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Whale of a Design to take Shape on S Graham Street

This weekend, August 27 and 28, S Graham Street between 51st Avenue S and 48th Avenue S will be closed from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day when a large whale and fish design will take shape on the street.  Dozens of volunteers, including students, parents and neighbors from the community, Graham Hill Elementary School and from the Harborview Medical Center will work together to paint the street mural.  The whale represents the Graham Hill Elementary School mascot; the different sized and multi-colored fish represent the diversity of the community and the school’s student body. 

The design is a combination of sketches by artists Carrie Pluger and Violet Ewing, current teachers at Graham Hill, and Lisa Confehr, a former teacher at the school. Pacific Telecom Services donated staff time and resources to scale the mural design and color code the pattern into a grid format to ease application of the design to the street. 

Lorena Chavez, Safe Kids Seattle*Coalition Coordinator and Manager of the Community Health Improvement and Outreach for Harborview Medical Center, has worked together with the school’s Parent-Teacher Association and the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) Safe Routes to School program to create a multi-layered safety program for the children, of which the street mural is just one element. Funding for the program has come from several sources including the Safe Kids Seattle Coalition, a FedEx “Walk this Way” program grant, and a grant from the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) Safe Routes to School Program.  As key partners of the Pedestrian Safety Task Force, the Feet First non-profit organization and the Seattle Police Department have also played a role in the development of the program. 

Working from 9 – 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, the volunteers will clean the street, outline the design, and then paint the large street mural. 

 *Safe Kids Seattle is part of a global network of organizations whose mission is to prevent unintentional childhood injury. Each year in the United States more than 354 Children are killed as pedestrians and another 13,000 are injured.  Long-term modifications of areas where children walk are critical to the reduction of such injuries and fatalities.