Joel Fritzler, Mayor
State of the City Address - December 11, 2012
From the Mayor
For those of you returning from your summer excursions, “Welcome back.” If you are new to Carbondale then, “Welcome to the Cultural Capital of Southern Illinois.” Whether you are here to live and work, or to attend SIU, you have made the right choice. Having lived in three states and four countries prior to the last 17 years in Carbondale, to sum up why I enjoy living here, I like to say, “There is no place quite like this place.”
We have four distinct seasons in Carbondale but, fall is my favorite season to be in Southern Illinois but, we experienced many exciting changes in Carbondale during the summer season. Construction on the new Fire Station on the west side of town has been taking place through the summer and is almost completed. The re-construction of Schwartz St., between Oakland and Eason Streets, is providing the residents along this stretch of road with a street of the same high standard enjoyed by the majority of Carbondale residents. I have been fighting for these two projects since joining the city council eight years ago. And, although there was some resistance from a few council members, the majority of the council saw that funding these projects was the prudent thing to do.
One could say that 2013 was the brightest summer ever seen in Carbondale. The City organized the Fourth of July firework display this year and, with $6,000 from the City, $3,000 from SIU, and $1,000 from the Lions Club, people that saw the display said that it was biggest firework display ever seen in Carbondale. The historic Illinois Central caboose received a new coat of bright red paint as a gift from the Sherwin-Williams Paint Company, and colorful artwork from the Carbondale Middle School is displayed on the panels across the tracks from the Amtrak Station. For more color this fall, don’t miss the Union County Colorfest Celebration which takes place October 11, 12 & 13.
Since food is always on my mind, I was ecstatic when Pita Alley, McAlister’s Deli and a new donut shop, Delish, opened in Carbondale this summer. McAlister’s is located across from the Mall and east of Barnes & Noble. Delish is located at 813 E. Main, across from Hunan, and also serves sandwiches, wraps, and rice bowls for lunch. Pita Alley, located in the Murdale Shopping Center at 1711 W. Main, offers Greek, Middle Eastern, Turkish, and Vegan cuisine. And, located in the CCHS parking lot on Saturday mornings, a second Farmers’ Market opened this summer.
Fall is a great time to be outdoors in Carbondale so, pick up some takeaway food on Wednesdays and Fridays in September, come to the Town Square Pavilion in Downtown Carbondale, and enjoy some free live music at two of Carbondale Main Street’s famous events. Every Wednesday at noon, they sponsor a Brown Bag Concert with music by local musicians. Bring your own lunch (and a chair) or pick up something from a downtown restaurant. Every Friday night from 6:00 to 9:00, come out for Main Street’s Friday Night Fair featuring live music, locally grown produce, and handmade products.
Besides the countless events, festivals, and concerts for which Southern Illinois is known, there are a number of organizations in the region that are working on projects that may be of interest to you. There are many ways to get involved and we need you to be involved, whether by volunteering at the Boys & Girls Club, the Red Cross, or the I Can Read Program. In any case, the best way to feel that you are a part of a community is to become part of the community.
If you ever have any questions about the city, feel free to contact me at email@example.com or 457-3229.Have a great fall
Joel Fritzler, Mayor