It was the Great Bend business community’s opportunity to shine Saturday night. The forum was the Great Bend Chamber of Commerce’s annual banquet.
Still one of the cornerstone gala events, the evening is dedicated to honoring what has gone right. Roger Murphy was named the citizen of the year, Great Bend Regional Hospital was name business of the year and Kristy Hogan was the young person of the year.
But, it is easy to lose sight of what has happened in light such high profile recognitions. However deserved these awards may be, there are a lot of other things happening that are worthy of note.
In the past year, economic development headlines were stolen by the coming of Sutherlands, Ace Hardware and American Ag Credit. These were outside entities that found Great Bend attractive.
Closer to home, local investors finalized their takeover of Fuller Industries in a deal that kept the long-time manufacturing firm here. Other local investors also saw the thriving potential in our downtown and opened the Cinema 6 movie complex.
You see, Great Bend looks like a good bet from the inside and out.
However, even these two projects garnered news coverage.
Behind the scenes, there are many, many other entrepreneurs opening new businesses in Great Bend. These are much smaller, but no less important.
This year’s meeting theme “Great Bend ... This is Home” was designed to reflect the community’s focus on alleviating the housing problem. It could also apply to the new business ventures that are calling this home.
Sure, the bright lights of the banquet have faded and the tables have been cleared. The impact, however, of what it represented linger, and will fuel Great Bend into the future.