The students at Gateway Intermediate School 364 (IS 364) and Frederick Douglass Academy VIII (FDA VIII) are aspiring artists and now the entire community knows it. In an attempt to draw attention to the soon to open Boston Market, the chain involved the community, local schools and local artists to participate in a mural contest. “In advance of our Boston Market Spring Creek restaurant opening, our goal with the construction barricade surrounding the location was to transform it into a community involvement project that involved the surrounding neighborhood, schools, professional artists and local officials, among others. The project will serve as a natural leadin to the opening with the project conclusion coinciding with a grand opening ceremony,” said Bob Gerard, Director of Operations at Boston Market.
This is the first mural collaboration that Boston Market involved both local schools and artists. Lisa Romans, also known as Ms. BOOMBOX, visited both schools to talk with the students about their designs and discussed how they can pursue art as a profession. She explained that her work is based on passion, and if they feel passionate about their art, or whatever they do in the future, they will be truly happy when they grow up.
After selecting students’ designs at each school, she sketched both murals using their designs and LadyKFever helped on-site during the Mural Painting Community Day. “This is our first time partnering with schools to paint a mural and first time collaborating with Ms. BOOMBOX and LadyKFever. They did some great work, and the students really enjoyed working with them,” said Gerard.
Ms. BOOMBOX visited both schools while students sketched out their renditions of family time and food. “I love this concept (of involving the community) and I’m really excited and enjoy working with the children and with the community. This just shows the kids that your dreams can come true,” said Ms. BOOMBOX. Art teacher, Dianne Ferrer who teaches 8th grade art at IS 364 said that the students are enthusiastic and thrilled to participate in the mural contest for Boston Market. “Students are excited to be representing their school in this project,” said Ferrer.
Art is very much intertwined in FDA VIII’s course work, so the Boston Market mural was a wonderful outlet for the talented students to exhibit their work. Twelve-year-old Princess Richardson loves to paint, draw, and aspires to become a famous painter when she graduates from school. “I’m excited to draw something for the Boston Market mural that shows how a family sits down together to share a meal, and all the love that goes into each dish,” she said. Richardson came up with one of the designs Ms. BOOMBOX chose, a group of silhouettes holding hands around a table.
On Saturday, October 17th, students, educators, local artists (Ms. BOOMBOX and LadyKFever), community members, and Boston Market officials gathered to participate in Mural Painting Community Day. “We were most impressed with the students’ creativity and their ideas for family meal time. We had such a great variety from the students which definitely showed in the finished murals,” said Gerard. These students were given a task of making sketches that encompassed family time and incorporated chicken, food and what family meal time means. Students gave it their all and were thrilled to see their sketches come to life with the help of local artists, Ms. BOOMBOX and LadyKFever. “This community collaboration with the Brooklyn schools is a great starting point to show our partnership and dedication to the community. We look forward to the community’s participation in the mural competition, “said Gerard. There are three ways to vote for your favorite mural. For every vote, Boston Market will donate $1 (up to $7,500) to the schools. Cast your vote now until November 9. The winner will be announced at the grand opening ceremony in midNovember!
- Facebook: Visit the Boston Market Facebook page and comment on the photo using #VoteGatewayBostonMarket or #VoteFreddyBostonMarket
- Twitter: Visit the Boston Market Twitter page and retweet either the Gateway Middle School tweet or the Frederick Douglass Academy tweet
- Instagram: Visit the Boston Market Instagram page and comment on the photo using #VoteGatewayBostonMarket or #VoteFreddyBostonMarket
Boston Market’s Spring Creek restaurant located at 1340 Pennsylvania Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11239 will open in mid-November.
By Pamela Stern and Amanda Moses
Photo Courtesy of: Jared Jeffery Photography