Two events sponsored by the Marshall County Chamber of Commerce attracted the most ever attendance during the past year. One was the 20th annual Christmas Tree Gala auction, which enabled the Chamber to donate $4,000 to the Body & Soul Community Kitchen housed at Simpson United Methodist Church, Moundsville, and the other being the annual Chamber dinner at which West Virginia University Basketball Coach Bob Huggins was the speaker.
Some of the other events in a "Marshall County Chamber Happenings in 2013" included:
Attendance of 3,500 at the annual Home & Business Expo, and an attendance of 235 at a breakfast gathering last January at Grand Vue Park sponsored by Consol Energy.
Among other "happenings:"
Williams Ohio Valley Midstream in January signed up to be a major sponsor of six annual Chamber projects during the year.
The Chambers' free Summer Concert series this past year was the 19th annual. This event takes place at Moundsville's Riverfront Park.
The Chamber was responsible for connecting Noble Energy and the Marshall County Schools in providing the funding to start up and sustain an After School Program for McNinch Primary and Central Elementary students. Noble Energy's commitment was $300,000 over a three year period.
The Chamber provided 40 project opportunities for its members to attend and interact with other chamber members and the public.
The Chamber recognized two members as "Businesses of the Month." One was the sponsor of that month's Business After Hours, and the other was selected through a drawing from names of all chamber businesses. Chamber Executive Director Dave Knuth said the reason for honoring two business members each month is to get their names out to the public.
Twenty Chamber members were in attendance at a reception for the newly organized Cameron Rotary Club, which the chamber helped organize. Cameron City government officials, and a number of Cameron businesses were also in attendance.
The first annual ladies Night was organized this past year by the Chamber, and provided for chamber members as well as non-chamber businesses. Considered highly successful, plans are to make this an annual major event.
It was noted that 11 major industries located in Marshall County are members of the Chamber. The Chamber takes pride in having a new outdoor sign which was installed compliments of JK Sign Studio of Moundsville, and also that the exterior of the Chamber office building (Kirkside) was repainted thanks to donations by Williams Ohio Valley Midstream, the Moundsville Economic Development Council and the Marshall County Commission.
Passed along from the Chamber is a list of significant happenings during the past 12 months in Marshall County. These included:
The Williams firm already has an up-and-running plant on the other end of Fork Ridge. Its other facility is located on the former Allied North site.
Reflecting on 2013, the Marshall County Fair Board members are blessed with unwavering support by individuals, businesses and agencies throughout the county and surrounding areas, pointing out this support has helped the fairgrounds to not only survive, but to thrive.
The fairgrounds hosted many events throughout the year, including fair sponsored gun shows, craft shows and weekly bingo. A year-round campground provided a "home away from home" for area workers.
In addition, fair buildings were donated for use by the Marshall County 4-H activities, Boy Scout functions, and other charitable events during the 2013.
The "Hands-On" Ag Days took place on the Fairgrounds and provided fifth graders in Marshall County the opportunity to learn about livestock and agriculture related topics.
In November, the first "Redneck Monster Run" was held, sponsored by the fair board. The event featured obstacles, running, and, of course, mud for participating runners.
Proceeds from the event benefited the clean-up and repairs for Valley Fork Youth Baseball Fields and the Walking Trail at VFP, which is located adjacent to the fairgrounds.
The banner week at the fairgrounds was July 21-27, as the campground was filled to capacity for the Marshall County Fair, and as usual, the fair had something for everyone.
Fair board officials are happy to report that many improvements were made made to the grounds, making them more comfortable and attractive to visitors. Thanks to a generous donation from Williams Ohio Valley Midsteam, a new state-of-the-art grandstand was erected on the grounds.
Also, the "stage trailer," a part of the Festival Stage area, was replaced with a modern building to house pageant contestants and entertainers in style.
Expansions and improvements continued in the barn areas to accommodate an ever-growing number of livestock exhibits at the county fair.
There were other improvements throughout the county during 2013, some of which have taken place and others which are in the planning stage.
One of the "planning stage" undertakings is the Marshall County Public Safety Building, at the former Jozabeth location across the street from the courthouse. Several meetings have been held with the architectural firm in recent months on plans to house the sheriff's department, 911 dispatch and the Office of Emergency Management.
In Cameron, a couple projects are ongoing. They are improvements to the old B&O Depot and the American Legion's former NAPA building.
Grand Vue Park's older cabins underwent improvements to the exteriors during 2013, and interior improvements will be taking place in January.
The shelter at Riverfront Park in Moundsville will be upgraded and enlarged in the next few months.
Also, installation of some of the equipment for a skate park at the Four Seasons Complex in Moundsville is expected to begin this year.