This summer, Downtown Racine will blossom into a vibrant gallery under the open sky, as the Downtown Racine Corporation unveils its 23rd annual public art project. From June through mid-September, the streets will be adorned with enchanting butterfly wings, offering an immersive and interactive art experience like no other. The official unveiling of all 26 butterflies will be on June 7, during Downtown Racine’s First Friday.

“We are thrilled to celebrate over two decades of continuous public art displays, a feat that places us among the elite communities nationwide,” expressed Kelly Kruse, Executive Director of the Downtown Racine Corporation. “This year’s focus on butterfly wings isn’t just about enhancing the aesthetic appeal of our downtown. It’s about creating interactive art that invites selfies, sparks joy, and ultimately, transforms into cherished garden art pieces once auctioned.”

Enhancing the local connection of this year’s project, the Downtown Racine Corporation is proudly collaborating with Green Hills Metal Werks for the wing designs and partnering with Professor Kyle Worzala and his Gateway students’ welding class to create all the bases. These local ties add a unique and special dimension to the project, further rooting it in the community spirit of Racine.

“Gateway Technical College’s Welding Program is honored and excited to work with the DRC in creating metal stands for this art installation. We believe in giving our students the ability to utilize their education in a real-world setting and to give back to the community. The sense of professionalism and pride they will gain from this opportunity will be beneficial to their post-college careers. We hope this inspires not only our current students, but potential students who may want to enroll with our program,” stated Professor Worzala.