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Smithfield LOVEwork sign relocated

Smithfield’s LOVEwork statue has a new home.

The art installation and photo backdrop is now located in front of The Smithfield Times office at 228 Main St. It was formerly a block away at the Smithfield and Isle of Wight Visitors Center at 319 Main St.

Tourism officials said in a statement they decided to move the art installation to give the piece greater visibility and a less cluttered backdrop. The town owns the building that the newspaper office occupies as well as the adjacent outdoor pavilion that’s home to the longstanding Summer Concert Series.

Locals and visitors are invited to take their photo in front of the Smithfield LOVEwork and post their pic to social media with the hashtags #LoveVa and #SmithfieldLOVE. The Smithfield LOVEwork piece was created by Meagan Pugh. She is a Smithfield High Governor’s School for the Arts and Virginia Commonwealth University’s Fine Arts Department graduate and owner of Smithfield-based SummerWind Vineyard.

The LOVEworks program is a statewide branding initiative designed to promote the famous “Virginia is for Lovers” tourism slogan, which was introduced about 50 years ago. Virginia Tourism created the local LOVEwork program in 2013 after recognizing the popularity of similar signs placed at travel welcome centers throughout the state. More than 100 local signs have been placed.