As a Girl Scout, Wilbraham & Monson Academy’s Kiki Brook ’26 is familiar with selling cookies.
Late this summer, Kiki and her troop members shifted a bit and found a way to turn lemons into lemonade.
After the outside of the convenience store located near the Academy was defaced with spray paint, Kiki and two members of Troop #64587 painted the wall a bright blue sky filled with colorful umbrellas.
“I was excited (for the project),” said Kiki, in her eighth year of Scouts. “I had painted a mural before and it was fun. I was glad we were able to do that wall specifically because it was kind of ugly. It was splotchy and peeling. And since it’s central in Wilbraham, it gave us a chance to beautify the town center.”
It was no easy task, especially for just three people. Kiki and her teammates: power-washed the graffiti; scraped the already-existing peeling paint; applied a base coat, touched up some spots; projected the sketch of the mural onto the wall; bought all of the paint and supplies; painted the entire area; carefully designed the outlines; and finalized a few rough patches. They completed this in a six-day span.
“While working on project there was some anxiety because it’s a big wall and people pass by from my school,” Kiki said. “I hoped it would turn out good.”
The mural didn’t turn out good. It turned out GREAT, with yellow, blue, red, white, maroon, green and pink balloons appearing to be floating in the air.
“Once finished, I was happy with how it turned out,” she smiled. “Hard worked paid off. The day we signed our name, two people stopped. Someone asked to take a picture with the mural.”
The final project has taken on a bit of a life of its own, with the Facebook page “Umbrellas! The interactive mural in Wilbraham” created for people to share their photos taken in front of the art work.
“(Projects) allow me to give back to my community and I’ve been able to learn important skills,” Kiki said. “There have been a lot of opportunities I wouldn’t have had if it I didn’t join Girl Scouts.”