Functional does not have to be boring, so the City of Moab turned to artist Tim (MIK) McAllister to create the new sign for Lions Park, which was installed in late December 2017. The park is located off U.S. Highway 191, just south of the Colorado Bridge.
A traditional brown recreation sign had been installed temporarily when Lions Park reopened in 2016, after undergoing renovations. However, the plan was always to replace it with something more interesting, Moab City Director of Parks, Recreation and Trails Tif Miller said.
“We are really excited about the sign and it’s a great addition to our wonderful park,” Miller said.
The artful new sign at the entrance to Lions Park includes a river design with Castle Valley in the distance, plus an image of Delicate Arch. Rusted metal portrays Moab’s iconic red rock landscape. A copper coating in places provides the blue for the swirl of the river.
The 7-foot wide and 3-foot tall sign took several months to construct, and is attached to a boulder.
“I had never built anything like it before,” McAllister said. “I layered rusted steel and aluminum (to create rocks and a river on a steel background).”
McAllister has made signs before, though. The longtime graphic designer and illustrator also makes collages and creates artwork out of found objects. He created the signage and branding for Moab Made, a local artisan shop at 82 N. Main St.
He also designed and created the sign that hangs outside the Moab Arts and Recreation Center. McAllister additionally submitted a bid to make a new Swanny City Park sign, he said.
“The MARC sign got me going,” McAllister said.
“I commissioned Tim to make our sign – I love Tim’s’ style,” MARC Director Meg Stewart said. “I was looking for a sign that fit with the feeling of the building, and also stands out and makes a welcoming impression. His execution really fit what we were looking for.”
New amenities at Lions Park include a lower pavilion area, a large open grassy area, a small water feature representing the Colorado River, an upper pavilion area with restrooms and space for parking. The park connects to the pedestrian bridge that crosses the river, connecting to Grand County’s Transit Hub through a highway underpass, and connects to the Moab Canyon Pathway along state Route 128.
New interpretive signage regarding the area’s history, including how crossing the Colorado River has evolved over the years, has also been added to the park.
The park includes biking and hiking trails, and a privately funded bouldering park for all ages, which was donated to Moab for people to come and practice bouldering skills in a controlled environment.
“Lions Park is a great spot for families to come and enjoy each other’s company and their environment due to its location and the amenities located within and just outside the park,” Miller said.
City commissioned local artist Tim McAllister for Lions Park project
To learn more about McAllister and his artwork, go to: www.hifimik.com.