Mural committee needs help on cops photo

Sean C. Morgan

The Sweet Home Active Revitalization Effort Murals Committee is seeking at least one photo of an old Sweet Home police car for the community’s next mural.

The committee didn’t realize it was the 100th anniversary of the department when it chose the mural’s theme, said Bill Nyara, chairman of the committee, but the members enjoyed finding out about the happy coincidence.

Even with the celebration and all of the digging around to come up with information on the department’s history, no one has been able to come up with a photo of older Sweet Home patrol cars.

The ideal would be a photo from 1961, Nyara said. That would be the 50-year mark, but he would be happy finding a historic patrol car from other years.

“We would all love for someone to come forward with a picture of something back in time, the ’50s or ’60s,” Nyara said. “We want it to be accurate if we can.”

The murals committee completed the mural and makeover at the VFW Hall this year and had some funds left over, Nyara said. “We have the money to do another one.”

The committee doesn’t have enough to do a large mural, but it does have enough to do a full-sized patrol car on the wall of the Hartman Building, located on the northeast corner of 12th and Main.

“Next year, we’d like to do a large mural,” Nyara said.

The committee had $10,000 to work with from the Sweet Home Active Revitalization Effort and a $1,000 grant from the Linn County Cultural Coalition to work on the VFW mural.

The new mural will go on the east wall of the Hartman building, which is occupied by Green for All Seasons, Nyara said. The wall was exposed by the demolition of the White’s Building.

“Ironically, it’s got White and Sons Jewelry that we’re going to leave on the wall,” Nyara said. “We thought it’d be a good idea to put a full-sized patrol car up.”

It would be something that would catch people’s eyes, and it would have a historical theme, Nyara said.

The committee would have preferred to get the mural finished this year, but the search for a photo has put it behind.

The committee would like the artist, Larry Kangas, who has painted many of Sweet Home’s murals, to go to work on the mural in his studio over the winter and then bring it down in the spring, Nyara said. Kangas will paint the mural in his studio, on Mylar panels, which will then be attached to the wall of the Hartman building.

Nyara asks that anyone who has a photo of an old patrol car to call him at (541) 401-9559.