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Storm Drain Murals

Monica Deathridge works Saturday on a sidewalk mural along Central Avenue in Coos Bay. Deathridge's "I'm not that kind of maid" piece is part of a collaborative “Storm Drain Mural Walk,” to be completed at this year at the Blackberry Arts Festival. The Coos Watershed Association, Coos Art Museum, the City of Coos Bay, the Coquille Indian Tribe and the Coos Bay Downtown Association collaborated to fund the environmentally conscious art project.

COOS BAY — Local artists took to the streets of downtown Coos Bay on Saturday to give folks a preview of the new “Storm Drain Mural Walk,” a collaborative community project set to be completed at this year’s Blackberry Arts Festival.

The Coos Watershed Association and the Coos Art Museum teamed up with the City of Coos Bay, the Coquille Indian Tribe and the Coos Bay Downtown Association to create the environmentally conscious art project.

Monica Deathridge works Saturday on a sidewalk mural along Central Avenue in Coos Bay. Deathridge's "I'm not that kind of maid" piece is a par…

With the hopes of raising awareness on a number of watershed issues including storm water pollution, the murals will be spread out near several storm drains around downtown Coos Bay.

Alexa Carleton, the Coos Watershed Association’s education program leader, said the murals will act as a reminder to folks letting them know of their direct connection to the local watershed and how they can impact its quality.

“The message we want to get across is that everything in the watershed is connected,” said Carleton. “So, when it rains a whole slew of things wash into the storm drains and with no filter in place all those things go directly into our waterways.”

The Coquille Tribal Community Fund and the Coos Art Museum provided funding for the mural project as well as donated paint and art supplies, said Carleton.  

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A committee with representatives from each of the organizations involved voted on their favorite pieces of artwork and selected seven artists from around Coos County to take part in the project.

Monica Deathridge works Saturday on a sidewalk mural along Central Avenue in Coos Bay. Deathridge's "I'm not that kind of maid" piece is part …

“We’ve got a high school student, an 8-year-old artist, a retired man and even a city engineer,” said the Coos Art Museum’s director of education Josie Keating. “It’s a wide variety of participants.”

The artists will paint live during the Blackberry Arts Festival in Coos Bay on Aug. 24-25. Two storm drains on Central Avenue have already been transformed as a way to give folks a sneak peek of what’s to come.

Keating, who created a swirling storm cloud in front of the Hall Building, added each mural will feature the text #nofilter as a way to continue the conversation online and help spread the word.

The Coos Bay Visitor Center will also release a brochure of the “Storm Drain Mural Walk” later this fall outlining the project and mural locations for folks interested in viewing them. The brochure will include a total of 10 murals three of which were created back in 2010.

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Reporter Amanda Linares can be reached at 541-266-2039 or by email at amanda.linares@theworldlink.com.

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