Sprucing up Spruce

Group aims to beautify town

SPRUCE — There are more empty storefronts in Spruce than active businesses, which can be ugly. But recently formed group of women hope to change the appearance of the small town, according to Cyndi Apsey.

Apsey said the idea is to take those empty storefronts in the community — the only active “business” in town is the U.S. Post office location– and transform them with art in the form of photography printed on large plastic window clings.

The hope is to include the clings, featuring farming photography, on all the town’s windows. Apsey said the idea came from the group formed this winter called the Loyal Ladies.

“It basically started out as a group of women who just wanted to do something for the community,” Apsey said. “We can remind the community of what we were, what they are, and what they are going to be.”

Apsey, who is a photographer, said her images of farming will be used for the window clings. She said the group is trying to get grants for the project, but currently is accepting donations to get the project off its feet.

“The goal of these projects is to bring the community together and raise community morale by creating an understanding of our unique sense of place,” Apsey said. It’s a beautification project and kind of maybe instill that into the community that we’re not depressed and we’re beautiful.”

Years ago there were many active businesses in Spruce, but the town has been on the decline for decades, Apsey said.

She said every building is going to have a different theme revolving around agriculture.

Apsey said she hopes to have the project completed by Memorial Day when there will be an upcoming festival in the community called Old Fashioned Country Days.

“We are hoping with that celebration we can raise money for the next project,” Apsey said.

Apsey said the budget for the current window cling project is $7,480 of which $5,195 has been raised thus far. She said anyone interested in making a donation can make checks out to Inspiration Alcona with “Spruce Window Project” written in the memo line.

The checks can be mailed to: Bessie Schlehr, P.O. Box 61, Spruce, MI 48762. Questions can be directed to Apsey by calling 335-3018

Mockups for the project can be seen by searching for “Spruce Window Project” on facebook.com, according to Apsey.

Jason Ogden can be reached via email at jogden@thealpenanews.com or by phone at 358-5693. Follow Jason on Twitter @jo_alpenanews. Read his blog, Sunny side up, with Jason at www.thealpenanews.com.