4-H adds colour to Voyageur Panel

There’s something new to see at Voyageur Panel’s OSB mill in Barwick, compliments of the Rainy River District 4-H Association.
Local 4-H members and leaders put the final touches on their wall mural at the OSB mill Saturday.
Leader Shirley Morrish said their painting crew, consisting of Simone and Seline LeBlanc, Laura and Linda Zimmerman, Tina Hyatt, Tammy Flatt, Melinda Teeple, Christina Kellar, Alwine Teeple, and Kim Jo Bliss, put in about 20 work hours over six visits to finish the painting.
“The hardest part was getting started,” Morrish said, noting it was hard to schedule between the kids’ summer jobs. “But once we got going, it was great.”
The mural was designed by Kellar and Simone LeBlanc. It was first put together on paper, copied over to a transparency, then blown-up on a projector to be outlined on the wall.
Since the mural was inside the mill itself, only four people were allowed to get up on the scaffolding to paint at any one time for safety reasons. That lengthened the job a little. But Morrish said what they didn’t have in numbers they made up for in enthusiasm.
“We’d go in for 10 in the morning for as long as our stomachs and energy could hold out,” she said. “[The kids] were quite interested.”
The idea of painting the mural came from Voyageur Panel mill manager Percy Champagne, who made the offer to the local 4-H association at its annual awards banquet last year.
For their troubles, 4-H will get a cheque for $500, all of which Morrish said will go right back to the kids in the club.
“This will go to trips and banners and awards,” she said, “And the different things we present to the kids.”