September 6-15, 2024

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Celebrating Expo '74

At the 2024 Spokane County Interstate Fair, we will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of Expo '74: The World's Fair. On this page, we have included information, history, and resources to learn more about Expo '74!

Upcoming Celebration Events

Want to dive into the Expo ’74 celebrations? Click the button below to be taken to Visit Spokane’s on-going calendar of 50th Anniversary Expo ’74 events!

History

Expo ’74, Spokane’s World’s Fair, was an international exposition held from May 4 to November 3, 1974, in Spokane. With a population of only 170,000, Spokane was the smallest city ever to hold a world’s fair, yet it attracted almost 5.2 million visitors. The theme was the environment.

Ten countries, including the Soviet Union, Japan, and the United States, along with many states and corporations, hosted pavilions on the 100-acre site. The original impetus of the fair was to clean up and reclaim the land alongside the mighty falls of the Spokane River, which for decades had been clogged with railroad tracks, trestles, and warehouses. Under the leadership of King Cole (1922-2010), a veteran of urban renewal projects, Spokane made the audacious decision to host a world’s fair and then convert the downtown site into a public park. After the fair closed, the site was revamped to become Riverfront Park, today the city’s downtown showcase and gathering spot. David H. Rodgers (b. 1923) Spokane’s mayor at the time, said, “Reduced to its essentials, we gave a great big party and the rest of the world came and paid the bill” (Youngs, 503).

The U.S. Pavillion

The iconic U.S. Pavilion in Riverfront Park was actually built specifically for Expo ’74, and was a gift to the city of Spokane from the U.S. government. Read more about the history of the U.S. Pavillion at the links below!

Articles About Expo '74

Below, you will find a select few articles about the celebration of Expo ’74! 

The World Market at the
2024 Spokane County Interstate Fair

We will be putting on a World Market at the 2024 Spokane County Interstate Fair! To learn more about this event, click the button below. We are currently looking for vendors!

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