Lacombe Business and Community Awards celebrates local resiliency

The event was hosted by Darcy Stingel with audio and video support provided by Airace Productions. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)The event was hosted by Darcy Stingel with audio and video support provided by Airace Productions. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)
Dancer’s Edge, a finalist in the large business category, celebrates at Leto’s Steakhouse and Bar. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)Dancer’s Edge, a finalist in the large business category, celebrates at Leto’s Steakhouse and Bar. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)
Eastside Eatery, a finalist in the small business category, watches the award ceremony from Leto’s Steakhouse and Bar. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)Eastside Eatery, a finalist in the small business category, watches the award ceremony from Leto’s Steakhouse and Bar. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)
Jo(e) Social Media watched the awards as a team from their downtown office. Jo(e) Social Media, are the recipients of both the Small Business Award and the Business Resiliency Award. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)Jo(e) Social Media watched the awards as a team from their downtown office. Jo(e) Social Media, are the recipients of both the Small Business Award and the Business Resiliency Award. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)
Maria Saganis was awarded the customer service individual award for her work at Leto’s which was announced earlier in the week. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)Maria Saganis was awarded the customer service individual award for her work at Leto’s which was announced earlier in the week. (Alannah Page/Lacombe Express)

Celebrating business in the middle of a global pandemic is no easy feat, but on Saturday the Lacombe and District Chamber of Commerce pulled it off uniquely.

The event was live streamed from Jo(e) Social Media’s studio and was hosted by Darcy Stingel. Behind the scenes was Airace Productions helping to make sure audio and video were good to go at all the restaurants who were streaming it.

Boston Pizza, Cilantro and Chive and Leto’s Steakhouse and Bar were all streaming the ceremony in order to celebrate the annual event. Along with the watch parties happening all over the city, members of the Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors drove around delivering the awards to winners throughout the evening.

The presentation, which was about an hour-long, included pre-recorded thank you videos from each of the winners. Viewers watching from home were also able to send in comments and win prizes throughout the event.

Monica Bartman, executive director for Lacombe and District Chamber of Commerce, said the event was a success and she couldn’t be happier about the outcome.

“I’ve had some really positive comments about the production and just what we were able to pull off in such a unique way,” said Bartman.

Bartman said she will be reviewing the event and considering what she can take away for future events.

The Business and Community Awards added a new category for the 2020 ceremony that Bartman felt really embodied the difficult year.

The Business Resilience Award was given to a business that, according to Bartman, showcased how they have adapted during the year. The selection committee made up of past winners then chose the award recipient.

Jo(e) Social Media received both the Resiliency Award and the Small Business of the Year Award. The company has been operating in Lacombe since 2016 and feels thankful for the community recognizing them after only four years.

“It blew our minds,” said Jo Phillips, co-owner of Jo(e) Social Media about winning the Business Resiliency Award. “To be selected was really a validation of how hard we worked to stay standing.”

Jo(e) Social Media plans to continue to give back to the Lacombe community through their volunteer work. The company speaks in schools to local youth about how to effectively and safely utilize social media platforms along with assisting and sponsoring various events around the city.

“Basically whenever we’re asked [to help] a member of our team will show up,” said Phillips.

The company has also added eight new hires to their team since March 13 of this year.

The 40th annual award ceremony recognized eight businesses and community members and was watched by 100 people on Oct. 24.

The live stream will be available to watch on Youtube for anyone who missed the Saturday event.

The winners of the 2020 Lacombe Business and Community Awards are:

Citizen of the Year – Rieley Kay, Cilantro and Chive and Moe’s Pizza

Lifetime Achievement Award – Calvin Swarbrick

Farm Family of the Year – Sunnycrest Seed Potatoes

Non-Profit of the Year – Lacombe and District FCSS

Customer Service Award Individual – Maria Saganis, Leto’s Steakhouse and Bar

Customer Service Award Business – Circle K Lacombe

Business Resiliency Award – Jo(e) Social Media

Small Business of the Year – Jo(e) Social Media

Large Business of the Year – Blindman Brewing