The St. Louis Zoo is great to visit any time of the year, but summer is when the Zoo really shines. From Memorial Day to Labor Day the Zoo is open extended hours until 7 p.m., on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. The Zoo also opens an hour earlier every day at 8 a.m.
If you visit on a Friday night, you can also enjoy Jungle Boogie, free outdoor concerts featuring popular local musicians from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. The concerts are held at Schnuck Family Plaza near the sea lion basin. Jungle Boogie is just one of many free concert series held in St. Louis each summer. For more information, check out Free Summer Concerts and Live Music in St. Louis.
More Free Concerts:
(Photo courtesy of Robin Winkelman, St. Louis Zoo)
Memorial Day weekend is a busy time in St. Louis. There's a lot happening to mark the unofficial beginning of summer. From bar-b-ques and shopping, to concerts and parades, there's an event for just about everyone. For ideas on what to do this weekend, see my article on the Top Memorial Day Weekend Events in St. Louis.
The Missouri Botanical Garden is hosting one of its most popular annual events this weekend. Chinese Culture Days is a two day festival featuring folk dancing, cooking demonstrations and fashion shows. There will also be performances by the New Shanghai Circus and a Grand Parade each day complete with acrobats, martial artists and dragon dancers.
Chinese Culture Days is May 17-18, 2014, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults and $5 for children and Garden members. For more information, check out Chinese Culture Days 2014.
(Photo courtesy: Leslie Wallace, Missouri Botanical Garden)
Forest Park is home to some of St. Louis' most popular attractions including the St. Louis Zoo, Science Center, Art Museum and more. Once again this year, it should be easier for visitors to get to the park's top destinations. Metro is offering trolley service through the park from May 3 - September 28, 2014. The trolley route begins at the Forest Park-DeBaliviere Metrolink Station. The trolley runs daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with extended hours until 7 p.m., between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
The trolley runs every 15-20 minutes making stops at the Missouri History Museum, Visitor's Center, Grand Basin, Art Museum, Zoo, Boathouse, Pagoda Circle (Muny), Upper Muny Parking Lot, Jewel Box, Steinberg Rink and the Science Center. A one-day pass is $2 for adults and $1 for children and seniors. Kids four and younger ride for free.
Here's a way to spend some time with Mom and it won't cost anything. The St. Louis County Parks Department is offering free tours of Thornhill Estate in Faust Park during Mother's Day weekend. Guides in period costumes will give tours of the mansion and other nearby buildings.
Thornhill Estate was built around 1819 as a home for Frederick Bates, Missouri's second governor. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Free tours will be given May 10-11, 2014, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
For more on Mother's Day in St. Louis, see Where to Take Mom for Brunch on Mother's Day.
Other May Events:
St. Louis is ready to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. There's the big street festival on Cherokee Street on Saturday, May 3, 2014, complete with a parade, live music, food, drinks, art and more. There will also be plenty of celebrating at local Mexican restaurants and other locations around town. For more information, check out my article on Where to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in St. Louis.
It's May and the weather is feeling more like summer. You can get an early start on summer fun this month with all kinds of outdoor events and activities. There's the Shakespeare Festival in Forest Park, Strawberry Festival at Eckert's Orchards and Kids Day at Cahokia Mounds. For more ideas, see my article on Top Things to Do in May 2014 in St. Louis.
Browsing through a bookstore is a good way to relax, but few bookstores compare to what you can find at the Greater St. Louis Book Fair. A huge selection of books, DVDs and CDs will fill the lower level parking garage at the West County Center this weekend. For collectors, there are also tables of rare books, first editions and autographs. Admission is free except for Thursday night when there's a $10 cover to get in. Most of the books cost less than $5, and the final day of the sale on Sunday is half-price day. Money raised from the book fair goes to a variety of St. Louis charities.
Greater St. Louis Book Fair
April 24-27, 2014
West County Center
Macy's Parking Garage Lower Level
(Photo courtesy Manchan, Getty Images)
The Missouri History Museum is once again hosting a free concert series this spring. The Twilight Tuesday concerts return April 22, 2014. Bring a lawn chair or blanket to the north lawn of the museum each Tuesday night for the outdoor concert series featuring some of the area's most popular musicians. Picnic baskets are welcome, or you can buy food and drinks when you arrive. Each concert starts at 6 p.m., and lasts for about two hours. See the complete schedule of performers and other detailed information about Twilight Tuesdays.
Your chance to help Saint Louis Effort for AIDS is April 24, 2014. That's the date for this year's Dining Out for Life in St. Louis. More than 100 local restaurants will donate at least 25 percent of their sales to the AIDS charity. Some of the area's most popular eateries are taking part, including Bailey's Chocolate Bar, Sidney Street Cafe, Favazza's on the Hill and Modesto. From inexpensive coffee shops to some of St. Louis' finest restaurants, there's a place to fit everyone's tastes and budget. You can find the complete list of participating restauants online.