NORWAY – The Oxford Hills Chamber of Commerce is approaching its annual dinner later this month.

Friday is the deadline for reserving a seat or table at the event, which will take place at 6 p.m. Jan. 26 at the State of Maine Armory on Elm Street. Tickets are $50 a person.

The event will feature a dinner catered by Call Me Ishmael of Fryeburg, presentation of awards, a silent auction, and live entertainment. In a change from previous dinners, there will be no keynote speaker, although chamber director Kelsey Jewell will briefly speak.

“There’s just so much going on that frankly we couldn’t fit it into the schedule,” Jewell said.

Jewell said the decision was based on input from attendees and a decision to make the event more entertainment-oriented.

Food is included in the ticket price, as are water and coffee. Call Me Ishmael will service a cash bar including wine, beer, mixed drinks and sodas.

The event includes the chamber’s presentation of awards to community members. This year, Lisa Jones will be given the Citizen of the Year award for her work with organizations such as the Oxford Hills Food Pantry, Stephens Memorial Thrift Shop and SAD 17. Amanda Huotari, executive director of the Celebration Barn Theater, will receive the Rising Star Award, which honors a “young, talented, and dedicated individual who shows promise and also personifies the vision of the Oxford Hills as a dynamic and exciting place to live and work by being an active member of the community.”

Also receiving awards are Jessica Jendrick of Blue Moon Midwives and Jess Small of Turner Publishing for Employee of the Year. Western Maine Health will receive the Employer of the Year award, a new honor this year.

The event’s signature sponsor is Norway Savings Bank, with support from Cold River Vodka, W.J. Wheeler Insurance, Weston-Chandler Funeral Homes, Turner Publishing and Park Street Press. The auction portion of the event is sponsored by C.N. Brown Co.

Jewell is keeping the evening’s entertainment a secret, saying it will feature “at least two surprise entertainment acts, including one by an acclaimed musician.” The auction prizes will include ski packages, home appliances and items donated by chamber members.

Jewell said she expects between 300 and 400 people to attend the fundraiser. Parking for the event is available behind the armory.

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