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New mural will celebrate town’s and nation’s history

Current and former residents, community groups and organizations will band together to create a mural as a lasting legacy of two major milestones.

Current and former residents, community groups and organizations will band together to create a mural as a lasting legacy of two major milestones.

The Town of Westlock 100th Anniversary Committee along with the Westlock Community Art Club announced they’ve been chosen as one of 150 communities across Canada to take part in the Canada 150 Mosaic project aimed at celebrating nation’s 150th birthday in 2017. It will also serve as a chance to recognize the town’s centennial this year.

Communities will create eight-foot by eight-foot murals depicting their town made up of smaller tiles, creating a larger mosaic.

“It’s going to represent a lot of things from Westlock,” said art club vice president Kathy Nelson, while keeping tight-lipped on the details.

“It will contain the flavours of Westlock and we can’t tell you any more than that.”

Each individual mural will represent a train car and will join the others to form a complete train that will pay homage to the railway.

Westlock will unveil its mosaic at the town’s 100th anniversary homecoming on July 1.

In the meantime, organizers are calling for volunteers to paint the 600 individual tiles that will make up the mosaic. They’ve already recruited help from 4-H clubs, seniors’ lodges and schools to assist.

County musician and former Westlock native Carolyn Dawn Johnson has also committed to painting a square, while Nelson said she is trying to track down more successful Westlock musicians and athletes to participate. Members of the community will also have the chance to paint tiles at open workshops, which will be held early next month.

“We will have time when it will be open to the public to come and paint,” Nelson said. “We welcome anyone and you do not need any artistic talent whatsoever to do one.”

Participants will be given a small tile and it’s up to them what they’d like to paint.

“When we get the tiles, they specifically label the plan and you get a four-inch by four-inch tile and it could be all blue,” said art club president Linda Corbett.

“You think about Westlock and you think about what you want to put on there. As long as you follow the colour scheme.”

When it’s done, the mosaic will be similar to the “hockey player” painting in the lobby of the Rotary Spirit Centre.

“It’s done the same way, except our tiles are going to be smaller,” said art club treasurer Maureen Flinn.