Mural sends a message in Greenbank

The front wall of the Greenbank Post Office was destroyed May 24 when an elderly man in a van mistook the gas pedal for the brakes and crashed into the building.

Since then, the front wall has consisted of stark plywood boards, where before stood a window framing the friendly postal workers sorting mail.

This wasn’t visually appealing to Coupeville resident Mary Ellen O’Connor, who applied her artistic talent and some acrylic paint to create a mural covering the temporary plywood wall. The mural is removable for easy relocation when the wall is finished.

The mural is designed to appear as though the viewer is still looking through a window at workers sorting mail. One of the pictured postal workers is Roxy Etherton, who hired O’Connor, to aestheticize the post office’s boarded up front.

“I’d like it to look less like a condemned building and more like it’s open and still functioning,” said Etherton. Some customers thought that the post office was closed. “The regulars have figured it out, but not everyone has.”

Mary Ellen O’Connor is a self-employed artist. She is experienced in painting theater sets, interior murals, and outdoor murals. She recently did a mural in a house in Oak Harbor with an Egyptian theme, and has painted a tennis center in Rochester, N.Y., among other projects.

“It’s big and it’s fun,” she said of painting murals.

O’Connor also works in oil paints and as a jeweler. Small details are the commodity that catch a jewelry buyer’s eye. But with murals, “It’s a lot looser than other types of art,” she said.

“I think it should say something like, “We’re still here!” Etherton advised O’Connor before the artist did her magic.

With the mural in place now, everyone will now know that the Greenbank Post Office is, indeed, open for business.

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