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  Fair St. Louis
Brief Description:  Fair St. Louis began in 1981, the brainchild of Robert R. Hermann, a local businessman and entrepreneur. The event was designed to "unite the region in a joint effort to promote St. Louis to the country and the world." It was sponsored by the Veiled Prophet organization, a group of business and civic leaders who had been engaged in promotion of the City for 100 years. With the help of approximately 3,000 volunteers, the first three-day V. P. Fair was held on the St. Louis Riverfront July 3-5, 1981. It became known as "America┬┤s Biggest Birthday Party." The annual festival on the riverfront featured air shows, games, food booths, rides, major nationally known entertainment, and nightly fireworks displays that attracted more than a million people each year. In 1994, the VP Fair was renamed Fair St. Louis, partly in response to criticism of the VP organization for its perceived elitism. The sponsoring organization said that the "new title more effectively showcases the civic pride and spirit of the people of the St. Louis region." Each year that the fair generates a profit, the Fair Saint Louis Foundation usually makes a gift to the City with part of the proceeds. Past gifts have included the lighting of the Eads Bridge, the creation of the Mississippi River Overlook, and the mile-long Riverfront Promenade as a part of the National Park system. [http://www.fairstlouis.com/html/history.html]
Year:  1981
Decade:  1990 - 1999
Beginning Date:     Jul. 03, 1981



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