If anyone questions the validity of the Huffington Post's recent article regarding the fluff which fuels Asheville's reputation, then you should look no further than the absolutely preposterous Earth Day celebration which was auspiciously sited on the rolling , um, pavement of Lexington Avenue.
Yeah, that’s right: an Earth Day celebration on pavement. Had the author of the Huffington Post article visited us then, he might have accidentally noticed that while Ashevilleans boast about our link to our natural environment and tout our high quality of life, he would have found just another unfortunate and more realistic oxymoron of Asheville: Asheville doesn't even hold its Earth Day celebration in a park.
Instead of the city's residents and guests basking in a park, running their fingers through grass, picnicking like one would think, and enjoying the benefits of nature, Asheville's Earth Day celebration was relegated to the bland and disappointing hard pavement of Lexington Avenue, and rendered just another beer and merchandising event a la Downtown After 5.
There are rumors about why this could happen. Some say that the city/county offered little assistance to provide the citizens with a park setting, some say it would have cost too much to hold it in one of our various parks. Regardless, it was a farce, another indication that Asheville really could clearly use the type of criticism applied recently and that we need more of it.
We need to be a city that expresses high, simple values first and foremost instead of spending energy on telling everyone about how wonderful our emperor’s new clothes are and bumping our progress against the low ceiling of good intentions and low standards.
And does anyone realistically wonder why there was such a lackluster attendance at this year’s celebration? I left after an hour of sitting on the pavement.
— Doug Robideaux