When Dave Skrzecz started rehabbing the century-old barn on his Neersville property last summer, he didn’t set out to make it a landmark, but, judging from the number of people stopping by to watch him work, there is a new attraction tucked in amid the Between the Hills wineries.
After replacing the rotted siding, Skrzecz knew he wanted to paint a flag on the side. “I had a barn and I figured why not,” he said.
The 23-year Army Special Forces veteran was inspired by murals painted by Scott LoBaido on VFW Halls around the nation that are distinctive for their 3D furling effect.
“I didn’t think it was that big of deal until I started painting it,” said Skrzecz, who moved to the property about two years ago and lives in the small stone structure that served as the community’s schoolhouse after the Civil War.
“The first day, I had just most of the blue done and people were pulling into [his neighbor’s driveway] and coming back so they could take pictures.” One passerby even asked to record the work with a drone he pulled out of his SUV.
It is his first artistic painting project.
“I figured how hard can it be? If I screw it up, I’ll just paint over it,” he said. “Or I figured that it is abstract enough that if I make mistakes you won’t know.”
Why paint a flag?
“The real why is that we’re all Americans,” Skrzecz said. “In this day and age, everything is all politics, but at the end of the day we’re all Americans. And having been all over the world, this is still the best game in town. We might have our problems, we might have our differences, but this is absolutely best thing going on this planet.”
You’ll see Skrzecz’s work at 12813 Harpers Ferry Road on the west side of the street in the village of Neersville.