Improving the scenery |

Improving the scenery

Annie Flanzraich

Annie Flanzraich / Tahoe Daily TribuneSindri Azpeitia looks at the half completed mural on the side of the Meek's Lumber and Hardware building on Lake Tahoe Boulevard. High school art students will help complete the bottom of the mural before Azpeitia and other friends finish shading and outlining the art piece.

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – When Sindri Azpeitia opened the Free Bird eatery on Lake Tahoe Boulevard with Aaron Abrams, she knew something had to be done about the wall on the side of Meek’s Lumber and Hardware building.

A faded rendering of Jesus with a crown of thorns, a painting of a joker and the phrase “Art4tho” formerly adorned the concrete gray wall.

“I’ve been spoiled with scenery,” said Azpeitia, who moved to South Lake Tahoe in 2007 from the Grand Canyon. “That’s why I couldn’t stand the crumbling Jesus.”

So Azpeitia began the two-month long process to get the mural approved by the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency and other agencies.

Once she received approval, Azpeitia reached out to South Tahoe High School art teacher Candi Lincoln and asked her students to design the mural.

Azpeitia took those designs as inspiration for the mural which depicts three Tahoe scenes – a bike trail, a pier and a mountain sunset. To start the mural Azpeitia, Abrams and others projected an outline of the design onto the wall at night. They traced the design and then Azpeitia labeled each section with what color it should be painted.

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“It’s like a giant paint by number,” she said.

Ahern donated a scissor lift for Azpeitia and others to use to paint the top of the mural. Meek’s and Devoe donated paint for the mural.

On Tuesday afternoon the mural was half completed and Azpeitia expected it will take a few more days for the final image to emerge. Many volunteers have helped Azpeitia paint the mural including friends and students from Tahoe High School.