Genoa welcomes record crowd
Genoa’s 82nd Candy Dance Arts & Crafts Faire this weekend attracted the largest number of people ever, and without much incident, except slow traffic and limited parking.
“It was an exciting event,” said Genoa Town Manager Paul Williams. “We had well over 50,000 people on Saturday. Sunday started off slow but we then peaked about 30,000. It was a record year.”
Williams said many of those who visit the faire are Douglas County residents, even with advertising reaching Utah and California.
“It was strongly supported by the local residents of Douglas County,” he said. “They were very orderly. You could hear people say, ‘I’m glad to see you again.'”
More than 400 vendors operated booths in Mormon Station State Park, North Park and the downtown area.
“It’s been growing year after year,” Williams said. “Our reputation is growing.”
He said the main problem at the Faire was parking, which took a long time, especially Saturday.
He credited Genoa’s volunteers with the Faire’s success.
“I’m absolutely amazed about the volunteers’ commitment to the project,” he said. “Our town population is 240 people, and with the people outside Genoa that’s 500 people. They all jumped in there to participate.”
Volunteers begin planning in December for the next festival. Candy making begins six weeks before the faire. This year, volunteers made more than 3,500 pounds of candy, including peanut brittle and two kinds of fudge. A big seller was the 1/2 pound box of mixed candies which costs about $6.
The faire is the largest annual fund-raiser to benefit the Town of Genoa.
Typically, the town makes $100,000 from vendors fees, sales of candy and T-shirts, and Saturday’s dinner/dance.
“The money received from the Candy Dance addresses road issues and maintenance of public facilities,” Williams said. “It is about 85 percent of our annual income.”
It was the first time Reno’s Street Vibrations motorcyle rally coincided with the faire. With increased numbers of people in Douglas, Carson City and Washoe Counties, the Nevada Highway Patrol said the weekend was busy.
“This is the third year I’ve worked the Candy Dance,” said NHP Trooper Todd Hartlane. “This was by far the busiest year. This can basically be attributed to Street Vibrations which was the same weekend. It made for much more traffic in the county.”
Hartlane said a fatality involving a motorcyclist occurred Saturday about noon at Cave Rock on Highway 50.
“We had to turn all that traffic around on Route 50, and send them down Kingsbury Grade,” he said.
He said accidents at Genoa Lane and Highway 395, including a three-car accident south of Genoa Lane, were due to slow traffic and inattentive drivers.
In the Town of Genoa, Douglas County sheriff’s deputies reported fairly light activity, said sheriff’s Lt. Steve Orr.
“Everything went smooth,” Orr said. “Nothing unusual that I’m aware of occurred.”
The Town of Genoa is now preparing for its two-day Christmas Fair in December. Vendors sell Christmas crafts in the Town Hall and the Firehouse December 7 and 8.
“It’s a festive weekend,” Williams said.
The Christmas Fair is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. For more information or to register, call the Town of Genoa at 782-8696.
n R-C Staff Writer Maggie O’Neill can be reached by e-mail at mo’email@example.com