FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association
PHONE: 256.350.3500 / 800.648.5381
AMLA Awards $2,000 Grant to Oneonta Business Association for New Mural
Decatur, Ala. (November 15, 2021) – The Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association (AMLA) presented the Oneonta Business Association (OBA) with a $2,000 community grant for the development of a new street mural. In conjunction with the new North Alabama Mural Trail marketing program recently launched by AMLA, the North Alabama Mural Creation Grant program is a strategic investment in the region’s culture while increasing visitor traffic and local business revenue. OBA is the first recipient of the community grant.
On Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021, AMLA President and CEO Tami Reist presented the $2000 check at the popular OBA Art Walk to volunteers of the OBA. According to OBA co-secretary Patti Williams, the OBA plans to use the North Alabama Mural Creation Grant for the purchase of paint to continue phase two murals, starting with the Hometown Heroes mural and then the 300 block mural alley. Work will commence when OBA receives approval from the city of Oneonta for the design concepts.
OBA’s history with murals goes back to late 2018 with the launch of the Paint the Town mural project and the now popular Angle Wings mural located on Railroad Boulevard at 4th Street. Phase one officially launched in January 2020 and resulted in 15 local artists painting 17 original murals in the 210-foot OBA Art Walk that dissects the 200 block between 1st and 2nd Avenues in Oneonta. The murals transformed a bleak, dark walkway into a beautiful exhibit of creative art and is now a favorite passageway downtown. Many years ago, this walkway was used as a cattle chute for farmers to herd cattle from one station to another, and today a mural of cattle is located in the plaza area of the Art Walk as a tribute to the town’s heritage. The OBA also commissioned the Welcome to Oneonta mural, designed by two board members, and sponsored an American flag mural on the side of the new headquarters for the United Flagpole Company on Highway 75 in Oneonta. The first phase was made possible from private contributions, a donation of $5,000 worth of paint from Benjamin Moore/Pell City and 1,458 volunteer hours.
Phase 2 is underway which involves two parts. The first phase will be a Hometown Heroes mural partially sponsored by Ascension St. Vincent’s Blount for which expert muralist Donald Walker of Arab has been commissioned and will depict first responders and hospital workers, some of whom gave their lives in the fight against COVID-19. The second component involves revitalization of the alley in the 300 block. Seven design concepts are in the approval phase with the City’s mural review committee. The artists of the 300 block alley consist of local students and adults and work is expected to begin in early 2022.
“We realize many people will never walk into a gallery so through strategically placed murals, everyone has the opportunity to learn a little about a community while adding an aesthetic improvement,” said OBA Volunteer Pat Clanton. “Through our Paint the Town project, we have seen an increase in community engagement, revitalization and tourism in our city. These murals tell the story of our community and encourages locals and tourists to discover new places and learn about the beautiful art our town has to offer.”
For more information on OBA’s Paint the Town project, visit https://www.oneontabusinessassociation.com/paint.html or call Clanton at 205-559-4769.
The North Alabama Mural Creation Grant is in conjunction with the new North Alabama Mural Trail marketing program recently released by AMLA and awards funds, up to $2000, for the development of new street murals in the region. AMLA will award one grant to an organization/community within each of the 16 counties within AMLA’s region. Counties within AMLA’s region are Blount, Cherokee, Colbert, Cullman, DeKalb, Etowah, Franklin, Jackson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Morgan and Winston.
“With the North Alabama Mural Creation Grant, we hope more communities will take note of how the transformation of a blank wall into a work of art can produce a positive outcome for residents, businesses and visitors,” said AMLA President and CEO Tami Reist. “Strategically placed murals contribute to the beautification of an area, lead to an increase in commerce for local businesses and encourage further economic development. The possibilities for murals are endless. They can spark the imagination, serve as a way to share the history or tell a story that belongs to the community. Murals can add interest and value to a community like no other art form can.”
Criteria for the grant include:
1. Only one (1) grant will be awarded per county.
2. Grant application must be submitted no later than Monday, January 31, 2022.
3. Mural must be a minimum of 10-foot x 10-foot in size.
4. Mural must be viewable in a public space and viewable for free.
5. Mural project must be completed no later than Friday, September 30, 2022.
6. It is recommended the mural design be a reflection of the history, heritage and/or spirit of the local community.
7. Mural must contain the following information painted in a lower corner in a legible size:
#NorthALMurals | A program of the Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association
For more information on the North Alabama Mural Creation Grant program, call Reist at 800-648-5381. For more information on murals throughout North Alabama, visit https://www.northalabama.org/trails/mural-trail/.
About Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association (AMLA)
AMLA is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion and development of the travel industry within the 16 northernmost counties of the state. It is supported by 500-plus members consisting of chambers of commerce, Convention & Visitors Bureaus, attractions, campgrounds, festivals, communities, counties, golf courses, restaurants, tour operators, accommodations, vendors, financial institutions and individuals. Counties included within the AMLA region are Blount, Cherokee, Colbert, Cullman, DeKalb, Etowah, Franklin, Jackson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Morgan and Winston. Additional information on North Alabama destinations, accommodations and special events is available by calling 800.648.5381 or by visiting www.NorthAlabama.org. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and TikTok @VisitNorthAL and like us at www.facebook.com/VisitNorthAL.