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If you’ve been to Kensington, KS, lately, you might notice something fresh and new. In preparation for the 150th annual Veteran’s Day celebration, Denise Miller and her students from Thunder Ridge High School took on an aggressive plan to beautify Main Street. They invited Kensington residents to work alongside the students in showing pride in their community. Even Prairie Land Electric got involved!

The plans and designs were created by the students in advance, and action started in September. Several empty buildings were painted and revitalized. A new tribute to veterans was added, and a unique outside dining pergola was built. A mural that was painted just last year, only to be destroyed by storms, was recreated on a more permanent surface.

Miller provided frequent updates and pictures of the progress to her community online. A city-wide cleanup started on Sept. 5. That day, Prairie Land crews brought some poles to donate and used the digger to set them in the location for the new mural. About a week later, the students installed the supports for the mural, so that crews from Prairie Land could come back the next day and mount the metal. Later, after the mural was repainted, an awning and solar lights were added.

These projects provided real-life skills for the students to work on, and the additional assistance provided by the rest of the community gave everyone a chance to have tangible evidence of their community pride. 

The results were very satisfying. “I’m just so thrilled with all the work that has been accomplished,” said Miller. “I’m proud of our students for investing in their hometown.”

For more information, visit the story on City of Kensington’s website.  Find more photos of the mural restoration under our Events and Projects page.