A Little History of Seafair

 Photo of Seafair royalty with Navy men, ca. 1950 Courtesy Paul DorpatWith Seafair just around the corner, ever wonder about the history?

The Seafair Beginnings article on HistoryLink,org writes, “The first Seafair took place from August 11 to 20, 1950. Hundreds of thousands of people enjoyed more than 100 events throughout King County. The events ranged from a 25-mile bicycle race around Lake Sammamish to a decorated-boat parade on Lake Washington with 350 participating boats. Spectators witnessed a Police Pistol Contest at 106th Ave S and East Marginal Way, a steamboat race on Elliott Bay, a Coast Guard lifeboat race, also on Elliott Bay, a “husband calling” contest at Seward Park, and an operetta called “The Desert Song” at Volunteer Park attended by 10,000.

Poster for Aqua Follies, Seattle, 1957 Courtesy Peter BlechaThe centerpiece of Seafair’s first year was the Aqua Follies at Green Lake. The plan was that a group that performed a “swimusical revue” would be brought in from St Paul. Established in 1940, the “Aquadears and Aquadivers” would perform for the first time outside of St. Paul with a water ballet, trick and comic dives from two four-story-high towers, and a stage show with singing and dancing.”

Want to learn more? The Hugh and James Ferguson Seattle Room has many reference items to explore and the library has a couple of Seafair books which check out. Here are a few ideas of more things you can find in our collection.

~posted by Jennifer B.

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