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Joey Chernov

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About Joey Chernov

  • Rank
    Loves World's Fairs
  • Birthday 01/07/1993

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  • Location
    Washington, DC
  • Interests
    Social Media team at NASA HQ in Washington, DC.

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  1. I took quite a few photos of Nur Alem and the Independence monument from the perspective that gives the illusion of the iconic 1939 structures. For me, it was quite a sight to see the similarities to the structures which first piqued my interest on world expositions over 12 years ago.
  2. Expo 2017 report

    I've uploaded the video for the Expo 2017 evening parade here.
  3. Hi all. I spent a week in Astana from August 1-7 making my first international trip and first world expo. I thought the Exposition grounds were wonderfully organized; one could walk easily in between countries. Each building had an art installation in the center of their central walkway that represented energy from the wind, water, solar and the land, respectively. Food kiosks were placed along this walkway offering food ranging from cafe sandwiches to local fast food to burgers. Between the architecture of the buildings, planted trees and art installations, the area in front of the pavilion clusters was rather efficiently decorated while still maintaining beauty. The main square in front of Nur Alem featured the only fountains and flower displays across the whole grounds, however, and added nice visuals. Nur Alem is just as magnificent as it was hyped to be; eight levels offering the latest technologies and applications for future energy; the "Museum of Future Energy" as it was called will remain after the fair closes. That, along with two food courts and a concert hall, are expected to be the expo site's cultural landmarks once the site becomes a financial center next year. The first floor of the structure houses the Kazakh National pavilion. To actually enter the sphere itself, you must ride in one of eight elevators to the top level and work your way down. The flow of visitors throughout the sphere was self-explanatory, but it was possible to go to a specific floor if you asked an elevator attendant. I thought the Theme pavilion I was the better of the two thematic experiences. The multimedia show with the dozens of silver balls and copper rings was one of my favourite experiences from the entire fair and it was followed up nicely with a presentation of a future city - complete with a model. It very effectively inspired and proliferated the ideas promoted at Expo. On the other hand, Thematic Pavilion 2's most memorable quality to me was the black drop of oil used as an activity key - it was representative of the last drop of oil our species is dependent on. As for the international pavilions, most of them were nicely done. Highlights included the 'mirror wave' in Monaco, the laser infinity room in Poland, and Russia's chunk of Arctic ice. Switzerland played into an ingenious application of future energy by building a gigantic, human-powered playground full of bicycles and levers. Some pavilions used a combination of live performance with video while others were nothing more than infosigns on a wall. The queues were longest for South Korea and Germany. While the 20 minutes or so for Germany wasn't too bad, South Korea's was at 30 minutes most of the time and over 60 often! The poor Korean line attendant looked wholly exasperated every time I'd walk by. Shell's Energy Lab was very interactive and was far more accommodating to all ages than the others. You could even run around like a human hamster inside of a zorb ball generating electrical current for the building. The nightly parade through the exposition grounds was also one of the fair's highlights. The three and a half minute parade artistically highlighted each form of future energy on display while also paying homage to Kazakh culture. (I have a recording of the entire event on youtube, which I have linked here.) Souvenirs were available at each entrance and all offered the same semi-limited supply. Wares included magnetic sets of Baikonur, Astana, or the expo, a few T-shirts and jackets, ties, pens, snow globes, phone cases, pins, and various electronic accessories. They did offer Expo Passports and had rather large amounts. Expo volunteers also near the entrances gave any passerby within 50 feet multiple maps of the grounds and were rather adamant I took them. My only major issues were that there weren't any water fountains available at all (and the one I did find, on the second floor of the Best Practices area, wasn't even connected) and that only one in ten of the electronic charging stations worked. Coke offered four cubes to charge devices in and each one of the aforementioned thematic art installations could charge probably 20 devices each. However, only around 2-3 of the USB charging ports were actually wired up. I visited the Expo every day while I was there, though some days I went sightseeing in Astana beforehand. Many of the city's landmarks had been opened up especially for tourists visiting the Expo including the Nazarbayev Center and the Palace of Peace and Reconciliation. The famed Bayterek tower opened earlier in the summer after undergoing an extensive renovation for Expo. Advertising was EVERYWHERE. Every construction site had Expo wrapping on their chain link fences, the sides of buildings were lit up at night with Expo light signs, and the tricoloured logo leaves were everywhere. Astana had never experienced tourism before the Expo opened, and everywhere I turned there were people eager to welcome the world. The overwhelming consensus from the individuals I encountered was that the Expo is good for bringing international interest to the city but bad because the government stripped everyone's pensions to help pay for Expo. They are supposed to be reinstated once the event is over. All in all, Astana was an incredible city and a perfect host for an Event such as Expo. Additionally, the futurism of the city helped shape Expo to become the cultural event of year, with over two million visitors to the fairgrounds alone. Personally, I feel this expo is more memorable than the recent ones since Shanghai, but only in terms of standout architecture and exhibits. For those who have been to Yesou, Milano, and Astana, is this a fair statement? I've attached a few photos but have most of them posted in my flickr album.
  4. Yes, I wouldn't mind meeting up at some point at the fair. I'll defenitely need a familiar language after being in the city for a few days. I'll keep an eye out for you two for sure, and if it's getting later in the week and I haven't found you I'll send you a message on here.

    I'm average height and will have a very short, thick beard. If you see a young American guy with lots of cameras taking photos all over that'll be me!

    1. wf256


      Hi Joey,
      I shall look out for you. I travel without a computer or smart 'phone so unless my hotel has kit I won;t be on-line - so will just watch carefully for a walking camera with beard and an American accent.



      PS Envious of you for having seen the NY sphere in your photo - I have a poster of it on my wall - but never seen in person

    2. wf256


      Hello Joey,

      How are things going? Unfortunately although I did manage to get on-line whilst in Astana - with a Samsung device that couldn;t handle anything with Javascript - so couldn;t contact you.

      And I drove my companion mad by looking out for you and wheeling up to bearded westeners.

      You have probably worked out as much now as we managed to - but I am properly on-line now if you want to try me out. And I;m going to start answering dangling questions on the forum as well

  5. I noticed early on in the Expo's run that the monument would give the illusion of the iconic '39 theme structure. I plan on highlighting this when I visit the site in two weeks.
  6. Expo 2017 Report

    I'm planning on being in Astana for a week, and will try to go to the expo every day, even if it's just in the evening after sightseeing. I'm staying in the 'old town' part of Astana north of the river. Did the older parts of the city or from the new monuments back to town look walkable to you? Also, how easy/fair were the taxis, if you took any. I'm planning on using a combination of both.
  7. I worked with Deimos Imaging to obtain this satellite imagery of the Expo site taken on June 16. Orbital imagery in both Google Earth and Google Maps is dated September 28, 2016, and I wanted to see the site now that it is completed. Photo copyright Deimos Imaging.
  8. Anyone going?

    I'll be in Astana August 1-7 and will be staying at the Absolut hotel in Old Town. It will be my first world's fair!
  9. Stamps and Passports at the Expo

    I've been following the #Expo2017 tags closely on social media and came across this image of the Expo passport last week. I contacted the original poster (World Expo News) who stated that the organizers did not order them until very late. So far, only twenty arrived and he was unclear how many more they would get or how long they would be available. I've attached his image. I'm hoping they'll be sufficient supplies for my trip the first week in August. EDIT - I've come across a few other posts on Instagram of stamps from various pavilions already so it looks like the service is available regardless if there is a passport book or not.
  10. Anyone going?

    I'm planning my trip now, though I'd like to clear up some details before I fully commit. Are the tickets fully online, or could I walk up to the gates the day of and purchase them? Is there like a three day pass (I'm planning on being in Astana August 1-7. I'm still looking around for lodging and transportation around the city as well.
  11. According to this, it looks like the US pavilion has four major corporate sponsors signed up for it, along with State Department backing. http://www.usapavilion2015.net/
  12. NASA and the World's Fair

    Hi, all. After a few-month hiatus on the World's Fair project, I've picked it up again for academic perusal. I'm uncovered a considerable amount of information of NASA's involvement at the 1982 Fair (Which operated a significant portion of the US Pavilion) as well as photos of their exhibit and hardware on display. The guidebook reveals little information other than an advertisement for the US Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville. As for the 1984 Fair, enough photos exist on the internet that, when coupled with guide book information and the few images from the NASA archive, I've been able to compile a fairly detailed vision of the agency's involvement. The only major exposition not covered would be Expo '74. While it had an environmental theme, I posit there must have been some sort of Earth-science display somewhere with satellites and instrumentation. Does anhyone ahve any insight? Along the same lines, I doubt there was nothing shown at HemisFair '68 due to its specialized nature, but being located in Texas, the same state as Mission Control, one could not be too sure. Does anyone know where the archives for both expositions could be?
  13. Hello again all, I have a question for you which may pose a puzzle. Where are the archives of the fair located? I'm on the hunt for some official photographs, documentation, and information, and would like to dig into the archives of the Fair corporation. Does one of the local Knoxville universities or library have them? ​Posting almost this same thing in the 1984 Fair section.
  14. Hello again all, I have a question for you which may pose a puzzle. Where are the archives of the fair located? I'm on the hunt for some official photographs, documentation, and information, and would like to dig into the archives of the Fair corporation. Does one of the local New Orleans universities have them? Or the library? Posting almost this same thing in the 1982 Fair section.
  15. Yes, as well as the rest of the Saturn I block II series. The Saturn I block II was still a Saturn I, but with a live upper stage, a few avionics modifications, and aerodynamic fins.