Beggars’ Night – The traditional trick-or-treat event held in downtown businesses for children of all ages, including adults! Residents are encouraged to dress up and visit all of our businesses for their spooktacular treats! Monday, October 31st, 2016, 5-7pm. Want to make it a weekend? There is a lot to do here during a beautiful fall weekend- we suggest checking out some of the following activities during that weekend:
Sensational Chefs: Fort Madison Main Street is pleased to announce the return of the award winning dining experience Sensational Chefs! In 2012 Sensational Chefs received an award for the best fundraiser in the state of Iowa. Sensational Chefs features two local chefs who prepare a 5 course meal with wine for 25-30 guests.
2015’s Chefs serving to a sold out crowd were Becky Rump & Fred Knoch. Each chef has created a stellar menu. Becky’s dinner took place on September 26th. Her cuisine featured some of her favorite dishes from Shrimp Ceviche to Zwai fish tacos. Fred’s dinner on October 17th featured American Classics, including slow roasted garlic and rosemary studded prime rib.
If you or anyone you know is interested in being a Sensational Chef, or if you would like to be added to the Sensational Chef mailing list, contact Cassie Gilbert at email@example.com or 319-372-5471. Our 2016 dates are set:
September 17th: Kevin & Julie Moon
October 15th: Ellen Hunt (Apron Bake Shoppe and Café)
2016 Boo-Athelon Spooktacular will be kick started at the Baxter Sports Complex in Fort Madison. The Spooktactular includes a kids run, a 5k run/walk and 10k bike ride- you can do one or both. Join in the fun Saturday, October 29th starting at 9:00 am. Registration is required by October 14th for a guaranteed shirt size, however sign-up the day of the event will be an option, but shirt sizes will be limited.
Ghost Hunt – Fort Madison will again play host to the Paranormal!!! This is your chance to experience & document paranormal activity in one of the most historically haunted towns on the Mississippi River. Tour different locations from haunted homes, businesses and a few of the oldest graveyards in Fort Madison. Tickets and location details are still being finalized so stay tuned. This event takes place every other year, a date will be set or 2016 soon!
The Community Thanksgiving dinner continues to make a difference in the lives of those in the greater Fort Madison area. Each year the number of meals served and delivered to residents in the North Lee County area continues to grow. This is only possible because of the outpouring of support from our business community. The businesses not only provide the monetary donations to keep this event going but they also send volunteers who shop, chop, mix, bake, count, greet, serve, deliver, setup and cleanup for the traditional Thanksgiving Day meal. Alongside of those many business men and women, you will find families, retirees, singles, community groups and religious organizations working together for the betterment of the North Lee County families.
Thanksgiving is a time to reflect and give thanks for all that we have. Community Thanksgiving gives you that opportunity; won’t you consider playing a part?
Wine & Beer Walk – Shop n’ sip at the Wine & Beer Walk! Our historic commercial district and quaint boutiques offer wine, beer and even distillery samples from local and regional producers. While the planning for 2016 will be happening soon, please save the date and join us at our seventh annual Wine & Beer Walk on November 18th, 2016, 5-8pm.
Parade of Lights – Since its beginning 25 years ago, the Fort Madison Parade of Lights has experienced many changes, but this year the parade returns to Avenue G beginning promptly at 6:30 PM the Friday after Thanksgiving (November 25th, 2016), when the American Flag will be lit with patriotic music and fireworks.
We invite spectators to enjoy the lighting of more than 50 completely lit floats. Holiday cheer is in the air, with decorations and a visit from Santa Claus
Every evening following the Parade of Lights the floats will be lit and on display in Riverview Park for drive-by viewing until the first week in January.
Mistletoe on Main Street – Saturday November 25th 2016 Fort Madison Main Street will have a Christmas Open House in conjunction with Small Business Saturday. The holiday spirit will shine bright as stores are offering holiday savings and tasty treats for their customers.
While you are searching for that one special gift, your family can ring in the holiday season with Mistletoe on Main Street during the afternoon. There will be fun for the whole family from 10am to 2pm on Main Street as local carolers line the streets, children can enjoy a visit from Santa, as well as create crafts. The North Lee County Historical Society will be offering pictures with the “North Pole Express” train engine in Riverview Park. Horse wagon rides will take place from 12:30pm to 2:30pm for $2 a ride. Check out our Facebook Event for more information.
Fort Madison Christmas Home Tour– The Fort Madison Christmas Home Tours will occur every other year with the next dates being December 4, 2016. The Christmas Home Tour is a fun way to kick off the holiday season by touring some of Fort Madison’s homes that are wonderfully decorated for the Christmas season! By participating in this special event, you are helping support Fort Madison Partners with Fort Madison beautification efforts- examples being: a sound system in the downtown, streetscape plan through out town, etc. The cost is only $10.00 per person. Tickets can be purchased the night of at any home or in advance at the Partners office, located at 614 9th Street, starting the end of November during regular business hours. If interested in placing your home on the tour, please contact the Partners office at 319-372-5471.
Fort Madison Community Clean-Up-
Fort Madison is a beautiful community, and sometimes we all need to pitch in to keep it looking that way! For 2016, the Chamber Events Committee & Main Street Affiliates have joined forces and have elected to offer one community clean-up day..
April 23rd: Central Park – 9:00am registration, 11:30am lunch provided for those who are registered and participate in the clean-up event at Central Park Shelter.
Sponsored by Scotts Miracle-Gro Company, Fort Madison Hy Vee, Mid American Energy, Fort Madison McDonalds, & Fort Madison Area Chamber of Commerce.
Small Business Breakfast-
Join us as we celebrate the backbone of every community during Small Business Week– May 1-7, 2016. We celebrate the Fort Madison small businesses during our annual Small Business Breakfast- Thursday, May 5th at the Comfort Inn & Suites. Doors open at 7:00 am and ask you to take advantage of that time to talk with vendors available to you to make your business thrive. Breakfast begins at 7:30 followed by awards for the 2015 Small Business of the Year and Micro Business of the Year!
Mayhem on the Mississippi – May 14th will mark the third “Mayhem on the Mississippi” 5k walk/run in Fort Madison. The race will take place in Riverview Park, and will include some fun obstacles. As May 14th is also the day of Faeth’s famous Main Street BBQ, the first 50 people to register will receive a free entry ticket to Faeth’s event. Pre registration ends April 24th, and registration the day of the race will commence at 8:30 am at the shelter house in Riverview Park. The race will start at 10:00 am. Make sure to register before April 24th to guarantee your dri fit event shirt. Click on the link below to download the registration form. Forms may be dropped off or mailed to 614 9th Street, Fort Madison, IA 52627. Please make checks payable to Fort Madison Main Street. Registration information coming soon!.
Fort Madison Barley Hops
You asked for it, so here it is…Fort Madison Barley Hops…Friday, May 20th from 5-8 pm. Area beer enthusiasts have the opportunity to taste the sweet tastes of Spring and Summer from some of IOWA’s finest breweries. This outdoor event is sure to please as we have made it easier to get to all the vendors and even tossing in a little food for you to enjoy. Fort Madison Barley Hops glass sponsor for 2016 is the Hill Side Inn with the Glass Pre Sale Party on May 13th from 5-8 to get your glass at the reduced price. Click the link above for more information about vendors and specials!
Jack Morris Florida of Iowa Golf Outing-
Named after a dearly missed long-time Chamber member and supporter, the Jack Morris Florida of Iowa Golf Tournament is one of our signature events. Always held the second Friday of June at Sheaffer Memorial Golf Course, the golf tournament is a chance to play golf, make new business connections, and have a whole lot of fun! Funds raised at the Florida of Iowa are used to support other special programs that occur throughout the year. The 2016 Florida of Iowa Golf Tournament is scheduled for June 10th at Sheaffer Memorial Golf Course . To get your team signed up or get on the waiting list, contact Laura today: 319-372-5471 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Main Street Sip-n-Stroll Ladies Night Event-
The 2015 Ladies Night, Adult drinks & appetizers was a huge success and plans are being finalized for the 2016 event slated for June 24th. This a great opportunity to grab your friends and just enjoy a ladies night out having a few drinks and enjoying the great shops right here at home- then maybe meeting up with the guys at dinner or maybe Faeths.
Chamber Ladies Golf Outing-
The 3rd Annual Chamber Ladies Golf outing will be held later in 2016; September 30th at Sheaffer Memorial Golf Course. Information will be going out in July with a team deadline the end of August. If you are interested in sponsorship opportunities, contact the Chamber today so we can make sure you get the level you want as they go quickly.
Planning for the 2016 event is in the works and looking for volunteers to be held August 20, 2016. This is an event that is geared towards kids having fun! Bring your family down to Riverview Park in Fort Madison and enjoy hours of kid games for all ages. For you more competitive types, there is a 4 on 4 sand volleyball tournament available to you to show off your skills. Call the Fort Madison Partners office for more information at 319-372-5471.
Big Buckle Bash–
Fort Madison Main Street’s Big Buckle Bash will take place August 20th from 5:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. in downtown Fort Madison! Cost of admittance is $5 per person. Bring your family down starting at 5 p.m. as classic cars will line the streets as a Car Cruise will end on Avenue G. Madd Hoss Jackson will be live starting at 7:00 pm. An area favorite, they guarantee a rocking time! Enjoy a cold adult beverage or some tasty food from our local food vendors. There is something for people of all ages at Big Buckle Bash!
Main Street is excited “The Voice of Big Buckle Bash” will be returning to the Bash from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Contestants must be 18 or older to participate. The Voice of Big Buckle Bash will send one talented voice home with $500. The contest will run using The Voice format, contestants will perform on stage hoping for a judge to spin their chair. Each Judge will choose 2 for their team. The eight finalists will perform a 2nd time with the final 4 being chosen by judges in the audience. The grand prize winner will receive $500 with $200 going to 2nd place, $100 to 3rd, and $50 to 4th place. To sign up to be a Voice contestant, download the form below or pick up a copy at Fort Madison Partners (614 9th Street).
If you are interested in being a food vendor, participating in the classic car cruise, volunteering or would like more details about the bash, contact Fort Madison Main Street at 319-372-5471.
Party on the Patio at Baxter Sports Complex– Free Live Music along with Food and Drink Special! Come out and kick off the stress from work from 5-7:00 pm on the 4th Friday of the month: April thru October:
June 24: sponsored by Scotts Miracle Gro Fort Madison Facility
July 22: Sponsored by Hy-Vee with entertainment by Stewart Beyer
August 26: Sponsored by AXALTA with entertainment by Brad Kurtz
September 23: Sponsored by Connection Bank with entertainment by Curtis John
October 28: Sponsored by Climax Molybdenum (TBA)
Fort Madison Farmers Market has Changed Date AND New Location: Every Monday at the Depot on US Hwy 61- Boost your health and support local agriculture by purchasing fresh fruit and vegetables weekly. You can also pick up delicious homemade pastries and pies. This event will take place rain or shine.
Year-Round or Annual Meeting Events:
Business After Hours (BAH)-
When we ask our membership what they want from the Chamber, the most common answer is networking opportunities. The Business After Hours events provide a forum for mixing and mingling with other local business professionals with a different member business being highlighted each month. These events typically occur on the third Thursday, from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm.
Upcoming BAH events:
Fort Madison Young Professionals was designed to help the 21 – 39 year old population navigate this period of life; supporting, encouraging, and generating friendships with others in similar life and work situations.
FMYP is an inclusive group welcoming individuals from ALL career fields; employed, unemployed, or under-employed. They meet together to promote personal and professional development opportunities through networking events, Lunch ‘n Learns and service opportunities. Meet new people, make new friends, identify common interests, and begin building that ever important professional network and have fun doing it.
Up-Coming YP Events:
- April 8th – Strategic Volunteering for Professional Development
- May 20th – Business Etiquette in an Changing World
- June 24th – Overcoming the Public Speaking Jitters
- July 22nd – Social- Party on the Patio Night Baxter Sports Complex
- September 30th – TBA
- October 21st –TBA
Business Women Connect brings women of diverse occupations together to foster both personal and professional growth through leadership, education and networking support.
BWC Upcoming Dates:
- March 24th –
- July 13th– “Keeping Things in Perspective” with guest speaker Becky Rump at Simple Table 12-1:00 pm
- October 6th – TBA
- December 1th – Evening Social
2016 Elected Officials Reception:-On a biennial basis, The Fort Madison Partners and Fort Madison Area Chamber of Commerce co-sponsor a reception honoring our elected officials. This offers a neutral opportunity for elected officials to meet with constituents and allows citizens a chance to thank our representation for their service. State, local, and county elected officials are invited to attend, and the event is open to the general public. The 2016 Elected Official Reception will be located at Sheaffer Memorial Golf Course January 28th from 5-6:30 pm- Come and have a discussion with your elected officials: City, County and State. Sponsored By Thomas Klan State Farm Insurance Agency
The 2016 Legislative Luncheon Schedule:
The Fort Madison Chamber Government Affairs Committee is hosting a luncheon open to the public every third Friday of the month during the 2016 Legislative Session. These luncheons are held at local restaurants beginning at 12:00 noon. Lunch is available for purchase:
- January 15- Apron Bake Shop And Café
- February 19- Apron Bake Shop And Café
- March 18- With State Auditor Mary Mosiman- Atlas Steak & Smokehouse
- April 15- TBA
- May 20- TBA
Industry Appreciation Reception-
Annually we like to thank our industry partners or all they do to make Fort Madison a great place to work. The 2016 Industry Reception is slated for Thursday October 6 from 5-7 pm. located at Boulders Inn & Suites, Fort Madison. This event is sponsored by Huffman Welding & Machine.