Future of Helper Saturday Vibes Discussed


Saturday Vibes ETV News stock photo

Allie Farnham and Kimberly Kuehn discussed the future of Helper Saturday Vibes with the city council during Thursday’s council meeting. Farnham began by reminding the council and attendees that the Vibes team previously visited the council in May to discuss the possibility of a continued partnership.

That was at the beginning of the Vibes 2022 season, while only two events remain this year. With this in mind, the duo wished to once again request the continued partnership.

“As a community event, we really want to continue to have the opportunity to serve the community,” said Farnham.

The Vibes team provided the council with an outline, stating that it is the same that was requested in May, with one difference. This difference is that they are willing to consider more flexible options with a three or five year partnership, understanding that five years is a big commitment.

Otherwise, Farnham said that they would like to keep everything the same as what was done this year as they feel that they have really hit their stride with scheduling, event time and length of events. The Vibes team values community feedback and believes that they have been doing due diligence in speaking with different department heads within the city and gathering community feedback.

With this in mind, and in coordination with Helper, they have distributed a survey to all the utility bill holders in Helper. This comes as a second page for those that get the paper utility bill and an online link for those that pay digitally. There is an agreement with Helper Mayor Lenise Peterman to have a month-long period for receiving the surveys.

The Vibes team wishes to foster positive growth while creating jobs and economic opportunity. They reported the creation of 30 jobs and every staff members lives in Carbon or Emery counties.

With this in mind, Farnham suggested tabling the discussion or vote in order to receive the input from the surveys, which only went out last week. She encouraged all to complete the survey and give feedback in partnership with the city in order to move forward.

Questions for the Vibes team revolved around the length of the contract, the rental of the building they are currently in and more. Farnham stated that, in terms of planning and coordination, it is beneficial for them to be able to continue to bring in bands, recruit vendors and have ample food trucks with the extension.

It would be very helpful for them to have some kind of commitment beyond one year to move forward in a positive way. Farnham also mentioned that there are so many things happening within the city and they do not want to have to keep coming back and being on the agenda, taking time from city officials.

During the public comment portion of the meeting, Mayor Peterman read a written comment that the council received. This came from Marsha Ellington, owner of Marsha’s Sammich Shop on Helper’s Main Street. Ellington stated that the event has ruined her business and she is pondering closure.

In Ellington’s opinion, closing the streets so early on Saturdays kills any business that she could have received in that afternoon, as Saturday is usually her busiest day of the week. She believes that her customers are deterred by the closure of the road. Ellington continued by stating that she thinks that Vibes has ruined the arts festival and she has cleaned a lot of trash from Saturday Vibes.

She suggested that the event be scaled back to only once per month and that it be considered with better supervision. In her conclusion, Ellington voiced being opposed to the event as-is.

The council agreed to bring this topic back on the Oct. 6 agenda with the data and information collected, as the council is not able to make a decision without hearing from the community.

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