With December booked as the final Marion Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon, Marion Economic Devleopment Inc. will try to initiate a monthly business luncheon to carry on the social tradition started by the chamber.
MEDI members discussed such an idea at a Thursday meeting. The main issues were who would plan and carry out such a meeting. Wanting to avoid putting the responsibility on the shoulders of an economic development director, should Marion be able to hire one, Heitschmidt suggested having different businesses organize one each month.
Only, he wasn’t optimistic that would work.
“I’m sorry, given what happened with the chamber, I don’t think we’re going to see those businesses step up and do it,” he said. “I don’t think I could find 12 businesses that could take on a month right now.”
Mike Powers and Jeremy Ensey disagreed, saying they thought 12 businesses could be found to volunteer.
The focus of such luncheons was another subject of discussion. Heitschmidt wanted a narrow economic development focus, but other members said that economic development should not be the only benefit of it.
“It’s time for us to at least network, talk to each other, hear about a topic that’s going on that’s relevant to Marion,” Ensey said.
The group decided to have Gene Winkler survey businesses in Marion about what types of presentations would pique their interest.
Lunches would be paid for by those attending and be open to non-business community members that have an interest in attending.
“It’s a platform to educate folks so maybe they have the correct information at coffee,” Margo Yates said.