PREVIEW: W.O. Chamber's Big Orange Awards

Who will win this year’s Big Business and Small Business member of the year awards?

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Exciting surprises await the attendees of the West Orange Chamber of Commerce’s upcoming Big Orange Awards. With a theme of “Under the Big Top,” one can expect circus-style entertainment, interactive activities and decór at this annual signature event for the chamber. No word yet on whether or not Chamber President Stina D’Uva will arrive on a trapeze.

The program takes place from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1, at Disney’s Contemporary Resort.

Tables of eight can be reserved for $800 for chamber members and $1,000 for others. Individual tickets are $96 and $116.

Live and silent auctions will be featured, and businesses still have time to donate an auction item.

The main event of the evening is the distribution of the 2018 Big Orange Awards, which celebrate the accomplishments of select chamber members who have facilitated opportunities and contributed to the betterment of the West Orange business community.

This year’s recipients are Mike Bollhoefer, who will receive the Chairman’s Award; Dennis Foltz, Sam Hovsepian Award; Chris Garcia, Ambassador of the Year; GeeGee Burmeister, Mary VanDeventer “The Spirit of West Orange” Award; Heichel Plumbing, George Bailey Award; Teresa Jacobs, Bert Roper Award; and Lynn Walker Wright, Danniel J. Petro “The Bright Future of West Orange” Award.

Two more awards will be distributed for the Small Business Member of the Year and the Big Business Member of the Year. The recipients won’t be announced until the event.

Sponsors are Disney, Platinum; Orlando Health, Presenting; Duke Energy, Premier; and Dawn Gilmore Productions, Entertainment.

For tickets, go to or call (407) 656-1304.

Last year’s winners were Florida Hospital, Large Business Member of the Year; Pammie’s Sammies, Small Business Member of the Year; Rob Maphis, Chairman’s Award; Becky Roper and Charlie Roper, Bert Roper Award; Gary Shif, the Danniel J. Petro “The Bright Future of West Orange” Award; Chick-fil-A Winter Garden and Ocoee, George Bailey Award; Jennifer Talbot, the Mary VanDeventer “The Spirit of West Orange” Award; David Billsborough, Sam Hovsepian Award; Kurt Ardaman, Lifetime Director Award; and Denise Fisher, Ambassador of the Year.



Amy Quesinberry

Community Editor Amy Quesinberry was born at the old West Orange Memorial Hospital and raised in Winter Garden. Aside from earning her journalism degree from the University of Georgia, she hasn’t strayed too far from her hometown and her three-mile bubble. She grew up reading The Winter Garden Times and knew in the eighth grade she wanted to write for her community newspaper. She has been part of the writing and editing team since 1990.

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