Countdown to Candy Dance in Genoa - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Countdown to Candy Dance in Genoa

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We have many special events in Northern Nevada -- but one event makes enough money to fund an entire town, for an entire year. The Genoa Candy Dance raises more than $100,000 every year and despite the challenging economy, people still flock to the historic event. We visited Genoa Tuesday to see first-hand the calm before the Candy Dance.

This weekend, Genoa's population will swell from 250 to nearly 30,000 people. Chad Coons is a local real estate broker. He told us the excitement is building. "Thousands of people come to town during the event and it really helps local businesses and the town of Genoa," said Coons.

It takes many months to prepare for the big event, and according to Dave Whitgob, many volunteers. "That's one of the things we appreciate from the volunteers, they start making the candy weeks in advance in anticipation of this, then we keep it on ice, ready to sell," said Whitgob.

Volunteers have created more than 3,000 pounds of candy, all of it made from scratch. The Candy Dance is part of Genoa's history. It all started in 1919 when the town needed money for street lights. They held a fundraising dance at the Raycraft Hotel, which is now the town hall. The ladies made candy to give to the guests. That was 92 years ago.

Today, the money raised at the Candy Dance pays most of the town's bills. Whitgob told us just how much. "It represents about 80 percent of our entire town budget," he said. "Genoa is economically independent. We don't require any funding from Douglas County. It's been a part of our history so this is a real important event for us," he continued.

The two-day event includes 40 food vendors and 300 juried artisans selling everything from jewelry to crafts, to t-shirts. All that tucked into a beautiful, historic town in Northern Nevada, which keeps the crowds coming back.

The 92nd Annual Candy Dance Arts & Crafts Fair is this Saturday and Sunday in Genoa. Hours are 9am to 5pm both days. Genoa is about 50 miles south of the Reno/Sparks area.

There will be three parking lots nearby that will have fees per vehicle. Or, you can park for free at Douglas High School, or the Carson Valley Inn, which are both in Minden. From there, you can take a shuttle that costs $2 for a round trip per person.

We also learned that Patty's Tours is offering a shuttle from the Grand Sierra Resort on Saturday, and that leaves at 7:30am. Call 775-453-1794 or email pattytours@charter.net or www.pattytours@charter.net

Written by Jennifer Burton

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