Eight Wauseon businesses were spotlighted Saturday by the Chamber of Commerce for shining especially brightly in 2018.
The Chamber held its 3rd Annual Heart Beat Awards banquet at the St. Caspar Catholic Church Parish Life Center to honor Sullys Bakery and Bistro, Tree’s Diner, Wheeler Chiropractic, Gerald Grain, the Wauseon city pool, the administration building for Wauseon Exempted Village Schools, Dennis Apartments, and Hammontree’s Heating and Cooling.
Chamber Executive Director Bill Drummer said each of the award winners, in some way, invested last year in new or expanded businesses or renovations. Examples include: the openings of Sullys by local restaurateurs Scott Sullivan and Brian Roth, a new city pool after a years-long, tenacious campaign, Tree’s Downtown Diner on Fulton Street; the upgrading of Gerald Grain on County Road 11; and new apartments constructed by businessman Tim Dennis.
“Their awards are to recognize their investment into Wauseon,” Drummer said. The Heart Beat award is based on the city’s motto: “Wauseon, The City You’ll Take To Heart.”
Attended this year by 325 people, the awards banquet has become a tradition of honoring those Chamber members who invested in their businesses financially and for the betterment of the city of over 7,300 people.
Eight to 10 members are recipients of the Heart Beat Award each year. It replaced the Chamber’s former Snazzy Award, given to just one city business annually. Drummer said multiple Heart Beat Awards are presented each year so that all of the greatest efforts are recognized.
Wauseon Mayor Kathy Huner said the Heart Beat Award the city received for the new community swimming pool goes to each and every resident.
“It’s the citizens who actually opened the pool back up, so I think it’s the citizens who actually got the award,” she said. “It was kind of a neat honor to get, because (the pool) was a lot of work from everybody. It was a huge community effort, and getting the award was a great way to show the community that we all worked together.”
Wauseon schools superintendent Larry Brown extended his appreciation for the Heart Beat Award recognizing the new 9,554 square-foot school administration building at 930 E. Oak St., and invited the public to visit.
“As a school district, we appreciate the support of the entire community for the means to provide a dedicated administrative services location in close proximity to the district’s schools,” he said. “We truly feel that the building will provide the necessary space for the Wauseon Board of Education for many years to come.”
Teresa Spies, owner of Tree’s Downtown Diner which opened last March, said she has bragged about the restaurant’s Heart Beat Award since she received it.
“It’s our very first award,” she said proudly. “We haven’t even been open a year yet and we won an award. I think that speaks volumes.”
Twenty-eight new Chamber members were added in 2018, bringing the current number to 220. “Which is a big membership for a little town,” Drummer said. “I’m absolutely optimistic that the business community continues to grow.”
Reach David J. Coehrs at 419-335-2010.