• Sun. Apr 14th, 2024

Spokane’s Quest for the World’s Fair: A Look at the Organizing and Funding Efforts

BySamantha Nguyen

Apr 3, 2024
The World’s Fair transformed Spokane’s downtown 50 years ago

Spokane leaders looked to Seattle, which had previously hosted a fair in 1962, for guidance on organizing their own world’s fair. They were advised that a fair was a great idea and should be pursued. Fair leaders managed to secure pledges of $1.3 million in start-up funds, primarily from Spokane businesses. Additionally, the Washington Legislature allocated nearly $12 million in state tax dollars to construct the Washington State Pavilion, which later became the Spokane Opera House and Convention Center.

The Spokane City Council implemented a controversial business and occupation tax that raised $5.7 million to remove the railroad tracks and prepare the fair site for Expo ’74. In October 1971, President Richard M. Nixon officially endorsed the event. With a delegation led by King Cole, Spokane received the Bureau of International Expositions in Paris’s unanimous approval as an official “special exposition.”

Washington’s influential Congressional delegation, including Sen. Henry “Scoop” Jackson, Sen. Warren Magnuson, and Rep. Thomas Foley, secured an $11.5 million appropriation to construct the U.S. Pavilion at Expo ’74

By Samantha Nguyen

As a content writer at newsskio.com, I weave words to craft compelling narratives that captivate readers and bring stories to life. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for storytelling, I strive to create engaging and informative content that resonates with our audience. Whether I'm delving into the latest news trends or exploring unique angles on various topics, my goal is to deliver quality content that informs, entertains, and inspires. Join me on this journey as we uncover the news stories that matter most.

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