Local News: Rodeo entertainment lineup to be announced during a Friday night event in March (1/23/23)

Taylor Deere, director of membership and programs for the Sikeston Regional Chamber and Area Economic Development Corp., gives a review of the past year at the chamber’s monthly luncheon Thursday, Jan. 19, 2023, at the Clinton Building in Sikeston. (Leonna Heuring/Standard Democrat)

The format for announcing the entertainment lineup for the upcoming Sikeston Jaycee Bootheel Rodeo will be a little different this year.

Although the announcement will still be made in partnership with Sikeston Regional Chamber and published in March, it will take place in the evening and will also allow members of the public to attend.

Taylor Deere, who is the chamber’s membership and program director, highlighted the change during a presentation at a luncheon for chamber members Thursday, Jan. 19, at the Clinton Building in Sikeston.

“This is my most exciting announcement,” Deere said Thursday. “I love how the Jaycees are always willing to try new things.”

For many years, the Jaycees have announced the entertainment lineup for the upcoming rodeo during the chamber’s luncheon in March.

“Probably one of our best-attended luncheons is partnering with them for their rodeo entertainment announcement,” Deere said. “That will be moved to the evening event. So, this will replace our March lunch. It will still be in partnership with the chamber.”

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Doors are expected to open to Chamber members only at 4:30pm on Friday, March 24th with an exclusive special social hour. Dinner and the program will begin at 6:30 p.m., followed by live music.

“Hopefully, this is a new, exciting way to start the rodeo season,” Deere said. “You’ll get a party announcement followed by live music and I think it’s going to be a really fun event. It will be open to the public after the chamber mixer hour.”

This year’s rodeo is August 9-12.

Other minor changes the chamber is introducing in 2023, according to Deere, include: the return of after-hours mixing tables during non-lunch months, which would be February, April, June, August, October and December; and blog addition.

“Keep an eye out for posts covering events, chamber luncheons/ribbon cuttings, member spotlights, corporate sponsor features and more,” said Deere.

Deere also noted that 2022 has been an incredible year for the chamber.

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In other chamber luncheon news, Marcie Lawson, president/CEO of the Chamber and Area Economic Development, Corp., presented an economic development update. She noted that construction at Carlisle Construction continues. It has more than 490,000 square meters of space under one roof.

“They’ve put over $100 million in capital investment into this building and, by extension, Sikeston,” Lawson said. “It’s exciting for our community.”

Lawson noted that the new construction company is bringing more than 100 new jobs to Sikeston and they are more than halfway through the hiring process. She said Carlisle has a goal of being in full production by April.

Lawson also briefed the crowd on the strategic planning process for economic development, while Katie Merideth, chamber trustee and director of SOAR, gave an update on the SOAR program to Sikeston High School students. SOAR stands for Students Observing Area Resources.

Kathy Medley, executive vice president of the chamber and director of the Sikeston Convention and Visitors Bureau, updated the crowd on upcoming events and projects.

The first Sikeston Hot Air Balloon Festival will be held June 16-18 at the Sikeston Jaycee Bootheel Rodeo. There are currently 57 providers registered. Seller’s commission is $35 per space for Friday and Saturday. Sponsorships are also available.

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Work is underway on the Veterans Park Sikeston Honors Banner and Light project, the result of a partnership with the Sikeston CVB, Veterans Park Committee and Sikeston Parks and Recreation. Medley said 16 period light poles will be installed on the east and west sidewalks bordering Veterans Park, and each pole will display banners honoring local veterans. A QR code will also be displayed on each pole, where users will be directed to the SRC website and can read that veteran’s story.

The Tourism Advisory Board will present the Sikeston Award for Tourism and Hospitality to this year’s winner during a luncheon on March 2 at noon in Lambert’s Cafe. The guest speaker is Stephen Fouts, director of the Missouri Department of Tourism. The award will recognize a company, organization or individual that has made a significant contribution to tourism and hospitality.

Past award winners have included Lambert’s Cafe, Sikeston Parks and Recreation and the Sikeston Jaycees.

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