Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Forest Park- St.Louis, Missouri

Pictured above is the World's Fair Pavilion at Forest Park, one of the older buildings of the park.  Hard to believe that it is a 137-year old park.  When I first visited it, about 40 years ago, it was pretty much run down.  Weeds filled the grassy picnic areas, bridges and roads were crumbling.  Heavy use of the park over the years and deferred maintenance took its toll and by the 1980s this city park was declining rapidly.  Forest Park Forever was created in 1986 to work in partnership with the city to make the urban park the beautiful place it is today.  Public and private funds were raised and $100 million dollars was used to restore the park.  It is one of the largest city parks in the United States, surpassing Central Park by 500 acres.
Last week John and I drove around the park before visiting the History Museum.  We first stopped at Art Hill where the St.Louis Art Museum is located.  From atop of that hill we could look down at the Emerson Grand Basin, which is quite picturesque with it numerous fountains.  Our next stop was at the Muny, where we have attended live theater many times over the years.  Pictured above is Pagoda Circle,  located in a small pond outside of the theater building.  Speaking of live theater, I noticed on the map of the park that there is an area designated Shakespeare Glen.  Every year, early in June, a different production of one of Shakespeare's plays is performed.  We have also attended some of those plays over the years.
The pond outside of the Jewel Box is quite beautiful at this time of the year because of the many colorful lilies blooming on the pond.
The Jewel Box building has been the setting for many marriages over the years.  At Christmas it is decorated with many poinsettias and at during the spring season with numerous Easter lilies.
For tourists visiting St.Louis I would also like to mention other features of the park, as a skating rink and golf course.  It also has a world class zoo, and planetarium, which is part of the Saint Louis Science Center,  located across Highway 40.

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