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2018 EDAM Summer Conference
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6/27/2018 to 6/29/2018
When: June 27 - 29, 2018
Where: Grand View Lodge
23521 Nokomis Avenue
Nisswa, Minnesota  56468
United States
Contact: Rhea Sullivan
(952) 928-4640

Online registration is closed.
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2018 Summer Conference Registration Form (PDF)


Sponsorship & Exhibitor Opportunities



Join us on Gull Lake for three days of focused education, networking, and fun! Escape the day-to-day busyness of the work week and connect with the EDAM community in a relaxing setting.


Grand View Lodge Resort Map


Wednesday | June 27, 2018

12:00 - 4:30 pm

4:30 - 6:30 pm

5:30 - 6:30 pm

6:30 - 7:30 pm


President's Welcome Reception

President's Award Presentation & Dinner

7:30 - 8:30 pm

Keynote | Retail: Change at the Speed of Light!
(1.0 AICP Credit)

Christopher Walton, Red Archer Retail; Wayne Elam, Commercial Realty Solutions; Lisa Diehl, CCIM, CPM, Diehl and Partners, LLC; Moderated by Jeff LaFavre, IAG Commercial Real Estate

This session will discuss the rapidly changing retail market in both urban and Greater Minnesota. What we know to be true in the past is not what will be true in the next five years. Community shopping centers and big box retail buildings will need to be redefined if they wish to stay relevant within a community. Discussion will cover these changes from 20,000 ft. and provide a framework for communities to see change as opportunity. 

Thursday | June 28, 2018

6:45 - 8:00 am

7:30 - 8:45 am

7:30 am - 4:00 pm

9:00 am

5k Fun Run/Walk
Run/Walk starts at 7:00 am, and will be held rain or shine unless there is lightning predicted.



President's Welcome

9:10 - 10:10 am

Plenary Session | Digi-Key's Continued Investment in Greater Minnesota
(1.0 AICP Credit)

Rick Trontvet, Digi-Key

Digi-Key has continued to expand its operations in Thief River Falls, despite facing workforce, housing, and childcare shortages. Hear from Rick Trontvet, Vice President of Administration at Digi-Key as he describes their business, their growth, along with the advantages and disadvantages of expanding in small communities.

10:10 - 10:30 am

Break with Exhibitors

10:30 - 11:30 am

Breakout Sessions: Choose One

Statewide Affordable Housing Development Trends: Retail Chasing Rooftops
(1.0 AICP Credit)

Leslie Roering, AEON; Tim Gladhill, City of Ramsey; Christopher Walton, Red Archer Retail; Margaret Kaplan, Minnesota Housing

Minnesota Housing Finance Agency will report on affordable housing trends for 2018. A few notable trends include:

  • Minnesota needs more affordable housing with a large share of households cost burdened by their housing
  • The economy should continue to grow, which will hopefully support growth in household incomes
  • Home prices  and rents will likely continue to increase with a limited supply
  • Millennials’ decision to own or rent is a key driver of the housing market
  • The aging baby boom generation will create new housing needs and challenges
  • Housing location matters, providing access to jobs, transit, school, services, and other amenities

Following the trends report, you will hear from non-profit developer, Aeon, and the City of Ramsey in their partnership to increase the number of affordable housing units in the City of Ramsey. The City of Ramsey will display how they attracted Aeon to their city, and Aeon will report on why they chose Ramsey. The session will close with a Q&A with Red Archer Retail in an effort to better understand how retail’s evolution could affect your community development planning.

Innovative Strategies to Building Child Care Supply
(1.0 AICP Credit)

Landon McKay, First Children's Finance; Jeff Andrews, First Children's Finance

Child care is an economic driver for communities across Minnesota, but many communities are facing shortages of high quality child care. Building the supply of child care is a complex issue, but First Children’s Finance has been working closely with various communities across Minnesota to develop innovative approaches to address this important issue. This seminar will explore the extent and impact of the issue, root causes as well as best practices to increase the supply of quality and affordable care.

11:30 - 12:00 pm


12:00 - 12:45 pm

Keynote | Retail Development Past, Present & Future
(1.0 AICP Credit)

Howard Paster, Paster Properties

Join us to hear from Howard Paster, President of Paster Properties. Paster Properties owns, develops, leases, and manages nearly one million square feet of retail properties in the Minneapolis/St. Paul market. Embracing the ever-changing retail landscape, including trends in urban redevelopment and mixed-use properties, the company has been involved in six major redevelopments totaling approximately 600,000 square feet over the past ten years. Paster will share his perspective on where the retail market is headed, what trends we can expect, and what this means for urban and rural communities and the economic development community.

12:45 - 1:45 pm

Plenary Session | All Things Legislative: What to Expect Moving Forward

Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson, (R) District 7; Rep. Erin Murphy, (DFL) District 64A; Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson, (DFL) (invited); Congressman Tim Walz, 1st District, (DFL)

A discussion with local movers, shakers, and gubernatorial candidates.

1:45 - 2:00 pm

Break with Exhibitors

2:00 - 4:00 pm

Mobile Tour of Brainerd Lakes Area Development Projects (at capacity - additional registrants will be added to a waiting list)

The bus will board at 1:50 pm and depart at 2:00 pm. The bus will board in the parking lot immediately west of the Gull Lake Center.
The mobile workshop will show you two vibrant attractions and innovations behind Economic Development in the Brainerd Lakes Area. The first stop will be at the ever-popular Brainerd International Raceway (BIR). Take a once in a lifetime tour on the track and around the 200-acre facility with owner Jed Copham moderating. BIR opened in 1968 as Donnybrook Speedway with no safety barriers, no grandstands or even bathrooms at the facility. Today BIR hosts NHRA Drag Racing, Trans Am Series road racings, Go Karts, concerts and a host of other events. BIR has room for over 50,000 people, seating for over 20,000 fans, 164 full service RV sites, 12 two-bedroom two bath condos and 11 private race side suites to view all the action.

The second stop on the tour will be at Gull Dam Brewing. The brewery opened in the spring of 2014 in the old woodworking water wheel building in Nisswa, MN. The facility is a massive 14,000 sq. ft composed of a 4,000 sq. ft warehouse which houses a 20 bbl. (Barrel) brewhouse, two 20 bbl. And two 40 bbl. fermenters, an events center and a 2,400 sq. ft loft used for business meetings, weddings and all things in-between. Come experience why the motto “Who wouldn’t want a Gull Dam Beer?” holds so true in central Minnesota.

2:00 - 3:00 pm

Straight from the Source: Minnesota Business Panel
(1.0 AICP Credit)

Bill Gleason, Gleason Printing; Ryan Muhlbauer, Escape MSP; Mila Krol, Pinot's Palette; Moderated by Elise Durbin, Hennepin County
 A moderated panel of Minnesota business owners who will speak to their experiences in Hennepin County’s Economic Gardening or Open to Business program as well as general experiences in business plan development, site(s) selection, and working with communities through permitting processes and brand promotion.

4:15 - 5:30 pm

Beanbag Tournament hosted by the Emerging Professionals

Join us on the beach for a little friendly competition, courtesy of the EDAM Emerging Professionals!

6:00 - 8:00 pm

Networking Boat Cruise (space is limited)

The boat will board at 5:30 pm and depart at 6:00 pm from the Grand View Marina.

Friday | June 29, 2018

7:30 - 9:00 am


8:00 am - 11:20 am

8:30 - 9:00 am


Conference Prize Entry

9:00 - 10:00 am

Plenary Session | Community Housing: A Unique Way to Help Address an Age Old Issue
(1.0 AICP Credit)

Cliff Knettel, 1 Roof Community Housing; Adam Fulton, City of Duluth

Learn about how 1Roof works in communities using existing resources to develop sustainable and affordable housing.  Beyond helping to develop sites, they work with the community to educate, and understand their opportunities through Community Land Trusts.


10:00 - 10:20  am

Break with Exhibitors

10:20 - 11:20 am

Plenary Session | Retail Market Trends
(1.0 AICP Credit)

Mark Robinson, Mid-America Real Estate Group; Rob Barse, McShane Development

This session will explore the state of the retail real estate landscape and how this quickly changing environment is challenging retailers, owners, and developers. Take-aways include recent retail developments, adaptive reuses of property, challenges in the current retail world, how retailers are evolving, active retailers, and development challenges faced by municipalities and developers.

11:20 am

Conference Prize Giveaway & Adjournment

11:30 am

Attendees should vacate their rooms and bring luggage to their cars prior to 11:30 am, but will be able to officially check out in the Gull Lake Center Lobby at the conclusion of the conference.




Full Conference
Payment received by June 1: $305
Payment received after June 1: $330

Single Day (Thursday OR Friday)
Payment received by June 1: $205
Payment received after June 1: $230


Full Conference
Payment received by June 1: $405
Payment received after June 1: $430

Single Day (Thursday OR Friday)
Payment received by June 1: $305
Payment received after June 1: $330

Additional Tickets

Attendee Ticket for Conference 5K: No additional cost
Guest Ticket for Wednesday evening activities: $50
Guest Ticket for Thursday evening boat cruise: $50
Guest Ticket for Conference 5K: No additional cost


Grand View Lodge

23521 Nokomis Avenue, Nisswa, MN 56468

Online Reservation Form


Due to the size of our group and types of lodging available at Grand View Lodge, most attendees will be in shared cabins, and some may be housed near the golf course, not in the main lodge area. If you have a specific lodging request, we will do our best to accommodate it, but cannot guarantee all requests will be met.

Important information:

  • Note the names of your preferred cabin-mates in the Unit Sharing Requests section of the reservation form. If you do not name anyone, EDAM staff will work with Grand View to place attendees into shared cabins as necessary.
  • Unless you specifically request double occupancy and name a roommate, you will not be asked to share a bedroom or bathroom.
  • The EDAM room block closed on Monday, May 28. You may continue to use the online reservation form above; Grand View will follow up if your desired lodging is no longer available.

Questions? Contact Rhea Sullivan at or (952) 928-4640.



AICP: EDAM has received approval for credits through The American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) for selected sessions for Certification Maintenance (CM) credits. See session descriptions.

NDC: Each day of participation in the EDAM 2018 Summer Conference has been approved by the National Development Council (NDC) for 1 recertification unit. Those who attend the full conference may claim 3 recertification units.

IEDC: The 2018 EDAM Summer Conference is a recognized recertification event by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).

Conference Extras

EDAM 5K Fun Run/Walk

Please join us for the EDAM 5K Fun Run / Walk on Thursday morning at 7 a.m. The event will take place across the road from Grand View, on the north side of Highway 77. We will run a scenic out and back course through the woods on Lower Roy Lake Road. This is a mostly flat course with a few rolling hills at the beginning and end. This is a fun run. There will be no official timing; however, there will be prizes for the first place male and female.


Golf Tournament

What better way to kick off the Summer Conference than a round of golf benefiting a good cause? Join the Minnesota Economic Development Foundation (MEDF) for a 4-person, best ball scramble golf tournament. The tournament will be hosted at The Pines Golf Course located at Grand View Lodge. All proceeds will go to MEDF to fund grants for a variety of economic development programs. A separate registration is required – grab your best golf buddies and sign up today.


Cancellation Policy: With written cancellation notice, received no later than June 4, 2018, you will receive a full refund, less a $50 administrative charge. Cancellations after that date are nonrefundable. Notices of cancellation must sent in writing to Substitutions will be allowed by same-company attendees if EDAM is notified before their arrival. No-shows will not receive a refund.

Payment Card Industry (PCI) Compliance: EDAM has taken the appropriate steps to maintain PCI compliance. In order to protect your privacy, please do not email your credit card information to our office.

Audio/Video Policy: Registration or participation at association events constitutes an agreement by the registrant/participant to association’s use and distribution of the registrant/participant image or voice in photographs, videotapes, electronic reproductions and audiotapes of such events and activities.

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