May 23, 2024


Than a Food Fitter

Celebration marks 40th anniversary of World’s Fair in Knoxville

2 min read


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The City of Knoxville will turn back the clocks this weekend for a celebration commemorating the 40th anniversary of the World’s Fair.

Visit Knoxville is hosting a kick-off celebration honoring the 40th anniversary of the 1982 World’s Fair on Saturday, May 21 at World’s Fair Park. Admission is free.

Celebration activities will include performances, food trucks, exhibits, plus a splash of 80s music during the fireworks. The 1982 World’s Fair debuted on May 1, and Knoxville’s Sunsphere was built for the event some four decades ago.

The Sunsphere was recently reopened for its observation deck views in February after some improvements and enhancements.

For Saturday’s celebration, Visit Knoxville listed the activities:

Activities include the following:

  • Cultural and technology displays and exhibits
  • Performances at the World’s Fair Amphitheater
  • Makers Market with local vendors and crafters
  • A Ferris wheel and Arcade Truck
  • Food trucks and beer including:
    • Petro’s, Buddy’s Bar-B-Q, CJ’s Tacos, Enjoy Latin Food, Big O’s Famous BBQ, Alebrijes Mexican Food, Smoky Mountain Kona Ice, Mucho Gusto, Captain Muchacho’s, Kazoku Hibachi Express, Treetop Coffee Shop, Denton’s, Rainbo Shaved Ice & Funnel Cakes, Orale Mexican Food Truck and Waffley Good
  • 40th Anniversary merchandise
  • The evening will close with a brief fireworks display programmed to ‘80s music

Time and Place:

10 a.m. – 9 p.m. – Performance Lawn
10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Festival Lawn

World’s Fair Park had hosted the ‘Sunsphere Sundays’ concert series last October to informally kick off the 40th-anniversary celebration of the Knoxville World’s Fair taking place in May. A portion of all sales from the series benefitted the Sunsphere Fund.


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