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There is still some time left to get tickets for the 2018 Charleston Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner & Awards Ceremony set for Saturday, Jan. 27.

It will be “A Roaring Good Time” at the annual gala affair which takes place in the Grand Ballroom of the University Union on the campus of Eastern Illinois University.

The Grand Ballroom will be transformed into a Roaring 20’s Speakeasy with art deco black and gold decorations and lots of feathers and pearls.

The festivities begin at 5 p.m. with a Cocktail Hour and served appetizers. Attendees can strike a pose at the Selfie Station or buy a ticket to select a wrapped bottle of wine from the Wine Pull. Live music will also be provided by a Jazz Quartet from EIU.

A buffet dinner will be served, followed by the presentation of awards. Lawyer-Richie Florist will be honored as the Small Business of the Year and the Outstanding Citizen of the Year Award will be presented to Dee Braden. The Diplomat of the Year will also be announced.

New this year is an After Party hosted by Mother’s Bar located at 506 Monroe Avenue in Charleston. Everyone who attends the dinner is welcome to attend the After Party at no additional cost.

Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling 217-345-7041. The deadline for reservations is Jan. 19 at 4 p.m.


One of the hottest travel destinations right now is Iceland -- the Land of Fire and Ice. The Charleston Chamber, in conjunction with Mayflower Tours, is offering a trip to this amazing country next Oct. 6-12 for $2,979 per person, double occupancy including round trip airfare from Chicago.

Highlights of the trip include a city tour of Reykjavik, a full day adventure to the South Shore with volcanoes and waterfalls, a relaxing soak in the mineral rich waters of the Blue Lagoon, a full day excursion on the Golden Circle tour to the Thingvellir National Park and UNESCO World Heritage Site, a whale watching trip and a special excursion to view the Northern Lights.

There are a limited number of seats still available for this tour. A deposit of $250 will secure your reservation.

Interested individuals are invited to attend a free informational meeting at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 31 at the Charleston Chamber office.


If you’ve been yearning to spend some time in the highlands of Scotland, our Discover Scotland tour is made for you. The overnight flight departs on Sept. 16 for nine days of stunning landscapes, lively cities and stirring history.

Travelers will enjoy a lesson and demonstration with a renowned bagpiper, visit a working sheep farm, reflect at the historic Culloden Battlefield, enjoy a cruise on Loch Ness, experience the Orkney Islands, explore the Isle of Skye, tour the city of Edinburgh and more.

The all-inclusive price for the Scotland trip is $3,949 per person, double occupancy including round trip airfare from St. Louis. A deposit of $500 per person is due with the reservation form by March 9.

The Discover Scotland tour is offered in partnership with Collette. A free informational webinar will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 18 at the Charleston Chamber office.


For the exotic traveler, we have a fabulous Flash Sale for the opportunity to experience the highlights of Northern India for 11 days. The price for this trip is based on “Buy One, Get One Free” and is only $2999 for two people, including round trip airfare from Chicago to Delhi.

This is a small group tour for only 22 travelers offered by Indus. Booking and final payment deadline is Feb. 16.

This amazing tour starts in the bustling National Capital of Delhi; then continues to Agra, the home of the Taj Mahal; on to explore Bharatpur, home of one of the finest bird parks in the world; and ends in Jaipur, the imperial “Pink City” and its many magnificent sights.

Detailed tour information and reservation forms for all of the travel programs are available on the Chamber website at

Cindy White is president and chief executive officer of the Charleston Area Chamber of Commerce.


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