By David Howell
WATER VALLEY – Lieutenant Governor Tate Reeves will be the speaker for the annual Chamber of Commerce Banquet on Thursday, with activities beginning at 6 p.m. in the Water Valley First Baptist Church Activities Center.
Reeves is familiar with the town’s revitalization and is excited about making the trip, according to his spokeswoman, Laura Hipp.
“He is looking forward to meeting with the citizens and talking about what elected officials are doing in Jackson to help the entrepreneurs on Main Street in Water Valley,” Hipp told the Herald. Reeves will also talk about accomplishments during the 2015 Legislative session and efforts to increase funding for education while trying to rein in out-of-control debt.
Reeves was elected as Lieutenant Governor in 2011. He was earlier elected as the state’s 33rd Treasurer in 2003 and served a second term in 2007.
Thursday’s slate of events also includes the presentation of the annual Braswell Hatcher Service Award, the announcement of the new officers and directors for 2015-2016, the awarding the Elliot Scholarship and Mayor Larry Hart’s State of the City address.
Two-term president Tyler Hill will also pass the gavel to incoming president Tonya Eubanks. Hill is credited for an enthusiastic two years of service as president, bringing new and exciting events to Water Valley.
“I think I have only done what the previous 50 years’ worth of presidents would expect me to do. To do my best and take pride in Water Valley and put our best foot forward in everything we have tried to do,” Hill said about his tenure. He also credits a hard-working Chamber board as the backbone of the organization.
Among new events hosted by the Chamber were Christmas in the Valley, the holiday open house and the tour of homes. Hill’s desire was to help local merchants with increased sales and to share Water Valley’s charm with both citizens and out-of-towners.
“We had over a 1,000 storefront visits on one Saturday,” Hill said about last year’s successful open house as shoppers filled out cards detailing their visits to stores in Water Valley’s business district.
“Those things could not have been and would not have been done without the help of the entire Chamber board,” Hill added.
Tickets for the banquet are $20 and available at Mechanics Bank, Turnage Drug Store, the Chamber office or from any Chamber board member. Tickets may also be purchased at the door. Musical entertainment will be provided by the Sharecroppers. A catered meal will be served by the Water Valley cheerleaders.