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TONASKET – The Kuhler was chosen as Tonasket Chamber of Commerce's business of the month for July.

Owner Josh Kuhlman hired the Company Band to play during Founders Day weekend, then let the chamber collect a cover charge to donate to the city pool to go towards free swimming lessons for local kids. They raised $584.

“We are a firm believer kids in Tonasket should be getting swimming lessons, with the amount of creeks, rivers and lakes in the area,” said chamber president Marylou Kriner.

Kriner reported Founders Day weekend was a big hit.

“It's nice to see everybody come out,” said Kriner.

Fifty-three floats entered the parade. Taking first place among floats was the Oroville Mayfest float, with the theme “walking down memory lane” and celebrating 85 years of queens and princesses.

The Farmer's Market took second place and the Tonasket School District's Outreach program and Choice High School placed third.

Among horses in the Founders Day parade, Sedro-Wooley Rodeo Queen Abigail Barr took first, followed by Miss Tonasket Trinity DeJong. Darrington's Timberbow Queen came in third.

The Sweet Potato Queens took first place overall, followed by DeJong and the ProWest Rodeo Queen Mollie Gray from Liberty Lake in third.

Judges Choice also chose the Sweet Potato Queens for first place, with Confluence Health coming in second and Outreach/Choice High School taking third.

Kriner said there were eight vendors in town after the parade, with all of them turning a profit.

“It was good to see people come out and spend money locally,” said Kriner.

Tonasket's first Soap Box Derby, which followed the parade, had five racers.

“The Soap Box Derby was a real hit. Five cars is amazing out of this little town the first time around,” said Kriner. “I'm looking forward to it next year, I think it will be even bigger.”

The event was organized by Deven Sprague of Hickman's Body Shop, whose 7-year-old son DeKoven took second place in the open race behind James Gasho in first.

Kriner reminded members she would be stepping down from her role as president at the end of December, and was planning to spend time with two candidates to explain the role and what all is expected of the president. Kriner said she and her husband Steve would continue to run the chamber's RV Park in town.

In other business, the chamber:

  • Discussed planning a Halloween event or possibly joining forces with another organization who already has a successful annual event.
  • Viewed a tourist flyer designed by Tracy Vance and suggested additional details.
  • Discussed creating a chamber website. City Librarian Sara Dunn volunteered to work on it.
  • Learned Lions Club will be host a community yard sale from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 22, at the Lutheran Church, 623 N. Whitcomb Ave.
  • Learned a Tonasket all class reunion will be at the high school, 35 E. Highway 20, June 22.

The next chamber meeting will be Aug. 13.

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