more pg 1 11-16-23

By Linda Lemmon
Town Crier Editor
PUTNAM — The Martin Luther King Jr. mural on the Hale YMCA wall. Smaller murals on a couple downtown businesses. The revived Coca-Cola mural downtown.
And the latest mural to join the community’s embrace of art — the Boxcar Mural on South Main Street, next to the Gertrude Chandler Warner Boxcar Children Museum. Mural Project Coordinator Elaine Turner said the mural is 99 percent done. She said she’d like to touch up the painting describing the founding of the Boxcar museum and seal it. And there’s a 15-foot space where a “Wall of Thanksgiving” might be appropriate as the mural was a true community effort involving schools and many more. And there will still be some blank spots that would be home to other appropriate additions in the future, she said.
The dedication of the 290-foot long mural will be at 4:30 Dec. 4, Turner said.
BUT ... That is by no means the last mural.
Connecting the community and its history, the town has won a coveted spot on The Walldogs Historic Mural Fest calendar for 2030. That means that Walldogs muralists will be coming to Putnam and painting eight to 12 murals in town, in honor of the town’s 175th anniversary.
The Walldogs is a group of highly skilled sign painters and mural artists from all over the globe. Former Putnam resident and Walldogs member Emida Roller will be the coordinator for the Putnam mural fest. Turner said Walldogs members will descend on Putnam for five days when the weather is right (spring or fall) and get all the murals done.
Before that happens in 2030 much work lies ahead. Turner would like to get the planning committee for this geared up in the next six months. The subjects for the murals, fund-raising strategies, arranging housing and feeding for the Walldogs artists, wall spaces offered and much more will be on the committee’s agenda. It’s an intense huge project and planning needs to start very soon.
Turner raised $12,000 for the Boxcar Mural and she said the scale of this undertaking will cost “10’s of thousands of dollars.”
Turner anticipates that the town will have some ideas for murals that will be a given and she also anticipates that the Aspinock Historical Society will play a big part in the project as the mural fest will be highlighting the town’s 175th anniversary.
Anyone interested in helping should contact Turner at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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