The Market Theater Gum Wall first began around 1993 when patrons from the theater started sticking their gum on the wall to adhere coins to it. Efforts were made to scrape the gum away, but theater workers finally gave up when officials from the Pike Place Market declared it a tourist attraction in 1999.
I hadn't even heard of it, having just returned to WA recently, until one of my friends came to visit me from Texas. She had done some research on the area and said she wanted to see it. As we approached, we jammed a bunch of gum into our mouths and started chewing. We weren't prepared when we beheld the great gum wall for the first time. And we just couldn't bring ourselves to actually touch the wall by adding our gum to it. Looking back at the pictures now, I see us pretending to do it, but our faces were all screwed up in nauseated disgust. Having visited the wall a few times now, I still can't get past the "yuck factor."
It's no big surprise to find It has another claim to fame... it was named the 2nd "germiest tourist attraction" in 2009, second only to the Blarney Stone. Believe it or not, there's actually another of its kind in San Luis Obispo, CA called Bubblegum Alley that was started around the 1960's.
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