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Around and About …

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Submitted by Joe Johnson
Lancaster Chamber of Commerce

HAPPY NEW YEAR! … Here’s hoping all the best for our Chamber Members in 2012 – more business, better profits, less government interference, eager employees, willing customers, and a more stable economic environment for us all. 

Good News!

In Lancaster that means additional businesses have located here recently – such as Pinnacle Auto Parts taking 120,000 sq. ft. in Building #2 of ProLogis Park 20/35, which along with United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI) who earlier had expanded their space to approximately 500,000 sq. ft., making Building #2 full. … Owens Corning has taken the last 120,000 sq. ft. space in Building #1 to fill up that building, where Mars Pet Food had previously leased approximately 450,000 sq. ft. … 

So, in ProLogis 20/35 Park, Buildings #1 and #2 are basically full, and now plans need to be made for a Building #3. … In other commercial-industrial news, D & J Construction relocated their operations to the Lancaster side of I-35E from DeSoto, and TNT Truck Parts relocated to an empty manufacturing facility on E. Pleasant Run Rd. … And at BrassCraft-Lancaster a new plating line is being constructed, which will increase their productivity.

More Good News!

In the health care arena, the old MCL Hospital is undergoing renovation, reportedly installing a $100,000 water cooling system, with a re-opening date uncertain. … Meanwhile, up the street on Pleasant Run Rd., the new and never-occupied Talecris Blood Plasma Center has been sold to Biomat USA who plans to open the facility early in 2012. … On Lancaster’s Restaurant Row along I-35E, the long-anticipated In-N-Out Burger is breaking ground for their new facility next to Logan’s Roadhouse, and Chicken Express has acquired the land next door. 

Community Happenings

In the few weeks prior to Christmas, several events involved the Lancaster community, such as the immensely successful 6th Annual Tour of Homes Preview Party on December 2nd led by Nell Mazoch and her volunteers, which began at the home of Cindy King and Tom Jungerberg with special culinary treats. … The luscious fruit and cheese presentation was created by Gilles Delaisse who works in the food industry and who selected the cheeses for the Preview Party. … After sampling the delectable foods and beverages there, the 79 attendees traveled to 4 other homes on the tour – a Two Story Colonial, a Traditional Restored Ranch, a One Story Colonial, and culminating at the Remodeled Traditional Home on the Creek of Peggy and Bob Borden for coffee, dessert and liqueurs. … And speaking of desserts, famed country and western singing star Janie Fricke was offering an enticing chocolate something in a large martini glass with whipped cream and sprinkles! … Sinful! 

… And Suzi Weaver was right there with her in the kitchen, encouraging everyone to forget their diets and enjoy! … The “to die for” chocolate dessert was overseen by Barbara Herring, Lancaster’s own Queen of Chocolate! … In the Borden’s dining room Don Mazoch and Leslie Ray Lewis were serving coffee and exotic liqueurs to finish off the evening, while in the den four current or former mayors of Lancaster were comparing notes – Mayor Marcus Knight, former Mayors Walter Arnold, Margie Waldrop and Joe Tillotson. … The evening’s festivities were the work of the Lancaster Texas Heritage Park Foundation with the proceeds going to provide the reindeer and white lights that glowed from Thanksgiving to New Year’s at Lancaster’s Heritage Park, Community Park and Historic Town Square. … The next day the public had an opportunity to view the same wonderfully decorated and lighted homes for a nominal fee of $15.

58th Lancaster Lights Christmas Parade

On Saturday, Dec. 10, the community enjoyed a Christmas “2nd Saturday on the Square” followed by the 58th Annual Lancaster Lights Christmas Parade at 5:30 p.m., which started at Historic Town Square and headed north on Dallas Ave. to the Recreation Center for a Christmas Festival Celebration. The festivities there began with Santa Clause and Mayor Knight throwing the switch lighting the huge tree on top of the Recreation Center, and announcing the winners of the parade judging. 

Winners were: Best Business Entry – Milah’s School of Dance; Best Lighted Entry – D & J Construction; Best Organization – First Presbyterian Church; and Best Performance Group – LHS Band, Cheer, and Drill Team. … After those announcements the huge crowd – best ever I’m told – poured inside to partake in all types of activities including face painting, games, talks with Santa, and especially – a visit to the tables manned by the LHS Culinary Arts Kids, who made cookies, cakes and a special hot chocolate for a cold evening!

Finally, at the Lancaster Chamber’s Annual Board Planning Session at Bienvenidos Too Hot Cantina on December 7th, new Chamber Chairman Doug Hunt laid out his priority for 2012 – Members – Members – Members! Check out his new promotion – Membership Reward Program, and see how it can help you and your business! 

And we’ll see you in 2012 … Around and About!

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