The façade of Neponset’s Devine Ice Rink has a brand new look this summer that harkens back to the neighborhood’s not-too-distant past. A team of 10 young painters from the Mayor’s Mural Crew last month completed a colorful panoramic on the side of the state-owned facility on Morrissey Boulevard. The mural includes elements of present day Boston — the gas tank and the city skyline— alongside natural scenes that are still visible along parts of our coastline: salt marshes and egrets.
“We wanted to beautify the area and restore some of the natural habitat that was originally there,” explains Gregg Bernstein, the assistant director of the mural team that works out of the Mayor’s Office of Arts, Tourism and Special Events. “When you’re in that parking lot, all you see is concrete. This brings back memories of what once was there- a salt marsh.”
The paint job took the team about three and a half weeks to complete.
Karl Pastore, who manages the Devine Rink for the state’s Department of Conservation and Recreation, is delighted with the finished product. The mural is a nice complement to a city-state partnership that’s developed at the rink, which is directly adjacent to the city-owned Garvey Park. This summer, for the second consecutive year, the city’s Center for Youth and Families is using the interior of the ice rink — along with the park — for special programs for neighborhood youth through a program called Boston ROCKS.
“It’s great. The kids have a place to play ping-pong and cool off or go when it’s raining,” Pastore said.
Lauren Smyth, the mayor’s liaison to Dorchester, approached Pastore about having the mural designed to beautify the building.
“I’ve got to admit- before the mural- it was one of the ugliest facades of any of our buildings and we were looking for a way to make it more inviting,” said Pastore.
A photo display is planned for the rink’s interior to explain the new mural and identify the teens who helped to make it a reality.