Athletics News
Paint the Highway Orange Campaign Gaining Momentum

June 30, 2014

Paint the Highway Orange Map

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - In January, the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics introduced an Illinois Pride campaign called "Paint the Highway Orange!" in an effort to showcase Fighting Illini pride and generate excitement for Illinois athletics. Just six months into the initiative, 15 sets of signs - commonly referred to as Burma-Shave signs - have been installed along interstates and major highways across the state of Illinois.

"We have been encouraged by the great support for the first phase of the Paint the Highway Orange campaign," Illinois Director of Athletics Mike Thomas said. "The landowners who have partnered with us have told us how much they enjoy showing off their Illini pride and the many positive comments they have received about the signs. We need even more Illini fans to join this initiative and help us blanket the state's roadways with these signs to show the dedication and passion our fans have for the University of Illinois and Fighting Illini athletics."

The signs have been installed in five locations along Interstate 57, three along Interstate 74, three along Interstate 80, two along Interstate 72 and two along Interstate 39.

Illini fans and supporters are being called on to continue the program's momentum by joining the cause and placing a set of these signs on their property adjacent to major highways across the state. Landowners who pay for part or all of the sign placement cost can receive donation credit toward their I Fund account. In addition to this qualifying as a charitable contribution, priority points in the amount of your donation will be added to the landowner's I Fund account. The University of Illinois Foundation will follow up with a receipt of donation for tax purposes.

To join the program or for more information, contact Kathy Plunk by email or at 217-333-3631.

What They're Saying...
Dr. Robert Atkins, Landowner Along Interstate 57:

"The signs on my property look great, and I hope that more and more of them will go up around the state."

Bruce Baker, Landowner Along Interstate 80:
"We're glad to be able to be a part of this unique program. We've received many comments from folks who have seen it, so the signs are getting noticed!"

Mike Martin, Landowner Along Interstate 57:
"I am really proud to have these signs up on my property. It's a great way for me to show my Illinois pride."

Del and Sandy Sieber, Landowners Along Interstate 72:
"Our bright orange and blue Illinois sign is a great way to show our support for Illinois athletics and a visible way to welcome Illini fans and guests to Champaign-Urbana. It's also a clear reminder that folks are entering Fighting Illini country!"

Gayl and Gail Wyss, Landowners Along Interstate 39:
"The signs look great and we've gotten lots of comments from the local Illini fans who know it's our farm. It's great to promote Illinois. I have really liked the new slogan from the beginning and this puts it out there 100 miles from C-U, but still Illini territory. It doesn't hurt to have the Badger fans see these on their way down I-39 to games, either."