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Bill Cotter

What if they held a world's fair and no one came?

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Wish I was there that day. The lines at Ford, GM and the G.E, Pavillion were the worse. Of course it was a Saturday in the  spring of 1965 which did not help. But the NYS Pavillion, NY City Pavillion, Hall of Science, Bell telephone and Underground World home, we walked right in. Right after dark, the crowds thinned right out. 

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It remains incredibly difficult for me to understand why more did not attend the Fair.  Expo 67 was swamped with visitors throughout its entire run.

Just today, I visited the 2016 NYS Fair.  It has smashed its own attendance records almost every day of this year's 12 day run.  It is just over 300 acres and nearly 120,000 poured through the gates today.  It was packed with humanity.  It has been so busy that the parking lots closed by 1PM the past two days.  They ran out of room.  And this is an annual state fair.

Why did this not routinely happen in NY in 1964 and 1965?  I know all of the historical arguments and answers but what I will never get it why many more people did not see what a remarkable, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity the Fair was.  I did.  And I was 12.

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26 minutes ago, Jim said:

It remains incredibly difficult for me to understand why more did not attend the Fair.  Expo 67 was swamped with visitors throughout its entire run.

Just today, I visited the 2016 NYS Fair.  It has smashed its own attendance records almost every day of this year's 12 day run.  It is just over 300 acres and nearly 120,000 poured through the gates today.  It was packed with humanity.  It has been so busy that the parking lots closed by 1PM the past two days.  They ran out of room.  And this is an annual state fair.

Why did this not routinely happen in NY in 1964 and 1965?  I know all of the historical arguments and answers but what I will never get is why many more people did not see what a remarkable, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity the Fair was.  I did.  And I was 12.

Jim, I wonder if New York would have achieved 52,000,000 visitors if it had only run for six months or, conversely, if Expo 67 would have only had 51,000,000 visitors if it had run two years?

 

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On ‎9‎/‎5‎/‎2016 at 12:15 AM, Jim said:

It remains incredibly difficult for me to understand why more did not attend the Fair. 

Why did this not routinely happen in NY in 1964 and 1965?  

I have a theory that April 1964 was too close to November 1963 for people to have a good time.  I've seen a lot of crowd photos and very few show people really laughing it up.

It might have been too close to a national tragedy.  I visited Universal Studios in November 2001, and the place was deserted.  No one, even on Main Street.  (I have photos if anyone is interested--you would have thought I visited when the place was closed)

 

 

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Disney started pushing its timeshares (called Disney Vacation Club) after that.  Someone figured out that most of the people who came shortly  after 9-11 were the timeshare owners who would have lost their stay for the year.

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I went to Orlando on a preplanned vacation in October, so it must have been not long after air service restarted. I had had a business trip or trips into DC Reagan National that was temporarily reroruted to Dulles with a shuttle bus to DC. Before that I had a business trip scheduled very shortly after 9/11, and I and management were ready to do it, but the corporate insurance people said no.

My memory is that Orlando in October was active but not crowded, and I wondered at the time how much of the lull was due to the tragedy and how much due to a dip when the school year started. It was eerie, though, to see security check stations set up on temporary folding tables some distance before the entrance. I know that in the Chicago area some small motels went out of business during the next year and it was blamed on the decrease in travel.

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