Bluegrass Roadtrips: Discover hidden works of art with mural challenge

Published 8:02 am Friday, March 31, 2017

By Amanda Wheeler

Contributing columnist

With any large city, it’s easy to overlook small details, even though the details are often what make things fun. That’s why VisitLEX has created a “mural challenge” that helps lead you to interesting but hidden corners of Lexington.

Participating in the challenge gets you outdoors and helps you discover new parts of the city. I really got to experience and soak up the city — and it was totally free.

There are 24 different murals on the mural challenge list, which is similar to a scavenger hunt. The list tells you where to find them, and gives you a question about each one. To complete the challenge, you must visit at least 10 of the murals, answer the question about each one and snap a photo of yourself in front of one of the murals. Then, you email your answers and your photo to biglex@visitlex.com, and you will earn a prize. I would have just visited the murals for the fun of it, but getting a prize too is just a cherry on top.

Since  there are so many murals to choose from, I planned out my trip before I got to Lexington. You could plan beforehand, too, or just go down to downtown Lexington and start exploring.

I found a great mural map online (http://arcg.is/2noth8U) that lists the murals in the challenge as well as some that are not in the challenge. Some are not located in Lexington, but are in the Lexington area. It was great being able to see the murals mapped out, but I did reference the challenge website to make sure I was going to murals that counted.

One of my favorite spots has three murals on the challenge in one little area. They are all on Manchester Street, which just so happens to be by Crank and Boom — one of my favorite ice cream shops. If you plan your trip right, you could have lunch in Lexington and end up at the murals near Crank and Boom for dessert.

These wonderful works of art are peppered throughout the city and might take you to places you haven’t been very often. Others are located within walking distance of delicious foods and lovely parks. I spent a beautiful Saturday afternoon hunting for murals and could have easily spent longer if I had the time.

When you get to the downtown area, there are lots of murals near one another. I found a parking spot and then used Google Maps to walk to many of the murals. Most of them are easy to spot. Some of them you look for and can’t find, but then they pop out at you from nowhere. It was great fun looking for all of these pieces of art. A lot of them are really large and you get a different perspective if you look at them from close up or far away.

I didn’t find all 24 murals on the VisitLEX website or all 67 on the other map I found, so I think I will definitely be going back to hunt for more murals in the near future. According to the VisitLEX website, there are more murals popping up around the city all the time.