Friday, January 20, 2017

Friday Foto Friends #63

A New York Memory: Remembering 1964-65 World's Fair Remnants

It might be surprising to know that most of the world’s countries boycotted the ’64-65 Fair. Not because of any particular animus or grudge against the United States or New York City…it was just that there had already been a previous World’s Fair in Seattle in 1962, and most countries devoted their resources to that. U.S. industry picked up the slack. Nevertheless, 36 countries were represented. Here are two of the Fair's remnants still standing.
For out of towners and Queens visitors, the Unisphere can be a surprising and impressive sight for those who aren’t familiar with it: it seems to rise above the trees and buildings like a second moon when you are in the surrounding park and nearby neighborhoods of Corona and Queensboro Hill. The 35-ton Unisphere has become Queens’ symbol in the 4 decades it has been in Flushing Meadows, and needs no introduction, being hardly forgotten. There are some aspects to this 140’x120′ behemoth that you may not be aware of, though.
Though Earth has no rings, unlike Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, the Unisphere has three. Its rings represent the orbits of the first American astronaut, the first Russian cosmonaut and the first communications satellite to orbit the Earth.
It was quite an engineering feat to make the Unisphere stay in place, because the Pacific Ocean part of it is much lighter than the section showing Africa, Asia and Europe.
The Unisphere tilts at the same approximate 23.5-degree angle the Earth does as it orbits the sun. The angle is believed by astronomers to be the result of the close pass or perhaps even the Velikovsky-esque collision of a Mars-size body with Earth in the solar system’s earliest days. It’s this 23.5-degree angle that allows the sun to shine on earth at different angles depending on the time of year, producing the four seasons.

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The Rocket Thrower is one of a number of statues created for the Fair that had flight or space travel as a theme. (The Fair also boasted the Court of Astronauts, Fountain of the Planets, etc.) The stylized sculpture depicts a giant throwing a rocket (in his right hand) through a network of stars (in his left). After the Fair opened, reviews of Donald De Lue’s sculpture were decidedly mixed. NY Times art reviewer John Canaday called it a “most lamentable monster, making Walt Disney look like Leonardo Da Vinci.” I personally think that review was unfair.

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Hope you enjoyed taking this trip down memory lane with me to the old Fair Grounds in NYC. I so enjoy bringing back part of my good memories of sights and scenes I visited.
If you're interested in joining the Friday Foto Friends you can visit Debbie by clicking on her name. Until next time dear friends have a lovely and blessed weekend.

6 comments:

  1. Those are very good photos. We visited New York several times, but I guess we never made it there. There is so much to see and do there.

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  2. Cool information Toni! I only made it to Manhattan in 2008. "It's a Small World at Disneyland was first presented at the NY World's Fair in 1964. We have our puppy now. Have a great weekend. Hugs

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  3. THat is so interesting! I never realized that was there, even though I do remember hearing about the NY World's Fair when I was a young girl. Thank you for sharing this part of history with us! I love the pictures and the descriptions. Thank you!

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  4. What wonderful memories you have and so interesting. Thanks so much for sharing today. Hope you have a great weekend!

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  5. It is sad that in the late 60s of all the times I went to NYC that I never did see the old World's Fair grounds. The unisphere is just beautiful. I can understand how participating in a World Fair in '62 would make it difficult for countries to turn around and do it again in '64. Thanks for sharing the photos.

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