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Minot, ND

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2020

Project Category: Public art installations

Description: To increase vibrancy and walkability in Minot's downtown, the city's Downtown Business and Professional Association sponsored three new downtown wall murals, each created by different local artists. To encourage passersby to interact with the murals, the artists hid depictions of objects in each mural's imagery, challenging onlookers to search for elements that seem out of place in the painting's subject matter. The association worked with local businesses to acquire materials, such as paint, brushes and cleaning supplies, for the project. Each mural adorns the wall of a different local business. Over the years, Minot has become known in recent years for its assortment of colorful, creative street art -- an online tourist guide helps visitors find murals throughout town.

Ville Platte, LA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Public art installations

Description: The Tee Cotton Bowl is an annual high school football game -- and week-long event -- that promotes racial reconciliation. As part of local revitalization efforts, the Acosta Foundation engaged a team of multigenerational volunteers to create a 100-foot-long mural as a symbol of the community coming together. A small, landscaped seating area allows visitors to enjoy the artwork, with LED lighting illuminating the mural. Volunteers hailed from all parts of the city and worked on all elements of the project, from cleaning the wall to hosting a celebratory party during the Bowl. The project's success sparked creation of another mural on the grounds of Ville Platt's city hall.

Hendersonville, NC

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Public art installations

Description: Herdersonville has two discrete downtown districts and recently created a safe pedestrian pathway to connect them. Friends of Downtown Hendersonville's initiative beautified the path and dubbed it the Downtown Art Route. First, the organization held an art contest. Then volunteers painted three winning designs onto the path's pavement. The Hendo Bee Line mural depicts pollinator flowers, while another mural features five hands spelling the word Hendo in American Sign Language. A third stretch of sidewalk showcases artwork depicting bears in a mountain landscape. Since the project completed, organizers are looking for locations to install more public art in the future.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

Christiansburg, VA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2022

Project Category: Inclusive public space improvements

Description: This project created a Mobile Literacy Lab to provide technical resources and literacy education to adult learners.

Roanoke, VA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2023

Project Category: Housing Choice Design Competitions

Description: The project will stage an accessory dwelling unit design competition that will increase public awareness of this housing option. The competition will result in a set of plans that homeowners and developers can use to build an ADU on a single-family residential lot.

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