In anticipation of NYC Parks’ World’s Fair Anniversary Festival, which will be held in Flushing Meadows Corona Park on Sunday, May 18, readers of The Queens Courier have been sharing their World’s Fair memories and memorabilia with us.
Belle Chameides, 93, went to both the 1939-40 and the 1964-65 World’s Fairs.
“I just loved it and I enjoyed going back many times to visit it,” the Little Neck resident said.
She recalls enjoying World’s Fair festivities with her older sister, Anita Lee, and her twin sister, Shirley.
She sent The Queens Courier memorabilia from both Fairs: a flag and pins from 1940, and tickets from 1964-65.
Reader Dotty Sodano was about 20 when she worked as part of the stenographic pool in the Administration Building of the Fair.
Sodano started working in the office in 1963, the year before the Fair opened, and she remembers that there was a countdown in the office until the Fair’s opening day.
“It was a fun place to work,” Sodano said.
She wrote to The Queens Courier to share her World’s Fair memories:
“I was employed in the Administration Building at the World’s Fair from 1963 to 1965, working on occasion for [Vice President] Stuart Constable and President Robert Moses.
“It was a privilege to be present the day that Gen. Douglas MacArthur visited the Fair. I am actually in a photo that was taken of him and the office staff while he was being greeted by Gen. William Potter. The photo appeared in a pamphlet which I kept all of these years. He also visited the large-scale table model of the entire World’s Fair, which I still remember as being an impressive sight.
“One of the perks of working there was walking around on our lunch hour visiting the many extraordinary pavilions and exhibits. There were people of all nationalities enjoying the sites (which may be common today, but not then). The Walt Disney salute to the children of the world was most enjoyable, as were the international exhibits; and Michelangelo’s Pieta left a lasting impression.
“It’s hard to believe that was fifty years ago. As a young woman, it was certainly a great place to work and a most memorable time of my life!
The pamphlet featuring Gen. Douglas MacArthur’s visit to the World’s Fair, courtesy of Dotty Sodano.
WORLD’S FAIR SUBMISSIONS CALL
Did you or someone you know attend the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park?
If yes, The Queens Courier is asking you to share your memorabilia and/or memories with us to commemorate the event’s 50th anniversary this April. You could win a dinner for two.
Please email your entries to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “World’s Fair Anniversary” or to Editorial, 38-15 Bell Blvd., Bayside, NY 11361.
Note: All photos/items become property of The Queens Courier.