World's Fairs are by their very nature fleeting exhibits, just existing for a year or two then disappearing. Often the attractions, and even buildings and fixtures which usually cost quite a bit to create and develop, are sold after the fair is over. Many times it is amusement and theme parks which snap up these things at bargain prices giving new life to what would have otherwise gone to waste.
|Enchanted Forest Trash Cans
One of the most unique and plentiful fixtures that was part of the New York World's Fair was the hundreds of trash cans that were found all around the grounds. Many of these sleek yet simple trash receptacles were purchased for Great Adventure's new Enchanted Forest theme park. It is unknown where they were stored in the years between the end of the fair in 1965 and the opening of Great Adventure in 1974, but the cans dotted the park for several seasons before being replaced with more traditional garbage receptacles in 1977.
Glide-a-Ride Tractor Trains
Glide-a-ride trains run north-south and east-west across the Fair grounds. White flags (north-south) and green flags (east-west) distinguish these shuttles from similar trains for sightseeing. The fare is 25 cents.
|Parking Lot Trams
The original design of Great Adventure created a wooded divide between the parking lot and Enchanted Forest theme park. To make the journey to the park entrance guests boarded trams which carried them over the unpaved parking lot. The fleet of trams employed by Great Adventure in its earliest seasons was purchased by Great Adventure from the Fair operators, though where the trams spent the ensuing years between the end of the Fair and the opening of the park is a mystery. The low riding profile of the trams proved to be an issue and were quickly replaced.
Swiss Sky Ride
In one of the highest rides at the Fair, cabins holding four passengers each are suspended on cables 113 feet in the air. The cables run between the Korean and Swiss pavilions; a one-way trip covers 1,875 feet, takes four minutes and provides panoramic views not only of the fairgrounds but of Manhattan Island. Tickets may be purchased at booths near the two pavilions. Admission: 75 cents one way; cars leave every 12 seconds.
The cars and the mechanical station components of Great Adventure's Skyride were originally the Swiss Sky Ride at the NY World's Fair. They were purchased by a company that intended to move them along with other items to Canada, but they were held up at the border in northern New York where they sat for several years until Great Adventure purchased them. It is believed that the same company also purchased equipment from the defunct Freedomland park in the Bronx, and the Skyride at Great Adventure appears to have been assembled from the World's Fair components along with the towers from Freedomland. The Skyride cars served at Great Adventure until the early 1990's when they were replaced with a newer fleet from Six Flags Great America. The original station drive and tension bases still operate to this day, more than 50 years after the New York World's Fair.
Great Adventure's Musik Express ride is also rumored to have come from the 1964-65 New York World's Fair, though we have never been able to confirm this. Great Adventure made this claim in an employee newspaper in 1985. As far as we have been able to determine there was no Musik Express ride at the World's Fair, though many amusement rides were added to the Fair for the 1965 season as they tried to recoup their investments. The rides added had little to no documentation or mentions in the Fair guidebooks and maps which received few updates between the 1964 and 1965 versions and often omitted things. The mystery continues.