New mural includes odes to Helena's history

Posted at 5:40 PM, Sep 06, 2023

HELENA — On Wednesday, September 6, the City of Helena hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the completion of the Centennial Trail Mural.

“It kinda just takes you through different periods of Helena history and just different areas of our great city,” said Elise Perpignano, the painter of the mural.

The mural was painted in the tunnel that runs beneath North Last Chance Gulch and connects Centennial and Memorial Park.

The mural is roughly 3,000 square feet and uses about 30 gallons of paint.

As a Helena native, Perpignano wanted to include a lot of Helena’s culture in the mural.

“Sort of like a nostalgia as you’re walking through downtown even. There was all the urban renewal, there all these old beautiful buildings mixed in and a huge part of our culture here that isn’t totally visible anymore,” Perpignano said, “The natatorium from the Broadwater isn’t here anymore and we have a lot of train depots that aren’t here anymore, but they were so important in shaping Helena, so I wanted to give an ode to them.”

The mural includes callbacks and references to Helena’s history, indigenous tribes, the railroad and native plants and animals.

“I’m kinda on top of the world and it feels like I’m really a part of something,” said Perpignano.