Who: All Kansas Resident Artists

What: Murals Featuring Select Kansas Birds (on 4’x4’ MDO panel)

Where: R. Michael Rhoades Wetland Park | Newton, KS

When: Submissions due December 1, 2022 | Final Work (if selected) due April 22, 2023

Selection: Artists (5) selected by our judges will receive a $1,000 upon completion.


The R. Michael Rhoades (RMR) Community Wetlands Park Project is a collaborative effort between the Kansas Alliance for Wetlands and Streams, the Newton Area Birders, the RMR Foundation, and the City of Newton. The project will transform the unused, restricted-access greenspace adjacent to the wastewater treatment wetlands into a dynamic public park, which will provide education on the critical role of wetlands along the migratory birds’ Central Flyway.

The park will include a school-bus-accessible parking lot, concrete sidewalks leading up to an elevated concrete bird watching pad, a boardwalk out over the wetlands, benches, educational signage kiosks, murals, and birding-by-ear elements for blind and low vision park users.

The RMR Community Wetlands Park Project also addresses a priority need in the Newton Community Health Assessment. The number one community health need identified in 2017 was “improving well-being/mental health/behavioral health.” Per the World Health Organization, anxiety and depression have increased 25% since the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Exposure to nature, greenspace, and bird watching have been shown to reduce depression, anxiety and stress.

Incorporating murals into the RMR Community Wetlands Park will further engage visitors with the birdwatching theme, spark discussions about the featured species, and demonstrate how art is integral to science and public greenspaces.


  • Concept Submissions must be submitted online or postmarked by December 1, 2022

  • Concept Submissions will be accepted from any Kansas Resident without discrimination regardless of age, gender, race, religion, disability, national origin, or any other identifying characteristic.

  • Concept Submissions must include the completed submission form whether online or in print, a drawing (hand sketch or digital art) no larger than 8.5x11”, and a brief description of your subject matter.

Kansas Endangered Species:

  • Least Tern

  • Whooping Crane

Kansas Threatened Species:

  • Piping Plover

  • Snowy Plover

Kansas SINC (Species in need of conservation)

  • Black Rail

  • Black Tern

  • Bobolink

  • Cerulean Warbler

  • Chihuanhuan Raven

  • Curve-Billed Thrasher

  • Ferruginous Hawk

  • Golden Eagle

  • Henslow’s Sparrow

  • Ladder-backed Woodpecker

  • Long-billed Curlew

  • Mountain Plover

  • Short-eared Owl

  • Whip-poor-will

  • Yellow-Throated Warbler

  • Concept Submissions must be inspired by the Audubon Mural Project in NYC: Including: Stylistic Features | Large Subjects | Colorful Designs

  • ONLINE Concept Submissions are preferred and must be submitted via the online form by December 1, 2022.

  • Concept Submissions submitted via mail must be postmarked by December 1, be sent to Community Creative Services ℅ Newton Murals & Arts Project | 301 N. Main St. |Suite 108 | Newton, KS | 67114, and must include the written submission form. Please download, fill out completely and mail with your concept submission.

  • All concept submissions will become the property of NMAP and will not be returned regardless of selection status.

  • All concept submissions will be subject to reproduction for the promotional purposes of this project by any of the organizational parties listed above (NMAP, KAWS, KCAIC, Rotary).

  • 5 concepts will be selected for the final project by a diverse panel of judges.

  • The winning artists will be announced by January 5, 2023.


  • Selected artists will be notified in writing by January 5, 2023

  • Specific, Required Materials must be used for the final artwork

    • 4’x4’ MDO ½” Panel

    • Panel Primed on both sides with sealed edges

    • Mural grade paint.

  • NMAP will provide all Required Materials, but will not provide delivery/shipping services.

    • Required Materials can be picked up at the NMAP Studio in Newton, KS. OR

    • If you are unable to pick up the required materials from NMAP, you must secure them and NMAP will arrange reimbursement for your material costs.

    • Required Materials must be acquired by January 15, 2023.

  • Completed Artwork must be delivered to NMAP by April 22, 2023.

  • Upon delivery of completed artwork, a stipend of $1,000 will be paid to selected artists for their contribution to this project.

  • Installation of artwork will be contingent on the construction timeline of the R. Michael Rhoades Wetland Park.

    • Selected artists will be notified of installation date when established

    • Artworks will be installed on the reverse side of all informational kiosks at the R. Michael Rhodes Wetlands Park in Newton, KS.

    • Artworks will be additionally protected from the elements with a plexiglass covering and will be semi-sheltered from the kiosk roof structure.

    • If the construction timeline is delayed, NMAP will prominently display the completed artworks in Newton, KS until an installation day has been established.

  • Selected artists will be invited to attend any publicity events associated with the project

  • All completed artworks will become the property of NMAP. Once the artworks are permanently installed, the artworks will become the property of the City of Newton.

  • All completed artworks will be subject to reproduction for the promotional purposes of the organizational parties listed above (NMAP, KAWS, KCAIC, Rotary, and the City of Newton).

Organizational Info:
This mural project is a joint venture between:

Newton Murals & Arts Project (NMAP)

Kansas Alliance for Wetlands & Streams (KAWS)

Funding Organizations:
This mural project funded by generous grants from:

Kansas Creative Arts Industries Commission (KCAIC)

Rotary Club of Newton, KS (Rotary)