This week’s Hemisfair Memory comes courtesy of Chuck Hamilton:
In 1968, a college friend and I got summer jobs at Hemisfair. He drove a Mini Monorail train and I sold post cards. I peddled my wares just inside Gate 1, next to Pierre’s Interlude and across from the Rainbow Theatre’s “Argyle the Snake” puppet show. Between sales, I could watch Argyle tease fairgoers, take a few whiffs of the French onion soup emanating from Pierre’s, visit with friends, or just people-watch.
If that weren’t enough, many other sights, sounds, and smells lurked nearby, which explains why I seldom left Hemisfair at the end of my shift. The sun was down, the place was aglow, and there was much to explore and experience… and foods to try and re-try (tandoori chicken, Belgian waffles, buñuelos, Dutch Kettle fudge, and countless others)! Late evenings, many employees ended up on the patio of the House of Sir John Falstaff, quaffing Sir John’s namesake brew, swapping workday stories, and listening to vocalist Lofton Kline.
Over the years, I’ve strolled through the Hemisfair grounds many times, usually saddened that a once lively place appeared abandoned or at least under-utilized. Thus, I’m thrilled to learn of the ongoing plans for Hemisfair, and I hope it will become the urban oasis it aspired to be!
We hope you’ll join us on April 6-8 to celebrate our 50th Anniversary at ¡Viva Hemisfair! and celebrate our city’s tradition of activism, equality and the confluence of civilizations. If you’ve got a memory from the last 50 years of Hemisfair, we’d love to hear about at hemisfair.org/memories.