MDF Launches Downtown Mural Project

With a focus on arts and culture and a desire to activate alleys, the Missoula Downtown Foundation has partnered with Missoula Artist Tanya Lee Yarrow and downtown business Grizzly Hackle to create a large art mural on the Ryman Street entrance into Caras Park.

Funded by the Foundation’s new Arts & Culture Impact Grants program, the Greetings from Missoula mural will feature in each letter a unique cultural part of Missoula. Artist Tanya Yarrow noted in her application that the mural will strengthen the connection to downtown throughout the community and will be something the local community can take pride in.

“We are really excited to see the Downtown Arts & Culture Impact Grants program come to life,” said Dan Maronick, President of the Missoula Downtown Foundation Board of Directors. “Art for the public and alley activation projects are intended to attract people to these special places time and time again. This will be a fun project for the public to follow along with and share together as a community!”

The mural will take up over 700 square feet of blank cinder block wall space that is often a target for graffiti. Once the wall is covered in professional artwork, the vandalism and graffiti tagging is expected to taper. Once completed, the mural will be covered with a varnish to better protect the artwork from tagging and ultraviolet damage.

The project will start this week and should be completed by mid-to-late July. The sidewalk adjacent to the Grizzly Hackle building will be closed when the artist is working but will be open to the public during the Saturday morning markets.

“I am excited about the opportunity of this wall because it is in such a major corridor to a special place in our community, with Caras Park, the Carousel and Dragon Hollow all nearby,”

said Artist Tanya Yarrow. “This canvas represents an area of our community that is truly the heartbeat of our beautiful and creative town. As a local artist, the chance to contribute to making Missoula special is what keeps my drive alive.”

The newly-created Arts & Culture Impact Grants Program is intended to partner artists with building owners and funding to create destination artwork and implement goals of the Downtown Master Plan and its subsets, including more art, placemaking projects, alley activation projects, and gateway improvements. The Foundation will be funding two projects this year, and the Ryman Gateway is the first to get started.

“We are grateful for this partnership with the Foundation and look forward to working with Artist Tanya Lee Yarrow to transform a grey and uninteresting wall into a bright, colorful and interesting one of art that is welcoming for residents and visitors alike,” said Brendan Bannigan, owner of the building, Grizzly Hackle and Dry Fly Apartments. “This mural will be a great addition and highlight to a central gateway into the park.”

These projects are made possible in part due to generous gifts from Missoula Downtown Foundation donors. Folks interested in supporting the Arts & Culture Impact Grants Program are encouraged to donate online at

For more information about the Missoula Downtown Foundation, visit or reach out to the staff via phone (406-543-4238) or email ([email protected]).


Watch the progress here:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *