Winter weather is just around the corner and when it arrives, Reynoldsburg city workers will be able to take to the streets behind the wheel of colorful snowplows -- hand-painted by district students.

City Public Service Director Bill Sampson said his department and Reynoldsburg City Schools collaborated on a Paint the Plow program.

"We believe this was an amazing opportunity to promote public safety, increase awareness for city snow-and-ice operations and display the talent of our local artists," he said.

The plow blades were delivered to the schools in early October. Once the artwork was finished, the painted blades were mounted on the snowplows Oct. 26.

Sampson said the program allowed students the opportunity to see a snowplow up close and gain a deeper appreciation and understanding of snow-removal operations.

"The painted blades will be used on snow routes, giving the children the chance to catch their artwork in action as crews keep Reynoldsburg streets clear of snow," he said.

Schools participating in the project were (HS)2 Academy and eSTEM Academy at the high school, under the direction of teachers Kellie Gedert and Adam Dornbirer, and State Ridge and Rose Hill elementary schools

Superintendent Melvin Brown said he was excited about the project, as were the students and staff members.

"That enthusiasm is evident in the products that were created," he said. "We cannot wait to see them on the roads this winter -- although we hope for exhibition purposes only, as we are not looking forward to getting any snow."

Brown said he appreciated the collaboration between the city and district.

"This incredible project represents yet another fantastic sign of the strong partnership between the school district and the city of Reynoldsburg," he said.

Sampson said the Paint-the-Plow project was a first for Reynoldsburg.

"Working with the superintendent, school board members, administrators, teachers and students was an exceptional, fun experience for the city staff," he said. "This collaboration had a lot to do with the project's success."

He said the students and teachers were given the freedom to use their own judgment on the design and materials used for each plow blade, along with the selection of students to do the work.

Brown said the students used that freedom to create original designs that depict school pride, road views and snow scenes.

"We are so proud of our students, our staff and our city and we try to demonstrate that pride on a daily basis," he said.

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