From left, Glenn Anderson and Todd Tidball channeled Ed and Johnny for the “Poulsbo Chamber Tonight Show.” Photos by Terryl Asla/Kitsap News Group
SUQUAMISH — One hundred thirteen members of the Poulsbo Chamber of Commerce, their family members and guests gathered at the Suquamish Clearwater Casino Resort on Jan. 21 for the 64th annual Chamber of Commerce Gala.
Basic black was most women’s fashion color for the evening, with outfits ranging from evening gowns to cocktail dresses to little black dresses. Men’s dress varied widely from the formal white tux jacket on host Todd Tidball to suits and ties, to “Washington tuxedos” (sports coats and blue jeans).
2017 Chamber President Brittany Cline opened the evening, followed by Tom Taylor’s invocation drawing God’s attention to the success of local businesses and asking for His support.
The mood was upbeat; the general feeling was summed up by outgoing Chamber President Ingemar Anderson, who said of the chamber and the city: “We are well set up for 2017.” Poulsbo City Council members Jim Henry, Connie Lord, and Ed Stern were in attendance, and they received some razzing about how the city’s regulation and permitting process were slowing up construction. Mayor Becky Erickson was not present because of illness in the family.
Besides a booming economy, much of the credit for the good mood goes to Glenn Anderson and Todd Tidball, whose “Poulsbo Chamber Tonight Show” format channeled Ed McMahon and Johnny Carson. They offered up “man on the street” videos (“How do you pronounce ‘Poulsbo’?”) and live bits that borrowed liberally from late-night talk shows.
The “Top 10 List of Ways for the Chamber to Make Money” was particularly funny — and accurate. It predicted the number one way was to host a Dessert Bash and have tables submit cash bids for the opportunity to be one of the first to choose from a host of lavish desserts donated by local businesses. (The gag gift for last choice was a bag of Oreo cookies and a half-gallon carton of milk.)
The top five tables alone yielded a total of $1,351.
The talk show format and set worked extremely well for the awards portion of the program later in the evening. The winner in each category was invited to come up and be interviewed by the hosts. Hosts and guests proved to have great comic chops. Anderson in his role of “Ed McMahon” deadpanned off-the-wall questions for each guest. (To ChocMo founder, Peter Crabtree: “I’m on a diet. Which do you recommend, dark chocolate or white chocolate?”)
Among those laughing in the audience was Miss West Sound Anikka Abbot; she’s competing for Miss Washington. Ron Lamont was there, too. A Navy veteran, he’s author of “Risen from the Depths,” a mystery inspired by the true story of the USS Enterprise launching a 1963 Plymouth from its flight deck back in 1978. The book is one of the first imprints of Kitsap Publishing, owned by Ingemar and Barbara Anderson. New Poulsbo Police Chief Dan Schoonmaker and his wife, Debbie, were introduced, too. Anderson advised the chief to never agree to host a chamber gala. “Last year’s host was the chief of police and he was gone in the next week,” he quipped.
The awards ceremony began following introductions and dinner.
Winner in the “Emerging Business of the Year” category was Greens on Your Way, which has outlets in Poulsbo and Silverdale and is planning to add outlets in Redmond and Kent. Learn more about this unique drive-through salad business at www.greensonyourway.com.
Crabtree received the “Young Leader of the Year” award. Crabtree, who created and owns ChocMo and High Spirits liquor store, advised young people who want to get into business to “do it when you’re young and too dumb to know you can’t do it.” Learn more at www.chocmo.com.
“Organization of the Year” went to Kitsap Children’s Music Theatre, beating out Poulsbo Historical Society and Viking Fest. The group of some 200 volunteers works with about 125 young people from ages 7-18. The secret to their success: every child who auditions is in the show. Their next show is “The Wizard of Oz,” May 4-21. More information is available at www.kcmt.org.
Jim Sund was named “Volunteer of the Year.” “You make the time,” he replied simply when asked how he found the time to work with so many causes.
“Business of the Year” went to Peninsula Paint Centers (www.peninsulapaintco.com). Helping local ventures and projects was credited as an important piece of this successful business. One of those projects was becoming a corporate sponsor for the USS Turner Joy, the Vietnam War-era destroyer museum ship docked in Bremerton.
Recipient of the “Person of the Year” award — and a standing ovation — was Jim Shields, retired chief of the Poulsbo Fire Department and former president of the Poulsbo Historical Society. The historical society and museum, North Kitsap Fishline, Toys for Tots, the Alzheimer’s Walk, AmeriCorps — the list of his volunteer efforts went on and on. “The secret is doing for others, not just doing your job,” he said. He advised: “You feel good about it. Just step right up and do it.”
The last event of the evening was a raffle drawing for three prize baskets. The first prize basket, valued at $4,250, was won by Megan McCormick and Samuel Booth.
The 2017 Poulsbo Chamber of Commerce (www.poulsbochamber.com) board of directors:
- President Brittany Cline, John Kenney & Associates.
- Vice President Eric Mahler, Caffe Cocina.
- Immediate Past President Ingemar Anderson, Kitsap Printing and Kitsap Publishing.
- Treasurer Diane Donahue, Peninsula Paint Centers.
- Shiloh Schroeder, Fusion Creative Works.
- Donna Etchey, North Kitsap Herald.
- Paige Ward, Bon Cheveux Salon & Spa.
- Johnathon Huffman, Wells Fargo Bank.
- Michelle Clemens, Well Being Health Center.
- Kim Toro, Dale Walters Real Estate.
- Jeff Hora, Social Sapiens.
- Robert Morgan, Edward Jones.
- Stephanie Kirk, JC Madison, Inc..
- Ben Rogers, Northwestern Mutual.