Thousands flock to Genoa for Candy Dance and Arts and Crafts Faire

A steady stream of kids, moms, dads and bargain hunters flocked to Genoa's 81st Arts and Crafts Faire Saturday.

Booths lining most of Genoa's main streets and by-ways were swarming with people. Framed wild flower arrangements and American flags made of wood were selling like hotcakes.

Everything from Christmas baubles to kids' clothes, pottery to floral decorations were on display and patrons were bubbling with enthusiasm over the event.

A company out of Grants Pass, Ore., was selling metal weather vanes and South Lake Tahoe resident Jackie Smith couldn't resist.

"This is the second fair we've attended and I think this is fantastic," she said. "The selection is so great and you can tell these are crafts made by artisans. Sometimes, vendors buy them from somewhere else."

"This is an excellent fair," said Carson City resident Lupe Ramirez. "The crafts are good quality and very creative Ñ and the prices are reasonable."

The Genoa Candy Dance originated in 1919 when two locals organized the event to raise money for street lights. Generations have continued this tradition in this town, which currently boasts a population of about 200.

This year about 65,000 people are expected to attend and everyone gets into the act, according to Carson City resident Bob Fairman, who was managing traffic and parking from the intersection of Genoa Lane and Main Street.

"It's really gotten big over the last five years," he said. "Last year we had about 60,000 people and I think the crowd is bigger this year."

He said the fair and dance provide roughly between $70,000 and $80,000 for Genoa's annual budget, which takes care of most of the bills and leaves about $10,000 for city coffers.

For those venturing out today, it's best to allow plenty of time. Parking is provided in nearby fields, but access is slow and a painful process for anyone in a hurry. Once out and about, the streets are busy.

Booths will be open today from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. In addition to arts and crafts, about 30 food vendors, homemade town candy and special T-shirts are available.


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