FOR ZIP, FAIR MAY PITCH CURVES WITH CULTURE
BY Joseph Cassidy and Henry Lee
Despite the stern emphasis on culture, a nostalgic
touch of defunct Steeplechase Park - penny arcade, kiddie rides,
"walk-throughs" and popular priced attractions called
"hanky-pank" games in the carnival business - will
enliven the World's Fair this season, THE NEWS was exclusively
Fair President Robert Moses also is "thinking
over" plans for a night club featuring "special dancing"
- girls - and there has even been talk of a freak show, though
nothing definite has come of that yet.
Some agreements have already been signed and
want ads for "skill game operators" at the Fair are
appearing in Amusement Business, the bible of the carnival and
amusement industry. While no public announcement has been made
by the Fair, a spokesman acknowledged the closing of certain
of the contracts.
"JUST ANOTHER ASPECT"
Asked whether this represented an easing off
of Moses' adamant stand against undignified attractions, the
spokesman said: "No, this is just another aspect to the
new, improved Lake Area."
Originally known as the Lake Amusement Area,
this section on the wrong side of the Long Island Expressway
has been the Fair's own little Appalachia.
One of the failures there, the Texas Pavilion
and Music Hall, is being taken over by Jimmy Chiang, 46, Chinese-born
show biz promoter from Texas who became a U.S. citizen six years
ago through a special act of Congress introduced by the then
U.S. Sen. Lyndon Johnson.
KIDDIE RIDES AT 20C
Under the contracts he has signed with former Judge Samuel I.
Rosenman, head of the Lake Area, the first floor of the Pavilion
will be striped down and the interior walls lined with penny
arcade games. In the center of the hall there will be nine kiddie
rides, 20 cents each, 3-for-50 cents and 7 for $1.
Upstairs, Chiang told The News, he will install
the Carnival Frontier Palace room, a large restaurant offering
American and Continental cuisine, and the Carnival dinner club,
which will be "a night club featuring special music and
SOURCE: New York Sunday
News, March 14, 1965
Mr.Chiang and four star general
William Potter, Fair's Executive Vice President, hang new sign
from belcony of former Texas Pavilion
York Daily News, Friday, March 26, 1965
CAN-CAN GIRLS TO DANCE AT FAIR FUN-FUN HOUSE
Kiddie rides and can-can girls will be part
of the $1million dollar Carnival Pavilion for "the entire
family" that will occupy the site of the former Texas Pavilion
at the World's Fair, it was announced yesterday.
Fair President Robert Moses officially endorsed
the plans which were first bared in the Sunday News of March
14. "We welcome the new pavilion as an important addition
to the revitalized Lake Area," Moses said. "Carvinal
personifies the area's concept of clean fun for the whole family,
young and old alike".
RIDES AND GAMES
For the youngsters, the new air-conditioned
Carnival Pavilion will contain a series of rides ranging from
a boat trip to a miniature helicopter flight. Games similar to
those found in penny arcades will flank the walls of the $6 million
structure which last year housed the ill-fated Texas Music Hall.
Two indoor restaurants with a seating capacity
of 700 will be a part of the redecorated pavilion. A Carnival
dinner club is being created on the second floor and will offer
"sophisticated night club entertainment, of a type not yet
decided upon" a spokesman for Jimmy I. Chiang, Chinese born
promoter of the pavilion said.
THEY WILL SING TOO
The larger Carnival Frontier Palace will feature
can-can girls, one spokesman said, adding that the girls will
"sing as well as dance and shout "whee" and "whoo"
to the music. When not performing on the large stage behind the
bar, the dancers will give free shows "outside the Pavilion"
alongside a number of adult rides, including a miniature roller
coaster on which the riders shout "whee" and "whoo."
SOURCE: New York Daily
News, Friday, March 26, 1965
"CARNIVAL" SHOW TO ENLIVEN FAIR
BY FRED FERRETTI
OF THE HERALD TRIBUNE STAFF
"Mr. Chiang is from Marshall, Texas,
the hometown of Mrs. Lyndon Johnson, Lady Bird," the man
from the agency said.
Yes, but are there going to be girls here?
"Mr. Chiang is going to make Carnival
the biggest attraction in the Lake Area," the man said.
He began giving out little stories about how the long-vacant
Texas Music Hall was being redone and was to be renamed Carnival,
the "multimillion-dollar entertainment park".
What kind of girls? Are there going to be
girls? Here? At this year's World's Fair? What kind of dancing
are they going to do?
"Did you read my release?" the man
The release said "The Carnival Frontier
Palace will feature Can-Can girls and other entertainment."
What was this "other entertainment?"
"Discotheque. Upstairs is going to be
called the Café Au Go Go Upstairs. Isn't that nice?"
Where will these girls dance, the discotheque
"On the stage over the Frontier Palace
Bar. They'll alternate with our 10 can-can girls who are deep
Sounds fine. But didn't Robert Moses say that
he didn't want girls? That he had promised there wouldn't be
any atmosphere of the honky-tonk at the Fair?
"Did you read my release?" the man
The release said: "Fair President Robert
Moses said he welcomes the new pavilion as an important addition
to the revitalized Lake Area. Carnival personifies the area's
concept of clean fun for the whole family, young and old alike.
The youngsters will have seven rides of their own. Now visitors
to the fair can spend hours as spectators and participate at
exhibits, shows and rides representing healthy amusements."
"That's what Mr. Moses said" the
man from the agency said.
An observer observed that on the face of it,
it looked as if Carnival was going to be a complex of rides for
the children and a place where Dad can watch continuous performances
of salient features of contemporary culture.
"The girls will be doing a straightforward
dance" the man said.
What this meant in non-agency terms was that
the Texas Music Hall is becoming Carnival under the lease of
Jimmy I.C. Chiang, 46, a former Nationalist Chinese Army colonel
who ran the restaurant in the Pavilion of China last season.
He'll have a restaurant and a complex of children's rides with
such names as the Wild Mouse, the Scooter and the Rock-O-Plane.
And, on the second floor, there will be the
Carnival Dinner Club, which will offer, the man said, "Sophisticated
night club entertainment."
And what was that going to be?
"Sophisticated night club entertainment"
SOURCE: New York Herald
Tribune, Friday, March 26, 1965
CHIANG PLANNING PAVILION AT N.Y.
Jimmy I.C. Chiang, 46, of Marshall, who last
year was general manager of a restaurant at the China Pavilion
at the New York World's Fair, announced Saturday he was planning
an entertainment park that will occupy the site of the former
Texas Pavilion at the Fair.
Chiang, who is in New York, announced that
more than $1,000,000 is being spent to renovate and convert the
Texas Pavilion into a Tivoli-like fun center for children and
adults. Features range from a roller coaster to a discotheque
and from an ice cream parlor to a dinner club.
He said the new park will be called "Carnival".
According to Chiang, "Carnival will have
features especially selected for children and other chosen for
adults. All will be popularly-priced and all will be suitable
for the entire family".
The former 2,400-seat Texas Music Hall auditorium
built at a cost of about $6,000,000 is being converted to an
entertainment complex for children, with seven rides, souvenirs,
exhibits and refreshments.
Outside there will be a Sea Aquarium, a replica
of an ocean liner filled with 500 varieties of rare and exotic
fish, three adult rides, free entertainment, and low priced snacks
bars with seating for 1,200. These outdoor eating facilities
include a shrimp bar, Mexican Garden, and ice cream parlor and
a beer garden. The adult rides will include the Wild Mouse, a
mild Roller Roaster, the Scooter (bumping cars), and Rock-O-Plane.
Carnival will also have two indoor restaurants
with a combined seating capacity of 700. The Carnival Frontier
Palace, one of the restaurants, will feature Can-Can girls and
other entertainment. American and continental foods, with entrees
priced from $1.00 to $3.50, will be served. Plans are being completed
for discotheque dancing.
In addition, Chiang said that the Carnival
Dinner Club is being created on the second floor of the Pavilion.
The Club will offer sophisticated night club entertainment and
an American and continental cuisne, at a $1.25 minimum. Redesign
and refurnishing of the restaurants are being executed by interior
designers of Straus-Duparquet, Inc.
Carnival is the property of Flushing Meadow
Concessions, Inc., a new corporation formed for this specified
purpose. Chiang, who is President, said that there is no connection
between the new Corporation and the 1964 operations at the Texas
pavilion, now defunct.
SOURCE: Marshall News
Messanger, Sunday, March 28, 1965
Webmaster's note- Thank you to Mr. Jimmy Chiang for submitting
these news clippings on Carnival. So little is known about
the attractions featured in the Lake Area. These clippings are
treasures of information from the past regarding the attraction
and Mr Chiang's involvment. The story of the demise of the Texas Pavilions
and Music Hall has been documented by journalist Jim Hill
at his www.jimhillmedia.com website. It
is an interesting read and I encourange you to do so if you don't
already know the story! Mr. Chiang rescued a multi-million dollar
building from the padlocks.
Mr. Chiang writes:
Mr. Chiang was the sole owner
and President of the Carnival Pavilion (former Texas
Pavilion) at 1964/1965 New York Worlds Fair under the company
name of Flushing Meadows Concessions Inc. The Hollywood superstar
Ms. Goldie Hahn was one of the five can-can girls who worked
for Mr. Chiangs Carnival Pavilion. He paid
all bills and met all obligations and honored everything
all the way to the end of the Fair. And the Fair authority
was very pleased and proud of him; especially, since many others
enjoyed the so-called last 30-day tax holidays. (Mr.
Jim Diamond, Fair Treasurer, who was so impressed and said that
Mr. Chiang was the only one still paying bills till the last).
Mr. Chiang has become a citizen
of U.S. since 1961 through a special act in Congress sponsored
by LBJ, then Majority Leader in the Senate, Sam Rayburn, then
Speaker of the House, and Congressman Wright Patman of the 1st
District of Texas. At the opening date of his Carnival
Pavilion, President Johnson and the First Lady, Ladybird,
personally came to visit him and gave their blessings. It was
worldwide publicized by the news media.
Mr. Chiang has been active
since 1961 in the Democratic Party and served as the Co-Chairman
of Democratic Finance Committee, Special Advisor to Chairman
of DNC, close friend and advised on Far Eastern affairs to President
LBJ, President Carter and President Clinton. However, the Chiangs
also have many Republican friends since Mrs. Chiang is a devoted
Republican. As a matter of fact, recently they had a number of
occasions meeting with former President Bill Clinton in November
2003 and President George Bush in December 2003 and January 2004
and had blessings from both of them.
Mr. Chiang is a native of
Shanghai, China. In the last few years, he has spent most of
the time in Shanghai; especially, he is so pleased to see his
native city becomes the fastest growing city in the world and,
it has won the site for EXPO 2010. As he has great interest in
Taiwan (Mrs. Chiang was born in Taiwan) and they have residence
there. Mr. Chiang went to Taiwan in 1946 with C.K. Yen who later
became President of Taiwan, and took over Taiwan from Japanese
occupation. Many of Mr. Chiangs Taiwanese friends including
world famous industrialists have encouraged and requested him
to organize a Taiwan Pavilion or Overseas Chinese Pavilion (official
name to be negotiated and approved by Chinese EXPO authorities),
since he has successful experience in 1964-65 New York Worlds
Fair and Osaka EXPO 70, as well as other valuable qualifications.
In the meantime, Mr. Chiang
has been working closely with a number of U.S. Senators and Congressmen
who are in favor of American participating EXPO 2010 Shanghai,
as well as substantial U.S. enterprises which are interested
to participate said project.
Mr. Chiangs ambition
is to utilize his talent, successful experience and expertise,
along with his close relationship with world-class enterprises
to build the first one or two major pavilions on the site.
Some of the news media has
called Mr. Chiang as Father of World Expositions
in recent news reports.
As Fair enthusiasts, we wish
you great success, Mr. Chiang! If you'd like to contact Mr. Chiang
you may do so at email@example.com.
-Bill Young, February 2004