The Columbus Crossing Borders Project is Coming to Painesville!

PAINESVILLE, OH (February 3, 2020) –  On Thursday, February 6th, 2020, the Columbus Crossing Borders is coming to Harvey High School. The Columbus Crossing Borders Project travels to galleries, community centers, schools, and places of worship. The Project brought together 34 painters and a film crew to create an art exhibit and documentary titled “Breathe Free,” designed to provoke critical thinking and compassion for our world’s refugees. They met with refugees who were willing to share their stories, which artists used to create a painting.

“Through partnership with Community Refugee & Immigration Services (CRIS) the audience takes an intimate look into the arduous journeys of refugees who have been willing to share their personal stories on film.  Taking inspiration from these stories, the 34 artists were asked to work as a cooperative community, being challenged to ‘cross the borders’ into each other’s paintings.  The result is a visual collage served up as a tribute to the resilience, strength and spirit of those who have survived the hardship of forced migration.” (From their website

Throughout the day on February 6th, students of Painesville City and Fairport Harbor will view the exhibit, and will see the documentary film sometime before seeing the exhibit.  Showings of the documentary to the public will be at 4 PM and 6 PM and the art exhibit will be open to the public from 5-8 PM on February 6th at Harvey High School, 200 W. Walnut Ave, Painesville. This event is free and open to the public.

The congregations of Fairport Harbor Congregational and First Church, Congregational (Painesville) United Church of Christ are working to bring this project to the community. If you would like to assist with a donation toward the project, it would be most appreciated. You can give online at (On the online giving page, please mark your donation “Crossing Borders” or you may send your donation through the mail to: First Church, Congregational 22 Liberty St. Painesville, OH 44077. You may also stop by the church during office hours Monday-Friday from 9-3 PM to drop off your donation. Donations are tax deductible. We would be happy to acknowledge you (or your business) as an event sponsor in the program!

First Church Congregational is located at 22 Liberty Street, on the Square in Downtown Painesville. Those who are interested may call 440-357-7518, email through Connect with First Church Congregational online via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, or visit