Government and Politics

Mesker wins AZA accreditation

Sep 11, 2017

Mesker Park Zoo and Botanic Garden has received important recognition. 

The Association of Zoos & Aquariums announced over the weekend that Mesker was granted accreditation the by AZA’s independent Accreditation Commission.

In 2016, the AZA notified Mesker that certain conditions or requirements of accreditation were not being met.

Mayor Lloyd Winnecke initiated and the Evansville City Council voted to set aside $112,000 in 2016 and $78,000 in 2017 to correct the issues.

Winnecke hires from within for new zoo director

Sep 7, 2017

Mesker Park Zoo and Botanic Garden has a new leader. 


Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke hired from within, choosing Erik Beck as the zoo’s new executive director.

Beck has worked at the zoo for 22 years and Winnecke says he’s shown strong leadership as director of operations and interim zoo director.

Beck replaces Amos Morris who left the local zoo for a similar position in California.

In a news release, Mayor Winnecke calls Beck “well qualified for the position.” He says Beck will “lead the zoo through a seamless transition.”

Farsad addresses Equality crowd

Aug 28, 2017
John Gibson

The keynote speaker at Evansville’s Equality Day luncheon was an unusual choice: an Iranian-American who calls herself a social justice comedian. 

Negin Farsad says she grew up in the U.S. without icons, because there were no Iranian-American Muslims on TV or in the movies.

She also told the crowd at Old National Events Plaza that she’s finds it offensive when people ask her about terrorism.

("You cannot explain the sins of your fellow Muslims just as white people can't explain cargo pants.")

Old Howell Bank building could be razed

Aug 23, 2017
John Gibson

A 110-year-old building on Evansville’s West Side may soon face the wrecking ball. 


The old Howell Bank building at 3000 Broadway Avenue was built in 1907, when Howell was its own town southwest of Evansville.

The bank closed in 1932, during the Great Depression.

It housed other financial businesses after that, including Howell Mortgage Bank -- the name still visible on the dilapidated, single-story white structure.

Crouch says I-69 needs "orderly progression"

Aug 22, 2017
John Gibson

Indiana Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch visited her hometown to talk about the Holcomb administration’s “5 pillars,” including infrastructure. 

The Evansville native told the Downtown Rotary Club that she and Governor Holcomb are committed to infrastructure.

("Which includes finishing I-69 from Evansville all the way to Indianapolis, and trust me, it's going to be done sooner than later. And address our future needs, including an interstate-quality bridge over the Ohio connecting Evansville to Kentucky."