The pavilion provided demonstrations of every phase of baking for Wonder Bread and Hostess Cakes. The building exterior was actually a large reproduction of the Wonder Bread wrapper.

Continental Baking - Wonder Bread
Continental Baking - Wonder Bread - Courtesy World's Fair Historical Society - wf-97r

Continental Baking - The baker welcome you to Wonder Bread
Wonder Bread Entrance
Image courtesy of Randy Richter

Continental Baking - Penelope Shoo
Continental Baking - Penelope Shoo
by Arie van Dort

Behind the building was the only wheat field in the City of New York in 68 years. The scarecrow, "Penelope Shoo" protecting the wheat from birds.

The sign reads:

"Penelope Shoo The Scarecrow of Tomorrow Designed by Jean Spadea Crowned by Hattie Carnegie.

Dedicated June 13th, 1939, at the Wonder Bakery"

Trylon Tidbits

Trylon Tidbits for Continental Baking

Small pieces of news and interesting informaton compiled by David J. Cope.

Click here to show or hide content

  • A demonstrator at the pavilion had separated 9,000 eggs by June 7, breaking only three yolks in the process. One heckler spent two hours trying to get the young lady rattled. Finally, she "accidentally" dropped an egg on his shoe.
  • Three or four hundred of the seven thousand balloons covering the entrance hall to the pavilion had popped by June 8. Only between five and ten are replaced daily due to visitors throwing items at them. The Upholsterer's Union believed he should belong to their organization.
  • The pavilion awarded Eileen Stopher the title "Wheatheart of the Fair."

Wonder Wheatfield

The Wonder Bakery exhibit planted the first wheat field in New York City in over one hundred years. The 11,000 square-foot plot of land contained 13,500 cubic feet of top soil from Long Island farms and peat moss from Sweden. The field produced seven bushels for its summer crop.

To ward off any intruders, Jean Spadea, mannequin artist, designed "the scarecrow of tomorrow" –– Penelope Shoo and introduced her to the general public on June 14. The New York Times labeled her "the hussy scarecrow of Wonder Baker's wheat field." Alice Marble, the world's leading female tennis player commented on Penelope: "What a forehand that girl would have. Too bad she's in the wrong racket."

When it rained, the wheat field farmer's placed an umbrella in Penelope's hand to protect her Hattie Carnegie gown. The fair police "escorted" Miss Shoo to the Operations Building when they discovered her among a group of slightly tipsy revelers. To ward off further drunken escapades, the pavilion's watchmen carried the scarecrow into the pavilion. However, over time, Penelope began to show wear – her pink panties and brassiereless bosom became uncomfortably exposed to all.

Wheatheart Crowning Ceremony

July 11, 1939
Continental Baking Company

Eileen Stopher from Mt. Pulaski, IL is crowned Wheatheart fo the Fair
Eileen Stopher, James Montgomery Flagg, M. Lee Marshall, Grover Whalen, and Peter Arno

Eileen Stopher from Mt. Pulaski, IL was crowned Wheatheart of the Fair. The Crown of Wheat was placed on Eileen's head by both Grover Whalen, President of the 1939 NY World's Fair and Mr. M. Lee Marshall, President and Chairman of the Board of the Continental Baking Co. The three Judges of the Contest were: James Montgomery Flagg, McClelland Barclay, and Peter Arno. The crowing ceremony took place in the balcony of the Wonder Bakery Exhibit, overlooking a part of the 7-acre area of wheat.

Click here to continue to read more
about Eileen Stopher

Continental Baking - Wonder Bread
Continental Baking - Wonder Bread
Return to:
Food Zone