PHOTOS: Expo 86 kicked off in Vancouver 36 years ago

Expo 86 is pictured in Vancouver on May 3, 1986, as Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales attend a rock concert at the World’s Fair. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)Expo 86 is pictured in Vancouver on May 3, 1986, as Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales attend a rock concert at the World’s Fair. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)
Diana, late Princess of Wales, has a quiet chat with Vancouver-born rock star Bryan Adams Saturday night, May 5, 1986, at the Expo Theatre in Vancouver. Adams was one of many performers to take part in a gala rock concert. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)Diana, late Princess of Wales, has a quiet chat with Vancouver-born rock star Bryan Adams Saturday night, May 5, 1986, at the Expo Theatre in Vancouver. Adams was one of many performers to take part in a gala rock concert. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)
Diana, Princess of Wales, and Mila Mulroney walk through the grounds at EXPO ‘86 in Vancouver, B.C., during opening ceremonies May 2, 1986. (CP PHOTO)Diana, Princess of Wales, and Mila Mulroney walk through the grounds at EXPO ‘86 in Vancouver, B.C., during opening ceremonies May 2, 1986. (CP PHOTO)
Senator Jack Austin explains a model of EXPO 86 to Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip in Vancouver, B.C., March 9, 1983. The Queen earlier officially started the construction of the site. (CP PHOTO/Nick Didlick)Senator Jack Austin explains a model of EXPO 86 to Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip in Vancouver, B.C., March 9, 1983. The Queen earlier officially started the construction of the site. (CP PHOTO/Nick Didlick)

Thirty-six years ago this week, millions of visitors flocked to Vancouver for the beginning of Expo ‘86.

The 1986 World Exposition on Transportation and Communication ran from May 2 until Oct. 13 in the city’s north shore of False Creek, carrying the theme “World in Motion – World in Touch” and coincided with Vancouver’s 100th anniversary.

The fair, featured pavilions from 54 nations, including Italy, Cuba, Australia and Thailand. An estimated 22 million people attended the expo, which was powered by 26,000 volunteers.

Some of the pavilions featured then remain iconic landmarks today: Science World (formerly the Ontario Pavillion), the China Gate and Canada Place.

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To mark the start of the fair, then-Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and his wife, Mila Mulroney, was joined by Prince Charles and late Princess Diana for an opening ceremony, as part of an eight-day royal tour through Canada.

Queen Elizabeth listens while then-Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau explains something to her prior to the EXPO ‘86 invitational ceremoy that the Queen read from the people of Canada inviting the people of the world here in ‘86. The ceremony took place inside the domed BC Stadium. (CP PHOTO)

Queen Elizabeth listens while then-Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau explains something to her prior to the EXPO ‘86 invitational ceremoy that the Queen read from the people of Canada inviting the people of the world here in ‘86. The ceremony took place inside the domed BC Stadium. (CP PHOTO)

Visitors to Expo 86 in Vancouver, B.C. are dwarfed by the Expo Centre, an exhibit which contains a theatre and various displays. Twenty years after Expo 86 changed Vancouver to a destination point on tourism maps, both proponents and critics are looking back. (CP PICTURE ARCHIVE)

Visitors to Expo 86 in Vancouver, B.C. are dwarfed by the Expo Centre, an exhibit which contains a theatre and various displays. Twenty years after Expo 86 changed Vancouver to a destination point on tourism maps, both proponents and critics are looking back. (CP PICTURE ARCHIVE)


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ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

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Expo '86

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