by Josh Gross
Hundreds of students at Boise's Roosevelt Elementary gathered May 11 in the gym/cafeteria for the unveiling of a project that they have been collectively working on since January: a mural made out of plastic bottlecaps.
The project was spearheaded by self-proclaimed "art moms" Tracy Olson and Julie Bush, who were inspired by the recycled materials work of Michelle Stitzlein and the school's educational theme of respect to create the design and help the students assemble it.
"They aren't recyclable; they're free and they're colorful," said Olson.
And it didn't hurt that the school's walls were completely blank thanks to a large-scale renovation last year.
After a brief speech thanking the students for all their work, Principal Juli Bronner invited two sixth-grade students to remove the large blue tarp covering the mural, while the rest of the audience offered up a drum roll.
"But we already know what it looks like," one little girl who had worked on the mural groaned.
The students pulled the cords, revealing the brightly colored mural and eliciting a giant round of applause.
Afterwards, Bronner said there were ice cream sandwiches waiting for all the students to reward them for their hard work. Right on cue, they all immediately began screaming.