We came for the beer; we stayed because there is a lot of really cool crap to do in St.Louis.
We found ourselves getting thirsty during our venture across Kansas. As reported in a previous blog, Kansas is pretty void of good beer. We knew St.Louis was home to beer – and not just Anheuser-Busch either. So, we were looking forward to that.
We parked ourselves on the outskirts of downtown St. Louis in an overpriced parking lot deceptively named ‘St. Louis RV Park.’ St. Louis RV Park actually ended up being really great, as it allowed for walking access (we are open to walking decent distances) to some pretty cool St. Louis shit. Like The Arch. And Citygarden. And The City Museum. And Busch Stadium (Cardinals). And beer.
If we hopped in the car, we could get to many more attractions. We utilized that option to visit Anheuser-Busch, where I finally got to meet the Clydesdales (dream!) and we got to drink watery beer from the source. And it was free.
Many of the attractions in St. Louis are free – like the science center, and the art museum, the history museum, and the sculpture park. And also the zoo. We visited the St.Louis Zoo, which was mildly depressing due to the size of its enclosures. Our trip was ‘saved’ by a chance meeting with an older gentleman who knew just about everything about the resident gorilla troop. He also knew everything about every other gorilla in captivity in the nation, and he shared each tidbit of that knowledge with us for over 2 hours. You can form your own opinion regarding whether this was a nightmare or a dream.
Owning our titles of ‘perma-tourists’, we made sure to take a ride to the top of the Arch (it was cool).
But, by far, our favorite attraction in St. Louis was The CityMuseum. We stumbled upon it on a morning run, and decided to check it out later. Good call, us. The CityMuseum is the coolest museum ever. That we have been to at least. It’s like DisneyWorld for junk-appreciating adults; and there are no ‘rules’. Just free reign of a bunch of repurposed junk to fulfill all of your climbing, sliding, and jumping desires. We’re still trying to figure out how this place remains open (i.e. without lawsuits) in today’s world, but we’re really glad it does. Seriously – we would plan an entire trip to St.Louis just off of the idea to visit CityMuseum.
We also thoroughly enjoyed the food offerings of St.Louis. Their pizza is all floppy and they put fake cheese on it; and it is freaking delicious. We went to Schlafly’s (brewery) Fall Pig Roast; both pig and beer were worthy of our face holes. We scouted out Clementine’s Naughty & Nice Ice Cream; we stuck with the ‘nice’ flavors and we weren’t disappointed. We ate butter cake; St. Louis, you can keep your butter cake (good try).
We also made it a point to run to Illinois, because hey – state border! And we got lucky and found out we were in close proximity to another couple of perpetual travelers, Wes & Michelle. So, we did what any sane person would do and met up with them for some (more) Schlafly beer and companionship (we like Wes & Michelle).
We did notice that St.Louis isn’t all ‘fun and games’. There is a huge amount of poverty within city limits – like the kind of poverty where folks are dismantling their homes (or the abandoned homes of their former neighbors) to sell the bricks. The rumors of St. Louis being a violent place also seemed to be true; sirens were a constant sound throughout the day and night. But, there was also pride, and hope, from the residents of this vibrant city. Signs were placed prominently in the yards of patched-up homes declaring “we must stop killing each other.” The patched up homes were decorated with fake flowers and little statues. St. Louis is trying; and with a history that stacked every odd against this city – that is all we can ask.
We loved St. Louis. But, because our house has wheels, we decided it was time to venture on (East!). If your house has wheels, we completely suggest driving it to St. Louis, parking it in a glorified parking lot labeled ‘RV Park’, and exploring. And if your house doesn’t have wheels, well, that stinks. But maybe you can drive your car there – it’s worth it! Until you can get to St. Louis, we’ll leave you with a picture of our cat. Because, well, CAT.