FIFTY Fest opens with Tower of Fame presentation

Carole Custer, Dean McAtee
Carole Custer, Dean McAtee

The 37th annual Bell Tower Festival, hosted by the Greene County Chamber of Commerce, opened Friday evening with the presentation of the Bell Tower of Fame Award to Dean McAtee.

In giving the award, Bell Tower Community Foundation president Carole Custer compared McAtee to Floyd and Dora Mahanay. “I often think about the Mahanay Tower and what it stands for in our community,” Custer said. “Floyd and Dora Mahanay were successful in their own right. They were philanthropists. While many community members considered it a personal memorial, the tower stands as a tribute to success, the Mahanays’ success. It has evolved from their success to a reflection of our community’s successes over the years. Tonight, we again honor a person whose success brings great pride to Greene County.”

McAtee is owner of McAtee Tire and Service Center which, like the Mahanay Memorial Carillon Tower, celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. Custer called the tower and McAtee Tire “testaments to business and personal success.”

In accepting the award, McAtee thanked area residents. “I’m here because of your loyal business, your friendship, and your involvement in my life for 50 years,”  McAtee said.

He had suggestions for the 125 or so persons at the opening ceremony:

  • Become involved in your community. Make it happen.
  • Join a civic club or a church.
  • Be a volunteer. Be a part of something, anything.
  • Keep your Midwest values wherever you live – wave, smile, say ‘thank you’.
  • Help your neighbor.
  • Chat in the coffee shop with your friends, not online.

“Most of all, be part of the progress moving into the future,” he concluded. “Blessings come in all ways. Moving to Greene County 50 years ago was one of mine.”

Chamber president Ora Stevens welcomed all present and Chamber tourism and events coordinator Angie Pedersen acknowledged Bell Tower Festival sponsors.

Sponsors at the gold level are Home State Bank, Wild Rose Casino, Bolton & Menk, Peoples Trust & Savings Bank, A & W Family Restaurant and Greene County.

Jefferson Telecom is a silver sponsor.

Steel sponsors are Casey’s, Greene County Medical Center, Midland Power, Racoon Valley Lawn Care, Reuter’s Red Power and Wells Fargo.

Copper sponsors are Aureon, Bauer Built Manufacturing, Cobblestone Hotel and Suites, Durlam Electric, Fareway, Farmers Mutual Insurance, The Gardens, Hotel Pattee, Hy-Vee Landus, Louis Dreyfus LLC, McFarland Clinic, McLaughlin International, Medicap Pharmacy, Mumma Pedersen, N.E. Nelson Lawn Care, Raccoon Valley Radio, Regency Park Nursing & Rehab Center, and Wilcox, Gerken, Schwarzkopf, Copeland and Williams PC.

Bronze sponsors are Bee & Herald, GreeneCountyNewsOnline, John 15 Vineyard, Krieger’s Flower Shop, MacDonald Insurance, Shadran and Town & Farm Realty.Friday w people


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