Meet Chief!

Pictured left to right: Andrea Keller, Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce, Kristi Martin, The Chrome Lens Photography, Jessica Foster, Resident Artist, Shane Yoder, Anchor Down Tattoo, Megan McClellan, Syracuse-Wawasee Trail, Jeri Yoder, Lake City Bank, Erick Leffler, Dynamic Spine and Rehabilitation Center, David Mayer, Retired Business Owner, Jack Birch, Birch Law Firm, Sylvia Gargett, Northern Lakes Insurance and Kristy Rumfelt, Beyond Landscaping. Not pictured: Nicole Freiburger, Tranter Graphics.

Syracuse, IN – September 26, 2016 – The Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce was proud to unveil their Bison, named Chief, Monday afternoon in the Pickwick Plaza kicking off the Bicentennial Week festivities.

Chief is one of the many bison found all over the state of Indiana as part of the Indiana Association of United Ways first-of-its-kind statewide public art project. Kosciusko County is home to five unique bison and can be seen along with other bison from all over the state at

The Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce would like to recognize and thank everyone that helped bring Chief to Syracuse. The team of artists included: Kristi Martin, The Chrome Lens Photography, Shane Yoder, Anchor Down Tattoo, Jessica Foster, Resident Artist, Nicole Freiburger, Tranter Graphics and Andrea Keller, Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce. Thank you to Syracuse Napa Auto Parts for donating the materials needed to clear coat Chief and to Bud’s Body Shop for donating their services to apply the clear coat to Chief so he will continue to be a part of Syracuse for many years to come.

The Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce would also like to thank the many sponsors that help fund the bison project and the supplies needed. Sponsors include: Dynamic Spine and Rehabilitation Center, JP Developer’s, Inc., Kosciusko Board of Realtors, Lakeland Animal Clinic, Oakwood Resort, Syracuse Rotary Club, the Town of Syracuse, and Chautauqua Wawasee. Sponsorships are still available for businesses, organizations or residents that wish to have their name listed on the signage. For more information, please contact Andrea Keller, Executive Director, at the Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber by calling 574-457-5637.

Chief will be on display Thursday, September 29th at Lakeside Park as part of the Bicentennial Celebration Lunch sponsored by Willie 103.5 from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. This lunch is free and open to the public. We are encouraging everyone to stop out along the torch route (all along State Road 13, turning right at the light on Main and ending at Lakeside Park) and wave on our nominated torch bearers. Syracuse Torch Bearers include: Don Miller, Carolyn Baker, Cathy Lemberg, Larry Martindale, the Pelletier family and Ron Baumgartner.

Chief’s next stop will be the Wawasee High School Homecoming Parade Friday, September 30th. Businesses and organizations interested in participating in the parade will have until Wednesday afternoon to complete a registration form and turn it into the Syracuse Community Center. Registration forms are available at the Community Center or the Chamber Office. The Homecoming Parade participants are asked to arrive at the Community Center by 4:00 p.m. and the Parade will begin at 4:30 p.m. leaving from the Community Center going West on Main to Wawasee High School where the Wawasee Warriors will be playing the Warsaw Tigers.

Chief will permanently reside in Pickwick Plaza located in front of the Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce office and The Down Under Bar and Grill in Downtown Syracuse. It is asked that residents do not climb or mount Chief so he is not damaged.

The Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce is a non-profit business organization working to continually build a more vibrant community. We believe in supporting the success of local business and industry, the expansion of industrial, commercial and retail stores, legislative issues concerning local, state and national policies, quality education, tourism and conventions, community beautification and cultural and economic development.

For additional information regarding the Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce, please call 574-457-5637 or visit


Thank you Artists!