(The Center Square) – Nearly 50 years later, Spokane is celebrating its anniversary of hosting the 1974 World’s Fair with a nine-week-long event.

The Expo 50 Celebration will begin on Saturday, May 4, and continue through July 4.

In 1974, when Spokane was the smallest city to host the World Fair, it drew an astounding number of attendees, with millions of people flocking to the city. The first-ever environmentally focused world’s fair set the region on a path to flourish, something city officials hope to reignite.

Residents and visitors have the opportunity to attend dozens of events throughout the nine weeks, such as fireworks shows, historic tours, parades and business-sponsored celebrations.

Each event falls into one of five categories based on the original celebration’s key pillars: Expo Legacy, Environmental Stewardship, Tribal Culture, Recreation & Sport and Arts & Culture.

According to the Expo 50 website, Spokane’s annual Bloomsday Run and Hoopfest will also coincide with the anniversary. The two events are among the most prominent that the city puts on each year for residents and tourists.

As part of the celebration, Spokane Transit Authority also announced it will offer no-charge bus and paratransit services each weekend throughout the anniversary. In addition, Route 11, the Downtown/North Bank Shuttle, will offer 50-cent fares on weekdays, according to STA’s website.

“Our community has a tremendous resource in the Spokane Transit Authority, and I would love to see more people become familiar with our transit system, said Mayor Lisa Brown in a news release earlier this month. “Providing free fares during the Expo 50 celebration provides an opportunity to include everyone in the upcoming festivities, create a new generation of bus riders, and help us in our goal to reduce carbon emissions.”

Those interested in taking a step further can join Club ’74, a $74 membership that includes “exclusive benefits, opportunities and content before and during the celebration.” Members can expect a collector’s coin, member pass and discounts at local bars and restaurants.