An unremarkable wall outside a popular downtown Binghamton restaurant has received a colorful new look thanks to the work of a couple of artists.

Margot Datz and Tom Haines recently completed work on a mural on a wall on the side of the building that is home to Chris' Diner on State Street.

Speaking from her Martha's Vineyard studio, Datz said she and Haines had submitted a mural idea to the iDistricts public arts program. She said the goal was to create "something that celebrated the presence of the Greek community within Binghamton."

FLASHBACK: The side of Chris Diner before the painting of a Greek-themed mural. Image: Google
FLASHBACK: The side of Chris' Diner before the painting of a Greek-themed mural. (Image: Google)

Datz said she and Haines presented the mural concept to the owners of Chris' Diner and they liked the idea.

The partners spent more than two weeks transforming the plain white wall into something special.

Haines said they had to cope with a range of weather challenges while working on the mural, including some very hot, rainy and windy conditions. He said "it was tough" but "we just had to be flexible."

Margot Datz and Tom Haines outside Chris Diner on September 22, 2023. Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News
Margot Datz and Tom Haines outside Chris' Diner on September 22, 2023. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Haines said after a period of heavy rain, surprisingly, nothing they had painted had washed off the wall.

The owners of the diner have expressed their appreciation for the mural. In a social media post, they wrote that they were "so grateful for these talented artists!"

A celebration of the completed mural is planned as part of the next First Friday events. There'll be a gathering at the parking lot of Chris' Diner at 5 p.m. on November 3. Haines also will have a show exhibiting some of his most recent paintings from 6 to 9 that evening at Atomic Tom's at 196 State Street.

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Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: For breaking news and updates on developing stories, follow @BinghamtonNow on Twitter.

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