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A Glimpse at Tradeshow History (March)

ferris-wheel1893 – Wheel in the Sky
In 1890, the U.S Congress agreed to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ discovery of America in Chicago. It was decided that the expo needed a distinctive structure, something to rival the Eiffel Tower, which served as the iconic structure at the Paris Exposition in 1889. The result was Chicago’s great Ferris Wheel of 1893.

On March 18, the 89,320 pound axle, forged in Pittsburgh by the Bethlehem Iron Company, arrived in Chicago for the expo. On March 20, the first tower post was installed and shortly thereafter the axle was raised. In two hours, the immense axle assembly was hoisted to the top of the 140 feet high towers and mounted in its blocks.


1913 – Artwork in the Armory
The large spaces of U.S. National Guard armories have been used for many exhibits, but the Armory Show refers to the 1913 International Exhibition of Modern Art that was organized by the Association of American Painters and Sculptors (AAPS). It was the first large exhibition of modern art in America. The exhibition ran in New York City’s 69th Regiment Armory, from February 17 until March 15, 1913. The cost to rent 69th Regiment Armory for the show was $5,000. The show displayed 1,300 paintings, sculptures, and decorative works by over 300 avant-garde European and American artists.

1970 – 64 million attend Japan World Expo
Expo ‘70 was a World’s Fair held in Japan between March 15 and September 13, 1970. The theme of the Expo was Progress and Harmony for Mankind. This was the first World’s Fair held in Japan and was located in Osaka. The venue spanned 1.25 square miles.
A popular highlight of the fair was a large moon rock on display in the U.S. pavilion. It had been brought back from the moon by Apollo 12 astronauts in 1969.

The exhibitors included 76 countries, four international institutions, three American states, one German city, two companies and 32 organizations from Japan. Exhibits were shown at 116 pavilions.

Tradeshow History reported by Exhibit City News

ford-poster2001 – World’s largest poster

The new-for-2001 Ford Mondeo is featured prominently on the world’s largest poster mounted to the side of the Fort Dunlop building near Birmingham, U.K. Measuring 433 feet wide and 79 feet tall, the poster features the image of the small Ford Mondeo next to the slogan: “built to lead.” Created by NUR Macroprinters of the U.K., the poster is comprised of seven sections each measuring 66 feet wide and 79 feet high. The text and image are reversed out of a solid black background to create an advertising image dominating the landscape and visible from up to a mile away. The poster was viewed some 5.2 million times in about three months, according to the U.K. Dept. of Transportation.

2010 – Best Practices for Exhibitors
On March 15, the Exhibit Industry Council (EIC) released the first Best Practices Guide aimed at providing exhibitors with a reference frame for better industry standards. Titled Full Disclosure and Control of Exhibitor Costs, the document presented 11 points that address pressing issues in the industry as well as definitions and recommendations for possible solutions.

“The purpose of the Best Practices Guide is to increase exhibitor value and improve the effectiveness of face-to-face tradeshow and convention marketing efforts,” said Jim Wurm, executive director of the Exhibitor Appointed Contractor Association (EACA) and the spokesman for EIC.

The recommendations were aimed at creating more cost transparency and helping exhibitors understand total costs before contracts are signed.

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