Pennies for Penguins!
Thank you, thank you to all of the men, women, and children who raised funds during the Pennies for Penguins campaign to restore the Penguin Rush Hour mural panels by artist Sallie Callmer.The Silver Spring Regional Center sold t-shirts, mugs, and posters to raise funds for the restoration. The campaign also collected money from the public at the Silver Spring Swings summer concerts, the Silver Spring Jazz Festival, and the Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade. Thank you for contributing!
Penguin Rush Hour Artist: Sally Callmer, 1990
The hustle and bustle of all the "suits" commuting in and out of the Silver Spring Metro Station are captured in artist Sally Callmer's 100-foot mural depicting penguins at a Metro stop. The mural, which Callmer created as the winner of a public art contest conducted by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), was originally to be displayed for one year. However WMATA later decided to purchase the work and display it permanently. Callmer took six months to paint the 25 plywood panels. Modeled from nature magazines, the penguins have become Silver Spring's unofficial downtown mascot (the official mascot is the acorn). The panels were taken down and restored through donations from Silver Spring residents and visitors. The Silver Spring Regional Center raised funds through a "Pennies for Penguins" campaign. The campaign collected money from the public at the Silver Spring Swings summer concerts, the Silver Spring Jazz Festival, and the Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade. Callmer restored the wood panels and they have been stored by the Silver Spring Urban District for many years.
As a part of the construction of the Paul S. Sarbanes Transit Center, the Montgomery County Government had the panels scanned and printed onto aluminum metal panels by Dodge Chrome and installed by the Gable Company. The coated panels are weather and graffiti resistant, last longer than the original wood panels, and can be easily reproduced if they are damaged. Both the metal reproductions and the original wood panels are owned by Montgomery County and will be maintained by the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County.
The Silver Spring Arts & Entertainment District has over 50 pieces of public art. To read more about our artwork visit https://www.silverspringdowntown.com/arts-district/public-art-in-silver-spring or take a public art walk at https://www.silverspringdowntown.com/public-art-walk. You can also download an app for a walking tour or audio tour at tip-tour.com.