Closing out 2021


Hard to believe we’re back in that strange end-of-the-year week again.  You know, the one where no one really knows what day it is, the kids turn into zombies playing video games for hours on end, and our diets consist of copious amounts of cheese and alcohol.

Still, it’s one of my favorite weeks.  A time to reflect on the past year and make grand plans for the new one.

I had to giggle as I began to organize my slew of post-it notes for this morning.  On each one I had scribbled a sentence or a phrase pertaining to something related to 2021.  And on each one, in some capacity, was the word GARBAGE.

If there was ever a year we could call the year of the garbage – 2021 was definitely that year!  Not that the year itself was garbage, but that garbage seemed to be our nemesis throughout the year.  It was also the topic of many heated, opinionated arguments both online and in person. I suppose you can say it’s the one thing we’ve learned must be addressed in the new year.

And now… for the silver lining…

We dealt with such issues with garbage because Clear Lake was booming with PEOPLE all year long.  People came out week after week for Thursdays on Main.  We had a record number of people for our 4th of July Extravaganza. People stopped in Clear Lake for day trips, or to set up camp for a week and enjoy our beautiful town.  People visited the Surf, the crash site, and our Visitor Center from all over the country.

People shopped in our stores; they ate in our restaurants.  They cut their finger or spiked a fever and had to visit our local medical clinics.  People rented jet skis and boats and loaded up on groceries and craft beer – all bought right here in Clear Lake.

People visited our website by the thousands – the hundreds of thousands, actually.  Planning their stay at the Lake, booking fishing guide trips, or registering for TRI Clear Lake.

People. People. People.

They were everywhere – and they LOVED everything Clear Lake had to offer!

The result of all these people was an economic boost of epic proportions for our Midwest destination location.

It was also the cause of garbage like we’ve never seen!

But you know what?  I’ll take it!

And so, I suppose if extra garbage means our businesses are thriving because people choose to vacation in Clear Lake – bring it on!

And so, as we slide into another year here at the Lake, our hope for you is that it is filled with promise and hope.  May it be your best year yet as you fill up each day with precious memories, living your best life whether you’re here full time or just a seasonal resident.

We are beyond thankful for an amazing year here at the Clear Lake Chamber of Commerce.  But never fear, we still have a few tricks up our sleeve for next year.  Because that’s just what we do… always working for the best interest of the community to build a bigger, better, more amazing Clear Lake.

Cheers and Happy New Year!