2010 Genoa Candy Dance
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Started in 1919 as a fundraiser to finance the purchase of streetlights for the community of Genoa, the Candy Dance has become one of the premier events in northern Nevada over the past 90 years. From it's humble beginning - a dance with home-made candy as an incentive for couples to participate - it has turned into a street fair that spans almost the entire length of the town and fills a historic state park in addition.

That first Candy Dance did raise the funds needed to purchase and install the streetlights. Which created a commitment to repeat the event annually, up until today, and on and on for many generations to come, on the last full weekend in the month of September.

The Dance is still held, from 4 to 10 pm, and famous names line up for the privilege to render the rhythms and tunes for the moves. David John and the Comstock Cowboys were the honored ones this year, complemented by Special Guest Star Wylie and the Wild West. The home-made candy has been replaced with a dinner as an incentive for the dancers, but it has not disappeared. Volunteers now sell it inside the City Hall, along with t-shirts and other memorabilia.

Many of the vendors, artists and performers who set up their operations at the Candy Dance can also be met at other street fairs throughout the West. But this event distinguishes itself from all similar ones by being in a location that is as unique as it is genuine and charming. The historic brick buildings are real. So are coaches, wagons farm equipment and other antiques

 

we see throughout this town at the base of pine tree covered mountains that belong to the real Sierra Nevada. And if the old trees at the Mormon Station State Historic Park could talk, they'd tell us stories about the pioneers they saw building this first settlement in what should one day become the State of Nevada.

You just can't get that in Pomona.

The pride in its history radiates everywhere, particularly noticeable at a small sideshow that displays antique farm equipment in working condition. Operating combustion engines with close to, and even exceeding, a century of age testify about a time when durable goods were durable and upgrading wasn't invented yet. One Ice cream vendor trusts his 1929 hit-and-miss engine so much, he based his business on it, utilizing it to turn the churn that produces the ice cream he sells.

Thanks to all these wonderful attractions the attendance is strong, to say the least. One is tempted to remark that Genoa is so far off the ordinary, they haven't even noticed that there is a recession going on. Which is a good thing. Because the reason this dance was continued after the street lights have been bought and installed is the electric bill to operate them.
In other words, the visitors to this party really keep the lights burning.

 
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