Storefronts Bedecked In Circus Theme

May 13, 1994|By Jody Roesler | Jody Roesler,Special to The Sun

The glass storefronts at Pastore's Plaza will house elephants, tigers and zebras this weekend, but merchants have been spared the usual headaches of feeding and cleaning up after them.

A Northeast High School art teacher and three of his students decorated the plaza at Mountain and Hog Neck roads in a circus train theme for the annual "spring fling" bazaar and sidewalk sale this Sunday.

"They're made out of vinyl made to be cut on a computer," said Steve Sweet of his animal assortment. "I have these students in class the last period of the day, and we work on cutting out the animals."

Early in the week, Mr. Sweet and his students created the tops, bottoms and sides of the rail cars. Wednesday, they started applying the cut-outs to the windows, placing the animals in those cars. "They transfer like a big sticker," Mr. Sweet said.

"The hardest part is cutting them with dull X-acto knives," said Jason Grubb, 17, as he unrolled a gray section of elephant.

Each color of the design must be cut separately and layered over the others to create stripes and spots on the animals.

"We spray plain water on the window to float the vinyl so we can get it where we want it," said Greg Primrose, 17. "Then you squeeze the water out and it leaves a sticky layer."

Merchants of Pastore's Plaza started planning the "spring fling" six weeks ago.

"We decided on a circus theme at a meeting between all the tenants," said Shirley Esposito, co-owner of Pasadena Party. "And the circus train idea just came out of my mouth."

Ms. Esposito said that Brian Metzbower of Pastore's contacted Mr. Sweet, who incorporated the project into classwork. The job took eight school days.

"When they gave me the idea of the train, I got a box of animal crackers, did some drawings, showed them to the tenants, and they liked them," said Mr. Sweet.

Mr. Sweet, who owns a sign business, liked the idea of helping out. "For me, people come by and ask if I can do this or that for them," he said. "One guy asked me if I could do a banner for his anniversary party."

He said that the project is also good for the students helping him. "Two of these guys are going into the graphics business," he said. "It's nice for them because they see what it's like to do a real job."

Dusty Bierner says his future is in graphic design, "but it's going to be on people. I know a professional tattoo artist and am learning from him."

L Mr. Bierner, 20, said he's done vinyl striping on race cars.

Mr. Grubb, who also works on cars, said he started his own business in September. "It's called 'The Works.' I do auto airbrushing and detailing."

He said he hopes to attend the Art Institute of Maryland this fall.

Anne Arundel Community College is the school for Mr. Primrose. What he does there is still up for debate. "I signed up for secondary education but I'm also interested in advertising," he said.

"But, hey, Harvard is looking good, too -- I've always been interested in law," he said, laughing.

The "Circus Days" spring fling will be held Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Pastore's Plaza. The fling will feature pony rides, face painting, food and a sidewalk sale.

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