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Port Orchard plans to 'paint the town'
Volunteers are planning a second-stage cleanup for downtown Port Orchard in anticipation of the tourism season and summer festivals.
While the cosmetics are to be applied over the coming months, there is also a tentative plan for a more radical upgrade.
Mayor Lary Coppola is investigating the idea to hold a “painting weekend,” during which the city would close down Bay Street for two days and recruit volunteers to add a fresh coat of paint to every downtown building.
The landscaping and renovations, which will take several months to complete, are leading up to the first Cedar Cove Days at the end of August.
“Whenever you have company, you want to clean the house,” Tourism Committee member Cindy Lucarelli said.
Landscaping is the least expensive and most effective process, and several projects are on the drawing board.
The most prominent is a grassy spot on the east end of Bay Street downtown, which is to be cleaned up this weekend by a crew supervised by Chamber of Commerce Executive Director (and Tourism Committee member) Coreen Haydock Johnson.
After the area is cleared Johnson hopes to plant a visible W-E-L-C-O-M-E in begonias on the land, to greet people who are coming into the downtown area.
About $3,000 of already collected funds from the hotel-motel tax have been allocated to the project, supplemented by a $2,000 gift from talk show host and local resident Delilah Rene.
“Port Orchard is a great community and Delilah wants to show her support,” said Kraig Kitchen, Rene’s business partner and spokesman. “This cleanup is a worthwhile effort.”
Kitchen said Delilah is open to covering some of the paint costs, but won’t commit to a certain amount or percentage until more data is made available.
Coppola, who is enthusiastic about the painting project, admits there are several details yet to be determined.
The color scheme could be the most important, and controversial. There is the amount of paint, and its quality.
There is also the number of volunteers, which will influence how many paintbrushes will be needed.
And of course, liability needs to be established, and the process could take considerable preparation.
“This would be a great promotional opportunity for Port Orchard,” Coppola said. “We can have a lot of fun. There are volunteers and celebrities that want to get involved.”