Sharing Art in Williamson
If you take a walk in Williamson and notice things look a little more artsy, you can thank Kim McClanahan. Kim works with those struggling with addiction at the Southwestern Regional Day Report Center and recently she kicked off a project to paint fire hydrants throughout town. “I have seen other counties and states do similar art and beautification projects and I felt like this would be an amazing thing to do here,” she says.
Kim is not a stranger to local beautification projects. She was also a part of the effort to repaint the Chief Logan statue outside of the Coal House a couple of years back. This time she chose hydrants because they offered a smaller job that could be finished in one day. “They’re also scattered throughout the town and no one notices them, so this was a way for different styles of art to be scattered throughout,” she says.
A Positive Project
After getting the idea to paint hydrants, Kim got in touch with Williamson’s mayor and fire chief, as well as the manager of the city water company. Once she was in the clear to start, she began brainstorming with her clients at the Day Report Center. “We picked designs by looking up images online and brainstorming ideas on what we think would be relevant to Mingo County and West Virginia as a whole.”
She and her clients tried to paint some of the hydrants with images related to our area. One example is the hydrant across from the Coal House. It has been painted to resemble a coal miner. “Not all will be that way,” Kim says, “but we liked to incorporate what we could.”
This project was about more than adding some art to the area. Painting the hydrants also offered clients at the Day Report Center a positive project to be a part of.
“This project was also a way to provide our clients with a positive outlet to remain active in their community and take pride in their area,” Kim says.
There's more to come from Kim and her crew! Watch for updates on the City of Williamson Facebook page!