Ride the Historic Skyride at This Year's Washington State Fair

The state fair ride that’s a link to the past
The Seattle World’s Fair Union 76 Skyride
The Seattle World’s Fair Union 76 Skyride was a huge hit at the 1962 event; the aerial tram now moves people across the Puyallup fairgrounds.

It may be less thrilling than the neon-lit midway rides like roller coasters, but the Washington State Fair’s Skyride is a classic.

The aerial tram, which today transports riders across the Puyallup fairgrounds, debuted more than 50 years ago at the Century 21 Exposition, aka the Seattle World’s Fair. Imported from a company in Bern, Switzerland, the Union 76 Skyride (sponsored by the gas-station chain now called simply “76”) was one of the biggest attractions at the 1962 fair.

Although some of the fair’s structures were razed or removed after the event ended in October of that year, the Skyride and many other amusements remained. Visitors continued to enjoy the views afforded by the Skyride’s 55-foot elevation until 1980, when it was sold to the Puyallup Fair, which extended its route from the original 1,400 feet to 1,600 feet. The million-plus visitors expected to attend this year’s fair (September 2–25; thefair.com) will have the opportunity to catch this historic ride.