The Washington Area Chamber of Commerce will host its 79th annual dinner banquet Saturday, March 24, at the KC Hall.

The evening will begin with cocktails at 6 p.m. followed by dinner and a program at 7 p.m.

New this year will be motivational speaker Mark Mayfied, who delivered the keynote address at the 2016 Convention of the International Association of Fairs and Expositions.

Jennifer Giesike, Chamber president, said the Chamber staff and Fair Board members in attendance at the convention were impressed with Mayfield’s presentation.

“We knew when we heard Mark that our members would really enjoy his message,” Giesike said. “After watching his demo — which left everyone laughing and reflecting — the Chamber Board agreed that we should try something new with the banquet this year.

“We are thrilled to give Chamber members the opportunity to hear Mark’s insights,” she added.

The motivational talk will replace the musical entertainment.

Tickets for the dinner are on sale now. The cost is $50 per person. Tables of 10 are available.

Reservations are due by Wednesday, March 7. To order tickets call the Chamber office, 636-239-2715, ext. 102.

Tables are available on a first-come basis.

Giesike will again serve as master of ceremonies.

Sandy Anderson, board chair, will introduce Chamber board members and staff.

Brian Gildehaus, Washington Town & Country Fair chairman, will introduce Fair Board members. A video also will be shown featuring the big-name acts for this year’s Fair.

Natalie Ruether, 2017 Fair Queen, will help Jill Poepsel, queen committee chair, randomly draw this year’s queen sponsors. Poepsel also will introduce committee members.

One of the highlights of the evening will be the presentation of the Washingtonian Award by The Missourian.

Giesike said the banquet puts the spotlight on volunteerism in Washington.