Chamber recognizes 2016 community contributions at annual Awards Night event
Dan Sanderson | Staff Writer
A Grayling businesswoman who works to promote the community and is involved with several local regional organizations was recognized with the 2016 Citizen of the Year Award.
Sheryl A. Coyne, the president of Blarney Stone Broadcasting, was honored with the Citizen of the Year Award on Thursday, Feb. 23, at the Grayling Regional Chamber of Commerce’s annual Awards Night celebration held at the Ramada Inn of Grayling.
Coyne dedicates herself and her business to fulfilling the ongoing needs of the community on a daily basis and has received many special honors and awards. She volunteers her time and efforts to many organizations and causes such as Grayling Promotional Association, Grayling Rotary Club, the Black Bear Gran Fondo, Toys for Tots, the Kirtland Community College Foundation Board of Directors, and is a member of the Michigan Association of Broadcasters Board.
Blarney Stone Broadcasting was recently named the Best Northeast Michigan Small Business of the Year by the Small Business Development Corporation.
Coyne created the Old AuSable Fly Fishing report to spotlight a local Grayling business, which was recognized with Michigan Association of Broadcasters Merit Award in 2016, and ran an on-air Northern Focus Town Hall on Underage Drinking/Rx Drug Abuse in partnership with Up North Prevention and Michigan State Police featuring Crawford County panelists.
“Sheryl Coyne is a hard worker, totally devoted to making advancement in this town, a motivator, and mover and a shaker pushing to improve her surrounding environment and making the lives of those around her better,” said Traci Cook, the Executive Director for the Grayling Regional Chamber of Commerce.
Blarney Stone Broadcasting includes Q100.3 WQON and Your Sports Talk 101.1. The company has 14 full-time employees and between five to 10 part-time employees, depending on the season and events.
“I’ve overwhelmed with joy,” Coyne said after receiving the award. “Most importantly, it’s an award that everyone at Blarney Stone Broadcasting has earned. It’s not just me by any means.”
Other nominees for the Citizen of the Year Award were Stacy McIsaac, Erich Podjaske, Erica Blair, Sandra Moore, Marianne Gosnell, Chad Patterson, Kate DeVries-McIsaac, and John Alef.
Butch Weaver was honored with the Chamber’s You Made it Happen Award.
Weaver worked for the Crawford AuSable School District for over 18 years and has continued to serve the community through the creation of the Frederic Music Festival in 2013. The festival is free to the community, promotes local music, and proceeds raised through concessions, merchandise sales, and 50/50 raffles benefit Frederic Parks and Recreation.
“This wonderful community event has grown larger over the last four years and gives back to the community,” Cook said. “In 2016, it raised $2,600, which was matched by a state grant that otherwise would not have been available if not for the money raised by the festival.”
The profits from the festival will fund a new basketball court, restrooms, benches, trees, and playground equipment.
“Butch personally organizes the volunteers, vendors, and musicians by physically going business to business, collecting donations and equipment for the festival such as raffle items, tents, stage setup, and more,” Cook said.
Weaver closes the festival weekend with his band Nameless & Shameless.
“It means that the work that we’re doing at the Frederic Parks and Recreation is getting noticed,” Weaver said after receiving the award. “I just happen have my name on it, but it’s the whole committee that puts their time and work into it. Everybody works really hard, so it’s kind of nice to get noticed.”
Other nominees for the You Made It Happen Award included Amy Weston, Stephanie Riemer, Danielle Rae Gosling, Geno Mastroeni, Mary Becker, and the Grayling Main Street Paddle Battle.
Jack Millikin Inc. was recognized with Chamber Member of the Year Award.
Jack Millikin Inc. recently celebrated its 75th anniversary serving the Crawford County community.
“Millikins delivers outstanding services, and has a hard working staff. It supports local businesses and events, continues to make improvements, employs many local residents, and shows a care for the community without asking for any recognition,” Cook said.
J.C. Millikin, the president and owner of Jack Millikin Inc., said he was humbled to receive the award.
“I just appreciate all of the support from the community,” he said. “It’s an honor to receive this from the community and we’re really thankful.”
Other nominees for the Chamber Member of the Year Award were Tip’n the Mitten, Rolling Oak Brewing Co., Kirtland Community College, and Rialto Theater.