August 1, 2022
In December of 2019, we reached out to officials in the City of Chicopee and proposed this beautification project. We were inspired by an initiative that was undertaken by the Lions Club in East Longmeadow to celebrate the town’s 125th Anniversary. To celebrate – they painted fire hydrants.
With April being Autism Awareness Month – a time where Sunshine Village works to promote inclusion for people on the Autism Spectrum – we proposed painting about 35 fire hydrants in the city of Chicopee in April of 2020. This would help to promote autism awareness and acceptance – as well as celebrating the unique talents of those on with autism spectrum disorders.
The project was approved and we submitted designs and location suggestions. Then COVID hit in March of 2020 – and we put the project on hold.
We reached out to the City of Chicopee in February of 2022 and proposed starting the project in April of 2022 – when we would paint 6 hydrants in the Chicopee Center – and they again welcomed us to follow thru with this venture.
This project is more than a city beautification project – but also one that truly impacts lives. In addition to raising awareness of autism, it has allowed individuals on the autism spectrum and others who have developmental disabilities to give back to their community – and instill a sense of pride from showcasing their artistic talents.
We have painted almost a dozen hydrants now – and will continue as long as weather permits us. And…then we will begin again in 2023! We have been covered by several television, electronic media and newspapers – and each article or segment has received praise for work well done!
We welcome you to drive around the Chicopee Center and see our creations…and smile!