Awards presented at annual meeting, dinner

Hypnotist Chris Mabrey hypnotized more than a dozen people but local restaurant owner Henry Arcolesse was the star of the show. Arcolesse kept seeing “a big freakin’ rat” when Mabrey touched his forehead and he also got on stage and pretended to be exercise guru Richard Simmons.

MEEKER I “The questions range from ‘what is a sheepdog trial’ to ‘what is a range call’ to ‘at what altitude do deer change to elk’?” Meeker Chamber of Commerce president Cassie McGuire told the assembled crowd at the chamber’s annual dinner held Feb. 3.
After an entertaining performance by the Meeker High School show choir, McGuire addressed the group assembled at the Fairfield Center, pointing out the business — and busyness — that takes place every day at the chamber’s Market Street office.
Chamber director Katelin Cook, completing her first year as director, announced the unveiling of the chamber’s new website.
“Having a prominent website presence is becoming more and more of a necessity.”
In addition, Cook said, the chamber will be creating a commercial for the Altitude Channel this summer, as well as focusing on the development of the Wagon Wheel Trail that will connect downtown Meeker with ATV trails into the national forests.
Awards were presented to local businesses by chamber members.
Ann Marie Scritchfield presented the small business of the year award to Stan Wyatt, owner of Wyatt’s Sports Center.
Katie Conrado presented the large business of the year award to Scott Isenhour of REDI Services, Inc., who said, “We’ve got great employees because this is a great location.”
The Meeker Lions Club received the non-profit organization of the year award, presented by Kim O’Connell to Lions Club president Anthony Mazzola. The Meeker Lions Club will host the international organization’s sixth district convention in April, which will bring visitors from across the Western Slope to Meeker.
Wendy Gutierrez presented the award for citizens of the year to Dr. David and Beverly Steinman, for their tireless work in the community not just as a physician, but through the Rio Blanco Historical Society and the United Methodist Church.
Beverly Steinman and David Steele accepted the award on behalf of Dr. Steinman, who had been hospitalized prior to the event. He is battling cancer.
“Dave does give a lot to the community, but the community gives a lot back to him,” Beverly said. “Dave would like to see something happen for hospice care in Meeker. The moment is right,” she added.
Enterprise Products received the chamber’s energy industry partner of the year for 2012. As the number one taxpayer in the Rio Blanco County, with 40 employees, Enterprise rep Steve Cochran said, “We want to be an asset to the community.”
The awards ceremony was followed by Grand Junction hypnotist Chris Maybrey, who put 18 Meeker residents through their paces. Anyone who attended is not likely to forget Ma Famiglia owner Henry Arcolesse’s fear of rats, Joy Allen’s rendition of the Oscar-Mayer theme song, or Mason Scritchfield’s sudden affection for Barbie dolls.
Dinner — prime rib or orange-glazed chicken — was catered by Stage Stop Meats and Deli, with proceeds supporting Meeker High School students’ science trip to Costa Rica this spring.

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