Hopefulness Lights Up Lexington Park

April 17, 2024

An ambitious public art project has been installed on the grounds of the Church of the Ascension and will be unveiled and lit for the first time at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, April 19th. The public is encouraged to gather in the parking lot to celebrate the lighting of the Hopeful Project sign.

The installation of the colorful, retro, 5’x24’ sign which proudly showcases the word ‘hopeful,’ is an undertaking of the St. Mary’s County Community Development Corporation, the St. Mary’s County Arts Council, the Church, and many private sponsors. Created by Charlie Hewitt, a renowned artist who will attend Friday’s ceremony along with his wife Kate, the Hopeful Project features 3-dimensional neon signs installed in communities from Maine to Maryland including one located on the grounds of Anne Marie Gardens in Calvert County.

Mr. Hewitt explained that “Hopeful is a word that requires action. It asks us to be part of something that is greater than ourselves. It is a commitment to believing in a better future for us, our children, and our fellow citizens.”

The Hopeful Project is about far more than just another sign in Lexington Park. It’s about community engagement, the use of art to inspire, and leveraging opportunities for the future of the Great Mills Road community.

Residents painted the lively mural that now surrounds the Health Hub as well as the one that fronts Great Mills Road at the intersection of Shangri-La Drive. Final touches are being completed on a Tulagi Place mural featuring the history of the commercial area which will soon be spray painted on the south side of the Three Notch Theater. The St. Mary’s County Department of Recreation and Parks recently unveiled a multiyear Art Park Plan for the Lexington Manor Passive Park.

Through art we tell stories, and those stories are most often about pride in one’s community. To that end, among its many other projects such as the annual Great Mills Road Clean Up, the Community Development Corporation is now working with residents of Patuxent Park, which surrounds the Church of the Ascension, to enhance social ties and improve communication among neighbors as they explore new opportunities for the County’s first residential subdivision.

Lighting the Hopeful Project sign on April 19th is yet another memorable moment in Lexington Park’s ever evolving story of St. Mary’s largest commercial and residential area. For more information, go to About Us – St. Mary’s CDC (stmaryscdc.org), St. Mary’s County Arts Council (stmarysartscouncil.com) and Church of the Ascension (ascensionlp.org).