In 1982, the town of Anacortes was looking for a project to make the downtown more appealing. Bill Mitchell, a paraplegic artist offered to paint murals. Thus began a fantastic project that has placed 125 murals on buildings in downtown Anacortes. He now attempts to do 6 per year, so any count will be wrong. If visiting the area, he welcomes folks to his studio to watch him work.
One of his murals is of Rudy Malland the Banjo King, father of Beverly Malland, a good friend of Jim's. We met Bev for lunch and got our mural map out to take pictures of the murals and the garbage cans along Commercial Street. Yes, garbage cans, because they have been cleverly painted to imitate salmon can labels when salmon was king in Anacortes. This is a town of very clever people. Flowers line the streets; fire hydrants are decorated. Everywhere you look is something of interest.
The trouble with this plan, to view all the murals, was the weather. It was soooooo beastly hot for Washington, (100 degrees), that we didn't get to see them all. I call Jim the Weather Wimp. He gets a bit nauseous in hot weather and I should be a bit more charitable. Anyway, I managed to get some photos, but not enough to put a dent in the wonderful displays around town. Below is Bev and Jim in the airconditioned cafe. Smiling.
To see about 20 of Bill Mitchell's famous murals click on the link: