Downtown Dayton, specifically the Bear Plumbing business, located at 106 Cook Street, is the site of Dayton’s newest mural. Owners Jimmie and Samantha Cullars wanted to do their part to enhance the town and also advertise their business. Jimmie approached Richard Smith, owner of the building where they rent their office (Rich and wife Linda Smith have operated Smith’s Hair Fair there for many years), and asked his thoughts
about having a mural painted on the side of the building. Rich quickly agreed and Jimmie began searching for the muralist who would be enthusiastic about the project.
He found the ideal artist in Miss Cherry Meekins of Houston. They “met” through Facebook and he said he knew immediately she was the one for the job. Inspired by her artistic Mother, Dorothea Simon, Cherry began her art in elementary school. By middle school her work was displayed in the rotunda of our state capital. She doesn’t label herself as specializing in a certain type of art– as long as she can see it, she can paint it – abstracts, portraits, landscapes, etc. Cherry worked collaboratively on the impressive Juneteenth mural that is painted in the Strand area of Galveston and also painted in downtown Minneapolis on a multi-cultural mural. She decided to really focus on her art in 2020 during the pandemic and we are the lucky recipients of her considerable talent and will enjoy her painting for years to come. She can be reached on her web page Meek Cherry Artistry.
The Bear Plumbing business opened its doors on September 4, 2019, but Jimmie has been in the business since 1994. “We do everything – from propane work, water, gas, sewer, remodeling, new building, commercial, agricultural, residential – and we stay very busy,” said Cullars. When he’s not working, he loves to go fishing and has his commercial fishing license. On the mural, the bear in the bathtub is wearing a necklace with a hook pendant that represents his hobby. This bear-in-the-bathtub mural scene is one that will make you smile, and as Jimmie says, “That’s what it’s all about!”