SPUCC revives longstanding local tradition

Saturday, December 10, 2005

One of the area's oldest and most wide-reaching organizations -- the South Platte United Chambers of Commerce -- will be returning to the McCook spotlight Tuesday night.

After a two-year absence from the local scene, the South Platte organization will be coming back to town for the installation of Angus Garey of McCook as the new SPUCC president. The meeting, which will take place at the Republican River Valley Events Center, will feature remarks by U.S. Rep. Tom Osborne, the Third District congressman who is seeking the Republican nomination for governor.

"We have had Gov. Dave Heineman as our guest on a couple of occasions, so we felt it would be appropriate to have Congressman Osborne speak to us as well," Garey said.

The South Platte's December gathering in McCook will open with committee meetings, scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m. at the Events Center, located at 700 East Seventh Street in the former McCook Elks building. A meeting of the South Platte board of directors will follow at 4:30. The social hour will start at 5:30, with the dinner and program commencing at 6:30 p.m.

"We're hoping to have a good turnout," Garey said. "South Platte is an area-wide organization for communities and McCook and other area towns need to take an active role."

During the installation ceremony, SPUCC members will pay tribute to the 2004-05 president, Tom Willnerd of Clay Center, and will welcome the 2005-06 slate of officers: Angus Garey, McCook, president; Jim Ziebarth, Wilcox, president-elect; and Tom Hastings, from Hastings, vice president.

Marv and Dixie Lorentz, two of the South Platte's most loyal supporters, are helping to sell tickets, as is the McCook Chamber of Commerce office. The tickets, costing $12 each, may be ordered by calling the Lorentzes at (308) 345-5817, The McCook Chamber at (308) 345-3200 or the McCook visitors' committee hotline at (800) 657-2179.

Tuesday's meeting is an excellent opportunity to renew a long-standing area tradition. The South Platte United Chambers of Commerce was organized in 1934, and has made important contributions to the region in the past 71 years, especially in the legislative field. You need to hurry, because time is limited. Give Marv, Dixie or the Chamber a call for tickets and join the crowd Tuesday evening for Angus' installation and Congressman Osborne's speech at the December meeting of the SPUCC in McCook.

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