La Quinta Inns & Suites

Monday, October 26, 2009

U2 360 Tour Concert at the Rose Bowl

Editors review:
Cholos Tacos Awesome
Black Eyed Peas Awesome
Slash Cameos with Black-Eyed Peas for "Sweet Child O' Mine" Amazing!!
Stage Awesome
U2 Amazing!!

Best concert we've ever been!!
What a display and the LA crowd was awesome. 100,000 fans pretty much enjoying themselves without and troubles!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

St. Louis Area Mommy Bloggers to Drive New Chevys

Write About Travel Adventures in Chevy’s Fun-Filled “Mommy Madness”

Now the fun begins for six St. Louis area moms who are also bloggers.

The Mid America Chevy Dealers Mom Squad will drive new Chevys for four weeks and blog about their travels and experiences as part of the Mid America Chevy Dealer’s “Mommy Madness” promotion.

“We have four weeks of fun-filled ‘Mommy Missions’ planned for our Chevy Mom Squad,” said Kathy Federico, president of the Mid-America Chevy Dealer Association.

Besides driving the new Chevy Traverse or the 2010 Chevy Equinox, Mom Squad members will receive a Flip Video to document their missions and a chance to win a girls’ spa trip for four. There are weekly ‘Mommy Mission’ gifts, including a $150 grocery gift card, a free one-hour massage from Massage Envy clinics and a few more surprises.

The Mom Squad will blog, photograph and video their four weeks of fun in their Chevy Traverse or Chevy Equinox beginning October 19 through November 15, 2009. They will also encourage other moms to test drive the new Chevy Traverse or the 2010 Chevy Equinox at any Mid America Chevy dealership. As an added bonus, test drivers receive a free one-hour massage gift card from Massage Envy clinics.

A look at the bloggers who make up the Mom Squad:

Megan Durham ( is a crafter and home schools her four girls with husband Craig. She applied for Mommy Madness because her 13-year-old vehicle has 198,000 miles on it “and desperately needs a month off. Also, the stick people my kids drew on the back seats need to go to counseling.” She is a director of Classical Conversations, a community of homeschoolers. Besides her personal blog, she also blogs for and God’s World News for Kids. Megan resides in Maplewood. Durham will be driving the Chevy Traverse. She says, “What’s not to like? It’s new, it’s clean and it can provide me with instant directions with the push of a button. Plus, I really love driving a billboard on wheels.”

Emily Braig ( describes herself as “M.H.P.M.” (Married Hot Pregnant Mama) who has a spacious garage, a quirky, loving husband and a precocious 2 year old sidekick. Emily went from bean counter: master of the spreadsheet to kitchen counter: folder of the bed sheets; from rock ‘n roll to rock ‘n stroll; from convertible to convertible car seat; from first class and a Coach bag to coach and a diaper bag; from hot dates with him to play dates with her. She asks if her “traveling companion” Chevy has upholstery that is flame retardant and ‘Scotchgarded’? Emily resides in Florissant and will be driving the 2010 Chevy Equinox. When she received her Equinox she said, “This car rocks!”

Kim Julian ( started blogging a year ago “after having my second son, leaving my position as a social worker and staying at home.” She says her blog, “has given me the ability to help others financially and allows me to work from home.” STLMommy has subscribers from across the nation. Kim sees Mommy Madness “as a wonderful experience for me and my family, especially since we are nearing the time for purchasing a new car. Plus, who doesn’t love driving a new car and meeting new people?” Kim lives in Barnhart and will be driving the 2010 Chevy Equinox. When she sat in the Equinox for the first time she exclaimed, “I’m excited about Mommy Madness because I’ve never had a new car. It will take me where I need to go and hopefully alleviate some of my own madness.”

Elaine Mooney ( works as the winemaker at the Sainte Genevieve Winery. She received her degree from the University of Cal-Fresno in Enology, is a professional international wine judge and teaches many different wine related classes. She says she “enjoys traveling, playing my bassoon, cooking, photography and Grey's Anatomy.” She is the mother of two young daughters with her husband, John, a junior high and high school band teacher. “We met in marching band in college and have been together for 10 years,” she said. Elaine lives in St. Louis and will be driving the 2010 Chevy Equinox. She said, “I’m way excited to promote this car. I’m already starting to write blog posts in my head to show off the Equinox.”

Colleen Murphy ( blogs to find “humor in her daily chaos. Some of my older posts are pretty funny: I sent my youngest daughter to school in a full-habit nun costume on the wrong day.” She started blogging after her husband saw an article about a mom of six who had her own blog. “I figured, Why not me? My family would love it if I aired all our dirty laundry on the Internet.” She applied for Mommy Madness after a friend heard about it on the radio. She is excited about “driving a car that doesn’t smell like soccer shin guards.” Colleen is a resident of O’Fallon, Missouri and will be drive the new Chevy Traverse. As soon as Colleen sat in her Traverse she shouted, “I’m excited to have a car that has a window that rolls down. I can go through the drive through for the first time in two years!”

Danielle Smith ( started her blog a year and a half ago “as a place for moms to remember every day that what they are doing is extraordinary.” She works from home as a freelance consultant. Danielle is “always looking for ways to streamline the madness and share information that just may make life easier. It’s important that moms be involved when it comes to buying a car. We know what is right for our families.” A fun story about blogging: “I put a picture of my family on one of my sites, it was stolen and used for a life-sized ad in the Czech Republic…We ended up on the CBS Early Show, CNN, Fox News and NPR.” Danielle calls O’Fallon home. She commented, “I’m really excited for two reasons…one, it is a great opportunity to showcase the new Chevy Traverse. Traditionally, women have been left out of the car buying process. This allows Chevy to say we want you to understand your car and we value you as consumers. Secondly, I live Mommy Madness…if there is anything in life that can make my life ‘less mad’ that’s good. And, if I can share that with other moms- that’s a bonus!”

Chevy Mommy Madness is presented by Mid-America Chevy Dealers. The Mid America Chevy Dealers are comprised of 31 local Chevy Dealerships located in St. Louis and its surrounding areas falling into Missouri and Illinois.

For more information on Mommy Madness St. Louis go to

Finding Grace opens October 23

EXHIBIT NAME: Finding Grace: Ten Years in Retrospect

DATES & TIMES: Exhibit Dates: October 23 to December 13
Opening reception: Friday, October 23, 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.(free and open to the public)

Gallery talk and performance:
Thursday, November 5, 2009
6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Gallery hours:
Monday - Friday, 10 a.m.- 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday, noon - 5 p.m.

EXHIBIT LOCATION: The Gallery at the Regional Arts Commission
6128 Delmar Boulevard on The Loop
St. Louis, MO 63112
(Free parking in the lot behind The Pageant; metered street parking)

Finding Grace:Ten Years in Retrospect, an exhibit commemorating the first ten years of the community collabARTive, an integrated part of the Transitional Housing Program of Peter and Paul Community Services. PPCS provides housing and supportive services to those who are homeless, especially those who experience mental illness or live with HIV.

The men and PPCS staff work along side artists and community partners to raise awareness about homelessness, give voice to the marginalized, strengthen connections and build bridges.

This interactive exhibit will include visual, video and performance art that honors collaborations and collaborators past and present. Curated by Con Christeson, Michele Ryker-Owens and Keith Buchholz.

Leslie Laskey: Tango

Through October 24

Leslie Laskey presents a series of paintings and drawings inspired by the Argentinean dance. Tango has been a great inspiration for artists, whether they are musicians, filmmakers or visual artists. A fully illustrated catalogue with an essay by Jim Harris accompanies the exhibition. In the Project Room and Front Room, the gallery presents a group exhibition “Legacy: The Work of Laskey’s Former Students”, by Leslie Laskey’s former students during his long-standing career as a Professor of Architecture at Washington University. In the Media Room, video artist Dickson Beall presents a single-channel video titled “CUT-OUT” (view it on YouTube).

Art catalogues from Bruno David Gallery Publications are available at (link). Visit our website at Bruno David Gallery (here). Visit the gallery blog at (here).

Thank you for your continuing support and I hope to see you at the gallery! Bruno and the staff.


The Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts:
GORDON MATTA-CLARK "Urban Alchemy" (link)

Bruno David Gallery:
CHRIS KAHLER "Hybrid Dynamic" (link)
Front Room. "Dionna Raedeke: The Addition"
Media Room. "William Morris: 8ms"
Project Room. "Heather Woofter & Sung Ho Kim: Per.For.Mance"

PSTL Gallery:
LEO COLLAZO "Dredging the Sea of Tranquility"

Shown above: Installation view of Leslie Laskey: Tango at Bruno David Gallery, 2009.
Photo © 2009 Jim Olvera


ST. LOUIS – WXOS-FM’s Randy Karraker announced that he is stepping up to the plate in a bid to purchase the St. Louis Rams NFL franchise. Karraker made this announcement on the air this afternoon at 5:05pm on 101 ESPN.
As a diehard St. Louis Cardinals football fan, Karraker was crushed years ago when the football team left St. Louis to move to Phoenix back in 1987. It was with hope and optimism that he became a St. Louis Rams fan when the franchise moved to St. Louis. Randy has covered the team for the past 15 years, and has become a staunch Rams supporter. With the Rams’ Superbowl victory in 2000 under Dick Vermeil’s leadership, Karraker’s love of the team was solidified.
With the recent debacle of Rush Limbaugh’s efforts to join Dave Checketts’ quest to purchase the team, and the rampant rumors about the Rams potential sale and move back to Los Angeles, Karraker was reminded of how bad it hurt when football left St. Louis. And although there are a reported six potential groups interested in purchasing the team, none have stood out from the rest of the competition. Rather than just sit and watch it happen again, Karraker decided to do something about it, and has created the Randy Karraker: Save the Rams Fund- and Fan-Raising Campaign.
Karraker says “I believe St. Louis deserves an NFL franchise and when football has been good in this city, it’s been greatly supported. Rather than sitting on my hands and doing nothing about it, I’ve decided to do everything I can to make a difference and help keep our Rams here.” He continues, “Whenever 101 ESPN’s “The Fast Lane” broadcasts on location, we will have the Randy Karraker: Save the Rams barrel on hand to collect donations, with all funds donated going to this grassroots cause to keep the Rams where they belong, in St. Louis.”
101 ESPN Program Director Jason Barrett notes, “Randy is pulling together all of the people he knows, and is calling on the public to raise the funds necessary to keep the Rams where they belong, right here in St. Louis.” Barrett continues, “He realizes this is a huge uphill climb and he doesn’t expect it to be easy. But Randy is going to do his best to make a difference and he hopes to do it with the full support of the public.”
Karraker notes, “In the event that we are not able to raise enough money to buy the Rams or in the event that Chip Rosenbloom’s family elects to sell the team to someone else, our funds will then be donated to the Special Olympics of Missouri.
For more information about upcoming appearances of “The Fast Lane”, or how to join and contribute to the Randy Karraker: Save the Rams grassroots fund-raising effort, please contact Program Director Jason Barrett at (314) 983-6230 or

St. Louis Rams Fans will also be able to make contributions through the radio station’s web site by clicking on “The Fast Lane” page at
And for the latest Rams and NFL news, visit 101 ESPN’s web site at

About Bonneville International
Bonneville St. Louis is an affiliate of Bonneville International (, which was founded in 1964 and currently owns and operates 29 radio stations in the Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Seattle, Phoenix, St. Louis, Cincinnati, and Salt Lake City markets. It also owns and operates KSL Television (NBC affiliate) and has operating divisions of Bonneville Communications and Bonneville Satellite in Salt Lake City. Bonneville's motto is "Do good, do well, make a difference, and have fun."

In addition to competing aggressively in major-market broadcasting by structuring its business model on the three principles of building its people, making a difference in the community, and meeting aggressive financial goals, Bonneville also enjoys a longstanding reputation and is known industry-wide for its nationally recognized and award-winning commitment to serving the communities where it broadcasts.

Headquartered in Salt Lake City, Bonneville is known for its innovative business model and is a national leader in providing quality, values-oriented media products.

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Monday, October 19, 2009


Dinosaurs Unearthed Exhibition Arrives Nov. 7, Bringing With It Rare, Feathered Fossils and More Than 20 Life-Sized Dinosaurs Depicted in a Realistic Habitat“

Walking into Dinosaurs Unearthed is like stepping back in time,” said Brad Nuccio, Senior Vice President of the Science Center. “The impressive, life-like replicas of the dinosaurs in their environment paired with the most current scientific theories and information make it an incredible entertainment and educational experience.”

The exhibition highlights the latest theories in paleontology. Though dinosaurs are usually portrayed with scaled, reptile-like skin, most scientists now accept the theory that many were covered with feathers. Dinosaurs Unearthed explores this theory and presents some of the first life-sized models of feathered dinosaurs ever created. Each model has been hand-carved, with thousands of down-like feathers also placed by hand.

Visitors can also take control of several animatronic dinosaurs such as a baby Stegosaurus, Baryonyx, Parasaurolophus and an Allosaurus. Featuring new technology using electronics instead of hydraulics, these models demonstrate some of the most life-like motions possible with animatronics.

“We know how intrigued our visitors of all ages are with dinosaurs,” said Nuccio. “This exhibition has the sense of mystery and excitement that always surrounds dinosaurs, grounded in the latest science, which makes it completely new and unique.”

Not only are dinosaurs taking over the Science Center’s EXPLORADOME, but passers-by will also be greeted by a 57-foot long Apatosaurus on the front lawn of the museum, providing a preview of the amazing discoveries inside.

Half-price tickets for Science Center Members are $6.25 for adults and $5.25 for children. Tickets for Non-Members are $12.50 for adults and $10.50 for children. Call 314.286.4634 or email for information on discounts for groups of 10 or more. Tickets and more information at


Saint Louis Science Center

The Saint Louis Science Center is one of the top five science centers in the United States, serving 1.2 million visitors annually. Recently named one of the “10 Best Science Centers for Families” by Parents magazine and one of “America’s Most Visited Museums” by Forbes Traveler Magazine, - the only museum in Missouri to be named to either list - the Saint Louis Science Center complex includes a four-story OMNIMAX® Theater, the air-supported EXPLORADOME and the James S. McDonnell Planetarium. Its mission is to ignite and sustain lifelong science and technology learning.

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Experience “DinoQuest: A Tropical Trek Through Time,” May 1 through Oct. 3, 2010

WHAT: “DinoQuest: A Tropical Trek through Time” dinosaur exhibition
WHEN: May 1 through Oct. 3, 2010 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily
WHERE: Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Blvd., south St. Louis
COST: Exhibit admission: $5 adults, $3 children (3-12), in addition to Garden admission.
Garden admission: $8 adults, $4 St. Louis City/County residents, free children.
INFO:; (314) 577-9400, 1 (800) 642-8842 toll free recorded info

(ST. LOUIS): The Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis is marking the golden anniversary of one of its most popular attractions, the Climatron®, by transporting visitors back in time to the golden age of dinosaurs. Feel the thrill of encountering a hulking Placerias, bird-like Bambiraptor or soaring Sordes in an unparalleled environment: hidden in the heart of a thriving tropical rain forest. Witness dozens of these realistic, pre-historic creatures when “DinoQuest: A Tropical Trek Through Time” debuts at the Missouri Botanical Garden in 2010.

Since 1960, the Climatron has easily been one of the most recognizable features at the Garden, noted as the first geodesic dome to be used as a plant conservatory. Inside, lush green foliage, cascading waterfalls and a warm, humid climate simulate an authentic jungle atmosphere.

“This exhibition provides a perfect introduction to the history of life on earth, extinction, and survival. How we manage our resources will have a major effect on the future of life, and there are many lessons to be learned from the past,” said Dr. Peter Raven, president of the Missouri Botanical Garden. “In addition to the educational value, there is also a real sense of excitement in experiencing these lifelike creatures in such an awe-inspiring setting. We hope it will evoke wonder, imagination and intrigue in visitors of all ages.”

On the “trek through time,” visitors of all ages will experience life in a tropical forest long ago, today and tomorrow. A smooth pathway winds through the 24,000-square-foot Climatron conservatory, where more than a dozen installations depict dinosaurs and reptiles from the Cretaceous, Jurassic, Triassic and Permian periods “frozen in time” amid the living flora. Encounter hungry herbivores, including a pair of toothy Heterodontosaurus and an eight-foot-long,bulky-bodied Placerias. Spot a flock of bird-like Bambiraptors hovering beneath green cycads, keeping watch over nests brimming with eggs. Identify a large Dimetrodon by the finned “sail” along its spine, or the three-foot-long Rhamphorynchus by its fur-covered wings.

Postosuchus, a pre-dinosaur age predator of Placerias, hides atop a cliff near a bamboo grove, while a hungry Syntarsus lurks beneath a large tree. See the Compsognathus tend to their nests near the basin of a waterfall as a trio of vigilant Oviraptors keep watch over their nests of offspring near a shallow pool.

Look up to find three hairy Sordes, ready to take flight from their perches in the trees. Two Quetzalcoatlus babies, also flying reptiles, huddle in their nest above a tank of fish, while their 30-foot-long parent flies high inside the neighboring Shoenberg Temperate House, a conservatory adjacent to the Climatron.

Outside on Garden grounds, a 30-foot-long, duck-billed Parasaurolophus nurtures its three young. A 32-foot-tall Tyrannosaurus rex can scarcely go unnoticed as it towers above the surrounding flora. On public display for the first time, a 30-foot-long pregnant Hypsibema, the Missouri state dinosaur, watches over its nest and greets visitors near the entrance to the Doris I. Schnuck Children’s Garden.

The realistic DinoQuest dinosaurs and reptiles are a labor of love for creator Guy Darrough of Lost World Studios in Arnold, Mo. Darrough has been devoted to building life-sized models of these extinct creatures for nearly 15 years.

“My ultimate goal is to create an experience that is realistic enough to draw visitors into the arena of science and learning,” said Darrough. “The aesthetic appeal of these dinosaurs coupled with the surrounding vegetation is just incredible.”

The dinosaur discovery continues as visitors exit the Climatron into the Brookings Interpretive Center. There, visitors will be amazed to view a one-and-one-half-ton slab of sandstone containing over 200 bones from dinosaurs, turtles, fish and birds. Darrough obtained the slab from an excavation in Lance Creek, Wyo. and estimates the sandstone piece is over 65 million years old.

Children can hone their own paleontology skills by unearthing faux bones at a mini-dino dig site, climb and play in a dinosaur nest, envision themselves in the days of dinosaurs through green screen technology, and get an up-close look at the Dino Egg Incubator, an original prop from the set of the movie “Jurassic Park III.” Families can explore life in tropical forests today, discovering geckos and poison dart frogs, exploring the connections between animals and plants, and experiencing the many multi-sensory gifts that these bio-rich ecosystems give us. Visitors will also learn about tropical forests today and how Garden researchers are working feverishly to document, protect and preserve these at-risk ecosystems for generations to come.

Special themed classes, events and activities will be offered throughout the exhibition’s duration to enhance the DinoQuest experience, including “Jurassic Dark” extended Thursday evenings, DinoQuest Sleepovers, and a MovieFest. Additional activities include dinosaur-themed summer camp sessions, tropical forest ecology classes and guided tours for school groups, workshops for educators and family backpack adventures.

“DinoQuest: A Tropical Trek Through Time” is on display Saturday, May 1 through Sunday, Oct. 3, 2010 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Purchase tickets on site or in advance beginning Spring 2010 at Exhibition admission (which includes entry to the Climatron dome, Shoenberg Temperate House and Brookings Interpretive Center) is $5 for adults (ages 13 and over) and $3 for children (ages three to 12), in addition to Garden admission. Exhibition admission is free to St. Louis City and County residents on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9 to 10 a.m.

Regular Garden admission is $8 for adults and free for children ages 12 and under. St. Louis City and County resident admission is $4 for adults (ages 13 to 64), $3 for seniors (ages 65 and over), and free on most Wednesday and Saturday mornings before noon. Special admission rates apply during the third weekend of May, Labor Day weekend and the first weekend of October.

Become a Missouri Botanical Garden member to receive discounted DinoQuest exhibition admission of $3 for adults and $2 for children (ages three to 12), plus free admission on Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to noon. Garden members also receive free general Garden admission. For membership information, visit

DinoQuest sponsorship opportunities are available. Call (314) 577-9500 or visit for more information.

The 79-acre Missouri Botanical Garden is located at 4344 Shaw Blvd. in south St. Louis, accessible from Interstate 44 at the Vandeventer exit. Free parking is available on site and at lots two blocks west at the corner of Shaw and Vandeventer.

For more information on “DinoQuest: A Tropical Trek Through Time,” visit For general Garden information, visit or call the 24-hour recorded event hotline at (314) 577-9400 or toll-free 1 (800) 642-8842.

Also May 1 through Oct. 3, 2010, visit the Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House at Faust Park in Chesterfield, Mo. to experience “Jurassic Bugs.” Thirty-inch dragonflies, foot-long cockroaches and a 10-foot sea scorpion are among the models joining a host of crawling, flying and nesting living creatures on display. For more information, visit or call (636) 530-0076. The Butterfly House is a division of the Missouri Botanical Garden.

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Thursday, October 08, 2009


WHAT: “Gardenland Express” holiday flower and train show
WHEN: Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009 through Sunday, Jan. 3, 2010 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Closes early at 4 p.m. on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve; closed Christmas Day.

WHERE: Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Blvd., south St. Louis, Mo.
COST: $5 ages three and up, in addition to regular Garden admission
($8 adults; $4 St. Louis City/County residents; free children ages 12 and under). Garden members are free.
SPONSORS: CBIZ & Mayer Hoffman McCann, P.C.; Central States Coca-Cola Bottling Company; Miss Marian L. Herr; Hobby Station; and Mr. and Mrs. William R. Orthwein, Jr.
INFO:; (314) 577-9400, 1 (800) 642-8842 toll free

(ST. LOUIS): ‘Tis the season at the Missouri Botanical Garden! A host of holiday activities await visitors between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Experience the annual “Gardenland Express” holiday flower and train show, commemorating “150 Years of the Garden.” Celebrate Chanukah, Kwanzaa and Christmas traditions. Enjoy seasonal décor, from adorned trees to festive wreaths to sweet-smelling garlands. Take a class to brush up on your cookie-decorating and greeting-card-making skills. Stop by the Garden Gate Shop and Little Shop Around the Corner for unique gift-giving ideas, and more! Visit for details on all of the holiday happenings.

Don’t miss the Garden’s final sesquicentennial celebratory event of 2009! The vibrant “Gardenland Express” holiday flower and train show chugs into town Wednesday, Nov. 25, open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Sunday, Jan. 3 (closes at 4 p.m. Dec. 24 and 31; closed Dec. 25). Watch as eight G-scale model garden trains travel along 800 feet of railway track in the Orthwein Floral Display Hall, through a bold, colorful palette of orange, purple, red, white and lime green botanicals. Look for several Garden landmarks in miniature, including the historic Linnean House conservatory, Museum Building, Chinese Garden pagoda, Piper Observatory and Tower Grove House (founder Henry Shaw’s original country estate). Archival images highlighting the institution’s 150-year history will line the walls in a tribute timeline.

The 2009 “Gardenland Express” holiday flower and train show is sponsored by CBIZ & Mayer Hoffman McCann, P.C.; Central States Coca-Cola Bottling Company; Miss Marian L. Herr; Hobby Station; and Mr. and Mrs. William R. Orthwein, Jr. Admission to “Gardenland Express” is $5 for ages three and over, in addition to general Garden admission; Garden members are free.

Seasonal décor decks the halls of the Ridgway Visitor Center, Tower Grove House and Kemper Center for Home Gardening. Nov. 21 through Jan. 3 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., view the annual Holiday Wreath Exhibition, featuring unique creations by some of the area’s finest floral designers. All wreaths are sold by silent auction bidding, with proceeds benefiting the Garden. Nov. 25 through Jan. 3, experience a Victorian Christmas at Tower Grove House. The country residence of Garden founder Henry Shaw is decked with wreaths, garlands, floral centerpieces, greenery and holiday trees. Young visitors can enjoy storytelling on Saturdays at 11 a.m. and a special Seek-and-Find activity. Tower Grove House is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m. (closed Mondays). Dec. 5 through Jan. 3 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (closed Jan. 1), enjoy “Inspired by the Garden” Holiday Trimmings at the Kemper Center, featuring a 15-foot balsam fir tree decorated with over 50 “gourdaments” and gourd birdhouses to celebrate the Garden’s 150th anniversary. New this year, vote for the “visitor’s choice” award for your favorite gourd! All decorated gourds are sold by silent auction bidding.

Join the traditional Jewish holiday celebration, “Chanukah: Festival of Lights” on Sunday, Dec. 6 from noon to 4 p.m. Enjoy festive Israeli music and dance, a menorah-lighting ceremony, and a traditional “shuk,” or marketplace. Listen to holiday carols, whisper wishes to Santa in his sleigh and smell chestnuts roasting on an open fire during “Christmas Carols in the Garden,” Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 12 and 13 from 1 to 5 p.m. Experience the contemporary African-American holiday “Kwanzaa: Festival of the First Fruits” on Wednesday, Dec. 30 from noon to 4 p.m. Enjoy an afternoon of storytelling, craft and jewelry displays, and authentic African drumming and music, centered around the feast table of the harvest.

Several seasonal classes tap into the holiday spirit. Create a Decorative Scented Wreath on Nov. 17 or join a Holiday Wreath Making Workshop on Dec. 5 or 12. Try your hand at making a 3-D Papercutting Ornament on Dec. 3 or 8, or create DIY: Christmas Cards on Dec 9. Decorate a delicious Gingerbread Cottage on Dec. 2, and prepare stunning sweets with Holiday Cookies and Cookie Decorating classes on Dec. 6 and 8, respectively. Seniors, enhance your Garden visit therapeutically with a Botanical Wreath program on Dec. 9 or Holiday Cookie Recipes on Dec. 11. Youngsters ages four and five can also celebrate the season alongside an adult during Garden Buds: Evergreen: A Special Tree for Me! on Nov. 19 or 22. Advance registration is required for all classes; visit for a complete list of program times and prices, or to register.

Shop the Garden Gate Shop for unique gifts, including candy cane, cupcake and cardinal-inspired goodies. Browse an array of holiday greeting cards, “green” items made from recycled materials, tropical-themed ornaments, books, decor and more. The Shop is located in the lower level of the Ridgway Visitor Center and is open from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; visit Head down the street to the Little Shop Around the Corner for one-of-a-kind finds, including vintage jewelry, artwork, accent furnishings, garden décor and more. The Little Shop is located at 4474 Castleman Ave. (at the corner of Shaw and Vandeventer) and is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (closed January); visit

Give the gift of the Garden this season! A Missouri Botanical Garden membership includes free general admission for two adults and children ages 12 and under to the Garden, Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House, Shaw Nature Reserve and EarthWays Center, along with special discounts and invitations to members-only events. A regular level membership costs $65 ($60 for seniors age 65 and over). Purchase a new or gift membership Nov. 4 through 8 or Dec. 2 through 6 and receive 20-percent off (on-site sales only). For more information, visit

The Missouri Botanical Garden is located at 4344 Shaw Blvd. in south St. Louis, easily accessible from Interstate 44 at the Vandeventer exit. Free parking is available on-site on the west side of the parking lot (east side is temporarily closed this winter for improvements). Additional parking is available two blocks west at the corner of Shaw and Vandeventer.

The Garden is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, closed Dec. 25. Admission is $8 for adults and free for children ages 12 and under. St. Louis City and County resident admission is $4 and free Wednesday and Saturday mornings before noon. Garden members and their children are free. Admission to the Gardenland Express show is an additional $5 per person (free for members). Separate fees apply for classes.

For general information, visit or call the recorded event line at (314) 577‑9400 or toll-free 1 (800) 642-8842.

The Missouri Botanical Garden is the oldest continually operating botanical garden in the nation, celebrating its 150th anniversary in 2009. Missouri Botanical Garden: Green for 150 Years.

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The Missouri Botanical Garden’s mission is “to discover and share knowledge about plants and their environment, in order to preserve and enrich life.” Today, 150 years after opening, the Missouri Botanical Garden is a National Historic Landmark and a center for science, conservation, education and horticultural display. Missouri Botanical Garden: Green for 150 Years.

The Missouri Botanical Garden is located at 4344 Shaw Blvd. in St. Louis, just south of I-44 at Vandeventer-Kingshighway (exit #287B). Open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day except Dec. 25. Grounds open at 7 a.m. every Wednesday and Saturday. Admission is $8; free children ages 12 and under and Garden members. St. Louis City and County residents are $4 and free every Wednesday and Saturday until noon (exception: special admission rate events). Park for free on site and two blocks west at the Shaw-Vandeventer intersection. The Garden is easily accessible by taking the MetroLink commuter rail line to the Central West End station and picking up a Metro bus ( For general information, log on to or call the 24-hour recording at (314) 577-9400 or 1-800-642-8842. For membership information, call (314) 577-5118 during weekday business hours. For volunteer opportunities, call (314)-577-5187 or visit The Missouri Botanical Garden is a tobacco-free environment.

(Note: A section of the I-64/U.S. 40 highway is under construction through 2009. Before traveling, check for updates or visit for other helpful information.)