Monday, June 28, 2010

Carroll County's Unemployment Rate Ranks 5th Lowest in Iowa at 4.5%

The Western Iowa Advantage Region’s monthly unemployment rate increased to 5.2 percent in May from 4.1 percent in May 2009, according to figures released from Iowa Workforce Development. Iowa’s unemployment rate was 6.8 percent in May from a revised 5.8 percent in May 2009. The U.S. unemployment rate was 9.7 percent in May. Total employment in the region decreased to 46,532 in May from 47,688 in May 2009.

County unemployment rates in the region for May:

Adair 5.5%
Audubon 5.5%
Carroll 4.5%
Crawford 4.6%
Greene 6.7%
Guthrie 6.6%
Ida 5.0%
Sac 4.9%
Western Iowa Advantage is a partnership of economic development organizations in Adair, Audubon, Carroll, Crawford, Greene, Guthrie, Ida and Sac Counties in Iowa - dedicated to promoting Western Iowa for business and job attraction and retention.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Board Member Change

Farewell to Board Member Rob Whitham from Brown's Shoe Fit Company.  Rob is leaving Carroll and heading to Shenandoah.  We thank him for his time on the Chamber Board.

Welcome Tami Gute of inzpirationz as a new Board Member!

Carroll County Ranked 12th Healthiest County in Iowa

2010 Health Outcomes Map

Carroll County is the 12th Healthiest County in Iowa, according to studies conducted by the Univeristy of Wisconsin and funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.


"The County Health Rankings show us that where we live matters to our health. The health of a community depends on many different factors – ranging from individual health behaviors, education and jobs, to quality of health care, to the environment. This first-of-its-kind collection of 50 reports – one per state – helps community leaders see that where we live, learn, work, and play influences how healthy we are and how long we live. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is collaborating with the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute to develop these Rankings for each state’s counties. This model has been used to rank the health of counties in Wisconsin for the past six years."

Click on thg map above, or here to view statistics and rankings for Carroll County

Monday, June 21, 2010

Carroll County's Small Business Development Center Director Earns National Award

Lisa Shimkat helps Carroll County entrepreneurs with business start-up and growth.
AMES, Iowa — Lisa Shimkat, regional director of the North Central Iowa Small Business Development Center in Fort Dodge, was named the 2010 Iowa “State Star” by the national Association of Small Business Development Centers (ASBDC).

Carroll County is included in NCI-SBDC's service territory. Lisa works closely with Carroll Chamber of Commerce and Carroll Area Development Corporation to bring technical assistance services to individuals who are interested in starting a business and to small businesses seeking growth opportunities.

The national association annually recognizes Small Business Development Center employees for demonstrating exemplary work performance, significantly contributing to the organization’s economic development efforts, and showing a strong commitment to small businesses.
“This nomination by Lisa’s peers recognizes the outstanding job she has done for the business communities in the ten counties served by the North Central Iowa Small Business Development Center,” says Iowa SBDC State Director Jim Heckmann. “Lisa always works extremely hard for her clients and for our organization. Her dedication deserves this recognition.”

Iowa’s Small Business Development Centers are an outreach program of Iowa State University's College of Business. Partially funded by the U. S. Small Business Administration, the organization has 15 regional assistance centers located strategically across the state. Since program inception in 1981, the Centers have helped hundreds of thousands of Iowa businesses and entrepreneurs through individual, professional counseling and affordable training.

Friday, June 18, 2010

30th Bud Open in Carroll this weekend

Auen Distributing hosted this morning's Chamber Coffee to feature the 30th Anniversary of the Bud Open, a Fathers's Day weekend tradition in Carroll. Click on the video above to view comments from Jim Auen and Bud Open Coordinator Bob Fasbender.

The Bud Open is sponsored by Auen Distributing and hosted by Carroll City Softball Association and Carroll Parks & Recreation Department. The entire community gets involved in sponsoring and hosting 28 teams and their families from around the state that compete in the highly  competitive 16"  ASA certified men's softball tournament.

Double elimination bracket games begin Friday, June 18 at 6:30 p.m. at Carroll Men's Softball Complex running through 11:30 scheduled games.  Saturday and Sunday's games begin at 8:00 a.m. The Championship game is scheduled for 3 p.m. Sunday.

In honor of the 30th Anniversary of the Bud Open and the 60th Anniversary of Auen Distributing in Carroll,  admission is FREE on Sunday, June 20.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Are you 21- 45 years old with a desire to build relationships, enhance your professional development and contribute to the community? Connect Young Professional could be for you.

CYP is an affiliate organization of the Carroll Chamber of Commerce developed to encourage young individuals to get involved and become leaders in their community. If you are interested in learning more about CYP click on the CYP link on the Chamber's website If you would like to join CYP fill out the application below.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Carroll's Farmers Market Kick-Off

Depot Plaza - new location of the Carroll's Farmers Market.

Large selection of produce.
The first Farmers Market was held Wednesday, June 9.  There were seven vendors present offering: flowers, fruits, vegetables, jams, baked goods and kettle corn.  The vendors and customers were excited about the new venue.  There were children playing in the park and people enjoying the waterfall.  If you missed yesterday's market, plan to attend Wednesdays 3:30 - 6:00 P.M. or on Saturdays from 8:30 A.M. - noon.

Vendor - Norm Schettler

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Date Set for Agri-Business Barbeque and Golf Outing

If you had a good time at the 2009 Agri-Business Barbeque & Golf Outing, you won't want to miss the outing in 2010. And if you missed it last year, mark your calendar now for Friday, August 20.  
If you would like information on becoming a sponsor of this event, just call the Chamber for details. 
Golf & Dinner Tickets will be available in July.

Rock 'N Ride 2010 Big Hit

Saturday, June 5th was the date for another successful Rock 'N Ride at the Carroll Cycle Center.  Carroll's hospitality was extended to many out of town visitors; and proceeds from the beverage garden will be used to continue to promote Carroll through Chamber efforts.  Chamber Board of Directors worked very hard serving refreshments. Chamber staff worked as well, however, Katie & Sue did find time to take a little break to check out some of the bikes. Don't worry, the streets of Carroll were safe, as the kickstand never left the ground.

April Employment Statistics

The Western Iowa Advantage Region’s monthly unemployment rate increased to 6.0 percent in April from 4.1 percent in April 2009, according to figures released from Iowa Workforce Development. Iowa’s unemployment rate was 6.9 percent in April from a revised 5.5 percent in April 2009. The U.S. unemployment rate was 9.9 percent in April. Total employment in the region decreased to 46,658 in April from 47,982 in April 2009.

Western Iowa Advantage tracks various economic indicators in Adair, Audubon, Carroll, Crawford, Greene, Guthrie, Ida and Sac Counties in Iowa, including employment trends.
County unemployment rates in the region for April:

Adair 6.7%
Audubon 6.4%
Carroll 5.2%
Crawford 5.0%
Greene 7.2%
Guthrie 7.7%
Ida 5.7%
Sac 5.6%

Western Iowa Advantage is a partnership of economic development organizations dedicated to promoting Western Iowa for business and job attraction and retention.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Iowa Economic Outlook from Creighton University Business

Creighton University Business : Economic Outlook For the month of May 2010, reported June 1, 2010.

For the fifth straight month, Iowa’s Business Conditions Index climbed above growth neutral. The index, a leading economic indicator from a survey of supply managers, slipped to a to regional high 70.3 from 70.5 in April. Components of the overall index for May were new orders at 81.1, production or sales at 81.0, delivery lead time at 68.3, employment at 67.4, and inventories at 53.6. “Iowa’s economy has begun adding jobs. Since the beginning of the recession, Iowa has lost more than 51,000 jobs. Based on the latest state job data and Iowa’s recovery from the 2001 recession, I do not expect Iowa to fully restore these lost jobs until September 2012,” said Goss.

Click here to go to the May report from Creighton economist Ernie Goss -

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Memorial Day Parade Draws Large Crowd

Monday was a beautiful day for a parade and to remember those who fought for our freedom.  A large crowd gathered in the Carroll cemetary which was highlighted by a fly over from two Air Force Jets. Following the parade everyone in attendance gathered to listen to the names of those who have died serving this country and to hear several speakers. This year’s guest speaker was Master Sergeant Carey Promes who spoke of the history of Memorial Day.  Chamber of Commerce President Rob Cordes also addressed the crowd.

Master Sergeant Carey Promes
Rob Cordes, Chamber President

People entering cemetery to hear speeches