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Spotlight on St. Louis Area Neighborhood Activities - Updated April 29, 2014

Newly Rebuilt River des Peres Greenway Trail
Newly rebuilt River des Peres Greenway Trail features three miles of improved segment that is now fully ADA-compliant and wider than the previous trail.

Newly Rebuilt River des Peres Greenway Trail
Map of the newly rebuilt River des Peres Greenway Trail.
Newly Rebuilt River des Peres Greenway Trail Opens May 8 at the Shrewsbury/Lansdowne MetroLink Station
ST. LOUIS, MO, (, April 29, 2014 - After several months of construction, the Great Rivers Greenway District will officially reopen the newly rebuilt, three-mile section of trail between Lansdowne and Gravois with a ribbon cutting May 8th at the trailhead on Lansdowne Ave.

The ribbon cutting celebration on May 8 is taking place in conjunction with Citizens for Modern Transit's (CMT) third annual Great Race competition, which places Team TRANSIT, Team BIKE, Team CARSHARE and Team CARPOOL in a head-to-head competition to raise awareness about the viable transportation options available in our region.

The improved segment is now fully ADA-compliant and wider than the previous trail. It also provides safer access directly into the Shrewsbury/Lansdowne MetroLink station via an improved crosswalk at Lansdowne Avenue.

The District also incorporated many green features into the trail's redesign, including native plantings, bio swales for water management, and a "living wall," located at the intersection of Chippewa and River des Peres Blvd.

The living wall has been planted with native grasses that will soon make the wall "disappear" as it creates a habitat for a variety of wildlife. A bicycle education area was also created along the trail as a safe place for families to teach their children how to ride bicycles, properly signal, and share the trail with other pedestrians.

"The River des Peres Greenway trail provides area residents with a range of transportation options," said Susan Trautman, Executive Director of Great Rivers Greenway District. "Not only does it offer a safe way for people to walk or cycle to area parks, neighborhoods and businesses-it also connects them to vital transit hubs such as the Shrewsbury/Lansdowne Metrolink Station. Now that these improvements are complete, the River des Peres Greenway will be safer and more accessible to everyone."

The River des Peres Greenway currently stretches 5.5 miles from Lansdowne to Alabama Ave. near I-55. The greenway also links to a one-mile neighborhood connector, the Christy Greenway, which extends north from Germania to Holly Hills Blvd., where it meets up with the Bike St. Louis system.

The one-mile Carondelet Connector, which will link the greenway with Carondelet Park, will officially open in June. Construction is slated to begin in early 2015 on another phase that will extend the River des Peres Greenway from Alabama Avenue to Lemay Park, and then further east to connect with the Mississippi River Greenway near River City Casino. Plans are also moving forward to connect the greenway to the popular Grant's Trail on the Gravois Greenway.

St. Louis City Introduces Milkweeds for Monarchs
Ed Spevak, curator of Invertebrates at Saint Louis Zoo, described the benefits of Monarchs in a press conference at Brightside St. Louis attended by (L - R) Jim Miller, senior vice-president of Science and Conservation at Missouri Botanical Garden, Tracy Boaz, regional supervisor, private land servies division, Missouri Department of Conservation and St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay.
St. Louis City Introduces 'Milkweeds for Monarchs'
ST. LOUIS, MO, (, April 22, 2014 - The City of St. Louis is spearheading an initiative to help grow the monarch population, as part of a national campaign to save the threatened monarch butterfly.

The City and its partners will plant milkweeds and encourage private butterfly gardens throughout the City with its 'Milkweeds for Monarchs' initiative, an application of Mayor Francis G. Slay's Sustainability Action Agenda to foster a better connection between people and urban natural resources.

Mayor Slay has committed that the City will plant 50 monarch gardens, and is challenging the community to plant an additional 200 monarch gardens in 2014 to commemorate the 250th birthday year of St. Louis.

In partnership with community plant and butterfly experts, the City has created a STL Monarch Mix to serve as a reference in establishing monarch gardens. These plants were chosen to flower at different times of the growing season, offering seasonal color and important butterfly food and nectar sources. Plants include several varieties of Milkweed, Conflower, Goldenrod, Black-Eyed Susan, Bee Balm and New England Aster.

For updated information on the STL Milkweeds for Monarchs initiative and to receive recognition for creating a monarch garden, residents can visit

Tower Grove Better Block Festival in Tower Grove South
ST. LOUIS, MO, (, April 20, 2014 - Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation will host the Tower Grove Better Block Project, on Saturday May 10, 2014 from 12:00 pm to 4:00 p.m., to take place on the 3200 block of Morganford in Tower Grove South.

The event will feature live entertainment performances by: Steve Ewing Band, Miss Jubilee & the Humdingers, STL Hoop Club and the DuBourg Swing Dancers. Local artists and crafts people will display their work. Food and beverages available for purchase.

The Better Block project is a community planning exercise to show the potential to create a livable, vibrant, community. On May 10th, commercial vacancies will be brought to life with pop-up stores, restaurants and entertainment venues.

The 3200 block of Morganford will be transformed to promote safe walkability and biking by installing bike "sharrows" and a permanent crosswalk. Outdoor café seating will be installed and a vacant lot will be transformed into public space that will offer classes and information on sustainability, as well as a Stray Rescue adoption event and a canned food drive benefiting Operation Food Search.

May 8 is World Red Cross Day
ST. LOUIS, MO, (, April 20, 2014 -Each year, World Red Cross Day is celebrated on May 8, the birthday of Henry Dunant, who officially founded the International Red Cross & Red Crescent Movement nearly 100 years ago.

World Red Cross Day is a time to recognize worldwide efforts to advocate for the relief of human suffering, whether from disease, disaster, war or famine.

Red Cross blood drives will be held, from May 1-15, throughout the St. Louis region. Join the Red Cross family this month and make an appointment to give blood in honor of World Red Cross Day by calling 1-800-RED CROSS or visiting

The American Red Cross encourages eligible individuals to support these humanitarian efforts by making an appointment to donate lifesaving blood this May. The need is constant, and all blood types are needed, especially O positive, O negative, B negative and A negative.

For more than 130 years, the Red Cross has been dedicated to helping people in communities large and small across the U.S. It is the only humanitarian services organization that provides blood services, serves as the emergency communication link between military personnel and their families, offers health and safety training and responds to disasters of all types and sizes.

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Archived St. Louis Community News and Information:
 Heat-Up St. Louis Hits A Record High of $165,000 To Date
 stl250 to Install 250 Cakes for the "Cakeway to the West"
 Year-Long Birthday Celebration Planned for St. Louis' 250th Anniversary Kicks Off at First Night
 St. Louis Launches New Initiative to Improve Housing Near Public Transit
 ALDI to Open New Store in Central West End
 Clayton Named a Bronze Level Bicycle Friendly Community
 'St. Louis Light The Night Walk' Aims to be in Top 10 of 200 Walk Sites Across the Nation
 St. Louis Mosaic Project Focuses on Diversity and Contributions of Immigrants to Communities
 Concordia Seminary Students Day of Service at Community Gardens
 Metro and Partners Exploring New Type of Transit Service for St. Louis
 United Way Seeks Volunteers for 9/11 Day of Service & Remembrance
 Amnesty Project at STLCC to Include All Misdemeanor Warrants
 Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis Cheers Abandoned Factory Cleanup
 Old North Raingarden Is Pilot Program in MSD's Project Clear
 Thousands Turn Out for PrideFest in Downtown St. Louis
 The Trestle in Old North St. Louis to Connect Region
 stl250 Unveils Year-Long Birthday Celebration Planned for St. Louis' 250th Anniversary
 3-D Artwork Inspired by Historic Eads Bridge Installed at Laclede's Landing Metro Station
 Historical Event Held at Mary Meachum Freedom Crossing
 11 Local Arts Organizations Receive Grants Through PNC Arts Alive!
 AT&T Closing the Technology Gap with Contribution to OASIS
 The Mission Continues Veterans and PNC Bank Employees Refurbish Early Childhood Education Center
 Second Annual City Mayhem Obstacle Course Challenge
 Streetcar Feasibility Study Unveiled at Moto Museum
 State Seeking Organizations to Serve Meals to Children During Summer Months
 Hardee's Crew and Fred Bird Helps Heat-Up St. Louis Hit Record High of $125,000
 'Reason for Freezin' Annual Polar Plunge Raises Over $85,200 for Special Olympics Missouri
 Gov. Nixon Announces $1.3 Million in Innovation High School Grants
 O'Fallon Park Recreation Complex Opens in North Saint Louis Community

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