A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Artists from Cardinal Valley Elementary brighten electrical boxes outside of Legends’ stadium

By Tammy L. Lane
Special to KyForward

Despite blustery wind in their faces, students in the after-school art club from Cardinal Valley Elementary hit a home run outside Whitaker Bank Ballpark with their creativity and problem-solving.

“We came up with the designs and how to mix the colors,” 11-year-old Daisy Macedonio explained as fellow students busily painted on three metal utility boxes in the front parking lot. “We can show what we feel in our minds and what we imagine. It makes us feel like we’re artists,” Daisy said, describing the pride of seeing their work on public display.

The Lexington Legends had sought out a local school group to further brighten that corner of the property, and a former teacher recommended Cardinal Valley.

Students used brushes, fingers, and other tools to create their artwork outside the Legends ballpark.

“The Legends are no stranger to the wonderful world of art. We welcome the chance to work with students in our community and could not be more pleased to have these remarkable students contribute,” Andy Shea, president and CEO of the Lexington team, said in a news release.

The electrical boxes sit across from the stadium’s giant mural of Lafayette High School student-athlete Trinity Gay, who died last fall after a random shooting outside a restaurant.

Michelle Armstrong, the visual arts teacher at Cardinal Valley, asked all the fourth- and fifth-graders to submit sketches and then picked the best proposals for the art club to reproduce on site. Students brought along the drawings and pencils to transfer the images onto the primed metal, and then filled in the pictures with fade-resistant paint.

Their baseball-themed artwork features the Legends and the team’s Stache logo, along with the state of Kentucky.

As motorists make the right-hand turn into the lot, the first panel they’ll see says “Keep calm and play ball,” surrounded by light blue flowers. Looking straight on at the three boxes, viewers get the impression of a continuous mural with a pitcher on the left, a batter in the center, and a catcher on the right. The background of each section also contains a slice of the state’s outline.

“Our goal across the front was to tie it all together,” Armstrong said.

“These are all kid-generated ideas,” she noted. “These students are thrilled to be able to share their talent and transform utility boxes into something magical and inspiring. I always want them to convey positive messages with their art.”

Tammy L. Lane is website editor for Fayette County Public Schools

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