Then and Now murals grace downtown Forest

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Artist Red George in front of his mural Soul Mates in downtown Forest.

There will be more art than just films in Forest this weekend.

The town is hosting the Lambton Film and Food Festival Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Starting Friday morning, the downtown will be filled with music and art with musical street performers and school children livening up the street with chalk art.

And as they work and play, they’ll be able to see some of the 12 new murals in the downtown.

Catherine Minielly and Lynn VanHaaren of the Forest BIA spearheaded the project. Four artists, Rick Jones, Brian Normandeau , Bill Foster and Red George, were commissioned to create the murals with the theme of Then and Now.

VanHaaren doesn’t have one favourite mural saying each is interesting and she sees something new each time she looks at them.

George, who created two murals including Soul Mates which shows two Blue Herons in the sunset, is excited to be part of the project in the community.

VanHaaren says the BIA received grants to cover the $48,000 cost of the project. It also received funding from Lambton’s Creative County grants to commission two more murals.

The mural project may spread; VanHaaren says some business owners outside the BIA boundaries hope to commission murals to be placed on buildings in the commercial area.

If you would like to get a look at the murals, Minniely will be offering guided tours of the works of art starting at 11 am until 2 pm Friday starting at the Kineto Theater.