Westside Storm Drain Mural

Westside third graders will paint this mural design over a Garnet Drive storm drain on May 22 as part of a public art project designed to create awareness of storm water pollution.

Sun Prairie’s Westside Elementary School third graders on May 22 will paint a mural over a storm drain as part of a watershed awareness project.

Thanks to Dane Arts Mural Arts (DAMA) and the Madison Area Storm Water Partnership, third graders from Michelle Jones’ and Casey Boatman’s classes will be painting a mural over a storm drain from 1-3 p.m. on Garnet Drive, next to Westside, to promote watershed awareness.

Assistant City Engineer Tom Veith said the City of Sun Prairie is a member of the partnership. The project is fully funded by the Madison Area Municipal Stormwater Partnership and Dane County so there is no upfront cost.

Veith said municipal government officials already approved the project and assisted the partnership in locating a storm drain inlet that meets the necessary requirements of the project. Veith said the city is expected to provide some traffic control in the area during the hours when the mural is being painted on Garnet Drive.

DAMA has been asked by the partnership to help raise awareness of run-off into local watersheds and stormwater pollution through public art pieces.

“Public art is an amazingly effective learning/teaching tool — students involved in the design will become natural advocates and informed stewards, and their vibrant artwork will draw attention and inspire action around this important effort to protect local waters,” a statement from DAMA to the city reads. “DAMA will be working with a total of 10 schools this spring to design and paint murals on storm drain inlets across the county.”

The project was initially delayed from its May 16 original date because of a school safety training event.

Kids chose the final design, according to artist Amy Zaremba from Zaremba Art LLC. “The kids were so clever and thoughtful,” Zaremba added, “I’m very excited for this concept and am looking forward to helping them paint it.”

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