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Drake celebrates 5th Annual Downtown Street Painting on Court Ave.

April 17, 2014

A beloved Drake tradition hits Court Ave. for the fifth year in a row in celebration of the Drake Relays. Downtown Street Painting will take place on Wednesday, April 23 from 1–4:30 p.m. between 3rd and 4th streets on Court Ave.

While painting Court Ave. is equally as spirited as the campus tradition, it is not the messy event that Drake students and alumni know and celebrate. The campus version of street painting is a longstanding tradition, where student organizations paint a closed-off section of Carpenter Ave. to kick of Drake Relays week—many of the students end up with more paint on themselves than their designated squares.

Downtown Street Painting was not created to see who can get the messiest, but rather to provide exposure for Des Moines businesses, nonprofits, and community organizations while showing support for Drake Relays.

Each participating organization paints a 4-foot by 4-foot square of sidewalk on Court Ave. The squares will incorporate this year’s Relays theme, “Raising the Bar,” along with the organization’s own identity.

The painted sidewalk remains on display throughout the year and will be viewed by the thousands of individuals who enjoy the Downtown Farmers' market, as well as the many restaurants, businesses, and other activities that happen on Court Ave.

Registration for the event starts at 12:30 p.m. Judges choose the best designs and will be giving away awards at a ceremony, which starts at 4:30 p.m. on the day of the event.

Last year’s winners were:
• Best design (nonprofit): Court Avenue Business Association
• Best theme (nonprofit): PACE Day Treatment Center
• Best design (corporate): Ruan Transportation Management Systems
• Best theme (corporate): RDG Planning & Design
• Best overall: Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity

The celebration will end with the Court Avenue Happy Hour starting at 5 p.m.

This event is sponsored by Drake University, Drake Central Iowa Regional Advisory Board, Sherwin Williams, Court District, Habitat for Humanity, and Metro Waste Authority.

For more information contact Liz Tesar at elizabeth.tesar@drake.edu or 515-271-3378.