I recall there being talk in the 70s and 80s that economics were going to kill the World’s Fairs. Like the Olympics, now, (or a national political convention) the expense of developing and promoting an international event far outweighed money taken in for the event.
Has anyone else heard anything more recent in this vein?
If I recall correctly, both the ’64 NY and Expo 67 were extended a year or more to recoup expenses.
One of the initial questions Gatorbreath asked was, Why don’t we see the fairs today? I thought a bit about that, and came up with the access that we all have to "Virtual-World" via the internet. We can investigate much of the "Explore the future of XXXX" type of stuff here on the Net. It is no longer appealing to the American population to Explore the latest Kitchen Gadgets and the Wonder of Atomic Energy by focusing a vacation period on a location where those topics are displayed. The Virtual World is slowly evolving into a replacement for the ‘travel and see’ world.
In my career area, I have taught University Internet classes in the social sciences and think they-the net classes- will eventually do away with the expensive classroom instruction that pushes education costs so high these days. Thats a whole ‘nother topic and i will now return you to the World’s Fair Mystery!![:I]
I was 22 years old, working as a Credit Manager for WT Grant’s in Far Rockaway. My landlord was a union plumber at the 64 World’s Fair and gave me free passes, I never went. DUMB.
used to sneak into the 64 worlds fair across the subway tracks from shea stadium after a mets game and eat belgian waffles a real delicacy in those days for a 14 year old.
The 1982 Knoxville Worlds Fair was actually an energy exposition. It was considered very successful. Our office at the time was directly across the street and we had season tickets. Great food and I recall us visiting several times a week for lunch. I still have several six packs of some kind of beer with the Expo label on it.
Paul E. Smith
That was the Belgian Village. I remember it as being a beautiful ancient cobblestoned town through my seventeen year old eyes. Also had the waffles for the first time there. Loved them. We lived twenty minutes away by car so got there a few times in 64/65. Nice memories…
I remember the NY WF in 1964. (Queens – Flushing – some of the buildings are still standing) I was a kid. It was sooooo "exotic"! In fact they had this very special, new, exotic snack: Belgian Waffles! (Belgium Pavilion?). Also I think Chow Chow Cups (China Pavilion?) (a giant Chinese noodle/cup filled with chow mein). I also think I snuck some cigaretts and beers! (being like 14 yrs old)…I still have the Official Guidebook!
Wow! Thanks for all the info, gb!
Sounds like free beer is just one of the many attractions of your town. Thanks for the helpful link to the Times.
Geez, I didn’t even get the correct year for Knoxville. ’82, not ’84.
Thank you for asking about St. Louis suggestions for your proposed trip. It caused me to go off looking and reminiscing about my adopted city. Yeah, we’ve got all the places other cities have, and I crabbed on that earlier, but there are other places here that are unique or rarely represented in other cities. After moving to St. Louis, when out of town guests darkened my doorway I tried to come up with ideas of places to take them to which suited their personalities. A friend from grade school on came to town who liked live theater, music, and was a convert to the Catholic Faith. We went to the "Faboulous" Fox Theater for a cheap ticket, balcony seat performance by Bobby Vinton and Marie Osmond and later went to both the old and new St. Louis Cathedrals. The "fabulous" tag for The Fox is well earned and the mosaic work within the new cathedral is simply spectacular. Wow, this is getting wordy. Without so much detail, other places I’d recommend are:
Grant’s Farm (family estate of the Busch beer barons + FREE BEER)
Laumeier Sculpture Park
Forest Park (Zoo, Art Museum, Planetarium, History Museum, Municipal (Muny) Opera, 2 golf courses, and I once saw a bunch of guys playing Cricket there, I think it was Cricket)
Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery (these guys may not have made it to Arlington, but they helped make the USA)
Union Station (pure commercial schtick, but puts you across the street from a pretty cool fountain complex and likeable urban vistas)
"The" Brewery Tour (mostly commercial schtick + FREE BEER)
As far as music and food are concerned, far too subjective "subjects" for me to try and foist my opinions on anyone. I like nearly all forms of each too well to get into details. I will only offer up a source (The Riverfront Times) for your perusal to fit your tastes in both music and food.
In reading through some of these reviews it seems the reviewer is much like myself. They’ve seldom met a restaurant they didn’t like. Be sure to see the "Best Of’s" from the top menu bar and way down at the bottom of the homepage. One of them I can cite as;
G&W Meat & Bavarian Style Sausage Company (they sell meat + FREE BEER)
I read the The Devil in the White City. It is a great read. I also have The History of the World’s Fair, a Complete Description of the World’s Columbian Exposition, by Major Ben C. Truman, published in 1894. The book is in frail condition and I need to get it restored. Nevertheless it is fascinating.
From a historical perspective, the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair made quite an impact on our society. For a revealing look at the fair get the DVD ‘EXPO: Magic of the White City’ directed by Mark Bussler (noted for his historic documentaries) and narrated by Gene Wilder.
For those who are interested in the topic of World’s Fairs, I recommend reading The Devil in The White City, by Eric Larson. In alternating chapters, the author gives a detailed and fascinating description of both the building of the 1892 "World’s Columbian Exposition" in Chicago and the fiendish work of Dr. H. H. Holmes, a serial killer who trolled the fair for many of his female victims.
Since the details about Dr. Holmes’ work are not for the faint-of-heart, you should only read this book about the 1892 Chicago World’s Fair if you are also a fan of true crime novels and if you have a strong stomach. It is a well-written book that juxtaposes an architect’s struggles to build and open the exposition on schedule vs. a serial killer’s use of that exposition to carry out his own sick agenda.
The Eiffel Tower was built for a world’s fair in 1889, the Ferris Wheel was first unveiled in the 1892-93 Chicago exposition and President McKinley was assassinated at the 1901 PanAmerican exposition in Buffalo. The All-Star Game in baseball started as a part of he 1933 Chicago exposition
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