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Happy Days revived

KERI MOLLOY
Last updated 10:26 05/02/2013
Happy Days

TAKING SHAPE: Simon Ormerod progresses with his mural of Happy Days

Happy Days
HAPPY DAYS: Colin Campbell appreciates the new mural on the front of the Kaikohe Hotel.

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The old hotel at Kaikohe may be an eyesore to some but it's a thing of beauty to street artist Simon Ormerod.

Better known as Cracked Ink, Simon has works adorning streets and schools in Auckland, Wellington and Taupo.

Happy Days on Broadway is his first mural of the year.

Simon was visiting the Far North for the Honey Jam music festival on anniversary weekend, when he spotted Kaikohe's derelict hotel and asked permission from proprietor Neal Summers to paint a wall.

So instead of listening to music at the festival on Sunday he spent five hours on Broadway with a sketch and his spray cans.

People walking by gave their encouragement while interested business owners offered him more wall space to paint murals elsewhere.

Taking art to the streets has taken the world be storm and this may be Kaikohe's opportunity to be the street art capital of the North.

Kaikohe is not short of blank canvases, highly sought-after by street artists. Simon is talking to his fellow artists, with the aim of bringing them to town later this month. Three noted street artists are keen so far, he says.

The Happy Days mural gained enthusiastic response from children to senior citizens as it developed, including long-time Kaikohe resident Colin Campbell. A string of positive comments have been posted on the Northern News Facebook page.

"It's great to see people loving it, " Simon says.

He's busy costing the first stage of what he calls the Kaikohe Community Walls Project and arranging a scissors lift for greater reach on a second wall of the hotel.

Go to northernnews.co.nz to see a video of the mural develop.

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