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Calling All Teens: Write Back Story of Lincoln Park's Fountain Girl Statue

By Mina Bloom | September 23, 2015 5:47am | Updated on September 23, 2015 2:11pm
 The Fountain Girl statue in Lincoln Park.
The Fountain Girl statue in Lincoln Park.
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DNAinfo/Paul Biasco

LINCOLN PARK — What's the story behind the Fountain Girl statue in Lincoln Park? Why is she offering a basin of water to someone?

The teen who can come up with the best answers to those questions will be able to share his or her story with countless Chicagoans who visit the statue through August of next year.

The Chicago Park District is putting out a call for teens to write the back story of the statue — which is located just south of West LaSalle Drive and east of the Chicago History Museum — as part of the city's new initiative, Statue Stories Chicago, which debuted earlier this summer. 

Beginning in spring of next year, people will scan the sign next to the statue with their smartphones to hear the teen's story of the statue as if it were talking to them. Famous Chicago actors like John C. Reilly have voiced several other historical statues throughout the city.

Teens must be between 12 and 18 years of age to submit a monologue. 

Submissions must be 350 words, written in first person and in the statue's point of view. They must be include the following information: 

• Name

• Age

• School

• Email address

The winning piece will be voiced by a drama student, who will be selected by Chicago Park District officials.

Monologues must be submitted as a PDF document to teencompetition@chicagoparkdistrict.com by Oct. 26. 

The original version of the statue was sculpted in 1893 by George Wade after the Woman's Christian Temperance Union urged the creation of public fountains to provide drinking water as an alternative to alcohol. Children donated pennies and nickels to help pay for the fountain, which was originally at the 1893 World's Columbia Exposition in Jackson Park.

The girl is seen holding a small cup that resembles the Loyal Temperance Union badge, according to the Chicago Park District.

The fountain, also called The Little Cold Water Girl, was later moved to the Woman's temple at La Salle and Monroe and then to Lincoln Park in 1921. It was stolen in the 1950s and in 2008 it was reproduced and installed on its original base.

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