Marketing Monday


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Your Marketing Monday tip this week comes from Meghan O’Brien, an economist with Iowa State’s Regional Capacity Analysis Program and ISU Extension program specialist. O’Brien has presented her tips for businesses during tough times across the state. Below is what she had to say about marketing.

  • Try lowest cost options first. Use customer database as a tool, offer workshops or seminars in house, partner with other businesses.
  • Don’t eliminate your marketing budget, but stick with the tried and true. Spend money where it’s been most effective.
  • Use the web and local business resources for networking.
  • Retail businesses can inexpensively update the appearance of the store by changing signage, moving around inventory, updating fixtures.
  • Service based business can enhance logos and branding, update uniforms, change appearance of front of business.

The full article and other business tips from Meghan can be found at

Siouxland has the Green Light


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Traffic Green LightThinking about starting up a business in the Siouxland Area?

The time couldn’t be better according to recent polls conducted and reported on by CNBC.  In “America’s Top States for Business ’09,” Iowa ranks fourth, while Nebraska came in eleventh, and South Dakota was slotted at twelfth.

States were judged on several different components, these included: cost of business, workforce, quality of life, economy, transportation, technology & innovation, education, business friendliness, access to capital, and cost of living.

The rankings included a states overall economic health and growth.  They also gave recognition to states based on how many major corporations are located there.

This state recognition by CNBC is indicative of the accolades that Siouxland and the surrounding area has already received this year.  For the second year in a row, The Siouxland Initiative (TSI), the economic development arm of the Siouxland Chamber of Commerce, had been given recognition as one of the Top Ten Economic Development Groups in the nation for 2008.

Another factor that plays into positive economic development is low rates of unemployment.  In a blog already posted this past year, out of 372 metropolitan areas, only twenty cities have less unemployment rates than Sioux City.

Also, we all know that business is business and what truly matters is quality of life.  But economic trends tend to intrude upon our happiness and business creeps into our personal life as a result.  Not the case in the Midwest, compared to the rest of the nation when judging overall happiness we come out on top.  Nebraska ranked first, Iowa second, and South Dakota ranked eighth according to a Happiness Index.

Your probably sitting at home with your laptop, at work in your office checking your desktop, or looking at this blog on your mobile phone.  If you are, I hope you feel as I do how fortunate we are to live in the Siouxland area.  There are red flags going up all over for businesses with the recession on a national scale.  Here in Siouxland, green means go and that’s what were doing; MOVING FORWARD.

If you, like I said, are reading this blog on this beautiful sunny day in Sioux City, Iowa tell a family member and tell a friend about all the good things going on in Siouxland.  I know fourth in economic development for 2009 is hard to conquer in 2010, but lets try to get in the top three for next year. 🙂

Fellow Siouxlander,


Chamber Trivia


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Question for the week: Sioux City natives and Central High graduates, Esther and Paulline Friedman, are better known as…?

Trivia Logo Siouxland

Think you know…comment on this post with your answer for your chance at a great prize. Trivia questions will be posted each Friday with anwers and winners announced the following Thursday.

Lead’um Cowboy


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It’s Nomination Round-Up Time for Leadership Siouxland


Want to make a difference in Siouxland? Tired of all the nay-sayers? Why not get out there and be part of that change with Leadership Siouxland. This leadership program is designed to help you become a great role-model, citizen and community member.  One of our Chamber staff had a chance to go through the program last year and here is what she had to say: 

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to be a part of  last year’s Leadership Siouxland class and would recommend the experience. Being involved and being from the area, I really thought that I knew a lot about the community and our needs and opportunities. I was wrong. From learning about economic development to our nonprofits and law enforcement, Leadership Siouxland opened my eyes to what was really going on in the tri-state region. After meeting with your class every month you really get to know and form friendships with your classmates (and even have some fun in the process).  

-Beth Trejo, Director of Investor Relations, Siouxland Chamber of Commerce

This program is now accepting applicants that will be willing to enrich themselves throughout this school year to help students become leaders & role models in our growing community.  This eight month journey for the “future of Siouxland,” will aid students in developing networking skills, and to place emphasis on the importance of positive leadership as it correlates to their careers and involvement with the community.

Course Objectives:

  • Developing leadership skills
  • Networking
  • Understanding and appreciating the personality of Siouxland
  • How to identify and mobilize resources within the region

Students will be given a short reading assignment each month that will help them gain knowledge and tap into their critical thinking attributes already developed in our area schools.  Orientation will begin Saturday, September 26th with a banquet and the end of the program on May 6, 2010.

Classes will meet the first Thursday of each month from September to May.  These class sessions will focus on economic development, education, politics & government, arts, non-profit organizations, diversity, law enforcement etc.

This program will have a tuition fee of $675, but scholarships will be provided.  Applications will be reviewed beginning August 10, 2009.

If you have any questions or want an application please contact:

Executive Director: Amanda Beller 712.253.8522

And the Winner Is…


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Last week the question was asked: Can you name the 2009 Sioux City River-Cade Port Admiral and Commodore?

 and the answer is… 2009 River-Cade Port Admiral – Tom Padgett and 2009 River-Cade Commodore – Jeff Wooldridge

Congratulations to this week’s winner Jason. Everyone that answered correctly was entered in a drawing for this weeks prize, 4 tickets to Friday’s on the Promenade! Be sure to check back tomorrow for the next Chamber Trivia Question.

Would your business like to sponsor a Trivia Question? Contact Donate a prize and be featured on our blog.

Positively Siouxland


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This week’s Positively Siouxland radio spots from Chris McGowan let you know about current legislation being debated in Congress, and more about the Chamber Annual Dinner guest speaker, James Bradley.


Chamber Annual Dinner

2010 River-Cade Royalty


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This past Saturday was biter sweet. My reign as 2009 River-Cade Princess 6528_1109611858778_1181280540_30448341_2495833_ncame to an end, but three new Siouxland young women were crowned. I placed the tiara on Miss Erin Kiel, a 2009 graduate of East High School. Erin will be attending Northwestern College in Orange City this fall. Mary Horton was the other Princess crowned. Mary is a 2009 graduate of North High School and will be a freshman at Morningside College.

6494_1122855109841_1180980077_30370181_4148902_nAnd the new Queen of the River…Haleigh Zyzda. Haleigh will be a senior at Iowa State University this fall where she is majoring in pre-med. The Queen and her Princesses officially began Monday of this week, and will reign over the 2010 River-Cade festival. Haleigh received a $4,000 scholarship and each princess received $3,000.

Now that my year is over I’m back to just a student and intern…but I’ll never forget my time as River-Cade Princess. And as I like to say, once SarahSignature copya princess, always a princess.

Weekly Update 7.22.09


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This weeks Chamber update includes the press conference held at the Siouxland Chamber for its annual dinner.


Speaker for Annual Dinner Released


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Around 2:00 p.m. today, the Siouxland Chamber of Commerce announced this year’s keynote speaker James Bradley, a New York Times bestselling author.  His most notable and current works include Flags of our Fathers and Flyboys.

More information about the dinner is listed below…

What: Siouxland Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner

Who: Keynote speaker James Bradley

When: September 16, social time at 5:30 & dinner at 7:00

Where: Sioux City Convention Center

Cost: $70.00 for Chamber of Commerce members (per person) and $85.00 for non-members. To purchase, please visit

Questions or Comments contact:


Siouxland Community Foundation Announces United Airlines Trust Fund Award Recipients


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In November of 1989, United Airlines donated $600,000 to the Siouxland Community Foundation to establish a trust fund for community grants and scholarships. The trust fund was in appreciation of Siouxland’s valiant rescue and recovery efforts during the aftermath of the July 19, 1989, United Airlines Flight 232 crash at Sioux Gateway Airport

Each year, two-thirds of the income generated from this endowed fund is distributed in equal amounts to Briar Cliff University, Morningside College, and Western Iowa Tech Community College to assist students pursuing an education in emergency rescue, nursing, medical care, counseling, social work, clergy, or law enforcement.  The remaining one-third is awarded in grants to nonprofit organizations to enhance the ability of Siouxland communities to respond in emergency and disaster situations.

Since the first grants were awarded in 1990, a total of $695,020 has supported Siouxland nonprofit organizations and the three local colleges (for scholarships). This year’s award recipients along with $8,500 for each local college include:

  • City of Anthon:  $2,500 – Funding to install a new rotating warning siren system with battery backup and pagers so storm spotters and emergency services can activate the siren in an emergency.  Currently have a very old siren on the roof of City Hall (a one story building) that does not provide city wide coverage in case of an emergency.  New system can still operate if electricity goes out.   
  • Hawarden Volunteer Fire Department:  $1,681 – Funds to purchase a rescue saw (to replace current 20 year old one) used to cut holes in roofs for ventilation and holes in walls/floors for access to trapped people.  New saw will improve entry and extrication times of those in an emergency situation in Hawarden and surrounding communities. 
  • Mapleton Fire Department:  $1,200 – Support toward equipping two new firemen with personal protective bunker gear when responding to a fire.  Gear to include a coat, pants, suspenders, boots, helmet, gloves, and Nomex hood.   
  • Onawa Volunteer Fire Department:  $1,800 – Funding for headsets and necessary accessories to tie into the current communication system on the truck.  Department currently has only two headsets in the first responding engine, enabling only two firefighters to communicate effectively.  The engine carries seven people, so five firefighters are unable to communicate with the officer in charge and are not able to hear instructions of an incident’s plan of attack.  Funding will also help purchase a new nozzle for the brush truck.  
  • Sioux City Fire and Rescue:  $2,500 – Support toward the purchase of a Stryker Stair‑Pro Chair with accessories to assist in patient transport in a narrow/confined area.  Chair will reduce firefighter injuries and improve efficiency in rescue and evacuation operations as chair has front and rear handles, caster wheels, etc.  
  • Siouxland Paramedics, Inc.:  $1,600 – Funding toward a 24-Hour Refresher Course for EMT’s and nurses in the tri-state area.  Project is a collaborative effort between Siouxland Paramedics, St. Luke’s Regional Medical Center, and Western Iowa Tech Community College.  Course will be conducted over three days and will allow participants to train together, develop and reinforce their knowledge base, and obtain the necessary CEU’s for recertification.  
  • Siouxland Underwater Search & Recovery:  $1,900 – Volunteer underwater search & recovery group provides 24-hour a day assistance to all emergency service agencies in tri‑state area (11 counties) in the event of accidents, drownings, or searches for evidence in criminal investigations.  Funding toward the purchase of 19 cu. ft. pony tanks with gas switching block hoses and gauges.  The extra tanks will supply air to the primary diver until the backup diver can reach him/her and help get them to the surface.           

 TOTAL AWARDED:  $38,681 

The dollars from this trust fund are truly making a difference as stated in a thank you note from Chuck Hirsch, Fire Marshall, with the Sioux City Fire Department, “Thank you for the grant we received a few years back to purchase the ‘Rescue Alive’ ice sled. We used this sled to make a successful rescue of an individual that had gone into the Big Sioux River earlier this year. Without the ice sled, this outcome may have been different.”