Stillwater council approves event coordinator

Stillwater City Council unanimously approved the appointment of Angela Eastman to the position of event coordinator for the city of Stillwater.

Eastman owns her own event company called Events by Eastman Inc. She was recommended unanimously by the selection committee.

“Ms. Eastman has worked with the city of St. Paul doing just exactly what we’re going into,” Community Development Director Bill Turnblad said. “It just so happens that she’s a local person also, so we are seeking your approval to negotiate a contract and get back to you on April 1.”

“She’s the clear choice for the city,” City Administrator Larry Hansen said. “When she left the interview, the selection committee looked at each other, and we said right away that she was the best fit.”

Past events that Eastman’s company worked on include: The Taste of Minnesota, The Nature Valley Grand Prix, the Irish Fair and the St. Paul Winter Carnival.

Eastman’s proposal came in at $39,520 per year, while the proposals of the other two finalists for the position were for $60,000 and $27,500 respectively.

Her position was designed to act as a liaison between the city and event organizers to ensure smooth and efficient events. She will meet with event organizers to learn the purpose and expectations of the event, work out event details, such as permits required, materials or city services needed and handle any crisis that may come up.

According to Turnblad, Eastman will be in charge of helping with six events:

• Stillwater Log Jam (summer festival)

• Criterion Bicycle Race (Harvest Fest)

• The Ironman bike event

• Rivertown Art Festival

• Fall Colors and Fine Art & Jazz Festival

• Summer Tuesdays

When the council heard the price tag, members asked if this position could grow into a full time position, citing the fact that a little more money would be the equivalent of a full-time employee’s salary.

The contract, Hansen said, was created to save the city a little money as it goes through this first trial for the events coordinator position, but added that a full-time position could be a possibility.

“It is a one-year contract, but we’re hoping to evolve it into more events going forward,” Hansen said. “There’s been lots of talk about making Stillwater a 12 months-out-of-the-year community. If we have a person who can do this, we could add a couple events in wintertime, and if it doesn’t work out to have those, that’s okay too. I’m sure, though, that we’d have an excited and highly qualified candidate in Ms. Eastman if we did change it into a full-time position.”

Contact Avery Cropp at [email protected]