.com 218-822-7119.
Until then, we strongly encourage you to closely follow all safety practices so our businesses can remain open. And please make extra efforts to support our local restaurants, bars, breweries and event businesses as they deal with these new restrictions. #LakesProud
~Matt Kilian, Brainerd Lakes Chamber President
The Brainerd Lakes Chamber's Celebration of Excellence presented by Widseth is the largest signature event of the year for our 1,000+ members to celebrate the accomplishments of the Lakes Proud Small Business of the Year Award recipient, Business Excellence Award recipient and Business Legacy Award recipient!
Surround Yourself with the Dreamers, the Believers, the Planners and the Doers!
What do the 3 award finalists have in common? They all had a dream that they believed in and made it come true! Celebrate their Sparkling Stories of Success with us!
The Brainerd Lakes Chamber and Cub Foods are excited to present the 3rd Lakes Proud Small Business of the Year Award to Close Converse Commercial Real Estate | Business Brokerage which is a small business that truly personifies the spirit of entrepreneurship, pride and success! The Lakes Proud Small Business of the Year Award honors a Brainerd Lakes Chamber business that employs up to 20 team members with the following attributes: leadership, innovation, employee investment and community service.
Since 1995, Close Converse has specialized in providing the highest quality commercial, land and business brokerage services. Like most companies, Close Converse started small, with Kevin Close working as the sole broker for the company together with an assistant. In 2002, Kevin's son, Chris Close, joined Kevin and Rod Converse in the company. Today, Chris Close is the sole owner of Close Converse. They have four full-time salespeople and three full-time support staff. The company has three unique divisions: a commercial real estate division, a land sales division (Land Radar) and a business brokerage division.
What makes Close Converse unique compared to other real estate organizations is that all their agents work together as a team, allowing them to focus on their number one priority, their clients. From its conception, Close Converse has always been about serving people. Every week the team recites out loud their values statement which is "Together we will serve every individual with passion, integrity and excellence, always delivering more than is expected." Their hope is that long after a transaction closes, their customers and clients will remember the relationships that were formed with the individuals on their team.
Joining the cast of legendary Business Excellence Award winners is Lexington Manufacturing! They will be recognized for their leadership, innovation, employee investment and community service. Hy-Tec Construction is proud to sponsor the Business Excellence Award and present it to Lexington Manufacturing during the Brainerd Lakes Chamber's premiere event of the year!
Lexington is a world class manufacturer serving the commercial window and door industry from coast to coast and also in international markets. Its core concepts are to Build Relationships, Create Solutions and Deliver Value. This formula has worked well and has driven sales from $40 million five years ago to projected sales in 2020 in the $80 million range.
The Brainerd operations got started a little over twenty years ago in the Northern Pacific buildings headed up by Mike Dillon who is now president of all Lexington's operations. Lexington started out in a garage on Lexington Avenue in the Twin Cities back in the early eighties and has developed into a premier component manufacturer to Fortune 500 companies throughout the United States. Lexington is a growth oriented multi million dollar company but still has its roots & culture as family based.
Ron & Al Lindner
Headlining the Celebration of Excellence will be the presentation of the Business Legacy Award by the Brainerd Lakes Chamber and RiverWood Bank to Ron and Al Lindner! Ron and Al Lindner are true sportsmen and innovators for the fishing industry. In 1968, they, along with members of the Nisswa Guides? League, created the Lindy Tackle Company and have sold more than 70 million Lindy Rigs! Their talents and outreach to the nation grew with the founding of In-Fisherman magazine, a leading publication in the freshwater fishing industry in 1975. In-Fisherman Television and Radio began in 1979 and became hugely successful. Their sons, James and Daniel joined forces with Al and Ron in 2003 to establish Lindner Media Productions.
Al and Ron remain an important ingredient in the success of Lindner Media, which currently produces five outdoor television shows (Angling Edge, Fishing Edge, Ultimate Fishing Experience, The Ontario Experience, and AnglingBuzz). Both Al and Ron have received numerous industry recognitions, including belonging to the Normark Hall of Fame, the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame and the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame. Al is also in the Professional Bass Fishing Hall of Fame and received the Samuel C. Johnson Fishing Journalist of the Year award for his contributions to the industry. They have written hundreds of published articles, published multiple books on fishing and created the famed 'F+L+P=Success' fishing formula.
TABLE & SEATING OPTIONS:
DAZZLE TABLE ($1,000; 4 Available)
- Prime seating for 4 at a reserved table up front
- Plated dinners for 4
- Funds help support our LakesPROUD regional movement
SPARKLE TABLE ($475; 5 Available)
- Reserved table for 4
- Plated dinners for 4
INDIVIDUAL SEATS ($75 / Ticket) Individual Seats will be available for purchase based on availability. Contact Sue Galligan for availability and to purchase 218-822-7119 firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Reserved seating for 1
- Plated dinner for 1
Support the LakesPROUD Movement
Help us keep it local! www.lakesproud.com
- $50 LakesPROUD Donation
- $100 LakesPROUD Donation
WHAT TO WEAR
Put your best "glittery" foot forward at the Celebration of Excellence and show off your sparkle! We invite attendees to have fun celebrating our theme "All that Glitters" by donning their brightest attire. Grab a sequin bow tie, bedazzled jacket, or glittery dress and get ready for an evening of excitement! As always, we encourage our guests to wear what will make them feel comfortable.
SOCIAL HOUR SPONSOR ($1500 includes a Sparkle Table or $1000 without a Table)
Be the "Host with the Most"!
- Signature drink named after your business
- Stage recognition
- Signage at both bars
Add to the evening's celebration with music!
- Personalize the evening with your music request
- Stage recognition
Ooh and Aaw the night away with an amazing light show!
- Stage recognition
5:00 - 6:00 p.m.
- Social Hour
- Cash Bar
- Professional Photos by
- Celebration of Excellence - Sponsored by Widseth
- Recognition of volunteers, committees, and retiring board members
- Plated Dinner
- 3 Course (Gluten Free) Meal-
- House Salad with Ranch Dressing
- Apricot Stuffed Pork Loin
- Herb Crusted Carrots
- Roasted Baby Yellow Potatoes
- Vegetarian Option- Broccoli Quinoa Cake
- Dessert- Tiger Cake
- 3 Course (Gluten Free) Meal-
- Lakes Proud Small Business of the Year Award Presentation - Sponsored by Cub Foods
- Business Excellence Award Presentation - Sponsored by Hy-Tec Construction
- Business Legacy Award Presentation - Sponsored by RiverWood Bank
COVID SAFETY PLAN
This year's Celebration of Excellence event has been modified to comply with COVID-19 guidelines. To allow for social distancing, room capacity is limited to 250 attendees with tables set to accommodate four individuals. Hand sanitizer, social distancing, facemasks, and a new "no contact" check-in system will be implemented to ensure the safety of our guests. To read our full Safety Prepared Plan click here .
ABOUT THE AWARDS
The Brainerd Lakes Chamber will present three awards at its eighth-annual Celebration of Excellence on November 19th - the traditional Business Excellence Award, which goes to an outstanding local business, the Business Legacy Award, which celebrates individual lifetime achievements as well as community and economic contributions and the Lakes Proud Small Business of the Year Award which will recognize a small business that personifies the spirit of entrepreneurship in the Brainerd Lakes Area!
For all three awards, a nomination/application process was announced in April 2020. After the deadline passed at the end of May, a ten-member volunteer selection committee independently scored and discussed each applicant before choosing the recipients.
Past recipient of the Lakes Proud Small Business of the Year Award:
- Jack Pine Brewery (2018)
- Brainerd General Rental (2019)
Past recipients of the Business Excellence Award include:
- Widseth Smith Nolting (2012)
- Crosswoods Golf (2013)
- Grand View Lodge (2014)
- Ultra Paws LLC (2015)
- Just for Kix (2016)
- CTC (2017)
- Cuyuna Regional Medical Center (2018)
- 3 Cheers Hospitality (2019)
- Stewart C. Mills Jr. (2016)
- Arnie Johnson (2017)
- Paul and Lynn Hunt (2018)
- Dutch and Irma Cragun (2019)