SPOKANE, Wash. – Nearly 100 Shaw Middle School students and Spokane Arts worked to help beautify Harmon Skate Park in Hillyard on Friday.

The students painted murals of their own design around the park. This is part of the Zone Project. The project hopes to simultaneously strengthen the economy, education, health, housing, safety and engagement with the people living in the Northeast Spokane community. Spokane Arts and The Zone work to empower young people through art.

Organizers said the students were encouraged to express their individual experience, work as a team and learn from a professional. Four professional muralist visited the students last winter to talk about the creative process of a public artist. Organizers said the students worked on their own designs then handed them off to 30 practicing artists to refine. Then, the artists and students came together in small groups to learn the techniques of mural painting.