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Ray in Pasadena

OCTOBER 17, 1965

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My very last visit to NYWF was exactly 42 years ago today, but the memories are as clear as this mornings' California sunrise! For those of you that missed this memorable day, believe me when I say it was the most exciting eight hours ever spent at Flushing Meadows. I was only a speck of humanity amongst the more than 420,000 visitors that day and part of the excitement was to be part of that huge celebration. It was my last chance to record the events at the fair, so I decided to interview dozens of fairgoers to get their impressions of the impact that The Fair had on their lives. Everyone agreed it was difficult to imagine that this was never going to be seen again. How true it was then as it is now, no World's Fair on American soil has appeared that could match the splendor of NYWF! As my helicopter left the Heliport at sundown, I watched the lights of The Fair fade away as we flew towards JFK. As I did then, I now have tears in my eyes as I recollect the many hundreds of exciting hours that I spent at the New York World's Fair. It can never be forgotten.

Ray Dashner

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That's great Ray. Some real bittersweet memories (such a great expeience it must have been visiting the Fair--even if you'd been there many times already , and the sadness of leaving--knowing that it would be for the last time ). Thanks for sharing your memories (especially from the PTUers like me who were not born until after the Fair closed). I'm so glad that you recorded as much history as you possibly could in your "vaults". It would sem that you did as much as anyone else (if not much more) to make sure that the Fair and its memory would live on and on...

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I also remember that Sunday afternoon...Of all the times I visited the Fair, never could I inagine that so many people could assemble in one place....I was 14 years old, and I so clearly recall the long wait to go see The Pieta one last time.....I remember watching out the rear window of our Ford Country Sqiure as we cross the Whitestone Bridge on our way back to Westchester.....Never would I ever see the magnificent display of lights ever again......I must have driven past the Fair at least 80 times during those two summers going to and from Robert Moses State Park which was a new beach back then......It is rewarding however to have found this woderful site that transcends time and aloows myself and so many, to revisit the Wonder that was the 64-65 NY Worlds Fair........I'm forever thankful to this membership........

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That's is a great account of the final day of the Fair. I have often wondered why it took New Yorkers so long to realize they

liked their fair. Why didn't the huge crowds arrive until so late into the second season? I believe the closing of every fair had

a similar emotional impact on those who loved each particular event. The accounts of the final day and evening of the

Pan American Exposition way back in 1901 or of Expo 67 (forty years ago on October 29) are equally emotional and moving.

Fairs are snapshots of precise moments in time and it is hard to let them go when the time arrives.

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After going to the fair the day before it closed I also have strong feelings about that final weekend.The fair was a coming of age experience for me as I was 16 and 17 at the time.The experience will remain with me for the rest of my life and the only time I felt anything like it was my first visit to Epcot in 1984.It was as close to going back as I ever got.-Jerry

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