In the spring of 2023, Partners of Scott County Watersheds and Quad City Arts teamed up to create a series of watershed education murals along the Duck Creek Parkway!
Duck Creek runs from the far reaches of west Davenport through Bettendorf and into the Mississippi River, meandering through the most urban parts of Scott County. Next to the creek is the 12-mile Duck Creek Parkway, a natural corridor and multi-use trail. Many people use the Duck Creek Parkway, and many more live in the Duck Creek Watershed (see map), yet few know they are even in a watershed at all!
In the spring of 2022, PSCW received a grant to install 50 signs along the Duck Creek Parkway to educate trail users about the watershed they recreate in and ways to protect its health. See more about the project here.
To take this educational effort a step further, PSCW enlisted the help of Quad City Arts through their Metro Arts Youth Apprenticeship program. Through this collaboration, five mural sites along Duck Creek were identified and prepared for painting. In mid-May, 25 volunteers through the United Way Day of Caring lent a hand to the project and primed each mural site.
Once primed, artists began to sketch designs for each mural location. These murals were designed to educate users and neighbors of the Duck Creek Parkway about the watersheds they live, work, and play in; invoke curiosity and connection to watersheds through visual arts; and improve the aesthetic vitality of the community.
In early June, artists in the Metro Arts Youth Apprenticeship program presented their designs to the Partners of Scott County Watersheds Board and prepared to paint!
In August, sketches were sent over to PSWC for the Northwest Park and Garfield Park murals. Wonderful ideas we were excited to see come to life!
From mid-June through early September, the artists worked on murals at Marquette Park, Junge Park, Northwest Park, and Garfield Park. PSCW plans to implement the other mural designs Eastern Avenue Park by spring 2024. In the meantime, head out to Marquette, Junge, Northwest, and Garfield Park to see the completed murals yourself. Don’t forget to take a photo and tag #EnjoyRespectProtect when you post!
Marquette Park, Junge Park, Northwest Park, and Garfield Park Artists: