Sep 5, 2016

The Great Allentown Fair

The Morning Call website is hosting an archive of Fair Pictures from over the years. Being a fan both of fair pictures and black and white photography, looking at the 111 photos presented was a treat.

The photo shown above, which I will get back to, reminded me of one of my unique fair experiences. In previous posts, I have discussed that both my father and myself had stands at the fair. While my father learned that you couldn't sell hotdogs near Yocco's, I learned that drunks leaving the beer garden loved to buy printed T-shirts.

But today's post has to with George Kistler, long time City Clerk during the 1950's and 60's. George loved the fair, and loved sharing his fascination with a large group of people. I was fortunate enough to be invited several times. The routine was always the same; Dinner at a local stand on the eastern side of the fairgrounds, followed by the wrestling show. I remember photographing Andre The Giant.

The Morning Call fair picture above is none other than Jim "Super Fly" Snuka, who was recently back in Allentown, for a most regrettable reason.

A presentation, summary and discussion of a circa 1930 map of Allentown's business district, showing the leading merchants of that era.

The session will be held at the Coffee Shop Without Limits, located at the Alternative Gallery, on 4th Street, just north of Tilghman.

The short session will begin at 2:00 pm this coming Wednesday, September 7th.


george schaller said...

Will the original location be reopening or is this institution yet another demise of developmentalists advertisements sponsorships!

Dave said...

I also recall the professional wrestlers at the fair, along with the carny girls that I discovered when I was about 16 that used to travel with it, and worked at several of the rides and stands where you could lose money fast testing your luck. Some were very good looking and none had steady boyfriends because they traveled most of the year.

In the late 60s and early 70s, before the current William Allen gym opened, you could also see pro wrestlers at the Little Palestra for about $5. This was, of course, before pro wrestling went into the big money like it is today.

Atown Assassin said...

The wrestler on his back is Don Muraco, Snuka is in flight