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Painting FOR Positivity

When the legendary mural artist, Pat Milbery, invites you on his journey to reimagine the space in front of Denver City Hall, you grab a paintbrush and run! More than 30 members of our SOS family were lucky enough to be a part of this experience as one of their community service projects for the year. A key component of our multi-year curriculum, these projects put our core-values to practice and foster a community connection.

“I wanted to participate in this particular project to show our youth that there are different ways to look at community service. When we are out on the mountain we are always mindful of picking up trash, so city beautification should be thought of the same way. This is a great way for them to be a part of something that will be here for years and something that they can show their families they worked on.”

Rachel Rea, SOS mentor

“I immediately said ‘yes’ when I heard about this opportunity to paint with Pat Milbery. I wanted to help impact the community and be a part of something bigger than myself. It’s been great to meet new people as we have fun painting.”

Jace Lamorie, SOS participant


Pat initially painted this mural on Bannock St. in the summer of 2020 amidst a global pandemic when concerns over mental health were rapidly increasing. The redesign of this mural (which spans more than 40,000 square feet) is meant to better reflect where the community is today and to symbolize unity, positivity and inspiration. A pro-snowboarder turned artist and mental health advocate, Pat first partnered with SOS Outreach over a collaboration with Zeal Optics for the ‘Open Hearts Collection’ which donated $5 of every pair of sunglasses sold back to the organization. That partnership has grown to include more brand collaborations, as well as volunteer and engagement opportunities like this mural painting. 

“Creating art together requires shared trust, flexibility, and positivity. The spirit of working together and collaborating with purpose- that’s group therapy. Both the outdoors and mentorship have played a major role in where I am today which is why SOS Outreach is a nonprofit close to my heart. It was an honor to paint side by side with these young people and have open conversations around art, community engagement and our shared love for the city of Denver.”

Pat Milbery, artist