Continuing its upward trend, the Idyllwild Chamber of Commerce voted to add Creek House co-owner Lanny Hardy to its board of directors. Hardy and wife Lorraine have owned the iconic restaurant since July and have expanded both the menu and hours of operation, adding a lunch hour. Lanny’s background is in nonprofit business management, a level of expertise he will bring to serving on the board. There is still one vacancy on the 11-person board.
In other business, real estate agent Marge Muir, who had previously requested the Chamber assume overall management of the annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony from the Soroptimists, gave an update to the board on progress for this year’s ceremony. Muir remains titular head of the event, which last year celebrated its 50th year with nearly 1,500 attendees and KNBC Channel 4 weathercaster Fritz Coleman as master of ceremonies.
Muir noted that organizers are $2,000 short of funds needed to stage the event. She suggested donations could be dropped or mailed to the Chamber, with a memo “Greater Idyllwild Tree Ceremony.” She reported that, as last year, both the street in front of The Fort and Village Center Drive would be closed for the event. Twenty booths are planned, 10 of which have already been reserved. “We want them to be nonprofits so we are not competing with local retail businesses,” said Muir. As last year, there will be two decorated trees — the large one on Jo’An’s Restaurant property and the other near The Fort.
Town Hall Recreation Program’s staff and kids would help with the tree at The Fort, “the kid’s tree,” Muir reported, as she championed the Idyllwild spirit of willing assistance. “This is Idyllwild, people came together,” said Muir, recalling how quickly ceremony needs were filled last year. Addressing the board, she said, “You don’t have to do a lot but every one has to do a little.”
In other business, Director JoAnn Slater reported business memberships are at 120 and individual memberships are at 32, a marked improvement from several years ago when total membership was at 37. Treasurer Kim Mueller reported $3,226 in the Chamber checking account and $4,566 in the monument maintenance account.