Candy Dance founder statue project moves forward |

Candy Dance founder statue project moves forward

A 7-foot statue of Lillian Virgin Finnegan, founder of Genoa’s annual Candy Dance, will be placed in celebration of the event’s centennial in 2019. It was announced Saturday during a fundraising and social event at the Pink House that The Centennial Genoa Candy Dance Statue Project is moving forward in the next step of the statue’s creation.

Donors and potential donors to the project gathered at the Pink House where Finnegan grew up to revisit the residence and gather more information on the project.

Genoa resident Debrine Smedley, who is sculpting the statue, said the project has the funds to move forward with the enlargement process.

Smedley will take the clay version of the Finnegan statue to the Bronzesmith Foundry in Prescott Valley, Ariz., where it will be enlarged and cut into a life size sculpture in foam. Smedley will then add clay and sculpting details and the foundry will make the mold and cast bronze the statue. The process is expected to take the next two years to complete.

Friends of Genoa, the Town of Genoa and the sculpture committee, comprised of Smedley, Gail Teig and Smedley’s husband Larry, are driving the project.

While the exact location has yet to be determined the group is raising approximately $60,000 to complete the creation of the statue and place it in Genoa in time to celebrate the 100th annual Candy Dance and the many volunteers of the community.

“I want to take a moment to thank all of you for your volunteerism, because without you, we would not have our beautiful Genoa. Volunteers make this town,” said Lillian Virgin Finnegan Saturday portrayed by Kim Harris.

More fundraising events are planned for the project, including purchasable engraved bricks and plaques that will surround Finnegan at the final location. Bricks can be purchased starting at $200.

“We are building this statue brick by brick, plaque by plaque, volunteer by volunteer,” said Smedley.

The statue is a tribute to Finnegan and the volunteers who support Genoa.

For more information or to make a donation call Teig at 790-4231.