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Walldogs arrive in Olney

The group began painting its first mural on Main street Wednesday.

Posted: May 19, 2021 6:41 PM
Updated: May 20, 2021 6:44 AM

OLNEY, Ill. (WTHI) - A little bit of rain Wednesday couldn't stop the Walldogs. The first swipes of paint were put on in between showers. It shouldn't be a surprise. Not even COVID-19 could stop the event.

Walldogs artist coordinator Carl Scott Lindley says, "It's not just Mad Dog 2020. It's Mad Dog 2020 plus one. Because we saved face, we got one project done last year. But now this year we're going to get 12 of them done."

The Walldogs pick one town a year to visit. Murals around the community are painted. It helps to preserve history and spruce up the community.

Olney mayor Mark Lambird says, "I think this is a good step in maybe trying to do some revitalization and making people feel like downtown is more of a destination than it used to be."

The effort to bring the Walldogs to Olney began in 2016. Having to postpone the event wasn't easy for those working hard to bring them to town.

Olney city clerk Kelsie Sterchi explains, "I'll be frank, I shed some tears over it because it really did take a lot of time and effort putting together the plans. But it wasn't just us, it was everybody else as well."

With COVID-19 still hanging around the event has been scaled down for Olney. But not rain, nor a global pandemic can stop these artists from doing what they do best.

Lindley says, "When people stand here and they're looking at this project they add to the story. When people start realizing they have this shared community that they have forgotten about it usually inspires them to do more."

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