“Blue Suede Boots” was the theme for the fifth annual Christmas Valley Awards Banquet, held on Saturday, April 5.
Christmas Valley Community Hall was packed to celebrate the residents of north Lake County that make a tremendous difference in the area, handing out several awards amidst a plethora of raffle prizes and a dinner provided courtesy of Jack’s Restaurant, sponsored by Centurylink.
Organized by the North Lake Chamber of Commerce, the event included live music performances by Mike Foltz and Ken Hamlington, a state of the chamber address by Becky Tocol, and a keynote address by Laura Parks prior to the start of raffle giveaways and award presentations. Alan Parks handled the master of ceremony duties.
Deanna Roberts gave a heartfelt and emotional speech after being named the Emergency Responder of the Year for her tireless work as an EMT.
The Educator of the Year Award was given to Linda Hunt, with several of her former students in the audience congratulating the longtime teacher, who joked that her work has now crossed generations as she is now teaching the kids of some of her former students.
Becky Tocol received Volunteer of the Year for her work with Oregon Outback Humane Society.
Kathy Wenick, owner of the Silver Lake Feed Barn, earned the Business of the Year Award, stating that her key to success is simply that she just loves to cook for people.
But the award garnering the most praise was for Lifetime Volunteer, given to Earl and Connie Corum. Earl, now in his 90s, founded EMS services in Silver Lake and has spent decades working to improve the community in many ways. Few in the room hadn’t had their lives touched in some way by Earl and Connie’s work, and they let him know of their great appreciation.
Raffle items donated by attendees and local businesses included gift certificates, framed pictures, food items, birdhouses, toys, electronics, and various handmade goods.
Recipients of the awards were selected by popular vote from local residents through the Blue Jars With Stars campaign. Everyone attending earned raffle tickets, with the option to purchase more to increase the chance of winning some of the prizes on hand.
For more information on the awards banquet and other events in northern Lake County, contact the North Lake Chamber of Commerce at 541-576-3838.