In the media cage match that we here in Springfield know as Brad Bradshaw vs. Aaron Sachs, it’s Bradshaw, aka Mr. 333-3333, who has gained air superiority.
It’s new. It’s digital. And it’s up in the sky.
I’m talking about Bradshaw’s bearded face atop the newly renovated 10-story Plaza Towers at the busy intersection where East Sunshine Street meets South Glenstone Avenue.
Where there once were lightbulbs there is now a modern-day digitized billboard.
Bradshaw has expanded his campaign. At night, his familiar face shines down benevolently on passing motorists.
Bradshaw and Sachs are both lawyers who spend what must be a fortune on advertising. We know this because we see them even when we don’t want to on billboards and on TV — even during the Super Bowl.
And let me remind you that Mister Bradshaw is also Doctor Bradshaw. And I’m not talking about a doctoral degree in, say, Renaissance poetry. I’m talking about someone who might not know how to throw a football but could, I think, remove your appendix.
Bradshaw is Mr. 333-3333. Sachs is Mr. 777-7777.
I called Sachs to ask how he would respond to Bradshaw’s escalation to the top of Plaza Towers. He did not call me back.
I called Bradshaw. He picked up and quickly reminded me of the one time we actually met face-to-face.
(No, I wasn’t hit by a truck.)
It was October 2018 at an event at the Springfield Brewing Company sponsored by the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association. If you recall, there were three medical marijuana initiatives on the November 2018 ballot in Missouri and Bradshaw had invested $1.5 million in the one he was backing. It would fail.
Our brief encounter did not go well. He wanted me to promise that I would mention something in the story I would write and I said I probably would. But I would not promise I would so he declined to talk to me further.
I later wrote an opinion column on why an option other than his was the best choice. It passed.
“Did you call to give me more grief like you did over medical marijuana?” he asked me Monday.
That’s not how I remember it, I said, and moved on:
What does a digital ad atop Plaza Towers do that the digital billboards don’t already do?
Bordering the Plaza Towers parking lot is an on-the-ground digital billboard that includes not only Bradshaw but also his nemesis Sachs, and the Blue Iguana Car Wash.
The digital ad atop Plaza Towers is different from the Brad Bradshaw billboards, Bradshaw tells me, because it’s on the very building where his primary office is located.
I didn’t know this but Bradshaw has had an office in Plaza Towers since 1999.
Billboard advertising for tenants
Question No. 2: Many in Springfield consider you and Aaron Sachs to be in a War for Advertising Supremacy. Now that your face and phone number are a beacon for thousands of motorists looking to heaven as they drive, can you claim victory over Sachs?
“There is no real competition because Aaron does not try cases,” Bradshaw says. “And he settles cases a lot cheaper than I would. I could think of a number of lawyers someone could hire other than him.”
Finally! I think I know who Attorneys A & B are in Bradshaw’s ads!
Marco Denis owns Plaza Towers. He created Springfield Property, LLC, in 2012 and in September 2020 purchased the 130,000-square-foot Plaza Towers, the 35,000-square-foot Plaza Towers Center and the Jimm’s Steakhouse and pub building for $13.3 million, according to the Springfield Business Journal.
He bought it from the family of Errett Sechler Jr., who died in 2019 at age 98, according to the Journal.
Back in 1973, Sechler bought the building and renamed it Plaza Towers. He was a Springfield man who developed and managed six Holiday Inns in the western United States.
It was built in 1969-1970 and was originally called the Jefferson Trust Building.
The reason why it’s called “Towers,” plural, instead of “Tower,” singular, is lost to history. Regardless of whether it is actually a “tower,” clearly there is only one of them.
Denis tells me only tenants of Plaza Towers can legally advertise on the new digital sign atop the structure and, thus far, Bradshaw is the only tenant who has done so.
“He is one of our biggest tenants,” he says of Bradshaw.
Denis, 46, was born in Haiti and came to Springfield years ago to attend what was then Southwest Missouri State University — now MSU.
He has greatly improved the appearance of the building and tells me has plans for a first-floor restaurant and a roof-top bar.
If and when there’s a roof-top bar, I hope to have the opportunity to down a Doctor B & B/B & B.
This is Pokin Around column No. 25.