Chalk it up! YSU group to hit the sidewalks for class project

By Denise Dick


A group of Youngstown State University students is taking its talents to the campus sidewalks and asking others to join in.

A class assignment for a speech class is a campus beautification project.

Junior art-history major Zach Repphun of Cortland didn’t want to just pick up trash. He and some other students in the class decided instead to create a chalk mural.

Repphun, vice president of the campus Student Art Association, got that organization involved in the plan.

But participation is open to everyone, and artistic talent isn’t a requirement.

The project will start at 10 a.m. Wednesday and conclude about 3 p.m.

Organizers will draw the roughly 22-foot-by-44-foot mural on the sidewalk between the Maag Library and the Butler Institute of American Art, dividing it into square-foot sections.

Anyone who wants to pick up a piece of chalk and start filling in a square is welcome.

A draft of the mural bears the YSU logo in Halloween colors next to a jack-o’-lantern.

They hope for good weather and a lot of participation.

“It’s a pretty high-traffic area,” Repphun said.

Halloween candy will be available, and the art association will host a bake sale.

Repphun, an assistant to the dean of the College of Fine and Performing Arts and administrative assistant at the McDonough Museum of Art, said the museum and the dean’s office contributed chalk to the effort.

The graphic-arts department is contributing fliers to promote the event.

Bren Munroe, a graphic-arts major from Poland and SAA secretary, is part of the effort.

They’ve created a Facebook page, Chalk Block Party, to promote the event.

“We’re not really concerned about being able to get it done,” Repphun said.

Besides Repphun, Munroe and four students from Repphun’s speech class, several members of the SAA also will be helping with the bake sale and can pitch in with the interactive mural.

Munroe said SAA is a group of students who share an interest in art and spend time together. They traveled to New York City last spring to visit museums and plan a similar trip this year to Chicago, he said.

The mural will face the library so people who look out the windows there will be able to enjoy it.

“It should be a fun project,” Repphun said.

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