Colorful "Quiltwalks" Painted in Downtown Parsons

Two bright new crosswalks were painted by volunteers in downtown Parsons on Saturday.  The design of the crosswalks, inspired by the region's rich heritage of quilting, features traditional quilt block patterns, like the Ohio Star, the Card Trick and the Dutchman's Puzzle.

The quiltwalks are part of the "Paint the Town" project, a series of volunteer days held throughout the summer and fall. The goal of Paint the Town is to make visible improvements in downtown Parsons and get the community involved.  This colorful new addition is located at the intersection of Walnut Street and Second Street.

The idea of painting the crosswalks was inspired by Main Street Fairmont, where several crosswalk murals were painted earlier this year.

The quiltwalks were designed by AFHA AmeriCorps member Sydney Haltom. They were painted with traffic marking paint, designed to withstand the wear and tear of the road.

The City of Parsons provided funding for the paint. PRO ON TRAC is very grateful to have the support of the city government in beautifying Parsons.

Anyone interested in helping to make Parsons a better place to live is encouraged to attend a PRO ON TRAC meeting, email parsonsontrac@gmail.com, or call (304) 478-6009. Meetings are held the fourth Monday of every month at 6:30 in Parsons City Hall.

Photos: Art in the Park

If you weren't in Mill Race Park on Friday, August 21, you missed one of the biggest celebrations of the year in Parsons, as the community came together for an evening of music, food, crafts and good company.  Throughout the evening, local artists and artisans displayed their work, and kids got creative making their own fall candle holders from glass jars.  As the sun went down, the Davisson Brothers performed a free outdoor concert for a crowd of about 1500 people.

Here are some photos from a great day in the park!


Painting the Town at Parsons Community Service Day

Over 50 people came out for the Second Annual Community Service Day. Students from West Virginia University, local high school students, volunteers, and community leaders got to work bright and early Saturday morning.  The volunteers were divided into groups for several projects: washing fire trucks, clearing debris around the pond, repainting the fire hall and the Mill Race Park stage, and working on the downtown buildings.

PRO ON TRAC chairman Jimmy Judy led one group of volunteers as they scraped, primed and painted trim and doorways along Front Street.  The sunny weather (except for one brief shower) made it a great day for painting—the green paint and white trim on the Bank Building door made an especially noticeable upgrade.  The scraping yielded less visible results, but it was an important step toward caulking and repainting the Bank Building windows, which will refresh the appearance of the whole block when completed.

We greatly appreciated the hard work of all the volunteers, and and we hope that the WVU service group will be back again next year!  In the meantime, we'll keep working on downtown.  Expect to see even more fresh paint on Front Street later this week, and look for new glass in the McDonald Building windows soon!

Team picture (before we were covered in sweat and paint).

Team picture (before we were covered in sweat and paint).

Before and After - Bank Building Side Door

Getting started on the Bank Building side door.

Getting started on the Bank Building side door.

Scraping old paint off of these window frames takes a lot of elbow grease.

Scraping old paint off of these window frames takes a lot of elbow grease.

Priming the McDonald Building center door.

Priming the McDonald Building center door.

AmeriCorps member Sydney Haltom applies a coat of primer to the McDonald Building door.

AmeriCorps member Sydney Haltom applies a coat of primer to the McDonald Building door.

Priming the McDonald Building center door.

Priming the McDonald Building center door.

Lunchtime at Mill Race Park.

Lunchtime at Mill Race Park.


Fitness Stations in Mill Race Park

PRO ON TRAC is proud to announce that the four new fitness stations in Mill Race Park are now officially open!  Ensuring that people here are able to live healthy, active lives is a key part of helping Parsons thrive.

These stations make it very easy for someone who is just starting out to establish an exercise routine—it’s as simple as going for a walk in the park.  Having three activities at each station enables several people to work out at a time; friends and family can exercise together and encourage each other.  Each activity has a panel with instructions for beginner, intermediate and advanced versions of the exercise.  Simply follow the instructions on the panels and move on to the more advanced exercises over time.  Upper-body cycling and shoulder strength exercises are available for people who use wheelchairs. 

We greatly appreciate everyone who helped make this project possible.  The City of Parsons and Parsons Parks and Recreation were invaluable partners in this effort.  Funding for the stations was provided by the Growing Healthy Communities Grant Program.

Get Fit in Mill Race Photos

Mill Race Park was buzzing with activity last Friday as residents tested out the new fitness stations along the walking trail.  Taking advantage of the sunny afternoon, families also enjoyed playing volleyball, croquet, bocce, and other games on the grass.  New "Get Fit in Mill Race" water bottles kept everyone hydrated.  It was a great kick-off for the new stations, which will be an asset to the Parsons community for years to come.

Many thanks to the PRO ON TRAC volunteers who made this a great afternoon, and another huge thank you to the City of Parsons and Parsons Parks and Recreation for their hard work installing the stations.

The four new fitness stations are now officially open, so don't worry if you couldn't make it on Friday—head down to Mill Race Park and check them out!

Taking the cycling station for a spin.

Taking the cycling station for a spin.

Filling out a physical activity survey--then back to playing games!

Filling out a physical activity survey--then back to playing games!

Showing off a sporty Get Fit in Mill Race water bottle!

Showing off a sporty Get Fit in Mill Race water bottle!

Kylan Myers was the lucky winner of a Fitbit!

Kylan Myers was the lucky winner of a Fitbit!

"Children of the Holocaust" Art Display in the McDonald Building

Children of the Holocaust, a collection of art and poetry created by students at Tucker Valley Elementary Middle School, is now on display in the McDonald Building on Front Street.

The poems were inspired by the true stories of children during the Holocaust. Students then created artworks that connected with the poems they had written, using media of their choice, including charcoal, torn paper, and colored pencil.

Many thanks to the Tucker Valley students for allowing us to exhibit their wonderful, moving work.

Let's Paint the Town II

Last Saturday's Paint the Town volunteers demonstrated some serious elbow grease as they scraped old paint from window trim all along Front Street.  All this scraping will prepare the windows for a fresh coat of paint.

A special thank you to Megan Hudock at WBOY-TV, who helped bring the Parsons story to a wider audience.  Check out the WBOY coverage of the event here.

Thanks also to the City of Parsons for their support, especially allowing us to use the bucket truck.

Stay tuned for information about the next Paint the Town event sometime in August!