He announced only hours earlier on Twitter that he wanted to invite St. Paul residents to have lunch together at the Public Kitchen and Bar.
“Right now, with this highly-divisive tenor or politics at the national level, we figure, let’s just bring together a diverse group of people, labor leaders in the room, business leaders and foundation leaders in the room and neighborhood activists in the room,” Carter said.
The room was in the restaurant belonging to celebrity chef and St. Paul resident Justin Sutherland.
“There’s issues with the crime rate and the trash collection and the roads and all those things I think compound, but as a whole I think tis going in a great direction and I’m happy to be a part of it,” Sutherland said.
The turnout was much higher than expected, as dozens showed up. St. Paul resident Ann Idzik was eager to be there.
“When I came home and saw they were inviting people for lunch, I was like, ‘Oh yeah, I’ll go,’” Idzik said.
Sha’Ron Webb says she came to be a role model for her son.
“Mayor Carter put it out there, and I can’t be about the talk and not be about the walk. So I wanted to show my son Antonio who I livestream about, and there’s so many people that are here to support him, and it takes a community to make change and I’m here to support him,” Webb said.
City officials say based on this crowd, they will likely do something similar again.
The people who attended the meeting were responsible for their own lunch tabs.