Cowboy singer/poet Casey to headline Chamber banquet

Tony Parra: PNT Staff Writer

A cowboy songwriter/poet from Big Sky Country will be in Portales on Thursday to entertain people who attend the Annual Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce Banquet.
The Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce banquet is scheduled to take place at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Portales High School Cafeteria.

T.J. Casey will be the featured entertainment for the night. Casey is a singing cowboy from Billings, Mont. Casey has been a singing entertainer for more than 30 years, according to a press release from Cowboy Enterprises.
“It’ll be a lot of fun,” Sharon King, chamber manager, said. “It’s going to be a mixture of singing and poetry. I’m looking forward to it.”

Casey has shared the stage with country singers Merle Haggard, Dirks Bentley and the Everly Brothers. Casey was one of the five finalists for Rising Star and Western Swing Album of the Year and one of the Top 10 finalists for Western Song and Western Music Male of the Year.
Casey is currently on tour at the Rocky Mountain Association of Fairs in Great Falls, Mont.

There will be three awards given out to business workers from the community. King said the three awards are the Harley Faye Borden Award, the Workhorse of the Year Award and the Warm Heart of the Sunbelt Award.

She said a reason for the banquet is to recognize business owners and managers who have improved their businesses and helped the community. King said another reason is to give people something to enjoy.

Steven Hudson Certified Public Accountant, Trader Horn True Value and Creighton’s Town and Country feed store were all awarded with plaques for the expansion and success of their businesses at last year’s banquet. Roosevelt County chamber officials awarded Mickie Williams with the Workhorse of the Year Award, last year.

King said the Harley Faye Borden Award is given to the business owner who has improved his or her business’ approval over the last year the most. The Workhorse of the Year is given to the person who contributed a lot to the community and the chamber over the last year.

King said the Warm Heart of the Sunbelt award is not necessarily given out every year. The last Warm Heart of the Sunbelt award was given out during the 2003 banquet to Thom Moore.

The Warm Heart of the Sunbelt award is given out to honor an individual who has committed unselfish dedication to the prosperity of Roosevelt County and isn’t given each year because a person must show extraordinary dedication to the community as deemed by the chamber committee members.

There will be door prizes and Mark’s Eastern Grill workers are preparing the food, which is barbecue beef and barbecue chicken.

Kim Huffman, executive director of the chamber, said the chamber employees help with awareness, grand openings and advertising of new businesses.

“The chamber exists to keep a healthy bsiness climate,” Huffman said. “There’s been a good business climate for the city and it benefits the chamber.”

Huffman said the banquet is designed to take place in a timely fashion so that it will be over by approximately 8:30 p.m.