New owners took over the West Gate Lanes Bowling Alley last March. In the months since, they have brainstormed ideas to draw the attention of passing motorists.
"Maybe people from outside the city will come in and bowl a few games and stay next door and spend money in a restaurant, Bowling Alley Co-Owner Lonnie Wilson said.
Their idea: A mural on the front of the building.
The plan is to fill the space on the front wall with a mural by the same artist who painted the front wall at Das Stein Haus German restaurant and the retaining wall at Zesto's Drive-In.
"I believe it's helped out a lot, Zesto's Owner Kevin Berger said. We've had scout groups do scavenger hunts and one of them has taken a picture there. We've had a lot of people come through just to look at the mural.
The Jefferson City Code Enforcement staff granted a mural permit Monday to artist Dennis Holliday for the West Gate project. Holliday plans a colonnaded bowling lane, surrounded by landmark structures and adorned with symbols from area high schools and colleges.
"I'll try to make it as 3D as possible, Holliday said. That's what I really do, make things look 3D, like you can walk into it.
Holliday expects to begin work on the West Gate mural immediately, to take advantage of the good weather. He thinks it will take about six weeks to complete.
Holliday must be careful not to cross the line from mural to business advertising sign, for which there are different rules. That's why the neon sign on top of the old Zesto's Drive-In is muted in the mural.
"In my mind, it's a work of art, Holliday said. I wanna try to work with the city and have that in there. That's the main theme to me.