Put Yourself, And Your Design, Out On The Trail

POTTSTOWN PA – A mural that’s now in its design phase, and which is expected to be painted in coming weeks on a portion of the surface across the Schuylkill River Trail in Pottstown’s Riverfront Park, is awaiting another healthy helping of public input.

A second meeting about the trail mural project, which the Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area hopes will transform part of the walkway into a community-inspired work of art, is scheduled for Wednesday (March 20, 2019) from 6-7:30 p.m. at the 341 Beech St. gallery and studio of its partner, ArtFusion 19464.

The mural will include varying shapes of nature and wildlife representations found throughout the Schuylkill River Watershed. Its land area, which encompasses about 2,000 square miles, is the largest watershed that feeds into the Delaware River. The mural is intended to celebrate the watershed’s natural beauty, and help connect people to the river and trail, promoters said.

Put Yourself, And Your Design, Out On The Trail

During the project’s first meeting (at top), held March 7 (Thursday) at First Presbyterian Church, those who attended learned more about the mural and participated in a hands-on art activity: they created drawings (above) that may be used into its final design. Similar creative juices will be encouraged at Wednesday’s gathering, and all materials will be provided.

After community residents create and submit their drawings to Schuylkill River Greenways, local artist Jody Wenzel will merge some of the publicly created designs with her own to create a final outline. The estimated 120-foot mural will be painted along the trail section in front of the pollinator garden and near the Riverfront Park amphitheater.

The mural installation will be conducted April 27 (Saturday). Area residents and community groups can volunteer to paint a section by signing up online for a time slot, here; or by sending an e-mail to Le’Santha Naicker at lnaicker@schuylkillriver.org. For more information about the project or installation, call 484-945-0200.

Wenzel is a retired Pottstown School District art teacher, and a trail ambassador. She has crafted several art designs for Schuylkill River Greenways, including all the interpretive signs seen along the Pottstown RiverWalk, a trail located inside the park that connects to the Schuylkill River Trail to create a 1-mile loop.

Wenzel believes incorporating art along the trail has several benefits. “It helps to engage new audiences,” she said. “It’s another approach to convey information in a way that’s visual and relatable.”

The trail mural is funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and several generous individuals.

Photos from the Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area