History of Jakarta Fair
Jakarta fair or commonly known as PRJ (Pekan Raya Jakarta) is a fair that held in June and July. It held to celebrate the anniversary the city of Jakarta (22 June). The Jakarta fair held annually in Jakarta International Expo, Kemayoran Jakarta. It main features is shopping and food festival ( especially traditional food ).
The history of Jakarta fair was begun during Dutch east Indies era or zaman kompeni belanda. Originally it called Pasar Gambir held to celebrate the coronation of Queen Wilhelmina in 31 August 1898an later to celebrate the queen birthday. The location to held Pasar Gambir is in Koningsplein (now Merdeka Square), according “de Sumatra Post” (publish 2 September1907) pasar gambir featuring parade, public audience, and fair for a full day. The concept of pasar gambir is a nigh market where people around the city can enjoy themselves by watching the parade, football game, karapan sapi or enjoying the traditional food it also used to promote the product and invention from Europe.
Sadly, when Japanese force came at the beginning of world war, pasar gambir was stopped to celebrate. After the Indonesia independence pasar gambir was held again for first time in 1968, it change the name to the Djakarta fair. The fist Djakarta fair inaugurated by president Soeharto and took placefrom 5 June to 20 July 1968. The location to held the fair not to far from the beginning it held at Merdeka Square now it held near the National Monumen (Monas). The idea to hold a grand fair in jakarta was initiated by the current Governor at that time Mr. Ali Sadikin. He sought to combine several night markets held throughout the city inspired by the colonial era pasar gambir.
Over time, Jakarta fair that held in National Monument area no longer able to accommodate the visitor and participant of fair so finally in 1992 the fair location was change to Kemayoran where it still held until now.
The custom to held a nigh market also carried over to Dutch by European or Indo-european who ever lived in Indonesia but move away after the Indonesia independence, they held a similar festival called The Tong Tong Fair (formely known as Pasar Malam Besar) where it held anualy at the Dutch City of The Hague.