Sprucing up the wall

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Now 11 years old, the "Missouri Wall of Fame" was one of the earliest of the numerous murals that now adorn downtown Cape Girardeau. Designed by Cape Girardeau native Margaret Randol Dement, the mural on the floodwall between Independence and Merriwether streets was painted by a sign company and used few colors because of budget limitations.

The "Wall of Fame" mural looks tepid next to the brilliant colors and kinetic scenes on the "Mississippi River Tales" mural dedicated last year. Now the River Heritage Mural Association has hired "Mississippi River Tales" creator Thomas Melvin to rework the wall's portraits of famous Missourians.

More than half the $85,000 to $90,000 cost will be paid through sponsorships.

Dement will be one of the artists who will help do the painting and is thrilled that the "Wall of Fame" finally will match her vision of it.

The current scenes will be removed by sandblasting. Melvin's team of artists then will transfer his paintings onto the wall.

Work is scheduled to begin in May or June.

The enthusiastic reception received by the "Mississippi River Tales" mural bodes well for this latest plan to help beautify Cape Girardeau's downtown.

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