Skip to main content

Better Places Crowdfunding campaign launched for ‘Beginner's Mind’: A mural project for Rutland City

August 30, 2022

$6,000 goal to receive a 2:1 matching grant through DHCD’s Better Places program

Rutland, VT – Rutland residents will soon be able to enjoy a new mural on Rutland City Hall thanks to a recently launched crowdfunding campaign. The campaign is sponsored by the Vermont Department of Housing and Community Development’s Better Places program and is led by the Chaffee Art Center.

“Murals bring a sense of unity, strong community identity, and help revitalize our neighborhoods,” said Department of Housing and Community Development Commissioner Josh Hanford. “This collaborative effort aims to bring inspiration and enhance Rutland City’s community through public art.”

If the campaign reaches its $6,000 goal by September 30, 2022, the “New Beginnings Mural Project Rutland City Hall” will receive a matching grant of $12,000 from DHCD’s Better Places program.

Click here for project details and to donate.  The project is a collaboration between the Chaffee Art Center and mural artist Lopi LaRoe (aka LMNOPI) to bring inspiration to our community by adding more powerful public art.  The new mural will be on the Rutland City Hall building facing Strongs Avenue in Downtown Rutland. The theme of the project promotes reading and books as a gateway to imagination and adventure especially in our technologically saturated world.  Part of the mural will be a portrait of a bespectacled child who appears to be dreaming of geometry, gazing upward surrounded by a flock of flying books. 

Muralist Lopi LaRoe (aka LMNOPI) feels, “The goal of this mural, centrally located in downtown Rutland, is primarily for community inspiration. Public art on this scale has an uplifting effect and can act as a catalyst to change perceptions about the quality of life in a town or city. As a new resident here, it is one of my goals to lend my creative talents to elevate Rutland’s reputation as a desirable place to live”.

“With your support, we can raise a third of the total project cost which, along with the Better Places Grant’s 2:1 match, will allow us to beautify another building as we create an inspiring and vibrant community that people want to live in. All levels of giving counts as it adds to our final goal.” said Sherri Birkheimer Rooker, Executive Director of the Chaffee Art Center.

Residents, businesses, and neighbors ready to support vibrant public places, community gathering areas, and local opportunities are encouraged to get involved and support these projects.  Learn more and donate here.


About Better Places

Better Places is a community matching grant program empowering Vermonters to create inclusive and vibrant public places serving Vermont’s designated downtowns, village centers, new town centers, or neighborhood development areas. The program is led by the Vermont Department of Housing and Community Development in partnership with the Vermont Department of Health, the Vermont Community Foundation, and Patronicity, our crowdfunding experts. The program supports community-led projects that create, revitalize, or activate community gathering areas that bring people together to build welcoming and thriving places across Vermont.