Monday, September 12, 2011

Forest Park, a fantastic urban escape

I forgot about the time change when I told the girls they could sleep in today. When I finally disrupted them at 10:30 a.m., it was only 8:30 a.m. in their minds. I don’t think they’ve really had a chance to adjust to this time zone. Still, they managed to crawl out of bed, eat breakfast and we were out of camp shortly before 11:30. But we didn’t have big plans for the day, no special events, just a relaxed day exploring Forest Park, so all was well.

We took the Metrolink to the Forest Park stop, then entered one of the most spectacular urban parks I’ve ever visited. The park is home to playgrounds, of course, tennis courts, museums, lakes, and historic structures that remain from the 1904 World’s Fair, not the least intriguing of which is Jewel Box. The lily pond out front offered beautiful, full flowers and leaves large enough we thought an infant or cat could easily cuddle there.

The park hosted more than a few weddings today, and we spotted bridal parties taking their photos at any of SO many picturesque spots throughout the park. There was a Labor Day Weekend Festival replete with vendors and loud (and sadly pretty bad) music, and various reenactors were on hand representing the Lewis & Clark Corps of Discovery to Civil War Soldiers and Women.

We found our way to our goal, Turtle Play Park, in plenty of time for a couple of hours of play – largely tag with local kids – before taking the hike back through the park via St. Louis Zoo.

The zoo is free, but still I felt like a criminal when I walked straight into the gates without so much as checking in. The greeter at the gate merely asked, “Do you know where you’re heading?” Of course we didn’t, but we didn’t care, either. We just wanted to meander through on our way back to the car. The girls said they’d outgrown zoos, but once we were inside the gates, we were all easily distracted by both the flora and fauna. It’s certainly a beautiful garden, and the animals are beautiful and intriguing.

1 comment:

  1. did you see any live turtles in the lily pond? huge pads to hold big frogs! were there any frogs?


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