Design competition set to replace Our Lady of Fatima shrine destroyed by tornado at Indian Lake

RUSSELLS POINT — A statewide design competition has been announced to help craft a new shrine for a 60-year-old statue that was damaged and blown in Indian Lake by a tornado in March.

The Our Lady of Fatima Shrine was destroyed when a deadly EF-3 tornado hit the Indian Lake community on March 14. Pieces of the 20-foot-tall statue were blown into the lake and found over two weeks later, and the remaining portions of the shrine’s pedestal were demolished for safety reasons.

>> PREVIOUS COVERAGE: ‘It was very emotional;’ 60-year-old statute found after being damaged, blown into lake by tornado

After the tornado, the American Society of Ephesus (ASE) was immediately asked by the community about what was next for the statue.

“We immediately had requests from the local community to build it back, and there was never any question about it – we will rebuild the shrine!” Bill Quatman, president of ASE, said.

That led the nonprofit partner with ArtSpace/Lima to start a design competition for the shrine.

“The community uses the shrine regularly, so we wanted Ohio residents to have a say in what we build. We envision something similar to the 1964 shrine but updated to last at least another 60 years,” Quatman, whose grandfather built the original shrine, said.

The design competition will have 6 age categories: 10 & under; 12 & under; 14 & under; 16 & under; 18 & under; and over 18, and it will be open to any resident of Ohio, according to the Indian Lake Chamber of Commerce.

>> PHOTOS: Missing statue found after being damaged, blown into lake by EF-3 tornado in Logan Co.

A five-person jury will review the design submissions and decide on the winners in each category. ASE will then give a cash prize to the winners in each age category. In return for the cash prize, ASE will own the right to use any ideas from the winning entries.

“No design decisions have been made yet - despite many suggestions, other than three things. Those are: No fountains and no rotation or motors (which we found are very hard to maintain), and it must be Our Lady of Fatima,” Quatman said.

Entry forms, rules, and a schedule will be posted on the ASE and ArtSpace/Lima websites by June 13. Designs are to be submitted electronically by September 15. The goal is to have the new shrine dedicated by August 2026.

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