March 14, 2003 | By: Aimee D. Heald

White walls are starting to burst with color at North Pointe Elementary School in Boone County, thanks to a group of 11 students in the 4-H mural club. Recently the club completed a mural on one wall of the resource room and plan to begin another along the main hallway this summer.

Boone County Extension 4-H Program Assistant Lindsey Kenley has a mural painting business on the side and recently began involving 4-Hers to teach them what she knows.

"Through Extension we're encouraged to get kids involved in things we are interested in," she said. "So it was natural for me to approach the schools and see if they would let us paint any of the walls, and North Pointe did."

The 4-H mural club meets after school one day per week. In their first project last year, club members painted a wall at the Country Place Apartments with the theme "Under the Sea." At North Pointe Elementary, finding the theme took a little more work.

"At first everyone drew a picture then we decided on two and put them together," said Misty Egeleston, 4-H mural club member.

Club member Katie Hahnel said the girls wanted to do some kind of wooden deck and the boys were set on drawing the ocean so the members combined their ideas and came up with a scene to show both. Kenley said the students settled on painting the balcony of a restaurant overlooking a seascape at sunset.

North Pointe Principal Dave Thompson admitted to sneaking into the room at night to see the progress on the wall.

"Sometimes I'd go in there and see a lot of blue, then I saw a lot of orange," he said. "I must say I'm surprised and I'm very proud of them."

The project took club members about six weeks, working one day per week.

"It was confusing at first," said club member Jared Simpson. "But we finally got it all together and finished a design we all like."

Kenley said the success of the club has led them to start planning a four-day mural camp for the summer.

"We'll go to the Game Farm in Frankfort on the first day," she said. "The next three days we'll work from photos we take of the animals to paint a Kentucky ecosystem. So, we'll get some science involved and also allow them the creativity that art provides."

The summer project will cover a large wall in the main hall of North Pointe Elementary.



Lindsey Kenley  859-586-6101