Space Needle honors anniversary with ceiling painting contest

The Space Needle.

View Pictures/View Pictures/Universal Pictures G

The city of Seattle is giving five people the chance to paint the roof of the Space Needle its original color, Galaxy Gold, as part of the city’s 60th anniversary celebration to commemorate the construction of the Seattle Center.

The center, which covers 74 acres just north of Belltown in the city’s Uptown neighborhood, was originally built in preparation for the 1962 World’s Fair, which was held in Seattle. For the past 60 years, it has served as an educational, tourist and entertainment center in the middle of downtown Seattle.

“After 60 incredible years, we know that a thriving Seattle Center is at the heart of a thriving Seattle,” Mayor Bruce Harroll said in a statement. “Every day, and in every way, Seattle Center represents our vision for Seattle by bringing people together, embracing the values ​​and cultural traditions of our community, and celebrating the people who make this region special.”

The roof of the Seattle Center’s crown jewel, the Space Needle, was originally painted a shade of orange known as Galaxy Gold. At the time, the color was considered controversial by many. But when it was repainted in neutral shades of white and gold in the late 1960s, residents widely deplored the change.

The Space Needle is highlighted in its Galaxy Gold in Seattle on Thursday, August 2, 2012.

The Space Needle is highlighted in its Galaxy Gold in Seattle on Thursday, August 2, 2012.

Lindsey Wasson

The roof was repainted Galaxy Gold for the 2002 and 2012 anniversaries.

Now, the city is giving five people the chance to “take advantage, grab a paint roller” and apply another coat of Galaxy Gold to the roof of the 605-foot tower. To win the chance to do so, contestants must describe their favorite Space Needle memory from the past 60 years. Submissions must be under 200 words and can be submitted here.

Jeff Wright and Mauren Wright, 15, Jeff's daughter, begin painting the ceiling of the Space Needle with their original 'Galaxy Gold' on Tuesday, April 17, 2012. Jeff Wright's father, Howard S. Wright, built the Space Needle.

Jeff Wright and Mauren Wright, 15, Jeff’s daughter, begin painting the ceiling of the Space Needle with their original ‘Galaxy Gold’ on Tuesday, April 17, 2012. Jeff Wright’s father, Howard S. Wright, built the Space Needle.

Joshua Trujillo

An additional 55 people will be randomly selected to receive other prizes. These include tickets to the Space Needle, free admission to the Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibit, passes to the Seattle International Film Festival, and a “VIP package” to experience the Loupe Lounge, the revolving restaurant atop the Space Needle.

Those who share a birthday with the Seattle Center, anyone born between April 21, 1962 and October 21, 1962, are also eligible to win those prizes. They can enter here.

The official 60th anniversary celebration will take place on April 21. It will include speeches by community leaders, music by DJ Mike Steve, a spoken word performance by Young Poet Laureate Zinnia Hansen, and a digital photo booth. The event is scheduled to begin at 10 am on the main stage of the Seattle Center Armory Food & Event Hall.

In addition to the official celebration, the city is commemorating the anniversary with a scavenger hunt at the Seattle Center throughout the month of June, as well as a children’s coloring contest. That contest will require children to color “the world’s largest birthday cake,” which was featured at the 1962 World’s Fair.

Contest rules and a downloadable coloring sheet can be found here. Submissions will be accepted between April 21 and May 21.




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