Fifty years ago today, Canada welcomed the world to Montreal, which was the country's largest metropolitan centre and the host city for Expo 67, the future-fantasic spectacle that was the crowning achievement of the young nation's centennial celebrations. Sprawling across 900 acres of freshly repurposed space along the Montreal waterfront, the 1967 International and Universal Exposition, or Expo 67,was the living embodiment of the Baby Boom era's youthful exuberance and unbridled optimism for what the future had in store. The fair's Canadian context only added to the air of national pride that many Canadians felt upon the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Confederation.
After opening on April 27, Expo 67 took in an incredible number of visitors, reaching its all-time daily record on the third day with 569,500 visitors. When its six-month run ended on October 29, 1967, the grand total was 50,306,648. Hailed by many at the time as having successfully put Canada on the map, Expo 67 was truly a global event, with millions of visitors from around the world making sure to take in the sights and sounds of what would be later remembered as one of the most exciting world's fairs of the 20th century.
Criss-crossed with a multitude of monorails, the future-fantastic wonderland was created by an eclectic mix of bold architectural statement pieces. The plethora of inverted pyramids, geometric pavilion buildings, and of course the iconic geodesic dome (seen above) that housed the American Pavilion made for an experience that was like no other.
A massive success by virtually every metric, Expo 67 exceeded its financial expectations, bringing in a total revenue of $221,239,872 (in 1967 Canadian dollars) against a total cost of $431,904,683 for a total deficit of $210,664,811. At just less than 50%, this significantly outpaced most economic forecasts of the day. A shining, fleeting moment in the 150-year history of Canada, Expo 67 represents the best of what the nation can achieve should every corner of the country pull together towards a common goal.
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