Students, educators and representatives from Mount Airy Art Garage and the EPA gathered to kick off a special presentation of rain barrels painted by student artists Top row: Ms. Hunter (from Henry School), Cristin Harrington (teacher from Henry School), Linda Slodki (from MAAG), Shawn M. Garvin (EPA Regional Administrator, Region III) Daniel Brewer (SCH Academy teacher) Middle Row: N’Aaliyah McIntyre, Elizabeth Brown Front row: Ms. Alison Weiss (SCH Academy student)

Rain barrels painted by Springside Chestnut Hill Academy students have been selected to be part of the EPA’s exhibition, entitled “The Art & Science of Rain Barrels,” at its Public Information Center in Philadelphia.

The exhibition supports the City of Philadelphia’s Green City, Clean Waters plan by educating the public about stormwater issues and the ways people can help reduce runoff. It also promotes the message that small actions in stormwater management can make a big difference.

The SCH students worked on the rain barrel project with Mt. Airy Art Garage (MAAG) co-founders Linda Slodki and Arleen Olshanand and SCH Academy’s Fine Arts Department chair Dan Brewer. Other barrel designs chosen for the exhibition were painted by students from Charles W. Henry School, the Pennsylvania School for the Deaf, the Philadelphia Water Department and the Energy Coordinating Agency in Philadelphia.

At the opening of the exhibit on July 9, Olshanand praised the students’ barrel designs and their commitment to the environment.

“The students were enthusiastic about art, sustainability, learning more about the Wissahickon Watershed, and beautifying the community,” Olshanand said.

Alison Weiss, one of the SCH students, whose barrel was selected for the exhibition, added, “The paintings themselves bring color and creativity to unexpected places. More importantly, these barrels help the environment by holding water to be recycled.”

“The Art & Science of Rain Barrels” exhibition will run through Sept. 20. After the exhibit, the rain barrels will be distributed throughout Northwest Philadelphia and to each school that participated.

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