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Portage Area Chamber of Commerce
August 2021
Concerts in the Park series conclude with WCO
The Concerts in the Park summer series concluded with a rousing performance by the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra performing well-known disco tunes with guest band Jeans n' Classics on July 30. Those gathered around the Beasley Pavilion at Pauquette Park heard classic hits from ABBA, Bee Gees, Earth, Wind & Fire and more.

The annual orchestra appearance was preceded in prior weeks of the concert series by the Wisconsin National Guard 132nd Army Band, Mollie B & the Jim Busta Band and The Jimmys. The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce and the Portage Parks and Recreation Department thank all those who came out to hear the music and the following major sponsors for making the concert series possible:
Portage Lions Club
Dave & Judy Eulberg
Johnson Chiropractic
Adams Columbia Electric Cooperative
Don-Rick Insurance
Edward Jones Investments, Josh Vehring
Hart & Olson Dentistry
Sean Malone Insurance Agency
Seubert Family Dentistry
Lotus Advisors, Kathy Houzner & Julie Groves
General Engineering Company
Nona's Tailoring & Tuxes
Pflanz Mantey Mendrala Funeral Home
National Night Out - Tuesday, August 3
This national police-awareness event, recently expanded to include first responder personnel and starts at 7pm at Sunset Park, 1200 W. Pleasant Street, tonight, August 3, with a movie, “Planes-Fire and Rescue” starting at 8:30pm. Portage Police will pass out popcorn and water before the movie starts. People are being asked to bring lawn chairs or blankets.
Taste of Portage 2021
The Portage Area Chamber of Commerce invites the community to the 30th year of the Taste of Portage Market Fair, happening Friday evening August 27 and Saturday, August 28. Event highlights include great food, live music, craft vendors, a car show and kid’s activities.
Popular bands Best Practice, Copper Box and Road Trip will perform at the traditional live music location at Market Square, where visitors will also find delicious menu items at the Food Court.

However, the locations of some other attractions will change this year due to the ongoing road construction on Wisconsin Street. Downtown portions of Cook Street and DeWitt Street--normally closed to host the Taste of Portage event--remain open this year, thereby necessitating a change of venue for the following event attractions:
  • Car show to the Columbia County Administration Building parking lot, south of Market Square
  • Craft Vendors to the parking lot behind Wilz Hometown Pharmacy
  • Kid’s Activities to the lower half of Marachowsky Place
The Downtown Walking Tour will leave from the Portage Chamber office, 104 W. Cook Street, at 10am, and Sidewalk Sales will take place throughout downtown.

Click Here for 2021 Taste of Portage event details.
Welcome New Portage Chamber of Commerce Members

Ebenezer Janitorial Service LLC
Josef D. Ballard at 608-415-1188
A local janitorial service offering over 30 years of experience, 24/7 availability,
and strict cleaning standards eliminating 99.7% of airborne viruses.
About Ebenezer Janitorial Service
Greetings, my name is Josef Ballard. I own the Coverall Cleaning Franchise operating under the name of Ebenezer Janitorial Service LLC. We serve Portage and the surrounding communities. Coverall has over 30 years of experience with over 14,000 clients.

We now clean various buildings such as manufacturing plants, apartments, offices, and other facilities. We follow strict cleaning standards to eliminate 99.97% of airborne viruses. We are available 24/7 and offer a free no obligation price quotation.

I look forward to helping you have a cleaner and safer environment at a lower cost. If you have any questions or want a free quotation, please call me at my direct line at 608-415-1188.

Best regards,

Josef Ballard, Ebenezer Janitorial Service LLC
Portage Downtown Market
The Business Improvement District held the first-of-its-kind Downtown Market in the library parking lot on Thursday evening July 29.

The market, organized by the Portage Chamber, was a family-friendly event that brought many people "after hours" to hear live music and enjoy the vendors and entertainment on hand.

Thank you to all those who attended and participated!!!
Cardinal FG Rapid Hire Event
Cardinal FG is hosting a hiring event on August 18, 2021 from 8am to Noon at 1650 Mohr Road. In this RAPID HIRE event, we have openings for both full-time and part-time production technicians.
Interested applicants will get a tour of our facility and an overview of the many benefits we offer our employees. They will also interview with our experienced personnel and receive a gift for coming to check us out. This process will take about 2 hours to complete. It is important to wear closed-toed shoes and long pants in order to tour our production environment. Safety is extremely important to us!
• Full-time technicians work 12-hour shifts, three and four days per week. Choose from straight days or nights, or a rotating day/night schedule

• Part-time technicians can work up to 30 hours per week in 9-hour or 12-hour shifts. Choose any combination of days or nights to fit your schedule
Need a guaranteed appointment time? Call us at 608-742-1966 before August 18th.
Don’t want to wait until August 18th? Apply online, call, or walk-in now.
For more information about Cardinal FG and our openings, check us out at and on social media!
Portage Library Community Read 2021
The Portage Public Library would like to invite everyone to participate in a "Community Read" of the book The Sum of Us by Heather McGhee through August 19.

Using McGhee's book, the goal is to:
  • Increase awareness and understanding of racism
  • Discuss the ways in which racism hurts everyone
  • Strategize about how Portage can better combat racism
  • Unify our community, and cultivate personal growth - together!

Through August 12, discussion question primers are posted regularly on library social media ( There will be an in-person comprehensive Book Discussion with Stephen Rodrigues-Pavao held at the Portage Public Library on Thursday, August 12 at 6pm.

An in-person keynote speech and Q & A with Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes, who will discuss issues of racism and systemic racism as they affect rural communities, will take place at the Pauquette Park Beasley Pavilion on Thursday, August 19 at 6pm.

What is a "Community Read"
A "Community Read" is a book club for the entire city, intended to cultivate a culture of reading, discussion, and growth, by bringing people together around impactful works of literature. In discussing and better understanding important issues that affect our community, we can work towards change that will improve everyone's quality of life.

The Portage Public Library has purchased 45 Community Read copies of The Sum of Us to check out in-library. These books do not circulate to other libraries and cannot be put on hold. They check out for 14 days, with no renewals. Books available while supplies last! The book is also available as a digital audiobook.

Visit for more information.
Peter Pan at PCA
Festival Foods presents Peter Pan on August 13-15 and August 20-22 at Portage Center for the Arts. Friday and Saturday shows are at 7pm and Sunday shows are 3pm. Limited seating, advance sales only. Adults are $15 and 12 and under just $5.
Family special: two parents/guardians and up to 5 of their children. Tickets will not be sold at the door and face coverings are required.

Portage Family Skatepark Fundraiser
The Portage Family Skatepark (PFSP) and Portage Center for the Arts' Drury Gallery are collaborating on a fundraising exhibit in support of Phase III of the PFSP! The call for Artists has ended, and all submitted artwork has been donated to PFSP for use in fundraising activities, including an August 2021 exhibit and auction event! Bidding opens August 6.

For more information about these and other PCA events, visit or call 608-742-5655.
St. John's Lutheran School & CDC Hiring
St. John's Lutheran School is currently seeking candidates for a full-time 3rd/4th-grade teacher for the 2021–2022 school year. This position will co-teach with another 3rd/4th-grade teacher splitting the language arts and math. The teacher will also teach other classes in the school depending on their gifts and talents. A teacher's license is needed. If you know of a person who would like to apply contact, Jim Krupski via email at or call the school office, 608-742-9000 ext. 3, during business hours.
St. John’s Child Development Center is looking for a Lead Early Childhood Teacher and an Elementary Education teacher to work full time or part-time at our YoungStar “five” star center. Teachers are responsible for the planning, preparation, and implementation of all classroom activities. A primary goal is to provide a safe, nurturing, and educational environment where the child’s self-concept is enhanced, independence encouraged, and individuality respected. Full-time benefits: Vacation, Holidays, and Medical to eligible employees. Contact: Debbie Drew at or call 608-742-9000 x2 to set up an interview.
Portage Lions Club Stuff the Bus
Drop off donations at Walmart, 2950 New Pinery Road, on Friday, August 13 from 4pm to 6pm; Thursday, August 19 from 4pm to 6pm and Friday, August 20 from 4pm to 6pm. All supplies and books collected will benefit Portage Public School students.
Immediate Opening - Director of Retreat Center
Durward's Glen Retreat and Conference Center located outside of Baraboo, Wisconsin has an opening for the position of Part-time Director, 30+ hours per week. 

The overall responsibilities include office management, assisting guests, answering phones, responding to e-mails, and using electronic booking software to manage reservations, organize and run special events and fundraisers, supervise and schedule volunteer and paid housekeeping staff and caretaker, and enhance the image of Durward’s Glen by being active and visible in the community and by working closely with other professionals, civic and private partners.

The position is supervised by The Board of Directors, and they seek the following professional qualifications:
·        Excellent written and oral communication skills.
·        Computer skills, including Microsoft Word and Excel, maintaining and/or creating websites.
·        Experience managing social media.
·        Ability to work with little supervision.
·        Strong organizational abilities, including planning, delegating, and program development.
·        Knowledge of fundraising strategies and donor relations unique to non-profit organizations. 
Salary is negotiable, based on skills and experience.   
To apply: e-mail a copy of your resume to:
Kids Historical Storytime
Bring your kids to Fort Winnebago Surgeons Quarters for a fun and educational reading of I Am Sacagawea by Brad Metzler on Friday, August 6 from 10:30am to 11am.

Yoga on the Hill
Local Portage yoga studio Bee Alive Yoga will lead a yoga session outdoors on the Fort Winnebago Surgeons Quarters grounds on Saturday, August 7.

Kids at the Cabin
Join us for a day of educational fun for kids and adults alike for the Kids at the Cabin event at Fort Winnebago Surgeons Quarters, sponsored by the Kohler Foundation, on Saturday, August 14 from 11am to 4pm. Activities include presentations by Laura Ingalls-Wilder impersonator Laura Keyes, authentic 1840s cricket matches hosted by Tom Melville, and games for prizes (such as the three-legged race and water balloon toss). Food available for purchase. Admission charged on arrival.

Kids Cabin Crafting Day
Bring your kids to Fort Winnebago Surgeons Quarters for some guided crafting fun! On Sunday, August 22, create balloon rockets and fairy jars. The fun starts at 11am.

Fort Winnebago Surgeons Quarters is located at 1824 State Highway 33. For details and updates on events, visit,, or call 608-742-2949.
Become a Substitute Teacher
Want to make a big difference in the lives of students in your community? Teachers On Call® is hiring great people to substitute in your local schools, for both teaching and non-teaching positions. Try a new morning routine with a meaningful job that gives you the flexibility to create your own work schedule.
Wake up and teach in the Portage Community School District. Earn income. Enjoy real work-life balance. And know the work you do every day is making a profound impact on moving education forward.

For more information, please call 800-713-4439.
Portage City Flea Market
Come check out the Portage City Flea Market at the Columbia County Fairgrounds on Saturday, August 7 from 8am to Noon. Local vendors will be selling crafts, collectibles, woodworking items, rummage sale items and more!
Interested in reserving a vendor space? Contact Mike Percy at the Portage Park & Recreation Department, 608-742-2178 or
Ribbon Cutting at Kinship Mentoring of Columbia County
Join us for a ribbon cutting at Kinship Mentoring of Columbia County, 1115 W. Pleasant Street., Suite 8, as a new member of the Portage Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday, August 11 at 4pm.
Kinship, Inc. is a private, nonprofit organization which believes in and promotes the concept of youth mentoring. The National Kinship office exists to serve as a resource for established and emerging local Kinship affiliates. In 2020, Kinship Mentoring of Columbia County became an affiliate of Kinship, Inc.

Currently, the Kinship Affiliate Network is made up of 30+ affiliates located in the upper Midwest, having established mentoring relationships for nearly 1,800 of today’s youth.
The Community Based Mentor Program is at the center of the organization, matching children ages 5 to 14 with positive adult influences. All adult volunteers are interviewed, undergo criminal background checks, and comprehensive screening before being matched with a child.
The Program Coordinator then matches the child with mentors based on age, gender, location, interests, and mentor’s previous experience working with youth. ​The Program Coordinator is also responsible for maintaining a relationship with the mentee’s parent and/or guardian.
Kinship provides support, structure, and supervision needed to make sure everyone experiences a safe and positive relationship throughout their experience. More details on how you can be involved can be found at or by calling 608-697-3260.
August Chamber Meetings and Events
11 Ribbon Cutting at Kinship Mentoring of Columbia County 4pm
27-28 Taste of Portage Market Fair in downtown
Community Bank is celebrating 25 Years!
Join Community Bank of Portage in celebrating 25 years! Stop into the lobby for free treats and giveaways all week long.

Popcorn Party - Monday, August 23 Pop in with the kids for Popcorn & Gifts
Shred Event - Tuesday, August 24, Noon - 2pm Limit 50 lbs. per customer
Frozen Custard Bar - Thursday, August 26 from 11am - 3pm
Catered Picnic - Friday, August 27 from 11am - 2pm

For more information, call Community Bank of Portage, 2930 New Pinery Road, at 608-745-4300.
Enduring Skills Weekend at Agency House
Many historical skills and techniques would be lost to time were it not for those who continue to practice them to this day! Try for yourself an exciting sampling of skills that have endured through the centuries or have been experimentally re-created during the Enduring Skills Weekend, Saturday, August 14 and Sunday, August 15, 10am to 4pm each day at the Historic Indian Agency House.

Pre-registration is strongly recommended through the Enduring Skills 2021 web page. There is a plethora of fascinating offerings–different ones each day–for men, women, and children!
Stories of Wisconsin: Dugout Canoe Project
Enjoy a relaxing evening at the Historic Indian Agency House while listening to stories of Wisconsin's days of old around a unique "camp fire" on Friday, August 27 from 6pm to 8pm.
Each evening's story will be accompanied by progressing work on a fire-wrought dugout canoe! Working together, we will learn about and experiment with this ancient historical skill. A hot dog fundraiser will be held concurrently, so come with an appetite for history and fun!

Girl Scouts Day at Agency House
Did you know that the founder of the Girl Scouts–Juliette Gordon Lowe–was the granddaughter of John and Juliette Kinzie who lived and worked here at the Indian Agency House in the early 1830s? Historic Indian Agency House is planning an exciting day for Girl Scouts from all over the region on Saturday, August 28. Stay tunes for details!

For more information about these and other Agency House events, visit or call, 608-742-6362.
Looking for lawn care? Snow removal this winter? Call Reliable Handyman Service
For those of you looking for basic lawn care this summer, call Lance DeJong of Reliable Handyman Service at 608-235-1431. Lance also offers driveway and sidewalk snow removal and salt application during the winter. Only a couple months away, plan today.
Portage Summer Lunch Program
The Portage Summer Lunch Program - and the young people of Portage - need you! Volunteers are needed to help distribute the lunches at some of the sites during the week of August 23-27 and August 30-31.
You can find the registration and sign-up sheet on the Columbia County Extension website - there you will sign up for a shift (30-45 minutes) at one of the sites that needs a volunteer.
The sign-up sheet contains the link to register, instructions for what the site tasks are and has the times/days/sites that will need help. The community can stay up-to-date on the program by following it on Facebook "Portage Summer Lunch Program. "
If you have questions, please be sure to contact Caitlin Richardson ( or Dave Hankins ( or leave a message on the Facebook Page and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.
Zona Gale Celebrates Friendship Village
This year will mark the 100th anniversary of Zona Gale's Miss Lulu Bett Pulitzer Prize. Activities are being planned for the Zona Gale Celebrates Friendship Village, happening Saturday, August 21. Contact Jeff Grothman at 608-742-2228.

Women's Civic League Ice Cream Social
Enjoy this pie and ice cream social from 2pm to 4pm on the lawn along Wisconsin River during Friendship Village. Donations are accepted. Come and enjoy a fun filled day at 506 West Edgewater Street, the Home of the Women's Civic League.
Portage Elks Lodge Kids Fisheree
The Annual Portage Elks Lodge Kids Fisheree will be held at Pauquette Park on Sunday, August 22. All kids through age 12, accompanied by an adult, are invited to participate.

Registration begins at 9:30am, fishing starts at 10am. The event is free, just bring your own pole and bait. Fire trucks will be on site, there will be gift bags for all with prizes for winners in various categories. For more information, contact the Portage Elks Lodge at 608-742-6040.
About the Advance Child Tax Credit
Millions of families across the country have begun to receive monthly payments of the Advance Child Tax Credit. These payments will continue through December. Many people have questions about this temporary expansion of the Child Tax Credit.

Click Here to view a fact sheet that provides some of those answers. Please reach out with any additional questions: Jenny Abel, Financial Security Outreach Program Manager, Human Development and Relationships Institute,
Small Businesses offered free legal consultation
The Business Law Section of the State Bar of Wisconsin has initiated a program to provide a free legal consultation on business matters to small businesses and their owners. This free consultation is provided virtually so this service is accessible state wide. 

Business owners and organizations needing free non-litigation business law services they could not otherwise afford can set up a virtual appointment with a volunteer attorney with business law experience.
The Section is particularly interested in assisting those who are low income or serving low income communities. Please see Small business assistance which outlines the program and the process.
Services: Eligible participants can receive brief assistance on a wide variety of business law matters including: Finance and lending; Insurance claims/coverage; Commercial leases and contracts; Tax; Labor and employment; Real estate; Commercial debtor/creditor; Regulatory compliance, including privacy and COVID-19 related requirements.
There are exclusions that this Small Business Assistance will not handle and these exclusions are outlined on Small business assistance. This service will be offered by the State Bar of Wisconsin Business Law Section in partnership with the Marquette Volunteer Legal Clinic of Marquette Law School.  In order to receive the services, clients must request an appointment for a phone or Zoom consultation at which will be scheduled through the Marquette Volunteer Legal Clinic (MVLC). The MVLC will coordinate the scheduling and the consultations will be available on weekday mornings with the consultation lasting up to one hour. 
For more information, please refer see or please feel free to contact Jane Corkery, Section Coordinator, State Bar of Wisconsin at 608-250-6124 or 800-444-9404, ext. 6124
Portage VFW fundraiser event
The Portage VFW Post 1707, 215 W. Collins Street, is hosting a fundraiser on Saturday, August 14 from 4pm to 8pm. There will be food and raffles, with proceeds from the event going toward the repaving of the VFW parking lot. 

Voice of Elvis Clyde Masten and vocalist and guitarist Abbie Phillippi will perform. Donations are welcome. For more information, call 608-742-5350.
Kids Yoga at Bee Alive Yoga Studio
Register for Kids Yoga with Bee Alive Yoga, 230 W. Wisconsin Street, at 608-745-9333.

Classes are held Tuesdays & Thursdays in August from 3:30pm to 4:15pm.

Portage Theatre Summer Movie Series
Be sure to catch the Portage Theatre 50 cent Summer Morning Movie shows at 10am on Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday, August 3-5.

For more information, call 608-742-6900.
Submit your Events!
Are you planning an event this year? Get it posted on our web community calendar at One of the most popular viewed of the Chamber website pages, the calendar allows you to submit your own events.

Simply click this link and submit your events. If you have questions, please call the Chamber office at 608-742-6242.
Spread the word about Portage!
Use #portagewi in your social media posts.
Check out the Chamber's YouTube Channel HERE
Job postings on
Check out these job postings on our Chamber site from our member businesses. You are welcome to post job openings your business may have at any time. Call the Chamber office at 608-742-6242 for more information.
Want to submit an article for this newsletter?
The Chamber's monthly newsletter deadlines the 20th of the month. Members are always welcome to let others know: about new products and services; introduce new associates or promotions; provide updates about their industry or business; give helpful tips; promote a sale or event. For more information, call the Portage Chamber at 608-742-6242.
Text PORTAGE to 51660
to receive information about upcoming Portage events
Join a Service Club - Meetings subject to change
Rotary - Meets Mondays at Noon at Dino’s Restaurant, 2900 New Pinery Rd.
Lions Club - Meets the 2nd Wednesday of the month at 5:30pm at Dino’s Restaurant, 2900 New Pinery Rd., summer month meetings change locations
Kiwanis - Meets on Wednesdays at Noon at Pizza Ranch, 2905 New Pinery Rd.
Optimists - Meets on Tuesdays at 7am at Dino’s Restaurant, 2900 New Pinery Rd.
Elks - Meets 2nd & 4th Tuesday at 7pm; 4th Tuesday only during July and August
Women's Civic League - Meets 2nd Wednesdays of the month at Dino’s Restaurant, 2900 New Pinery Rd.
Portage Area Chamber of Commerce | 608-742-6242 | |