In 1979 the statue made its first appearance on Lake Mendota, in fulfillment of a campaign promise by student government candidates Jim Mallon and Leon Varjian, heads of the Pail and Shovel Party, who had promised to bring the Statue of Liberty to Madison. The original was torched by an unknown arsonist. Pail and Shovel made another, but it was exhibited only one more season before going into storage. It was erected one more time in 1996, and then until last year, it was just a nostalgic memory.
Last year -- on the 30th anniversary of its first appearance -- it was reassembled for the first time in more than a decade by the University of Wisconsin Hoofers. Now it's returning to Lake Mendota for the second year in a row, in connection with the Hoofers Winter Carnival. Will its appearance on the lake become an annual event. That depends. The required assembly takes a lot of volunteers.
[Hoofer’s Vice President of Programs Mindy] Cummings said Hoofers hopes to make the statue a yearly tradition, though the logistical hassles of assembling it are substantial. [...] She added the key to getting the statue assembled is having enough volunteers, and if future years do not see enough people willing to help, there will probably not be a future for the statue.Hope they find the resources. Winter wuldn't be the same without Lady Liberty on the lake.