ELLSWORTH — The crosswalks at Ellsworth High School (EHS) and Ellsworth Elementary-Middle School (EEMS) got a lot more colorful this week, as members of the EHS Gender/Sexuality Diversity Alliance (GSDA) set about painting them rainbow colors in support of the LBGTQ+ community.
The School Board approved the plan earlier this year. The group has also asked to paint several crosswalks around the city. The City Council denied the request in August but voted to put together a committee to explore this issue, which GSDA Advisor Carrie Richards Kutny said would likely get underway at the end of the month.
“It’s gone really well, and this group of kids, this club, they’ve been here for a long time now and they always have great ideas,” said EHS Principal Dan Clifford, who was on hand for the painting of the crosswalks on Thursday afternoon. “This is another example of one.”
Kutny said the group also planned to have a community painting party at Coastal Interiors, which has offered to let the students paint the cement barriers in its parking lot, and that residents will also notice several colorful animals — a zebra, an ostrich, a unicorn and a giraffe — appearing on properties around the city in the coming weeks. The animals, painted in rainbow colors as well as in the pink, blue and white of the transgender flag, are on loan from a family in Orono, where they have been displayed around the city.
Clifford said the crosswalk idea has been well-received by students.
“They’re looking out for what’s best for students and what’s best for our high school,” he said. “I thought this was a great idea.”
Heart of Ellsworth, Healthy Acadia and Fogtown Brewing Co. all donated supplies for the project.