A new mural at the Bethesda Haagen Dazs is set to be unveiled Tuesday, and a series of performances is planned to bring the artwork depicting county landmarks to life.
The idea for the 36 by 6-foot mural inside the Woodmont Avenue ice cream shop was born as the shop moved into the space next to the Bethesda Row Cinema left vacant by Gifford’s, according to Francine Segal, who co-owns the Bethesda location with her husband, Jerry, and business partners, Tommy and John Hughes.
Segal researched county culture and history in order to choose which icons to highlight on the mural – including the Bethesda Trolley Trail, the Clara Barton House, the Montgomery Farm Women’s Cooperative Market and the Writer’s Center. Artist Christian Kanienberg of Wish Painting and architect Swann Karandikar created the mural on an interior wall of the shop.
A mural depicting the surrounding community has been popular at the Georgetown Haagen Dazs shop, which is one of the five locations in the Washington, D.C. region the four co-own, Segal said.
The mural concept was also popular in Segal’s native New Orleans, where she co-owned several shops.
“There’s really a very rich history in Bethesda, and it’s important that people realize their heritage,” Segal said. “There’s a lot of pride. It’s amazing, because people come in and talk to me, and they give me even more information and I want to rearrange the whole mural and do it again.”
Tuesday, representatives from the landmarks depicted on the mural will perform at the shop during a ribbon cutting ceremony that will mark the dedication of the artwork. The event is set for 4-8 p.m. at the shop, located at 7237 Woodmont Avenue.
About 60 of the 75 local landmarks Segal researched are depicted on the mural, but there’s plenty of space for more to be added on. “It’s a living piece of art, and we’re going to continue it,” she said.