Friday, April 29, 2011

Food at the Fairs - Part 3

Here's a view inside one of the Bel-Gem Waffle stands. There are waffles all over the place, but for most of the Fair, they sold out as fast as they could be made. At times it seems some guests must have been eating waffles for breakfast, lunch, and dinner - with some waffles for snacks in between. I didn't get to eat as many myself as I might have liked, due to a small cash flow situation (a waffle cost the same as another ticket back into the Fair), but they were well worth waiting for.

Imagine how sticky these women would have been after a day around all that sugar!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Food at the Fairs - Part 2

If you talk about food and the 1964-1965 New York World's Fair you can only come to one conclusion. The math is easy:

1964 World's Fair + Food = Bel-Gem Waffles

The waffles were unquestionably the food hit of the Fair. Belgium waffles had been seen earlier at the 1962 Seattle World's Fair, but these were a lighter mixture that just were wonderful. As soon as word got out about them lines started forming at the first shops to carry them, like this one. Soon, it seemed that just about every place selling something to eat was also selling Belgium waffles.

Tomorrow we'll see why.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Food at the Fairs - Part 1

A big part of the fun in going to a world's fair is the food. Sure, the shows are great, but come on, admit it - a fair is a great reason to overload on junk food. Every fair I've been to has been a torture on the feet, a drain on the wallet, and a battle for the waist line.

This is one of the many Brass Rail Snack Bars that dotted the grounds of the 1964-1965 New York World's Fair. The food wasn't very good - in fact, at some of them it was barely edible - but the giant inflated bubble roofs were very visible all over the place, adding greatly to the carnival like atmosphere. While I didn't have any gourmet treats at these stands I would love to be able to walk back up to one just one more time!

Check out those prices...

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

This Date in History - April 26, 1970

It's sometimes difficult to tell exactly when a picture was taken at a world's fair. Sure, you can usually make a good guess as to the year, as most fairs only run one year. Some have run two years, though, and then you also have to consider the 10+ year run of "Man and His World", the successor to Expo 67.

For one year fairs, a slide will often have a processing date on it. However, some people didn't send their film out for processing until far after they got home. I have a box of slides advertised on eBay for the "1966 New York World's Fair". There was no such fair, of course, but someone waited until a year after the fair had closed to get their slides developed. On other slides you may get lucky if the original owner wrote down the date. With negatives, unfortunately, you usually can't get any dates.

Happily this slide of Expo 70 was very easy to date. It shows the date on the official Expo clock, and even shows the time. It looks like April 26, 1970 was a cloudy day at the fair, at least at 9:11 AM.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Tune back in tomorrow for another "This Date in History"

We'll be visiting Expo 70 in Osaka!

In the meantime here's a picture to keep things going. It was in with a bunch of negatives from the 1933-1934 Chicago World's Fair, also known as "A Century of Progress". I'm not sure if this was actually at the fair. If you do know please drop me a note.

Friday, April 22, 2011

This Date in History - April 22, 1964

April 22, 1964 was a wet and gloomy day. It was also the Opening Day of the 1964-1965 New York World's Fair! The crowd was lighter than expected due to the weather and political protests, but those that braved it were treated to a wonderful world indeed. The fair wasn't quite ready in some cases - you can see the unfinished Belgian Village on the right - but what was there was unlike anything seen before.

For more on the fair please visit and my site, We also have a very active discussion group at Stop by and say hi!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

This Date in History - April 21, 1965

The 1964-1965 New York World's Fair was just starting for the second season when this shot was taken. It's outside the Missouri Pavilion, and they're raising a flag to celebrate the 1964 World Series win by the St. Louis Cardinals. Imagine how grating that must have been to the New York crowd - especially as the Yankees had been the losing team!