Evans Phelps to run for second Nevada City Council term | TheUnion.com

Evans Phelps to run for second Nevada City Council term

Evans Phelps

Evans Phelps, the self-described "queen of Halloween," whose first four-year term on the Nevada City Council expires this year, plans to run for re-election in June, she said.

Phelps served on Nevada City's Planning Commission for 12 years before she was elected to the City Council. Her experience in government and strong relationships with city staff, she said, make her an effective and knowledgeable council member.

An outdoors enthusiast who ran the Outside Inn, a motel on East Broad Street, for more than a decade, Phelps has her sights set on advocating for public spaces in Nevada City.

If re-elected, she plans to help the city move forward with its intention to create a new trail on Sugarloaf Mountain — a project that's been in the works for more than a decade.

She'd also like to continue the conversation about new uses for the old Nevada City airport property, which took off last year with a public workshop. Phelps hopes the city will install solar panels on a portion of the property, which she said will help Nevada City reach its goal of transitioning to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050.

"That's a great goal, and an achievable one, but we have to keep taking the steps to make it happen," she said.

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She also plans to advocate for public trails on the airport property, she said.

Phelps is excited about the possibility of creating a town center in Nevada City — an idea that's been proposed numerous times in the city's history and was recently revitalized by a group of young adults that hosted a panel discussion on the subject in November.

Phelps said she was inspired by the mural that was painted last year in Grass Valley by artist Justin Lovato. She'd like to see more public art in Nevada City.

With an eye toward Nevada City's economy, Phelps is hopeful that medical cannabis businesses will have a positive impact on the community. She sees the city as a pioneer for the legal industry in Nevada County.

Marijuana industry jobs and revenue from taxes on cannabis businesses could provide an economic boost for the city, she said.

Phelps, retired from a career in the video production, real estate and hospitality industries, sees serving on the City Council as an important way to give back to the community.

But her favorite way of contributing to Nevada City is through her locally-famous Halloween parties — including a five-room haunted house and a maze in the backyard — which draw thousands to her home each year, she said.

"I destroy Halloween for the children of Nevada City for the rest of their lives," Phelps said. "As soon as they move somewhere else, they're disappointed."

To contact Staff Writer Matthew Pera, email mpera@theunion.com or call 530-477-4231.