Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

National and World

November 12, 2012

Statue of Liberty lit for 1st time since Sandy

NEW YORK (AP) — The Statue of Liberty was illuminated Friday evening for the first time since it was closed due to damage on Liberty Island caused by Superstorm Sandy.

The statue, one of the city's top tourist attractions, has been closed because of damage to the island resulting from the storm that hit New York Oct. 29, with no estimate on when it will reopen to visitors.

The statue sits on a small island in New York Harbor, and can be seen from many vantage points around New York City.

The monument was re-lit through temporary measures made possible by a donation of equipment and services from Musco Lighting to the National Park Foundation, which is the official charity of America's national parks, according to a statement from the National Park Service. Another company, Natoli Construction, handled the lighting of the statue's torch and crown.

The temporary lighting will remain in place until permanent repairs are made.

Mike Litterst, a spokesman for the National Park Service, said it was not clear in advance whether the Friday lighting would include the torch "so it was a pleasant surprise to be able to get the torch lit tonight."

The statue's lamp is held aloft by its raised arm and marks the highest point of the 305-foot-tall (93 meters) monument, which was dedicated in 1886. "The New Colossus," a poem by Emma Lazarus engraved inside the statue's pedestal, refers to the beacon in its final line: "I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

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