Zimmerman elementary school students turn snow plows into works of art

It may be the middle of May, but the city of Zimmerman, Minnesota already has possibly the best-looking fleet of snow plows around thanks to some local elementary school students. 

Professional artist Shane Anderson led a class of fifth graders at Westwood Elementary School in their latest collaborative effort: painting all of Zimmerman’s snowplow blades. 

“It’s weird because it’s curved,” Maari Kvidt, one of the students, said. “So when you are painting on the top, it sometimes drips, like dripping down the plow. And then you have to look upwards to paint it.”

The city’s new public works director, Keith Koehler, hatched the idea with an assist from Westwood’s art teacher, hoping to bring some attention to the crews who do so much more than keep the streets cleared when it snows.

“So we’re the ones doing the parks, the streets, the water, the sewer, treating the sewer... we’re the dog catcher,” Koehler said. “Any aspect of maintenance for the city, that’s our job.”

The three plows represent Zimmerman’s three school mascots: the Zebras, the Wild and the Thunder of Zimmerman Middle-High School. 

“I was blown away with it,” Anderson said. “[It was] fun to watch them work. They got really into it.”
The plows were all painted with Anderson’s vision, and some talented students who helped turn some boring plows into eye-catching works of art.

“It was pretty nice to try this for the first time,” Dominik Rasmussen, another student, said. “I’d say it was good. I loved it.”

While the plows are already getting a ton of attention and turning heads, they do not get a formal public unveiling until Zimmerman’s Wild West Days parade this Saturday.