IS IT TRUE August 5, 2013


Mesker Jungle 1
Mesker Jungle 1

IS IT TRUE August 5, 2013

IS IT TRUE the Mole Nation is telling us that Mayor Winnecke is about to share what he will certainly promote as good news that the City of Evansville has reached a tentative development agreement with HCW on the now 5 years since announced downtown convention hotel?… we understand that Mayor Winnecke will make the formal announcement Monday at 10:00 am at the proposed hotel site and that all members of the Evansville City Council are all welcome to attend?…Mayor Winnecke is even agreeable to provide Scott Danks legal counsel for the City Council with a copy of the completed agreement early next week for his review?…Mayor Winnecke is also hoping to fast track whatever this agreement that HE has made in a vacuum through the approval process before the 2012 financial audit has been completed?…the City Council will be asked to make time in the schedule for the first reading on August 12th followed by the second and third readings at their August 26th meeting?…that is conveniently before the completion of the 2012 audit and the 2013 budget hearings?…we guess the Evansville Redevelopment Commission will act as ordered and without time for learned deliberation on the agreement before coming to Council?…our readers can expect a wham bam thank yam am style of special meeting of the Redevelopment Commission will be scheduled for Thursday or Friday?

IS IT TRUE that the Evansville Redevelopment Commission has been railroaded by the Office of the Mayor before to buy a parking lot with a recent market value of $150,000 for a price of $603,000, to okay deal after deal after deal to approve a crony of former Mayor Weinzapfel to build a downtown hotel, and to even put the McCurdy Hotel at risk for a deal with a contributor to the Weinzapfel for Mayor campaign that never was?…we hope this version of the ERC has the good sense to think this through and not trust the numbers as presented by any Mayor of Evansville?…it was the ERC that the media spun as a cast of idiots over these other deals leaving the backroom dealings of the other players unexposed until the CCO sprung the stories?

IS IT TRUE it seems as though in the rush to hurry up and authorize spending $37.5 Million on a downtown convention hotel for absolutely nothing in return, $10 Million or more on Roberts dog park, $45 Million on high tech water meters, and who knows what other trivial pursuits, the City of Evansville has allowed Mesker Amphitheatre to degrade into a weed infested jungle?…local photographer Matt Camp has published the following photographs taken of the Mesker Amphitheatre this summer that look like the punch line of “Welcome to the Jungle”?…as long as the City of Evansville continues to exhibit utter contempt for maintaining that which we already have, there should be no new projects of any recreational or entertainment purposes?…intentional negligence was the plan that worked to destroy Roberts Stadium and it looks like the same playbook is being used over at Mesker?…this city and all of its people should hang their head in shame at the failures of administration after administration to take care of anything?

IS IT TRUE we wonder just when does the failure to be transparent cross the line into unethical behavior and/or abuse of power?…President Nixon learned that lesson the hard way as did President Bill Clinton?…creating or participating in an atmosphere that is designed to deceive the taxpayers is on the dark side of the line of ethical behavior?…the sneaky way in which the Homestead tax credit fiasco went down was clearly unethical as was the way that Earthcare Energy was handed a check for $200,000 without City Council approval?…the questions of crossing the line of unethical behavior by recent city administrations has clearly been breached?…the real question is whether there will ever be any consequence in local government for unethical behavior in office?

Mesker Jungle 2
Mesker Jungle 2
Mesker Jungle 3
Mesker Jungle 3
Mesker Jungle 4
Mesker Jungle 4


  1. Integrity remains a “dirty word” to Evansville’s Political Rulers.
    It’s a SHAME, but, with impunity a given in their Elitist playbook, that’s the “in your face” reality of Evansville’s Leadership and their Snegal game plans.
    The “FIX” is ALWAYS IN, in Evansville, so the best Advice is “Don’t bet against them!!

    • —Oh, and we’re not talking Football,–this game is called,– “Pillage”.

  2. Call Jethro Tull immediately. They need to play the ‘BUNGLE IN THE JUNGLE’ tour at Mesker this summer !! Yes, this facility has been BUNGLED !

  3. The death of Mesker Amphitheater and the Historic McCurdy hotel is a huge stigma for the City. Only when the City can restore and manage what they already have, is the City then ready for new projects.

  4. It is always the same ole thing. They let these buildings deteriorate on purpose instead of doing regular maintenance so they can justify tearing it down to build a new one. They then lie and show an exaggerated amount of cost to fix the old, while giving an overly optimistic amount to build the new so people will be for it. Then they can claim building something grand and new for the city as part of their legacy. Same thing happened with the stadium. Of course can you blame them? People keep voting for the same thing each election in this city and are surprised when they get the same.

  5. I believe Mesker is being intentionally mismanaged. I see no reason that amphitheatre could not be kept up by AT LEAST allowing local acts to take advantage of the facility. If we can’t bring in Def Leppard or Sevendust like we used to, or any one of the hundreds of up and coming touring acts that crisscross the country, then we should find another company to manage it, or just open it up to the public for a while so we can keep the weeds out and the trash off the stage. At this point, even Justin Bieber would be preferable to what’s on the stage now, and that’s sad folks.

    • …and another thing: where are all the seats that were supposed to come over from Roberts???

    • Mesker Amphitheater is neglected so that it can not compete with the Ford Center.

  6. They are not maintaining it so it too will need to be torn down. Whose fault will that be? Look at some of the other parks now. Garvin park has been somewhat neglected this year. The fountain in the lake was not working for almost a month before it was repaired. The grass does not get cut as often as it used too. This park is used by quite a few citizens.

    Something should also be done about the overpopulation of ducks and geese. Their feces are a health hazard.

    • Parks will always need maintenance. That’s just an accoutrement of having parks. The last two times I’ve taken my daughter to local parks I’ve found dangerous problems with the jungle jims. At Sunset Park downtown, for instance, there was a major support on one of the play towers that had broken off underneath and was on the verge of giving way. I called the Parks Dept on the spot and reported it. Hopefully they took care of it. Also, at Price Park off Covert, there was a loose support on one of the slides threatening to come loose. Again, I called Parks on the spot and reported it. Next time I went, to their credit, it was taken care of.

      It takes all of us to keep the parks nice. Every time I go, I teach my daughter that as we’re leaving we pick up trash and put things better than we found them. It’s part of our routine. If you see something broken and you can fix it, then fix it. Otherwise, report it.

      Here’s hoping these Mesker pictures stir some public sentiment and something is done about the trees, weeds, and vines taking over at that facility before our next Mayor claims it’s too late and wants to tear it down to reward some union cronies again. It’s going to take all of us standing up and saying we disapprove of the situation to get something done about it.

      The Mayor’s phone should be ringing off the hook today about the state of Mesker:

      Mayor’s Office
      Mayor Lloyd Winnecke
      Civic Center Complex – Room 302
      Phone: (812) 436-4962
      Fax: (812) 436-4966
      TDD-Hearing Impaired: (812) 436-4925

      • I just got off the phone with Sheila from the Mayor’s office, nice lady! The assured me she will pass along my concerns about Mesker to the Mayor.

        My hope is Mayor Winnecke will release a statement about the state of Mesker and the future intentions with that facility. I mean, if you zoom in on these photos, look at the roof of that support structure! It’s got weeds growing on the roof. The vines and trees growing out of it will undermine the structure if they haven’t already. This is an absolute black eye on the City of Evansville.

        Thanks to Matt Camp for taking the initiative to photograph the problems and bring them to light.

      • Brad,
        You are teaching your daughter well. If many people could learn this lessen wouldn’t the city be a better?! Nice job of parenting. (And this from a non-parent but a former teacher.)

        Am I wrong or didn’t the zoo take over Mesker? Perhaps the zoo should pay for a couple of new park dept. employees so that the pd could at least keep the place cleaned up. The bigger building and structural upkeep would probably need to be done by professionals but it would be a start. Just a thought.

        • I don’t recall that the zoo took over the amphitheater, only that they had suggested.

          As has been mentioned, city administrations for the past 20 or 25 years have let our facilities deteriorate to the point where they are useless.

          Roberts was not at that point, but were heading in that direction.

          One of the past mayors let things go to pot so he could “cut” the budget to maintain the “tax rate.” Yes, and it has or will cost ten times that “savings” to bring the facilities up to code.

          On a different subject, I have a suggestion for the Democrats in their search for a mayor candidate. None other than Frank MacDonald II. Yes, I am serious.

          • McDo-nothing? Really?

            IMO, he was the first mayor who began this slide our city has been suffering from.

            He was the one responsible for the Roberts remodeling fiasco. Had it been remotely thought out and done CORRECTLY, it would still be standing. Instead, he pushed through a cheap and poorly designed renovation that left it useless for anything other than basketball.

            Both Frank’s were nothing but political hacks. We desperately need new, fresh and innovative leaders in city hall, not recycled visionless hacks.

  7. hey you got the wrong person (Thanks to Matt Camp for taking the initiative to photograph) i took these pics friday afternoon

      • sorry after looking closer i believe he beat me to the site by about a hour but at first glace they look the same lol sorry matt

  8. I think Mesker needs to be taken over by a private association that will raise money to maintain it and bring it back to when it was in its prime, kind of like what happened with Bosse Field. Find a couple people like Brad Linzy and Amy Word that love music and this community, and we would be hearing some great musicians back at Mesker in no time.

  9. If we can spend $10 million on a new park, we should at least be able to maintain and operate Mesker Amphitheater.

    The parks department could minimally maintain Mesker Amphitheater with $50,000 a year and provide free concerts to the public as originally intended.

    George L. Mesker donated the funds to build Mesker Amphitheater and also endowed the Mesker Music Trust Fund to provide free concerts to the public.

    Abandoning Mesker sets a bad precedent for anyone considering a philanthropic donation to the city.

    • Much the same way as selling a Picasso sets a bad precedent for anyone thinking of giving a large art endowment to the Evansville Museum. There’s just so consideration, deliberation, or foresight in anything done in this town, it seems. It’s all shoot from the hip and hope for the best. The problem is, it’s all our kids with the apples on their heads downrange while these imbeciles are “ready…FIRE…aiming” away.

  10. […] Not too long ago, I did a blog here on the website about Mesker Music Theater, and a Facebook page that I am co-administrator of that is trying to raise public awareness about this decaying historic city landmark and concert venue.  What was once a thriving and often used Amphitheater is now in horrible condition as you can see in the photos below from our Facebook page and the City-County Observer […]

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