Hundreds paint "Black Lives Matter" on Central California street

FRESNO, Calif. -- Hundreds of people grabbed their brushes and their chalk and gathered to paint "Black Lives Matter" on a normally busy street in Fresno.

The street art event was the result of a partnership between community organizers and the city, who shut down the street in front of City Hall on June 18 and provided the paint to spell out Black Lives Matter in bright bold lettering.

"This is not a victory, but a step in the correct direction. It's important that this took place on this day, the day before Juneteeth, that kicks off tomorrow. To show not only the community but the world that these things can take place," said organizer DJ Kay Rich.

City Officials also declared June 18th "Black Lives Matter Day" in Fresno.

"Using your voice goes so far," said Fresno State NAACP President D'Aungillique Jackson. "The Fresno that you're seeing here, we've always had this type of love in the community, it just took a group of young people using their voices in order to bring us together."

NBA star and Fresno native Quincy Pondexter showed his support by picking up a brush and lending his artistic flair to the cause.

"How we've handled everything since the last month of George Floyd's passing has been great. It showed the resilience of our city and showed how our city can come together," he said.

"Don't stop trying, don't stop fighting," Jackson said. "As you stand up for yourself and those around you, you'll empower others to stand up for themselves and those around them."

The paint used on the street is washable and is expected to fade within a couple of months.