2024 marks a historical milestone in the Fox Cities Chamber’s long and distinguished history. For 150 years our Chamber has been a driving force behind the economic growth and development of our region. We have championed the interests of our members, promoted collaboration, and provided a platform for businesses of all sizes to connect, grow, and lead. We look forward to celebrating with our members and the community to commemorate this remarkable achievement!
Be a part of the celebration:
See our Events Calendar for all 2024 events.
Watch for our “Monday Memories” every week on Facebook and LinkedIn!
A group of Appleton business leaders met at the Waverly House in August to consider a Chamber for the city.
In September, 21 men officially signed the Chamber charter. Membership was $3 and mayor A.L. Smith was board president.
Ulysses S. Grant was president of the U.S., and Harry Houdini was born in Budapest but later moved to Appleton with his family.
The Menasha Chamber of Commerce was organized around this time, just 7 years after the U.S. Chamber formed.
The Appleton Chamber of Commerce reorganized and re-energized amid much fanfare and with great success. On March 29 it was officially relaunched, with 612 enthusiastic members signing up immediately.
Chamber offices were located on the second floor of the old AAL building, on the corner of Superior and College Ave.
Always working for businesses, transportation was a huge focus of the Chamber, from securing faster train service to creating a traffic bureau and an aviation committee.
The Neenah Chamber of Commerce was formed by a group of Neenah merchants and businessmen to align the interests of the business community.
The directors of the Neenah Chamber invited Menasha to join with them to become
the Neenah- Menasha Chamber of Commerce, a true “twin cities” chamber.
The Chamber helped advocate for construction of a new airport in Greenville, which opened in 1965 along with the start of Air Wisconsin.
An action plan from this time stated how the Appleton Chamber was instrumental in projects such as the establishment of FVTC, Appleton Redevelopment Authority, and the downtown Appleton rejuvenation project.
The Appleton and Neenah/Menasha chambers consolidated to become the Fox Cities Chamber of Commerce & Industry.
Appleton’s Octoberfest was held for the first time as a way to promote businesses
and showcase downtown Appleton.
The Chamber was instrumental in the planning and development of Highway 441, a beltway designed to relieve traffic on
The Chamber’s Appleton Downtown Business Association morphed into the new Appleton Downtown, Inc., still a thriving business organization today.
From a feasibility study in 2008 to opening in 2017, the Chamber was a vital partner in making the Fox Cities Exhibition Center a reality.
The Chamber identified a need for a division focused on economic development and launched the Fox Cities Regional Partnership.
The Chamber coordinated efforts and resources for Fox Cities businesses when an unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic swept through the world.
The Chamber was the first in the state to roll out a free membership level for small businesses who qualify and added nearly 500 new members by year-end 2023.