Caroline Edwards

(Rock Hill, S.C.) — The latest addition to Rock Hill’s “Mural Mile” honors the work of artist Vernon Grant, whose creations were featured on numerous magazine covers and advertising campaigns over his 30 year career.

Grant created the Kellogg’s characters SNAP! CRACKLE! AND POP! and he co-founded Rock Hill’s Come-See-Me festival, which takes place every spring.

“This project is for the city of Rock Hill and the official Mural Mile. To celebrate the life of Vernon Grant who was a prolific illustrator, who spent the last years of his life down here in Rock Hill and was deeply involved in the downtown area and the way you see things today,” said Osiris Rain, one of the artists who worked to create the mural.

“For this, I was not the designer of the mural. Jill Pratzon, who is out of New York, who is a designer and restoration artist, designed it to be in (Grant’s) style. Having worked on other projects here in the area, she reached out to me to execute her design,” Rain said.

The Mural Mile project began in 2020 and the goal of the project is to help bring the community back to downtown.

“We hired the company Project for Public Spaces, based in Manhattan, to look into placemaking projects for downtown Rock Hill,” said Cathy Murphy, developmental manager for Rock Hill.

“After some research and their help, we decided a Mural Mile throughout the town would be the perfect fit for the town to be revitalized,” Murphy said.

The project has been a welcome sight to downtown businesses.

“We chipped in our two cents worth for Overhead Station that we were absolutely thrilled to have this mural added. It’s one of the first things you see when you come downtown from Fountain Park and it has turned into a landmark,” said Terry Windell, owner of the Overhead Station gift shop.

“The murals in the downtown area were the perfect fit; and add an artist vibe to the city,” said Keaton Griffin, who has lived in Rock Hill most of his life.

The new Vernon Grant mural outside of City Hall was completed Oct. 14 and, as of now, it’s the largest mural in York County. There are plans to complete another two murals downtown.