Main Street Lansing to reveal new mural during plaza revitalization celebration slated for this Friday as part of annual Fish Days event

Plaza nearing completion in time for celebration this Friday ... The finishing touches are being put on the plaza area on Main Street in Lansing, including some structural finishing work and the painting of a mural by internationally-known artist Erik Burke of Reno, NV (pictured at far right in the above photo). Main Street Lansing will be hosting a plaza completion celebration at the site this Friday, August 11 at 5 p.m. as part of the annual Lansing Fish Days celebration also taking place this weekend. Standard photo by Brianne Grimstad.

Internationally-known mural artist Erik Burke selected to cap off plaza project

As part of Main Street Lansing’s revitalization of the plaza space at the intersection of Main Street and 3rd Street in Lansing, internationally-known muralist Erik Burke has been painting a new mural on the west wall of the Winke Law building, overlooking the plaza. The project started Monday, July 31 and continued throughout this past week.

The Lansing Plaza project began 10 years ago when the former Mueller Law Office building was razed at that current plaza site. Main Street Lansing purchased the site to offer it to the community as a gathering place. Unfortunately, the budget for any amenities was limited, so the plaza featured a couple of tables and some limestone rock features, but it was not an aesthetically pleasing or inviting look, with limited functionality. Over the years, the plaza has served as the site for the Lansing Farmers Market, the Light Up Lansing Christmas tree lighting, a new wayfinding sign and maps, and various small gatherings, but Main Street Lansing has aspired to encourage and host much more activity.

In 2021, Main Street Lansing identified a grant opportunity through T-Mobile’s Hometown grant program, and Bruce Palmborg, immediate past board president, and Lansing art gallery owner Fred Easker pulled together estimates to apply for funds to cover new amenities, such as professionally designed fencing from Tough Tek Metals, a contemporary stage canopy, new benches and picnic tables, and the crowning touch, a two-story high mural overlooking the space. T-Mobile chose Lansing as a community to receive this $50,000 grant and over the past two years work has gone on in earnest to install these improvements.

A 22-foot x 48-foot decorative mural painted by Burke will connect Lansing to the local environment and the spiritual character of the Driftless region, and will also serve as a symbol of the continual renewal of Lansing’s Main Street. A mural committee made of community representatives was formed in 2022 and members examined the work of dozens of artists from across the country who specialize in creating community murals. Three professional artists were offered a modest stipend to create a design for the plaza mural - one each from Connecticut, Nevada and Iowa - and were provided with information about the community of Lansing and the Driftless region.

All responded with interesting designs but based on materials provided by the artist, Erik Burke of Reno, NV ( was selected. He has created murals in several states, Mexico, Europe and the Far East. The Main Street organization also extends special appreciation to Nicole Winke and Aaron Gentes for allowing the mural to be painted on the east wall of the plaza.

While the community has witnessed the mural unfolding over the course of this past week, a formal plaza completion celebration will take place as part of Fish Days this Friday, August 11 at 5 p.m. The celebration will include live performances by Lesya Rhyzenkova and her Ukrainian family, speakers from Effigy Mounds National Monument and the Raptor Resource Project, who will speak further about the contents of the mural. Cookies and lemonade will be served at the celebration.