Downtown building gets a face lift

Christy Johnson and Christy Johnson

A deserving makeover was given to the building that first housed The Shed and then Eclipse Salon and Day Spa by a senior art student this November.

Tara Wilson-Valaitis was studying abroad in Florence, Italy, when a fire raged through 510 E. Wooster Street on April 27, ending Eclipse Salon and Day Spa’s two week run, and defacing the building’s structure.

“When I went to Italy, it was The Shed, when I came back, it was burnt down,” said Wilson-Valaitis.

The visual impact of the burnt building stuck with Wilson, and she soon decided to take action.

“I was walking down Wooster Street and saw that the building was all boarded up, and I wanted to do something to make it look not so bad,” Wilson-Valaitis said.

After gaining permission from owner Chip Myles to do a mural, Wilson-Valaitis got to work. She purchased her own supplies and borrowed a broken ladder from the art building to paint the brown boards covering the building’s broken windows.

“Arson is an attack on the community, and I wanted to counteract that,” Wilson-Valaitis said.

The mural, which was done using oil and acrylic paints, took 15 volunteer hours to complete.

The people in the mural are real, and the message was that students can give back to the community of Bowling Green, Wilson-Valaitis said.

“People, especially the students, can affect this community negatively, or they can do something positive” she said.

The mural was meant to be taken down after completion, but because of a wide array of compliments it has received, it will remain up until renovations on the building begin.

“The remodeling should start in a few weeks. Then we will rent it out again,” said owner Chip Myles.

The possibility of a new business on East Wooster Street will find catering to the student population to be key, because of its close location to campus.

“What business goes in there will have to cater to what is appealing to students, what the students need and want, since it is so close to campus,” Greg Nemes, junior, said.

In agreement with Nemes, Saliha Muttalib is hoping for a business that is useful to students living on and close to campus.

“I think a convenience store or something for people on and close to campus who don’t have cars would be most beneficial thing for that building, sometimes its hard to get to far away places when you don’t have a car,” Muttalib said.