SPRING LAKE, Mich. — People biking along Lakeside Trail in Spring Lake will be welcomed with a splash of color, as artists wrapped up two murals for the village's first public art initiative. 

The community raised more than $30,000 for the "Art in the Park" project, which was matched by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. The initial plan called for two murals painted by artists Chrisit Dreese and Joel Schoon-Tannis. 

"It's going to be something great that's going to bring a lot of joy and happiness to the community," Dreese said. "Everyone gets to enjoy the bike path and some beautiful buildings in the back."

Dreese's floral piece is painted on the back of Plantenga's Dry Cleaners, and Schoon-Tannis' aquatic mural is on the Cruise & Travel Experts building next door.

The initiative came from the Ottawa County Sheriff's Office as a crime prevention method through environmental design. The artwork creates a "natural surveillance," Sgt. Jason Kik said. 

"People are coming in the area just to see the art," Kik said. "We see a lot of people photographing themselves in front of the art, and it just brings an extra dimension to this area and this park."

With the remaining money, the village is planning to commission another mural and a sculpture along the path, Village Manager Chris Burns said. 

"I think it's a plan for them to continue adding on the artwork every year, and I think it's just going to keep moving along the path," Dreese said. 

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