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Pandemic surge cancels Andrews Avenue mural unveiling

Lit Youngstown is posting mural selfies on its website.
Andrews Avenue mural
Work is nearing completion on the Andrews Avenue mural in Youngstown. (Contributed by Lit Youngstown)

YOUNGSTOWN — Because of the surge in new coronavirus cases, the unveiling of the Andrews Avenue mural that was originally scheduled for Friday was canceled.

Youngstown State University students in professor Dragana Crnjak’s Mural and Site-Specific Painting class have been working to create the mural.

The coronavirus surge has caused YSU to cancel remaining fall events.

The project is a collaborative partnership between Lit Youngstown and the YSU Department of Art. Supported by Youngstown Cityscape and the Andrews Avenue Business Group, the project is located in the Andrews Avenue corridor stretching along Andrews Avenue from Federal Street to East Rayen Avenue.

A Neighborhood SUCCESS Grant from the Raymond J. Wean Foundation supports the project.

Lit Youngstown said in a news release that another way to celebrate the mural's creation will be pursued.

The organization said it will post mural selfies on its website. To send selfies, click here.

The project began with Lit Youngstown soliciting memories from those who remember downtown — yesterday and long ago — and proceeded with students selecting some memories for the images they are painting.

The project is designed for future classes to add to the mural.

Students involved are Elaine Ngo, senior, Graphic Design, Boardman; Hannah Roberts, senior, Studio Art-Panting, Warren; Holly Yarab, senior, Studio Art-Painting, Boardman; Lauren Linger, junior, Studio Art-Interdisciplinary, New Castle; Lexi Chismar, senior, Graphic Design, Boardman; Morgan Lay, junior, Studio Art, Brookfield; Tina Kalenits, senior, Journalism, Cleveland; Verena Bo Gyeong Son, sophomore, Studio Art-Painting, South Korea; Mya Kasten, senior, Graphic Design, Canfield; Rachel Hritz, junior, Painting and Art Education, Youngstown; Chloe Miklos, senior, Media Communication/Interdisciplinary Art, Sharon; and Rose Sulerach Rivera, senior, Studio Art-Interdisciplinary, Long Island, N.Y.

“We have had a very dynamic first five weeks of the semester, meeting and working with many different groups and individuals within the community," Crnjak said. "In addition to our named partners, we have received support from the Mahoning Valley Historical Society; YSUscape; Sean Posey, the author of "Lost Youngstown"; Dawna Carney, YSU Geography professor; and many volunteers.

"Without these strong partnerships and community relationships, this project would not be possible.”