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The Top 100 Reasons to Come to DRSWCVI!

Suggested by Tracey G.  ♦  The St. Louis Science Center mission is "to stimulate interest in and understanding of science and technology throughout the community." To that end, general admission to the Science Center itself is free. Exhibit galleries are divided into four areas: ecology and the environment; technology; humanity; and space sciences. Among the 16 galleries are: Aviation, DNA Zone, Human Adventure, Infomachines, Med Tech, and Space Xploration. The Science Center is really two buildings, connected by a bridge over I-64/US40, and a tunnel. The glass-enclosed bridge has radar guns that you can aim at the traffic below, and check speed. The main building, which includes the Omnimax theatre, opened on November 2, 1991. The Forest Park annex re-opened on June 5, 1992, and houses the Planetarium and Space Exploration gallery. If doing is learning, then the Science Center holds a wealth of knowledge for its visitors. The majority of the exhibits are interactive. By touching, listening, balancing, and building, adults and kids alike can gain an appreciation for all areas of science. The outdoor Monsanto Science Park, around the perimeter of the Forest Park building, is an activity zone for the physical sciences. Jump on a rope, and lift your friends sitting on a swing at the opposite end of a giant lever. Stand inside the 15' wind harp, and listen to the soft vibration of the strings in the breeze. Those are just two of the 24 light, sound, motion and energy exhibits. And don't miss the Thor Rocket, standing silent. This workhorse of the USAF and NASA programs boasted a 96% success rate in its 450+ launches between 1958-1972, sending numerous satellites into space. While general admission to the galleries is free, tickets are required for the Omnimax movies, Planetarium, laser light shows, Discovery Room, and some special exhibits. Fees are nominal, and well worth it. For more information, see the St. Louis Science Center web site at

Suggested by Mike Biondo  ♦  Forest Park has about 50 monuments of varying description, many dating back to the 1904 World's Fair. All the monuments could be seen in a leisurely run through Forest Park. Here are just a few that can be seen: Friedrich Ludwig Jahn Memorial, Round Lake Fountain, The Cascades, Confederate Memorial, Franz Sigel Statue, Victorian Foot Bridge, and Francis Preston Blair, Jr. Statue.

Suggested by Dean Mueller  ♦  One of my favorite places in St. Louis, is the Saint Louis Art Museum, located in Forest Park. From the wonder as a child on a field trip to the awe it inspires in me as an adult. I can't say that I'm a great fan of all kinds of art, but there are paintings and sculptures in the art museum that freeze me in place with wide-eyed amazement. "How could someone do that?" When you come to St. Louis for the conference, a trip to the museum would be well worth your time! :-) The Art Museum was originally the Fine Art Palace of the 1904 World's Fair. The Museum features permanent collections from nearly every period and origin in addition to lectures, films and live performances. Admission to the Museum and permanent collection is always free. However, special programs have fees or require pre-registration. Among the 30,000 works in their collection are paintings, sculpture, prints, photographs, glassware, silver, furniture, ceramics, textiles, ritual arts, and drawings. Popular favorites include the 3,000-year-old Egyptian mummy complete with an x-ray that lets you peek inside the mummy case, several recreated Period Rooms, Pre-Columbian figures, suits of armor, Renaissance masterpieces, and Impressionist paintings. They have works by Beckmann, CÚzanne, Degas, van Gogh, Homer, Matisse, Monet, O'Keeffe, Picasso, Rembrandt von Rijn, Warhol, and Frank Lloyd Wright. The Museum was founded in downtown St. Louis in 1879. One of only two permanent structures remaining from the Fair, The Saint Louis Art Museum is in a spectacular setting atop Art Hill in Forest Park. Housed within the building's three levels are more than 100 galleries, the largest public-access art library in the region, classrooms, an auditorium, a gift shop, cafe, and snack bar. Exhibitions that will be open conference weekend are: "Ancient Chinese Bronzes", through 1998 in Gallery 120; "The Art of Embroidery (Part Two)", through May 31 in Gallery 100; and "The Invisible Made Visible: Angels from the Vatican", May 9 - August 2, Special Exhibition Galleries.

Suggested by Kevin Keply, The Mathineer  ♦  One of the more popular places to run in St. Louis is Forest Park. A 6.1 mile asphalt loop runs around the approximate perimeter of the park. There are mile markers in the shape of tombstones at each mile except mile three by the zoo, where it is simply painted on the path. There are even quarter mile indicators painted on the path, but they have faded beyond recognition in some places. The course is flat in sections with some rolling hills in others. A typical StillDead run starts at 6:00 on Wednesday evening at the "Kupferer Fountain", the standard StillDead meeting place. We usually head north from the fountain (clockwise on the path). Almost immediately, one encounters the 5 mile marker. Nearing the 6 mile mark, one passes the History Museum, and then the Field House. The Field House is a St. Louis Track Club stronghold, and many of the Forest Park races start here. Continuing on, one runs by a couple of ponds before encountering the T-Rex and Triceratops by the Science Center between markers 1 and 2. Between 2.75 and 3 miles, one runs by the zoo. Occasionally, one might hear the lions roaring as one runs by. On the left is Highway 40, and across 40 are the turtle and snake sculptures detailed in another Reason. Between miles 3 and 4, one encounters the main hills in the run. From marker 4, one runs a long, gradual downhill grade along Skinker back to the starting point. You can knock a minute per mile off of your standard pace on this section. There are several objective hazards that need to be kept in mind when running this path. There are lots of bladers and bikers on the path in good weather. Some of these bladers like to go backwards, and as far as I know, none of them have eyes in the backs of their heads. Near the ponds, one is likely to encounter copious quantities of goose shit. This is hard to miss in the dark! Finally, if one is running with MarkO, he's liable to veer in front of you without warning at any time. Beware!

Suggested by MarkO  ♦  Steinberg Ice Skating Rink is the third largest outdoor skating rink in the country. Through out the winter, Steinberg rink is open to the public day and night. Many of us learned to ice skate oh so many years ago underneath clear starry nights (as well as blustery snowy ones) as cheesy tunes played over the old loud speakers. Running on the Forest Park path, you can still hear those tunes as you run by. Built in the 50's, it was named for philanthropist Mark Steinberg whose widow put up a chunk of money (on the agreement that the city of St. Louis would put up the remainder) to have it built. And though I can't say I've ever had a first date or first kiss there (like Dean seems to have had everywhere), I'm sure that many people have. (Note - by the time the World Conference rolls around, the ice will be gone, and Steinberg will be a roller rink).

Suggested by Tracey G.  ♦  No, it's not hidden riches from the days of yore... but it does hold treasure of another kind. The Jewel Box Floral Conservatory has delighted visitors since 1936. The art deco style, glass-enclosed building was designed by William Becker, an engineer with the City's Board of Public Service. Surrounded by rose gardens, lily ponds, statuary and monuments, it's a serene place to reflect... or, stop for a quick drink of water at the fountain while running around the park. Inside, the Jewel Box is a veritable greenhouse - tall trees and low shrubs frame seasonal floral displays. The fountain at the heart of the rose garden was built by the parks department in 1947. The fountains in front of the Jewel Box, next to the lily ponds, were designed by Joseph Murphy and installed in 1953. The largest fountain is dedicated to his late daughter, Celia, who was killed on the new "Express highway" (US40) on December 12, 1938. She was the first fatality on the road, which borders Forest Park to the south. Other notable statues include the Korean War Memorial, mentioned in an earlier Reason; a sundial, first installed in 1951 at the World's Fair Pavilion and later moved to the south end of the lily ponds; and a statue of St. Francis. There was some controversy over this sculpture when it was first installed, in that it specifically promoted Roman Catholicism. But the St. Louis Post-Dispatch newspaper pointed out that there was already a Jewish Memorial, and that St. Francis (a patron saint of nature) was a far more appropriate statue than that of the warrior king St. Louis, which had stood in the park since 1906. The Jewel Box is a fascinating place, from its surreal exterior to the exotic plants within.

Suggested by Mike Biondo  ♦  Still another reminder of the 1904 World's Fair is the Jefferson Memorial Building which stands at the former main gate to the Fair. It was built with Fair surplus funds and given to the city in 1913 by the Fair Committee. However the gift carried with it the understanding that the Missouri Historical Society - in recognition of its efforts in promoting the Fair - would have the use of the building. It has been the home of the Missouri Historical Society ever since. One of the most striking sights of the museum is the statue of Thomas Jefferson that sits in the loggia of museum. It was sculpted by Karl Bitter, in situ from a single 14 ton block of Italian marble.

Suggested by Dave Braun  ♦  The Muny Opera located in Forest Park is the oldest and largest outdoor municipal amphitheatre in the United States. Each year the Muny presents about seven shows that draw close to 400,000 people. It all started in 1916 when a sloping hillside was cleared and an opera featuring Sidney Greenstreet (from Maltese Falcon fame) appeared in that first production. In 1917 construction took about 7 weeks and a rain-shortened opening night saw 12,000 people fill every seat. Prices ranged from 25 cents to 1 dollar with 1,600 free seats. Free seats are still provided today and surprisingly, there are less than two rainouts each year from the June-August schedule. The regular patrons of the Muny have a lot of input into which stage plays and productions will appear each year. This year Oklahoma, Damn Yankees, Peter Pan and Fiddler on the Roof are slated to be performed. Also, each year the Muny Kids are selected to play parts. Last year over 100 were selected for parts in the Wizard of Oz.

Suggested by Dave Braun  ♦  The Kupferer Fountain is anywhere that StillDead Joe Kupferer is. Confused?? Well, join the crowd. Even some StillDeads think that the Kupferer Fountain is the place that we meet on Wednesday nights. And to make matters even more confusing, out of towners drive around Forest Park looking for this huge magnificent fountain, when in fact it is a drinking fountain, which in fact is not really the Kupferer Fountain in the first place.... now, even I'm confused. I can't remember who coined the term, but Joe sweats quite a bit... well, let's say a lot... even in cold weather or just standing still. Anyway, we were standing around the meeting place and Joe just started founting and someone said he was a fountain. Penguins have there waddles, Joe has his, his... puddles. Puddle on, friends.

Suggested by Dave Braun & Krash  ♦  The St. Louis Zoo in Forest Park is rated in the Top 10. With over 6,000 animals the zoo attracts over 2.5 million visitors each year. While some people say it takes more than a day to see it all, we are runners and should be able to do it in less. There are 17 areas - including the Antelope House, Aquatic House, Bear Pits (my personal favorite), Big Cat Country, Bird House, Children's Zoo (where kids can interact with some animals), the Elephant House, The Living World (a technical/live animal facility), and Primate House. Feeding time at the Sea Lion Pit is always an attraction. And the zoo train will take you on the 1.5 mile ride around the park. Except for high-priced food, a nominal charge for entry into the Children's area and $2 to ride the train, there is no fee to get into the park. Now, compare that to the wallet-buster San Diego zoo!! Notes from Krash: It has been neat, the past years, running through Forest Park and hearing sea lions roar, tigers and lions roar, flamingos screeching (along with other nocturnal animals I can't identify). A jungle experience within city limits.

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