COUNTDOWN: Mayor preps for transition as candidates prep for Election Day

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GREENFIELD — Chuck Fewell knows that 20 weeks can fly by in the blink of an eye.

That’s exactly how much time he has left in his 10-year reign as Greenfield’s mayor.

Having recently celebrated his 80th birthday, the longtime public servant opted not to seek another term and instead join his wife Kristen — who worked over four decades as an elementary school teacher — in retirement.

Friends gave him a timer for his desk that counts down the time has left in office, right down to the last second of his last official day, Dec. 31.

“I’m at 142 days,” Fewell said on Thursday morning, grinning from behind the desk of his office in city hall.

At Wednesday night’s city council meeting, local honor guard members Paul Norton and Matthew Benner presented him with a 9½-foot-long American flag in recognition of his decade-long service to the city.

“I am incredibly honored, and this will go in a prominent place,” said Fewell upon receiving the flag.

As he looks back at what he calls a rewarding and productive run in office, three other men have been busy campaigning, on a quest to fill his seat.

Guy Titus bested two opponents to win the Republican nomination in the spring primary while democratic candidate Nate Anderson ran unopposed. Larry Silver Jr. is running in the primary as a Libertarian.

“Everything is going great. We’re out every weekend canvassing, and have received good support from the people we’ve interacted with,” Silver said this week.

“Fundraising is going well for us, and we have lots of support from our state party and local affiliate party, so I’m expecting a good result on election night,” he said.

Hancock County Clerk Lisa Lofgreen is hoping for a better voter turnout in this fall’s general election than was evident in the spring.

Less than 14 percent of registered voters turned out for Greenfield’s last mayoral election in 2019, when Fewell bested his opponent Zachary Lafavers with 82% of the vote.

With less than 90 days to go before the Nov. 7 election, Lofgreen encourages voters to take the time to get registered to vote by the Oct. 10 deadline.

She also encourages them to take advantage of early voting, which starts Oct. 11.

“You obviously want to get registered in time so that you’re eligible to vote, and educate yourself about all the candidates,” said Lofgreen, who added that early voting times and locations will be announced in September.

Meanwhile, the three mayoral candidates are doing their best to meet with voters and share their platforms.

Anderson is hosting a “Dunk a Dem” fundraiser at Wooden Bear Brewing in Greenfield Aug. 19, while Silver is hosting a meet the candidate night at the Hancock County Public Library in Greenfield Aug. 23.

Titus said he’s been busy interacting with voters and attending city council meetings to get a better feel for how the city’s government is run.

“I’m excited about what’s ahead and am trying to prepare myself so I can hit the ground running the first year if I win,” he said.

Next month, Titus and his opponents will face off in a public debate hosted by the nonpartisan League of Women Voters of Hancock County from 6-7:30 p.m. Wednesday Sept. 20 at the Hancock County Public Library in Greenfield.

“We’re hoping for a good turnout and a really lively debate,” said league member Ellen Manolopoulos.

For a list of this year’s general election candidates or to register to vote, visit IndianaVoters.IN.gov.

For information on local polling centers and early voting, visit HancockCountyIN.gov.