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BE Chamber gets off to fast start

By Staff | Jul 17, 2015

This building in Iowa is what the Blue Earth Chamber of Commerce is using as a possible model for their new building, to resemble the current Red Barn Tourist Information Center.

Though Giant Days is over, the fun is just beginning for Blue Earth Chamber director Cindy Lyon as she continues fundraising for a new building at Giant Park.

“We raised over $8,000 at Giant Days alone, and our total with all pledges accounted for is $118,545,” Lyon reports.

The projected cost of the new building, which would house new offices for chamber workers, a new Giant Museum, bathrooms, and house Buckey Legried’s world record cap collection, is estimated to be $250,000.

“But that’s without bids,” says Lyon, who added bids were to come in last Wednesday.

So, the Blue Earth Chamber still has a ways to go for their big project and Lyon says she has many people to still reach out to.

“We have sent brochures to our 142 chamber members, 18 board members and to partners in the area, encouraging donations,” says Lyon. “We will now be reaching out to the community at large. Also we are going to start working in August on the group that donated caps to Buckey Legried’s collection.”

Besides doing some presentations to local businesses, come winter, when the cold starts and the summer fun stops, Lyon says she has some fun ideas in mind to continue to raise funds for the project.

“I think it would be really fun to have a chili cook-off,” she shares. “We could award prizes and share recipes and really bring the community together during the not-so-busy months in winter.”

She says that many businesses and community members have already come forward with donations and she is thrilled to see the community respond so strongly. Even the Green Giant artist’s family have a donation to the project. There’s still a good chunk of funds to be raised, but Lyon has faith in the community that the $250,000-plus goal can be achieved.

“I would hope in a year or two, we would have all of the funds together to make this building happen,” she says.

After the funds are raised, Lyon said the deed to the land would need to be purchased, and the layout of the building would need to be plotted out.

She says in August Henrichsen Construction will mark off the property line to see what changes will need to happen to the park in order to be able to fit the new building. Its measurements are 40 feet wide and 110 feet long.

Lyon says she and her chamber team still have plenty of steam to see the project through to the very end and is excited to see the community grow.

With the new building, she hopes even more tourists will stop at the Green Giant and be able to look at the Giant Museum and take part in all Blue Earth has to offer.