Ah, Autumn in New York. Crisp air and beautiful changing leaves, who wouldn’t want to visit the Empire State this time of year? Oddly Enough, a lot of people. That is why New York ran its long-running, “Autumn in New York” ad campaign.
I remember it as an adjunct to the more famous, “I Love New York” campaign, but I found them equally compelling. The campaign can easily trace its roots to the popular song of the same name. “Autumn in New York” is a jazz standard composed by Vernon Duke. It was written for the 1934 Broadway musical Thumbs Up! While originally written for that musical, a ludicrous number of covers of it have been recorded over the years. Perhaps, most famous was this cover by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong.
Autumn in New York covered by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong
I went on a quest for the original Autumn in New York Ad Campaign commercials, but could not find it online. As a consolation prize, I was able to dig up the print ad you see above. The ad is a sneak peek of all the beautiful leaves you will find when you visit New York State in the autumn. While the ad is old, I bet you the leaves have not changed their shape.
So if you are headed to New York, or any other leafing destination, why not take it along. Everyone will marvel at how skilled you are with leaf identification. You will earn the nickname “Professor Leaf, and people will high-five you as your move through the colorful forests. Remember folks, at bars, “Professor Leaf” never has to pay for a drink. It is just one of the perks of being such an accomplished academic.
Want some retro ad campaign wonderfulness? I suggest the original “I Love New York” campaign (Broadway Edition). This one has Frank Langella as Dracula and lots of other Broadway luminaries in it!
Flying for most people is not enjoyable. It is cramped with little room to move around and most of the time you are just counting the seconds until you can get off the place. That was not always the case. During the Golden and Silver ages of air travel, people would treat air travel as an event. Something worthy of getting dressed up for and it was an experience meant to be savored. After all, you are flying thousands of feet off the ground above the clouds in one of humanity’s greatest achievement.
While this time has passed. Memories of it live on through the spoken word of people who witnessed it and the advertising that sold everyone on the dream.
In the 1970’s Continental Airlines was attempting to get people to fly and was making a push for their Club and Pub flights. This is a flight where…now get ready for this…they had a club AND a pub space on the plane. A place, that is not the bathroom, where you could stretch your legs, grab a drink and most importantly play video games!
That is right, they had cocktail versions of PONG for your enjoyment while you socialized in comfort with your fellow passengers.
I doubt we will ever return to this storied age of air travel again, but I am happy that these artifacts exist to remind us that we do have the right to complain. Because when it comes down to it, sometimes things move backwards and the past could have nicer things than the present.
I remember this commercial from when I was younger. This person who posted this online, said it is from 1982. I am not sure how long it ran (maybe they had variations on it), but I remember see it much later. I was always a big fan of theme parks and “Dutch Wonderland” was closer to New Jersey than any Disney park, so I annoyed my Mother to try to take me there. Oddly enough, annoying her never worked.
If you are not from New Jersey or Pennsylvania, Dutch Wonderland is an amusement park catering to small children that occupies almost 50 acres near Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Built in 1963, the park was sold in 2001 to the Hershey Entertainment and Resorts Company. They are still open for business, but their website is nowhere near as cool as this retro commercial. Where are the bear mascots? What about the “high” dive act that is performed on a diving board shorter than the one at the public pool I went to growing up? Time to go retro, Dutch Wonderland!
With Winter coming, it might be time to think of warmer lands? Where will you go? The Caribbean? The South Pacific? All beautiful places, but all pale in comparison to sunny Ontario. So enjoy our time in the southern sun, but save up those vacation days, because before you know it you can go to where the real sunny action is, Canada.