Downtown Sault Ste. Marie Mural Project

Four Unique Murals to Celebrate Sault Ste. Marie

Downtown, Sault Ste. Marie, MI Arts Community

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Bringing Murals to Sault Ste. Marie

Michigan's oldest city, Sault Ste. Marie, was founded in 1668.  Our community is built upon nearly 350 years of rich, cultural history.  We are privileged to be home to scores of tremendously talented artists and art organizations who have given back to our city for many years.  Because of their work, Sault Ste. Marie currently boasts tremendous sculptures and indoor murals.  However, we have yet to truly showcase our skilled artists' work in an outdoor venue.

Four Unique Murals Planned

The Sault Ste. Marie Downtown Development Authority is partnering with four downtown business owners and three local artists to install large-scale murals in four unique locations.  

Location One: A 30'x30' mural will be painted on the south wall of Pingatore Cleaners' building located at 713 Ashmun Street, one of the most visible locations for more than 10,000 vehicles per day passing by, as well as bicyclists and pedestrians.  This mural will feature the work of Lake Superior State University arts professor Lloyd Eddy.

Location Two: A 20'x70' mural will be painted on the east wall of Island Books & Crafts, located at 101 East Portage Avenue.  Thousands of tourists, campers, and locals pass by this location each and every day.  This mural will focus on our maritime heritage, being the perfect size for a replica painting of the Edmund Fitzgerald, which sank in 1975.  What is truly amazing about the location is that in 1975, on the night of the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald, Portage Avenue flooded, and gale-force winds damaged the Island Books & Crafts building - damage which can still be seen today if you ask property owner Les Townsend to tell you the story.  This mural will feature the work of well-known local muralist Jeanne Tubman, who specializes in maritime art.


Location Three: A 15'x70' mural will be restored on the east wall of the historic Alpha Bar building located at 105 West Portage Avenue, located at the highly visible intersection of Ashmun Street and Portage Avenue.  The Farmer's Market is located just across the street, where thousands of people gather every summer.  This mural is incredibly exciting, because it is a historic mural that will be rediscovered and restored.  The building owners believe that the mural features a canoe and other various artwork dating back more than 50 years, but the mural was covered by plywood siding decades ago.  A small corner has been revealed this spring, showing that the mural is still there, waiting to be brought back to life.

Location Four: A 15'x20' mural will be painted on the west wall of 1668 Winery & Lockside Brewery located at 100 West Portage Avenue.  This mural will appeal to the nearly 500,000 tourists that visit the Soo Locks every summer, encouraging pedestrians to explore Portage Avenue in its entirety, and will serve as a visual connection between Portage Avenue and Ashmun Street.  The mural will feature a historic theme centered around Father Marquette and the founding of Sault Ste. Marie in 1668.  This mural will also be painted by local artist Jeanne Tubman.

Murals Transform Spaces

Fresh, vibrant public art is needed in Sault Ste. Marie, not only to encourage tourism, engage traffic, bicyclists and pedestrians, but to truly showcase Sault Ste. Marie's rich, diverse, and exciting arts culture. 

Each mural is strategically placed to add vibrancy to key locations. Location One: the wall of Pingatore Cleaners, is located just a few blocks from the Lake Superior State University campus.  The mural will serve to strengthen the visual ties between the campus and community. Location Two and Location Three: on the east wall of Island Books & Crafts and the east wall of the Alpha Bar, continues to build on a growing "critical mass" of energy on the corner of Ashmun Street and Portage Avenue, building on the success of the Farmer's Market across the street, and offering a finishing touch to the exciting facade restorations happening in the vicinity as well.  Location Four: on the west wall of 1668 Winery & Lockside Brewery, serves a special purpose: to draw the hundreds of thousands of tourists eastward from the Soo Locks, giving them a visual reference point to walk toward, encouraging further discovery of downtown Sault Ste. Marie.

Support Today!

To prepare the surfaces, buy the supplies, and hire the artists, a budget of $32,000 has been established. For every dollar we raise locally, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation & Michigan State Housing Development Authority, will match us 100 percent. Therefore, our goal is just $16,000!  

You can make your gift directly on this page by selecting a reward or clicking the support button.  

If you want to support this important project, but prefer not to make a gift online, please contact:

Sault Ste. Marie Downtown Development Authority
Justin Knepper, Downtown Manager
jknepper@downtownsault.org
906.635.6973

You may mail checks to:

Sault Ste. Marie Downtown Development Authority
511 Ashmun Street, Suite 103
Sault Ste. Marie, MI 49783

Make checks payable to the Sault Ste. Marie Downtown Development Authority with "Sault Murals" in the note. Add reward level in note if you chose to select one. Checks must be received and processed prior to the end of the campaign on July 15th, 2016.



Give $10 or more

16 claimed

Prep The Walls

Your donation helped prepare the mural surfaces

Give $25 or more

21 claimed

Paint & Brushes

Your donation helped purchase a can of paint and a brush!

Give $50 or more

18 claimed

Mural Postcard

You'll receive a thank-you postcard featuring one of the four murals once complete!

Give $100 or more

23 claimed

Mural Mug

You'll receive a mug featuring one of the four pieces of art PLUS everything in previous levels.

Give $250 or more

3 claimed

Mural T-Shirt

You'll receive a t-shirt featuring one of the four murals PLUS everything in previous levels.

Give $500 or more

11 claimed

Mural Plaques

You'll support will be noted on four appreciation plaques displayed at each mural location PLUS everything in previous levels.

Give $1000 or more

6 claimed

VIP Golden Ticket & Print

You'll receive a print of a mural of your choice and an invitation to a VIP unveiling event PLUS everything in previous levels.

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