Letter To The Editor By Chad Avery

Posted without bias, opinion, or editingGetAttachment.aspx-9
Dear Citizens,


A few years ago my family and I were driving to Atlanta, Georgia to visit family. I had my SUV loaded down with luggage, snacks, and three children, two of whom were my niece and nephew. Oh, and did I mention that my wife was pregnant?! As I am traveling I-24 I realize that we had missed our I-75 South exit to Atlanta! I don’t know about those of you reading this article, but I when I am driving and find myself lost, for whatever reason I turn down the radio and slow my speed. As I am trying to determine where I got off track it became evident that folks with Tennessee and Georgia license plates wanted to share the meaning of “southern hospitality” by showing me I was number one, if you get my drift. Eventually we were able to find the proper exit to arrive at our destination but only because we had to backtrack first. Was it time consuming? Yes. Was it frustrating at times? Most definitely! But was it worth it in the end? You betcha! The point to my story is that I believe it is time for this community and its elected officials to “turn down the radio.”


For Evansville to move forward, we must first backtrack to find the proper exit; the exit that will lead us, together, to fulfill the potential of this great city.

It is well documented that, within our local political parties, a fracture exists that some believe is un-fixable. I, however, believe the fracture is quite fixable and necessary to address. In both parties, select individuals have gathered on a cold day, drank cold coffee, began cold conversation, and kept cold company. When this happens within a group of people, the landscape begins to resemble the reality that Evansville faces today:  a bankrupt battlefield of special interests which does not encompass the necessary framework for moral discourse that is necessary for a strong foundation. Who among this city’s respected groups will stand up for the greater good and proclaim, “Folks, we are not who we once were. Not only have we lost our edge, we have dropped the ball both spiritually and politically.”

As another election cycle approaches, we are hearing a common theme in Evansville:  “Revitalization of Downtown.” Though this term is very important, I propose a “Revitalization of Community and Moral Values.” We all have fallen short, myself included. We are all cut from the same cloth and were bought for the same price. I strongly believe that it is our civic duty to address the issues of our community, but we must locate where we “got lost” to begin with. As a united front, we must find a new moral and political language that transcends old divisions and seeks a common good. Only when our local government and community adopt attitudes that include grace, humility, forgiveness, and peace can our city free itself from the shackles that have held us down.

This attempt to start anew will not only be led by elected officials, lawyers, and their financial backers. Local government needs to broaden relationships with community organizers, social entrepreneurs, nonprofit organizations, faith based communities, and parents in order to lay the gravel for a new path, one that will lead Evansville in a better direction.

I highly doubt that most of us has ever truly been inspired by a celebrity, but many of us have been inspired by a teacher, caregiver, parent, or stranger who took the time to mentor and mold us. These are the “silent saints” within our city, and frankly, we need more to step up to the plate. Let this be a call to the unnamed and “silent saints” who dwell amongst us.

It is time…… to remove self-made crowns.

It is time…… to put the last in our community first.

It is time…… to form a plan for city infrastructure.

It is time…… to make the focus on crime/drugs a priority.

It is time…… to erase party lines and work together.

It is time……

Respectfully Submitted,

Chad R. Avery

(Former) Democrat 1st Ward Leader

(Current) Democrat Committeeman 1-10


  1. Letter could also apply to our National situation. Let’s hope this starts a discourse and a change in attitude. Go, Chad!!

    “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
    — 2 Chronicles 7:14 KJV

  2. Excellent letter Chad. The problem I see is that our leaders do not know they missed an exit because they don’t know they don’t have a definition. “Revitalize Downtown’ fits nicely on a card, but what does it mean, what would that look like? Would it look like an arena, hotel, and some watering holes?

    A friend taught me a very good marketing question, “so what?” By repetitively asking that question we arrive at the significance of our endeavors.

    We have a revitalized down town. So what?
    We have an arena and hotel? So what?
    We are attracting more people downtown. So what?
    More people means restaurants and shops downtown. So what?

  3. Agreed this applies to state and federal government also, but every trip starts with 1 step. Local leadership is that first step. As above, the problem is present “leadership” doesn’t see a problem with the present route.

  4. We have been trying to “Revitalize Downtown” for over 30 years, it has proven to be a totally wasted effort spending million and millions of taxpayer dollars with no ROI, yes it has been a boondoggle for the politically connected to get advanced info and allow them to work the system for their personal gain, but any real concrete success downtown hasn’t appeared.

    Just look at “The Centre” operational losses year after year, it made no difference if a hotel was there or not, the most money The Centre has ever made is in selling the naming rights which we will see if that actually plays out.

    The brightest spot downtown is the taxpayer funded and supported Central Library, every other structure built in recent history has been ill-placed, from the civic center severing “down town” from main street, to the Ford Center (built in the wrong location and way too small) it would seem that just building it (and they will come) hasn’t worked, even “The Boat” hasn’t saved downtown and businesses like “Fast Eddies” couldn’t make it with the boat right across the street.

    Building a hotel will not solve this problem, the hotel like The Centre will fail no matter how much money is spent (private or public) because the fallacy of just building something and folks will use it is false, hope and wishful thinking cannot be a substitute for a sound business plan. The politicians supporting and pushing these endeavors will be long gone when the failure is realized and the blame can be shifted to whoever is currently in power much like the accounting mess the previous mayor left for our current one.

    I have to agree with I-E in saying “So What?”


    • I notice that the “boat-savior” of downtown is beginning to financially sink, and Bee Slough continues to stink.
      The sinking will likely continue, but the stinking is scheduled to stop, at much greater expense than would have been incurred if the “right exit” had not been avoided for so long.
      Mr. Avery makes some good points. Is this a run-up to an announcement of candidacy?

      • EKB,The fella had my attention,until I connected all the “dots”. “boat-savior”. That’s a good one. Considering where the geographical is there.
        Look at the boat that evansville is perceived to build its navy on.
        Forget about the venue with the boat,thats a private enterprise,and not a savior,even with the attached parasitics to the hull {Barnacles} that have affected its sailing ability lately.
        When sustainable balance of viability forward is visualized and accepted the “boat” evansville needs to keep seaworthy is its daily utility infrastructures. Those like good boats usually have a solid keel design applicable to the waters traveled forthcoming.
        Mr.Avery has some valid points,but before he loads that row boats crew,unties the shore lines at the dock, and sets out for an exit,it would be advisable to check the tattered line hidden in the bottom along the keel.
        From what I understood the likely event that its still attached submerged boat anchor is looming. Probably a cheap solution concrete block from a unfinished demolition site downtown.

        I can see the boat its crew,rudderman,oarsmen,everybody pulling oars together working up a organized,however frenzied frey,really slapping water,so to speak.
        Rowing off to a defined cadence stroke,stroke,stroke,then the tattered old line comes tight,at its point of attachment the keel less rotten hull allows the tie point to jerk the stern clean outta the stricken boat,the crew are then converted to swimmers still looking and assessing to exit,to a,or a”some beach” .So.

        Try to, “balance the load,the boat must float” with along a strong new keel,find some blended propulsion methods,sails,oars,Reliable little engine for the becalmed days.
        Make sure the “rudder is affective” per the bows direction by motion forward to the waters mass. Really something that should be in order,before anyone busts out a map, compass or sextant…even a GPS.

        And. Rudders are useless without hull movement or thrust over them for any chosen direction of passage.

        Sinking…stinking..Bee slough..moving the stinking,covering it up then moving to a different location,then sending it downriver [current plan as presented]”preventing the stink,creating better smelling condition” –>[mandate pass.]—>Sustainable balance.*

        “Boats…we don’t need no..stinking boats”…..heard that once as relative to your freedom festival. Ummm,was that a unlaying maritime forecast?

        Yep EKB,boats are good,however Most “Global” Navies have good blending for effect, so to speak.

        Farrago Fatigan’s

        thuffering thuccotash.

    • Old Downtown continues to be nothing but a albatross on the resources of the WHOLE community. Massive BORROWED(bonded)MONEY, funneled for YEARS, to a FEW square blocks of Evansville, that in the 21st Century are IRRELEVANT to most people’s lives.
      –So I will add,–“Revitalize Old Downtown”?
      –Who really gives a rat’s ass?
      –Only Evansville’s “In Crowd”, blessed with their “Superior Vision”, and financed of course, with the People’s money.

    • The boat did not kill Fast Eddy’s. Fast Eddy’s killed itself by making itself inviting to the drive-by shooting crowd. Heck they even had a shooting inside the place. Anyone who manages a business the way Fast Eddy’s was managed will never survive outside of a ghetto.

      • Aaahuua…… What kinda target practice was the local broadcast media showing that brought the holes in the buildings on main street this weekend.
        If your gonna spin,and jump make sure the spinninng didn’t make ya dizzy enough to find your…real balance there. You could be down before you’re around…

  5. A good start would be to abolish the redevelopment commission. When we see bipartisan support for that, then we will know we are heading in the right direction.


  6. “It is time…… to put the last in our community first.”
    What exactly does it mean & who exactly is last?
    Who set the standard which gauged them to be last?
    Inquiring minds want to know.

    • I was wondering that, too. I can’t tell if Mr. Avery is trying to run for office, start another church, or both. He needs to just “spit it out”, whatever his point is.

      • I think he just needed to ‘spit it out’. He spit out ‘moral’ at least 3 times and that reddest of red flags ‘faith based’ once. I always check to see that my watch is still on my wrist and my money still in my pocket when I hear those words.

        Nevertheless, whatever his intentions I’ll join VR in a roundhouse wave. (Although mine is more of a windshield wiper wave like Palin’s), and wish him well.

  7. I guess he doesn’t want to clarify for us.
    Thus his diatribe goes into the hot air category 🙂

  8. Having driven to Atlanta time and again, I do know that I24 DEAD ENDS at I75. It is really difficult to screw up navigating that area. Downtown Evansville is similar in that it is a dead end money sink, and everyone with a brain knows it. We need politicians (who by definition seem to lack brains) to acknowledge that fact. Evansville’s future lies on higher ground.

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