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The Top 100 Reasons to Come to DRSWCVI!

REASON 100 - ERIC CLAUDE
Suggested by Dave Braun  ♦  If for no other reason, you just have to meet Eric Claude. Eric, a software engineer, is a typical dead runner - mixes cereals in the morning, freezes water bottles on their sides, goes over the top, wears ugly, all leather NB's with round shoe laces. His ultra-runs require him to train 100 miles/week, all on a left-handed dread mill, while listening to "running song" cd's thru headphones. Occasionally he will show up at the gym, do banshee yelling dead lifts, 400-500 crunches and 200 jumping jacks in the nude (ouch!). His junk-shaved, non-supportive, but running SO, the former Betty Jo Dawson, was a Miss America contestant and currently works at Hooters. She took up running when she realized that she was already wearing running togs at work. She did post to the list for a short time, but being one watt short of a dim bulb, she left the list in a huff when someone suggested that there should be no more people with the initials BJD allowed. The couple have four kids - one of each (lgbt). See all your DRS threads come to life!

REASON 99 - THE ARCH
Suggested by Dave Braun  ♦  The Jefferson National Expansion Monument, the Gateway to the West, the huge croquet wicket, the UHF antenna for some alien nation, or simply, the Arch. The number one tourist attraction in St. Louis. Rising 630 feet, you ride to the top in tiny capsules that hold five people... you have about as much space as riding in the back seat of Braun's Laser. The ride takes 4 minutes, 3 minutes coming back down. At the top, you exit the capsule and can get a bird's eye view of St. Louis. Little known facts - all illegal - one guy tried to parachute down and land on the top of it... he did hit the side near the top, his chute collapsed and then plummeted to his death. Another guy scaled the monument on the outside by using suction cups. Got to the top, filmed himself, then parachuted off of it. He was not caught, but came forward several days later for the publicity. There has been one incident where planes flew through it. Going eastward toward Illinois, the culprits were never caught. Scott Larcher, you can't be the first, but you could be the first to do it going westward - now that, is better than any Puckett bet.

REASON 98 - CROWN'S CANDY KITCHEN
Suggested by MarkO  ♦  Take a trip down memory lane in this vintage soda shoppe. Relive the days when you could run a sub 40 minute 10K as you listen to oldies on a classic juke box sitting in a booth that is probably older than most of my grandfather's ties. Coca Cola memorabilia adorns the walls. Old fashion soda machines behind the counter. All the ice cream and candy is made on the premises. Before Easter the lines extend outside the door with people making their Easter candy purchases everything from 35lb solid chocolate bunnies to sugar crystal eggs that you can peer into and see a field of bunnies. Have an egg cream, have a phosphate, have a hot fudge sundae as big as your head. Standard grille fare is also available. So if while you're in St. Louis you want to go back to a time where good food didn't mean it was low in fat, but instead meant it tasted really good, then Crown's Candy Kitchen is a must place to visit.

REASON 97 - THE OMNIMAX THEATRE /ST. LOUIS SCIENCE CENTER
Suggested by Tracey G.  ♦  Even I can't run all day, every day, at the sixth DRS World Conference in St. Louis. So, what to do during those hours when you're not running or racing, eating and drinking, playing volleyball and ultimate, or (heaven forbid) sleeping? The St. Louis Science Center, just off Forest Park, is host to one of 17 Omnimax dome-screen theatres in the U.S. (There are also approximately 57 large-screen Imax theatres, but the dome is an entirely different experience!) The Imax technology has its roots at the Expo 1967 in Montreal, Canada, where multi-screen films were the hit of the fair. Three Canadian filmakers, directors of some of those films, decided to design a new system using a single, powerful projector rather than the multiple projectors in use at the time. Imax debuted at the Fuji Pavilion, Expo 1970, in Osaka, Japan. The first permanent Imax system was installed at Ontario Place's Cinesphere in Toronto in 1971. The Imax dome technology, Omnimax, premiered at the Reuben H. Fleet Space Theatre in San Diego in 1973. The domed screen at the Science Center is 4 stories high, and includes a 6-channel, 15,000-watt multi-speaker sound system. The projector produces a sharp, seemless image across the inside surface of the dome, wrapping the viewer in sight and sound... and into another dimension. If you want to escape for an hour or so, this is the way to do it! "Super Speedway" will be showing from May 22 to Sept. 7, at the Science Center. Take a visual ride with Mario Andretti, and learn about the art and science of auto racing.

REASON 96 - THE CITY MUSEUM (NEW)
Suggested by Krash  ♦  Opened in October just in time for Halloween, The City Museum is located at 701 N. 15th street in the old International Shoe Company headquarters, in the heart of the loft district (artists running amok). Parking is ample, I think due to the 3 double headed serpents guarding the lot, with a 14ft+ green copper praying mantis overlooking your parking habits. Enter on the first floor, to a wild matrix of tunnels, passageways, waterfalls, and labyrinths. Find your way upstairs by the castle tower or the Brontosaurus Staircase, with hundreds of rollers supporting the railings, hear them swoosh in concert. Arrival on the second floor, Art City is a turn from the treehouse, and features artists in their natural habitat, bellowing and showing mating colors. No wait, that's the zoo, nevermind. ;-) Glassmakers, potters, weavers (no, Dennis couldn't make it), metalsmiths (guns! not.), and sculptors show off their skills, and enlist audience help (from bleacher seating). Magically appearing on the third floor is the Museum of Mirth, Mystery and Mayhem, dedicated to weird stuff, changes every month, either because they switch the exhibit objects, or they mutate themselves. Everydaycircus is a carnival atmosphere for kids, live entertainment, rides, crafts and games. The Saint Louis Architectural Museum is one of my favorite walk abouts in this space, hundreds of facades, windows, pillars, gargoyles, all assembled in two huge rooms. Joined at birth, this appendage of the City Museum was also born in 1997 (new! improved! no more odor!) ;-) For the next 6 months, the largest travelling bone show (courtesy of the Russian Academy of Sciences) is distributed about the building, including full TRex and velociraptor skeletons. Join me at the Bowhead Whale, to see the huge fish tank it encircles. Walk up the whale's mouth, and into this fun abyss of sights and sounds. The City Museum, a 501c3 organization, just like DRS! Admission is 6 bucks, closed on Monday/Tuesday, 314-231-CITY or museum@protspace.net

REASON 95 - SOULARD
Suggested by Dean Mueller  ♦  The Soulard (soo-lard) neighborhood, the oldest in the City, spreads north from the brewery. A triangular-shaped area, it is defined by I-55 to the North and the West and Seventh Street to the Southeast. The Soulard neighborhood is most often recognized for the Soulard Market the outdoor market is the oldest farmer's market in the United States and located at the neighborhood's north end. The Soulard community is still very much true to its European founders with its integrated residential pocket of red-brick rowhouses. The ethnicity of the residents as well as the 19th Century Federal Style and French Second Empire architecture exemplify the influence of the immigrants that settled the area. Area restorations have remained true to the European influence in the area. The neighborhood is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Locally, Soulard is known as the host site for St. Louis very own Mardi Gras celebration, held this year from February 13 thru 24, ending with the area's only night time parade on Fat Tuesday. The influence of Mardi Gras can be seen in the local shops, establishments and the outdoor market. There is also a concentration of good blues clubs around Geyer Avenue in its center.

REASON 94 - THE KATY TRAIL
Suggested by Kevin Keply, The Mathineer  ♦  The Katy Trail is a rails to trails conversion that runs about two thirds of the way across the State. The trail surface is crushed limestone. This packs well enough to allow most bikes to use the trail. The surface is smooth, but there is a fair crown to the trail. As it is on an old railroad bed, the grade is slight (no hills!). There are numerous access points along the trail. It runs through a number of small towns, many of which have bicycle rental stores and bed and breakfasts. A few brave souls each year undertake to bike the entire distance, stopping at B&B's along the way. I think running the whole thing would be pretty cool. Maybe next year? I have many fond memories of running on the Katy Trail. Most of my long training runs for my first merrython (St. Louis, 1996) were done on the Katy. Shucks, back in those days, even Dave Braun was running. You could see the "Boston Qualifier" glow in his eyes! Auntie A, MarkO, Dean Mueller, Dave and Toni Braun, even Conrad Halling or Mike Biondo would show up now and then. Then we'd hobble over to the Trailhead Brewing Company for a glass of porter or Missouri Brown and a Cajun chicken sandwich with fries. I 'member one day that Braun demanded to see the fry manager on account of we weren't getting enough carbohydrates! (A sad note: Trailhead no longer brews their excellent porter.) The wildest thing I've ever done on the Katy trail, was to go snowbiking with Dave Braun. It was a very cold and windy day, and there was about 8 inches of fresh snow on the trail. I was supplied with virtually endless amusement watching Dave ride about 20 feet, then fall over like the guy in the yellow raincoat on the tricycle used to do on the TV program, Laugh-In. For some odd reason, Dave was less than thrilled with my mirth. My own feeble attempts were no better. Perhaps we should have rented cross country skis instead!

REASON 93 - BELLEFONTAINE AND CALVARY CEMETERIES
Suggested by MarkO  ♦  These two large cemeteries (the two largest in St. Louis) border each other on the north side of the town. Much of St. Louis' colourful history lies on these acres (literally). You can see the final resting places of people who previously you only knew as street names around town. You can pay homage to both Anheuser and Busch. You can see one of the best traveled tomb stones in the world that belongs to a riverboat captain who never went anywhere without it. You can see the grave of the aristocratic woman who slowly poisoned herself by taking arsenic so that she could maintain that healthy pale complexion even in summer. And there's tens of thousands more from hillside crypts to stately mausoleums to tiny flush with the ground markers and everyone of them having a tale to tell. Lying on several hilly acres, these cemetaries are second only to the Missouri Botanical Gardens in the variety of trees. Spring time is filled with magnolia blooms and dogwood and cherry blossoms. the winding roads make it very easy to get lost and to lose your sense of direction and some time it takes some time to make it back to the front gate so make sure to start heading back before the 5:00 closing time. And unlike Dean and Soulard (reason 95), I can't say that I've ever taken a "first" date here, but I have taken several dates here. And Crown Candy Kitchen (reason 98) is only a 10 minute drive away. "Cemeteries are not for the dead. They're for the living."

REASON 92 - GAS PRICES
Suggested by Dave Braun  ♦  If you are driving to St. Louis, try to arrive with an empty tank... St. Louis is usually one of the cheapest places in the country to fill up your tank. The current price for unleaded is .869/gal (U.S.). So, hitch up a tanker, or bring a bunch of milk jugs and take some home.

REASON 91 - FOREST PARK
Suggested by Dave Braun  ♦  Over the next week or so, we will provide descriptions of the Zoo, Science Center, Jewel Box, Muny, the running paths, etc. that are all located in Forest Park. Each of which can be reached by the ShuttleBug (bus service - runs from Clayton thru the park all day for $1). Forest Park is bounded by Highway 40 (64), Skinker, Lindell and Kingshiway and is a mere 2 miles from Clayton. Dedicated in 1876 the park contains over 1300 acres of trees, flowers, lakes, ballfields and has 3 golf courses. The park was also the site of the 1904 World's Fair and Olympics. Currently the park is undergoing some major renovations that will cost around $100 million. In addition the race on Saturday will be held within the park. The course is flat and fast. If you are in PR shape and the conditions are right, the Mathineer guarantees that you will have a new entry into the PR books.

REASON 90 - FOREST PARK "WILDLIFE"
Suggested by Krash  ♦  Forest Park sports two unique tributes to our ancient relatives, TRex, Triceratops and river turtles. Moved at great expense, a replica of TRex and Triceratops (life sized) now sit adjacent to the mothership known as the planetarium. They made the trip there at an amazing 1 mile an hour (like the space shuttle to launching unit) from their old haunts across from the Parkmoor Restaurant (about 3 miles away) at the old Science Center. When the Science Center moved into the old Falstaff building across from Forest Park, no space was available to place them. Rising to the occasion, the planetarium staff figured they already had one monster (Thor rocket), so why not add two more? And so it was done. For a pleasant afternoon about 6 years ago, I watched two dinosaurs block traffic (and confuse many), on their way to their current position. The Turtle Park, which originally included two turtles, uh, procreating, now has 4 (?) celibate turtles (about 10-15 feet across), as play things for kids, along with the odd river snake to keep populations down in this huge concrete community of reptiles. The procreating turtles were removed by the city as too upsetting and are now in storage, close by the city museum (profiled in an earlier Reason). Originally, a philanthropist donated the money for the park, and liked the whole concept (including the doin' the nasty turtles), but once installed, the city promptly removed the romancers, as they felt it was a bad influence, in what already was known as a rendezvous point for persons unknown, after dark.


Reasons 100-90 | 89-80 | 79-70 | 69-60 | 59-50 | 49-40 | 39-30 | 29-20 | 19-10 | 9-1