Spring Fever Blues
CHASING THE BLUES, CHAPTER 16: St. Louis, MO
Rain fell most of the night and continued well into the morning, delaying our plans for the day. Mother Nature conspired with my To Do list and laid out a perfect opportunity for me to compose and send a long-delayed email about a family reunion later this year. Oddly, when I looked out the window again after the task was complete, skies were blue and the sun was working hard at drying things out.
|Opened in 1849 and still an active cemetery|
|A cauliflorous redbud|
After lunch we set off to explore the 1,371-acre Forest Park, one of the largest urban parks in the U.S. Billing itself as “St. Louis’ big backyard,” this city oasis is 500 acres larger than New York’s Central Park and welcomes 13 million visitors annually. Two exits off I-64 lead to the park, and new visitors are well-advised to pick up a free map at the park visitor center. That’s exactly what we did.
|Art Hill from the Grand Basin|
Today the park is home to some of the city’s foremost attractions including the St. Louis Zoo, Missouri History Museum, St. Louis Science Center, Municipal Theatre and St. Louis Museum of Art. Recreation facilities in the massive park include a golf course, tennis center, boathouse, and a skating rink. There are even lakes stocked for fishing.
|Easy to see why it's called the Jewel Box|
By the time we decided to leave the park, it was after 3:15 and we had groceries from Whole Foods that needed refrigeration. Before returning to the hotel, we drove down Broadway near the baseball stadium to check out the locations of some local blues clubs. Back in our room, we perused the performance schedules, selected a couple, and made a big healthy salad for dinner.
Our plans to go out to hear some St. Louis blues were stymied by another severe storm system. In addition to heavy thunderstorms, this time city was under a tornado watch. Deciding we could wait till tomorrow for the music, we headed downstairs to the Irish pub, relaxed and enjoyed a pint, watching the heavy rain fall outside the windows.
Tomorrow we’ll visit some of the city’s top attractions, including its signature Gateway Arch.
- Miles driven: 43
- Weather: partly cloudy to rainy, 66° to 82°
- Tulips: 692,013
- Daffodils: 934,117
- Flowering trees: 7,238
- Cauliflorous flowering trees: 12
More Photos from Today
|Another view of Art Hill at Forest Park|
|Jewel Box interior|
|With this crossing sign, Forest Park must have hula hooping trails also.|
|The massive Gateway Arch dwarfs downtown buildings.|
|Construction around the arch will improve its access to visitors.|
|Our familiar St. Louis view|