Funded! This project was successfully funded on April 27, 2012.

Update #6

Citizen Paint project complete!


Hello Citizens!

I am excited to share a final image of the amazing mural that has transformed not only a vacant building, but an entire corner in our community.  It has taken weeks longer to complete because of the detailed painting and the rain.  Valerie, Shahin and Nehemiah have been seen on the ladders throughout the past month finalizing outlines and color blocking.  Big applause to their creative drive!

Thanks to those of you who came out to paint on April 28th!  More than 125 citizens made their mark.  Hopefully, you see the space you painted and smile, knowing that its a part of this process and final art work. I love that people use it to give directions to their house, or walk their dogs down to the site to check on the progress.  Keep coming and being on the Avenue!

Please send any images or comments to the Joe's Facebook page, or email me at  I'd love to know what this project means to you.

Many thanks for all your support!  You have made an impact!

Brooke and the Citizen Paint Tribe

PS: If you haven't yet received your t-shirt or other award, please contact me. Sorry for any delays!

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Update #5

Citizen Paint: on for tomorrow


Hello Citizens,

The weather looks agreeable enough to encourage you all to join us on Rhode Island Avenue to transform the corner of our community with creativity.  The entire Better Block Festival will mobilize at noon and the fun lasts until rain or wind send us home.  Wear a jacket, consider a hat -- come on down to shop, to socialize, and to enjoy green living workshops and local musicians, good eats from Fogol Brothers food truck and LOTS OF ART MAKING!

Stroll along the Avenue and check out the other aesthetic improvements our team provided to 4 businesses.  

Check out the outline of the design that Valerie, Shahin, and Nehemiah have completed.  Its ready for color by YOU!

Many thanks for your support of our community!

Brooke and the whole tribe of Citizen Paint/Better Block

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Update #4

Citizen Paint: Mission Accomplished

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Thank you Citizens!

You have made it possible for this project to be fully funded!  We applaud your commitment to community public art and engagement.  We thank you deeply for your investment!

We have 24 hours left to raise any additional gifts and the generous PREMIUM PRIZE for two weeks at the Washington Writer's Retreat is still on the table.  Any additional gifts or upgrades will be part of a drawing.  We have had cost over-runs for completing the project (renting sturdier scaffolding, additional paint, longer hours), so any extra will really help.

At the moment, we are contemplating the Better Block Project festival scheduled for this weekend due to predictions of rain.  If we postpone, the rain date is more likely to be May 5th.  An update will be provided tomorrow after we consult the forecast and the oracle.  We will let you know when you can Paint.

Check out Nehemiah on the scaffolding beginning the outline of the mural.  The energy is awesome on the corner thanks to all our partners and supporters being present at a long neglected community site.

Much appreciation,

Brooke and the Citizen Painters

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Update #3

Painting toward the finish line


Hello Citizen Paint supporters!

The base coat is being sprayed on the building right now.  Lead artist Valerie Theberge worked with Emily of Color in Space to select amazing colors that will vibrate without looking too cutesy.  Can't wait to see the patterns emerge next weekend at the main event: Mount Rainier Better Block Project 2012 from 12 to 5pm.

Right now, we are so close to the finish line of our fundraising goals.  79 tremendous people and businesses have donated $5,393. 

Special applause for special backers:  Franklin's Brewery and Restaurant, Nisey's Boutique, Glut Food Coop, Jimmy Tarlau, Brent Bolin and Danielle Schopp, and Larry Solomon of Thrifty Car Rental. 

Special Premium! for new or increased gifts of $10 or more - a raffle for a creative retreat in our community.  The Washington Writer's Retreat, a creative residency house here in Mount Rainier, has offered a 2-week stay and Joe's Movement Emporium is adding a two-week unlimited pass for classes, rehearsal space or theater tickets (space available).  You might have an artist colleague who needs a peaceful retreat, or someone planning to come to the Washington area.  You are eligble for the raffle if you increase your gift.  Please share and let your out of town peeps know!  The odds are going to be pretty good!

Many thanks for your support!

Brooke and the Better Block team!

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Update #2

Let's PAINT... and a Raffle!


The week just started and already it's great! The first coat of primer went up on the old funeral home. We’ve gained three new Creative Collaborators. Thank you Busboys and Poets, Hair Cuttery, and ShelfGenie. We’re more than halfway to our goal with nine days left...and we have a new raffle!

Win a Two-Week Residency in Mount Rainier, MD

Anyone outside the DC metro area who donates $10 or more to the Citizen Paint Project is entered into a raffle for two weeks at the Washington Writer's Retreat plus a wellness package that includes a massage, a personalized yoga training session, and unlimited classes and performances at Joe’s Movement Emporium. Book anytime after September 15, 2012. Come check out this creative community for yourself and help us transform vacant into vibrant in the Gateway Arts District.

We know you have friends who would love Mount Rainier as much as we do. Help us find them... tweet, post, and share the new raffle. Only nine days left to back the Citizen Paint Project, get a chance at the prize, and see a street corner transform right before your eyes.

Thank you again and hope to see you on April 28!

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    14 backers Limited (486 left of 500)

    Paint People! You get a hug and a paint brush on April 28 to help us go from vacant to vibrant on Rhode Island Avenue.

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    Bucket Brigade! You're willing to carry water for this project. You get a limited edition 2012 Better Block Bucket to display prominently on your front porch.

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    Design Divas! You love to feel good inside and out and you know this project will brighten our street corner and our spirits. You get a stylish 2012 Better Block t-shirt to show your support.

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    7 backers Limited (18 left of 25)

    Power Washers! You drive up and down Rhode Island Avenue and it makes you want to wax on and wax off. Miyagi have hope for you, kid. You get a chance to share your infinite wisdom in this year's Better Block video.

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    3 backers Limited (7 left of 10)

    Mark Makers! You know this project will make a difference for the Gateway Arts District and you want your name on it. We'll have a custom stencil of your name and the spot to spray it on when you arrive on April 28.

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    3 backers Limited (2 left of 5)

    Creative Collaborators! You know this temporary public art project is just one example of the creative capacity in Mount Rainier. You're excited about our new development and want to attract great partners to the Gateway Arts District. You probably don't want much in return, but we'll give you a hug, a brush, a bucket, a t-shirt, a name stencil, a spot in the video, and our sincere gratitude.

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Funding period

- (39 days)