The community of Morden gathered to celebrate local business excellence at the Morden Chamber of Commerce Awards Gala Thursday evening.  

Lili Krushel, owner of Bella's Castle, was named Entrepreneur of the Year for 2022. 

"I'm truly honoured to receive this award," said Krushel. "I was very surprised, and very happy, for the recognition. I feel very, very thankful for all the people that helped me along this journey, especially my family and our employees. Morden has been amazing to us!"

Krushel says running a small business entails many extra hours, with a typical day lasting up to sixteen hours.

"Working with an amazing team really helps," she added.

Krushel believes there's a sense of optimism in the city's business community, noting local business owners work together to be successful. 

Always appreciative of local support, Krushel says most of their customers come from Winnipeg, with some weddings from Alberta, Ontario and as far away as Brazil.

Krushel's family came to southern Manitoba through the Morden Immigration Program. 

Crocus Real Estate took home the award for Business of the Year with less than 7 employees. True North Electric was named Business of the Year with more than 7 employees. The Royal Canadian Legion Morden Branch #11 was selected as the non-profit of the year.

Scott Hoeppner, Chair of the Chamber Board of Directors, says the Morden's business community has a lot to be proud of, as a group and as individuals.

"It's important that we recognize each other. Not just for affirmation for one another, but to congratulate and encourage one another."

The award winners were successful for a variety of reasons noted Hoeppner.

"Everyone's had their own, I'm going to say, battle or challenges over the past number of years. These are examples of people who have come out of it stronger than they were before, who are deserving of recognition, for their innovative approach, just how they've dealt with it over the past number of years. They're people who've stood out to us, and the business community, as a whole. We are proud of all the nominees and winners."