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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Paint by number - Wells' mural marks 100th birthday

Thursday, June 13, 2013

(Top) Matti Smith, of Sioux City, is one of dozens of Wells Enterprises employees who are painting a mural on a Wells warehouse near Central Avenue in Le Mars. (Bottom) The mural design wraps around the west and south side of the warehouse. The project is part of a celebration of the Le Mars industry's 100th year in business. To purchase these photos log on to www.lemarssentinel.com.
LE MARS -- Matti Smith carefully follows the outer edge of a stencil with her paintbrush adding a name to a mural in downtown Le Mars.

Smith and other Wells' Enterprises' employees are painting sweet treats on exterior walls of a Wells' warehouse in downtown Le Mars.

The painting project involves two warehouses near Wells' North Ice Cream Plant, according to Dave Smetter, Wells vice president of corporate & integrated marketing communications.

Mike Wells, Wells president and CEO, asked if the warehouse building closest to Central Avenue could be painted with some mural representing the business's 100th birthday, Smetter said.

Ideas were developed by people who work as designers for Wells.

A selection was made incorporating the birthday cake and candles the company is using for the business's centennial this year.

"It's a reflection of our 100 years with our 100th anniversary logo, along with some of our packaging," Smetter said. "It's brightly colored and something that's taken on a lot of energy."

The energy Smetter refers to involves employees who have volunteered to paint the mural.

"We let our employees and departments know we could use some volunteers to actually paint it and if they wanted to use it as a team-building exercise or something like that, it would be great," he said.

Wells' designers started the mural process by painting the base coat on the outside of the concrete block building, he said.

The design was drawn on the exterior of the warehouse to wrap around the west and south sides of the building.

The next step was to add numbers to the different parts of the design.

"So it's kind of like the old 'paint by numbers' system," Smetter said.

Smith, a graphic designer, and other Wells designers have worked on some of the more detailed parts of the mural project and serve as supervisors for the other Wells' employees.

"We've had a steady group of volunteers," Smetter said. "I think we've had 40-45 employees who have touched that."

Weather conditions have made the project a bit of a challenge, Smith said Wednesday as she painted the company's name on the northwest side of the mural.

The company had a goal of completing the mural by Ice Cream Days.

Wells employees have had a lot of fun doing the mural, Smetter added.

Wells hopes people will enjoy seeing the mural, he said.

"It's a way to make that signature statement of saying thank you very much for helping us and being part of what we've done here for the last 100 years," Smetter said.

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