Sandy Short receives 2023 Woman in Business Award

Sandy Short of Taylor’s Maid-Rite is the recipient of the 2023 Woman in Business Award from the Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce. Pictured with Sandy is award presenter her son, Don Short.

Sandy Short owner of Taylor’s Maid-Rite in Marshalltown, was presented the 2023 Woman in Business Award during the Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce Women in Business Luncheon held at Iowa Valley Business & Community Solutions Dejardin Hall on March 31.

Presenting Sandy Short with the award was Don Short, Sandy’s son. It was a very special moment as Don surprised Sandy with the honor of Woman in Business 2023. Don spoke of the 95 year history of Taylor’s Maid-Rite, the eatery that was started by Sandy’s grandfather, Cliff Taylor.

Sandy Short became emotional when talking about the business, she reminisced growing up in Taylor’s Maid-Rite and all the work that she and her family have put into the business. Sandy is well known in the community for her engagement at Chamber events and volunteering at the Binford House.

Keynote speaker during the fifth annual Women in Business luncheon was Brenda Clark-Hamilton of Fresh Coffee, Professional Growth Programs. Clark-Hamilton spoke about how to bring your “A-Game” in a very dynamic and funny keynote presentation.

New Year brings new ownership for Tannin Wine Bar

Tom and Mary Curley hand the reins of Tannin over to Megan and Gary Lanfier

“Change is inevitable, growth is optional”…a quote by John C. Maxwell..inspires this short story…
A leisurely, relaxing trip led to an inspired idea to bring a business to Marshalltown. Tom and Mary Curley were enjoying time & wine with their kids at Vino 209 in Valley Junction, when Mary commented “This is so enjoyable, why can’t Marshalltown have a place like this?” to which her son-in-law said “why don’t you start one?”…having owned and operated Mary Katherine’s Bridal Shop from 1999 to 2011, Mary said, “no way…not operating another business…I’m retired!”
On the way home, Tom brought the subject up once again by quizzing Mary about where a wine bar in Marshalltown could be located. Mary again reminded him that she was retired…but his comment and inquiry also piqued her interest, which led to more investigation. Over the next few days, their interest grew…a location was found, drawings were created, a “team” of knowledgeable people were put together and a date of July 26, 2018 was set for the opening.
July 19 put a halt to the opening date when Marshalltown experienced an EF-3 tornado. It was a short delay but necessary as the Curley’s had to get repairs done at home. So, a new date of September 12, 2018 was set and Tannin was opened to the public. It immediately became a hot spot in town, as it still is today. Tannin endured the tornado, COVID 19 and the derecho…it was touch and go for a while, but came thru all these ordeals and continues to be a hot spot in town with lots of entertainment.
Sept 12, 2022 started year five of Tannin. In July the word was out that Tannin would be closed or sold by the end of 2022. Mary and Tom are really ready to retire. In August, an employee told us that she and her husband were interested in buying Tannin and, hence, their dream and ours began to meld. As of January 1, 2023, Megan and Gary Lanfier will be the new owners of Tannin! And Mary and Tom couldn’t be more confident that Tannin will live on for many more years under this new ownership. Looking back, we’ve already survived 3 major disasters in 4 short years, so the Lanfier’s should have smooth sailing!
As the first week of January 2023 approaches, Megan and Gary are planning a week of Grand Re–Opening Events! Wednesday January 4 will start with a Chamber Ribbon Cutting at 4:30pm, music by Austin Chadderdon, Give-Always and lots of excitement! The entertainment lineup for the week includes Phil Shipley on Thursday, Chris Ranallo on Friday and Tom Box on Saturday! The rest of the month will feature other entertainers like Dave Thaker Trio, Kevin Boehnke & Kathryn Severing-Fox and Steve Grismore Trio! It’ll be a hoppin’ place!
“Change is inevitable, growth is optional” … and this “growth” is a key example. The community has been so supportive of Tannin, we are confident that this will carry thru and continue to grow as Gary and Megan carry on our legacy. Thank you again Marshalltown, for your support. It’s been our pleasure to create Tannin and we know it’s only going to get better.
Mary and Tom Curley

Opening week live music

Wednesday, January 4-Austin Chadderdon (5-7pm)

Thursday, January 5-Phil Shipley (5:30-7:30pm)

Friday, January 6-Chris Ranallo (6:30-9pm)

Saturday, January 7-Tom Box (6:30-9pm)

Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce Promotes Ladies Night Out

Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce Promotes Ladies Night Out

The Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce is promoting shopping sooner this holiday season through an event geared towards ladies. Ladies Night Out is from 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, October 20. The event is free and open to all public to attend. There will be different promotions and prizes as well as refreshments served at each location.

The following Chamber member businesses will be participating in the Ladies Night Out events.

Be Unique Floral Boutique; Black Tire Bike Company, Brit Marie’s Country Boutique, Brown’s Shoe Fit Company, The Flying Elbow, Hellberg’s Jewelers, Lillie Mae Chocolates, Lowe’s Flowers, Maurices, McGregors Furniture & Mattress, Oliver Beene Designs, Oliver Beene-The Other Side, Real Deals-Marshalltown, Shoe Sensation, State Street Trading Company, Stepping Stones Christian Bookstore, T2K Nutrition, Tannin Wine Bar, Craft Beer & Small Bites, and Tremont on Main.

Sarah Smith, Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce Membership Director, says she is excited for the event. “Ladies Night Out is a great excuse to get together with friends and explore all the great shopping and dining Marshalltown has to offer,” Smith said. “Each participating Chamber member business will offer different prizes or promotions; some will even offer refreshments while you shop. We are excited to continue this semi-annual event this fall!”

For additional information and a downloadable map of participating businesses visit under the events tab. Follow the Chamber Facebook page ( for the Ladies Night Out event and more information on what each business will offer.

Shop Small Saturday more important than ever

Shop Small Saturday is Nov. 27

The Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce is promoting Shop Small Saturday to be held November 27, 2021. This national event was created by American Express in 2010, designed to encourage patrons to shop in their local communities to help boost the economy. Studies have shown that for every $100 dollars spent, $68 goes back into the community. Shopping local also creates jobs. 

Again this year, the Chamber has partnered with American Express as a ‘Neighborhood Champion’ for the Shop Small Campaign and encourages the public to do holiday shopping at Marshall County businesses on Saturday, November 27. Many local retailers and restaurants will offer specials, discounts, and promotions, and participating businesses will be giving away $20 in Chamber Bucks.

Participating businesses in the Chamber’s Shop Small Saturday event include: 319 Décor and Design, BeMobile Verizon, Black Tire Bike Company, Brit Marie’s Country Lace, Hellberg’s Jewelers, McGregor’s Furniture, My Dinosaur Dreams, Oliver Beene Designs, Oliver Beene The Other Side, Pentz Appliance & TV, Smokin G’s BBQ Restaurant & Catering Service, State Street Trading Company, Strand’s Flooring & Paint, Taylor’s Maid-Rite, Thompson True Value, and Tremont Restaurants.

The Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce is a 5-star Accredited Chamber located in Marshalltown and serving all of Marshall County. The Chamber’s mission is to “Advocate for business and tourism.” For more information, visit

Membership Hack: Are you getting the most out of your membership?

It’s that time of year to remind everyone of the ways in which they can get the most out of Chamber membership. 

Check your chamber emails. Members receive frequent e-newsletters (Chamber Headlines & Happenings) that contain pertinent information, reminders of upcoming events, and general information. Take time to read these and reach out to the Chamber with any questions.

Attend events whether virtual or in-person. Despite the changing times, we’re in, the Chamber has continued to provide value, while respecting COVID-19 restrictions and concerns. Attend Chamber-sponsored webinars or online events. This is a great opportunity to learn new things AND connect with others.

Sponsor a Chamber event. Sponsoring an event will allow you to advertise your business to a targeted audience, have brand visibility, create some potential leads, and provide community goodwill. 

Free job postings. Did you know the Chamber will post your job opening on our website, thereby increasing your chance to connect with qualified candidates? It’s true! And it’s part of your membership!

Purchase mailing labels for $30. We will print mailing labels for all Chamber members (close to 500) for you to use for your business’s marketing campaigns. This is a great, inexpensive way to connect with other Chamber members.

Become more involved. Join a committee or become a volunteer. This is a great way to get to know others in the community while providing assistance to the Chamber.

Work on your business

Do you believe your company’s success hinges on how well you prepare your budget, the kind of product you have or your customer satisfaction scores? Yes, those aspects do matter – but ultimately business will just be as good as the employees performing the work. Business wise, it makes more sense to hire smart people to add value to your company as opposed to resorting to the antiquated command and control model.

Autonomy in the workplace goes a long way to promoting and fostering creativity and innovation. As long as an organization has a clear trajectory and plan laid out, the leadership should be providing direction and oversight of its execution. David Ricardo, a British economist spoke about comparative advantage which has to do with matters of trade and relates to a country’s ability to execute economic activity in a more effective and efficient way compared to other nations. This principle can be applied to management, we must capitalize on what we are poised to do best. If your role involves being a manager then by all means, manage but leave the human resources to your HR Director.

Time is a finite resource and with the plethora of activities already in a manager’s calendar, it is important to know how to allocate time and resources appropriately. For example, consider a startup that is currently expanding. In the beginning the Founder & CEO most likely wore many hats if not all of them, from marketing and sales to coding, graphic art and fundraising. One day the company is able to fill those roles, vice presidents, directors and coordinators now roam your building, looking to maximize and perform the job they were hired to do. It is not unreasonable for the Founder & CEO to believe they can do a better job than the staff (which may or may not be true). The question is, should they? No, their time would be best spent pursuing growth opportunities for their company and strategizing their next move in the market.

Analyze your company’s mission, vision and overall strategy, even though management styles diverge across the board, remember that the way you approach it can make the difference between growth and stagnation. Even though success is in the details, it is important to know when to delegate, provide feedback and step in when needed. Are you working on your business or in your business?

How to Use Marshalltown More Than Ever

By: Kyley Leger, Vision Marshalltown Executive Director

Marshalltown More Than Ever is a way to focus on the Marshalltown story. It identifies us, celebrates our rich history, focuses on our world-class education, applauds our state leader position in business and education partnerships, highlights rich collaborations, and aspires continued growth.

How Do Businesses Use Marshalltown More Than Ever?

Marshalltown More Than Ever is a tagline and story created for use by individuals and businesses to show their connection to the community. It helps connect into a community collaboration. It associates a business or individual with the community as a whole.


Have a job posting or going to a career fair? Does your current material sell your company and the proposed job? Does it sell our community? Have you ever thought about how a candidate cares equally about the community they will be joining? Housing, amenities, schools, and things to do top the list of things people look at when moving to a community. We created a recruiting flyer that has the community selling points written on one side of the flyer and the other side of the flyer is for you to include your company or job posting information.

We’ve also developed a PowerPoint presentation that highlights Marshalltown More Than Ever as a great place to live, learn, and play. This presentation is short in number of slides, but powerful in community overview. It can be used during employee orientation or as a form of recruiting. Use as a standalone or combine with your company slides.


Do your 2021 goals include advertising? We designed a set of digital and print advertisements that promote Marshalltown More Than Ever. If you’re looking for a way to advertise, maybe this message can be adjusted to fit your business goals. Or maybe these advertisements can be used to support your company advertisements.


Do you have a social media account? Use our community hashtag to connect with the qualities in our community that stand out. What does your company offer that is better than your competition? Or, what first-class offerings do you have? These are all examples of how we are #MarshalltownMoreThanEver. Think about sharing more than your company content. Help other businesses promote their offerings by sharing their #MarshalltownMoreThanEver stories.

Email Signatures

Consider adding the phrase “Marshalltown More Than Ever” to the bottom of your signature or use the logo in your emails.

What Next?

Share Marshalltown More Than Ever stories with friends and family. Share them on digital media, tell your friends and neighbors, and start using the Marshalltown More Than Ever materials!

To find these files, visit For editable files, email with your request.

Where are the entrepreneurs?

Sustainable economic development comes from innovation and industrialization – this is what draws employees to cities and in turn creates demand for housing, amenities, and everything related to quality of life. Marshalltown has truly been a startup town that has seen large industrial players start here and expand. The Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce wants to further that trend. Our role is to help preserve, protect, and grow the free enterprise system. We recognize that, in order to grow, we have to encourage entrepreneurship and innovation. New businesses have the potential of attracting customers, workers, and visitors from all over the region; the new traffic flow then creates demand for other types of goods and services. The multiplier effect from a singular investment can create powerful ripples throughout the local economy.

Today, there is a tremendous shortage across the United States within the STEM (science, technology, engineering & math) fields for both labor and new products. Pent up demand has prompted the creation of incubators and start up accelerators in multiple cities in the U.S. Venture capitalists and angel investors are constantly hunting for new, disruptive, and groundbreaking deals to invest in. Academia has learned to better align their curriculums with the needs of our employers in order to fill the supply gap. Whether you have a way to revolutionize farming, manufacturing, or even coffee making – we want to hear from you!

This is the time to invest, not tomorrow or a year from now. If not today, when?

New Year’s Resolutions

January 2021 is here and it’s time to think about New Year’s Resolutions. 2020 was rough but that doesn’t mean 2021 has to be. Creating resolutions can help better you in your work life and personal life, and with many of us continuing to work at home, that’s one in the same! Below are my 2021 resolutions. I hope my ideas assist you in generating resolutions of your own.

  1. Learn something new every day

I have an Audible account that I don’t use. I am going to begin listening to audiobooks on my commute every morning and evening. Some will be fiction and some career but you can always learn something new from reading. Or, try this ‘word of the day’ calendar by Merriam Webster:

2. Budget and travel big

I was super excited last year at this time as the kids and I were to take a life-changing trip to Croatia, Slovenia, and Italy. Then Coronavirus hit. Plan a trip for 2022 and start saving money now, so you can afford your vacation and not stress about it. Have your bank deduct $50/paycheck into a vacation account, so by next year you will have $1200 to use on vacation expenses. Budget your expenses this year using one of these budget apps:

3. Drink more H20 by tracking water intake

This will be so difficult for me. I don’t like drinking water. But, in this crazy world, this is something I can control so why not be more proactive? There are lots of applications out there that you can utilize to accomplish this goal:

4. Make ‘Me’ time

I’m a single mom and ‘me’ time doesn’t come easy. My daughter created a 10-minute yoga routine that is simple and for the yoga beginner, like myself. It is easy, feels good and is a time that I am focusing on myself. Create your own using this guide:


I’m saving the best for last and this is a big one folks! Try to support local in every purchase you make. Could I buy my cat’s $75 special urinary protection cat food online and save $10 a bag? Of course, but I’m not going to because my local veterinarian needs my support. It’s about putting your money back into Marshall County and helping our businesses thrive even during the bad times (ummm, like now).