CELORON – A major donation has been made to assist with creating a new statue of Lucille Ball in Celoron’s Lucille Ball Memorial Park.
Village officials say a donation of $20,000 has been made by Ernie Boch, Jr. of Norwood, Massachusetts. In a media release from the village, Boch said he made the donation because he has tremendous affection for Lucy and the rest of the characters from the I Love Lucy TV show, adding that her hometown deserves the best statue possible.
Boch is the President and CEO of Subaru of New England.
Celoron Mayor Scott Schrecengost tells WRFA he’s in the process of forming a committee to review more than 50 different artists who’ve come forward to help create the new statue. He says the committee members will be announced during the next village board meeting on June 8, with an artist excepted to be selected by the middle of the summer.
Last month the village board voted unanimously to move the current statue of Lucille Ball – created by artist Dave Poulin – from the Park to the upcoming National Comedy Center in nearby Jamestown.
That decision followed a month-and-a-half of controversy and public outcry surrounding the statue, with many asking that it be removed and a more fitting statue take its place. Critics of the statue claimed the statue looked nothing like the comedy legend and as a result, requested that it be removed.
Schrecongost also says that even with the big donation from Boch the statue fundraising project is still underway, adding that it’s important the village raise as much money as possible in order to ensure the best possible statue can be created.
To make a contribution to help in the creation of a new statue, donations can be sent to the Village of Celoron (P.O. Box 577, Celoron, NY 14720-0577), Five Star Bank or online at www.kickstarter.com, with the project title of “Lucille Ball Tribute Statue, Celoron NY.”