Morinville & District Chamber of Commerce celebrated 70 years last week with its annual awards gala.
The chamber handed out 10 awards and also recognized local businesses and organizations that had been in the community for a long time at the Thursday night gala at the Morinville Cultural Centre.
Alexander First Nation was given a 140-year recognition award as the longest standing organization in the area. Chief Kurt Burnstick accepted the award that marked 140 years since Treaty 6 was signed.
Along with Alexander First Nation, Sturgeon County also predated the chamber of commerce and they were recognized for being 100 years old. The town of Morinville received recognition for reaching the 60-year mark.
The business legacy award, sponsored by St. Albert Gazette, was presented to HIS Trucking, owned by Jon and Esther Bucher.
The duo began operating in the community around 40 years ago when they were transporting grain for farmers. Since then they have expanded their business and work for Champion Pet Food.
Jon Bucher said in a video presentation that he loves doing business in the area because of the wonderful relationships they have in the community.
“I’m surrounded by just unbelievably good people and they come from the area. That’s one reason why we’re successful,” Bucher said.
Bucher said that they have never been stolen from and they never had trouble collecting payments from their clients.
The award for large business of the year was presented to Eco-Flex Rubber Solutions owner Alan Champagne. The company turns old tires into rubber mats used in vehicles and commercial and industrial businesses. The business started 15 years ago in the region and now has plants in Russia, California and Florida.
Medium-sized business of the year award was given to Mountain Meadows Food Processing, that sells a nut free and allergy safe alternative to peanut butter. The small business award was given to ATB Financial in Morinville.
The new business of the year award ended in a three-way tie. Deb’s Greenhouse, Meadows of Morinville and Fable Gardens all received recognition for their recent addition to the community.
More than 200 local business owners and employees from Morinville and Sturgeon County attended the evening gala. Some 22 businesses were nominated for awards this year.