Rolling Meadows High School Art Club Transforms Underpass with Mural

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Rolling Meadows High School students are teaming with Rolling Meadows Park District to add a touch of  color, creativity and beauty to their community.

Students from the high school’s Art Club began painting a 92-foot mural in late spring along the Salt Creek bike path, on the wall of the Kirchoff Road pedestrian underpass connecting to Kimball Hill Park. Designed, drawn and painted by students, the mural depicts recreational activities in all four seasons and highlights the Park District’s Vision and tagline “Play Learn Grow.”

“We’re so excited to have these talented students create a work of art along this key amenity in Rolling Meadows,” said Rolling Meadows Park District Recreation Supervisor Kailey Schwartzhoff, who initially proposed and spearheaded the project. “Through this partnership with School District 214, we’re giving students the opportunity to showcase their work and leave a lasting legacy.”

The young artists are working with their teachers to use a color blocking technique that will include Rolling Meadows High School colors purple and yellow. Paint and supplies are being donated by JC Licht and Benjamin Moore in Rolling Meadows.

“Kailey reached out to us in the fall and asked if we would be interested in doing a mural,” said Rolling Meadows High School Art Teacher Martha Nava. “Our students were really excited about it. Living in the community they knew this area really well. We started working on designs, met with Kailey, met with some of the administration from the Park District, and here we are.”

Prior to the project, the heavily trafficked underpass, frequented by cyclists, walkers, inline skaters and runners, boasted a dark, discolored cement wall. Power washing and block filler transformed the space into a massive canvas, ready to capture the RMHS Art Club’s artistic skills.

“It’s pretty cool to know I contributed to this and it will be here forever,” said Emily Podejko, an Art Club member who will be a junior at Rolling Meadows High School in the fall. She stopped by on a recent Saturday afternoon to help paint.

Work is expected to be completed later this summer.

“I am beyond impressed with the efforts and creativity of these young people to make this underpass wall something everyone can enjoy and love the way they incorporated our Vision and tagline,” said Rolling Meadows Park District Executive Director Kevin Romejko. “We appreciate the City of Rolling Meadows providing the use of this space for a phenomenal project that inspires the community to stay active and embodies our Vision of Play, Learn and Grow.”

For more information, call 847-818-3200 x1224.