Saturday, July 14, 2012

Day 2 in St. Louis

Our family vacation is a combination of history of Missouri for Fabian's sake, face time with college friends for Meggar's sake, and fun for the boys' sakes. Meggar went to sand volleyball tournament today. Tonight she's attending a cookout and concert with Spencer.
We headed north of Downtown to find the Confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. Since Fabian lives near the Danube River, I thought this would be a good outing. A new observation tower has been built in Alton, IL. We went out on decks at 50 feet, 100 feet, and 150 feet. We were not as close to the water's edge because of the power plant owning the docks. I was hoping it would look like this website of other famous confluences.  The Mississippi is known to be slower and greener, while the Muddy Mo should have appeared more distinct to us. Next time we will try looking at it from the airplane.

Next, we enjoyed the movie, keel boat, and the winter camp of Lewis & Clark called Camp Dubois. I was able to check out two teacher trunks full of animal skins, buffalo horn, Indian beadwork, and pioneer toys to add to the experience. We made another pressed penny souvenir, Polar Bear bought medallions for Scout walking sticks, and Winger bought a whistle made from a deer antler!

We went into town for lunch at the Ryder Bldg, which had served as a Courthouse where Lincoln practiced while on his circuit as a country lawyer. The cafe is famous for pies - hence the name "My Just Desserts." It had huge glass windows for looking over the Mississippi and shelves full of quilts and pioneer knick-knacks.

The afternoon adventure was a Double Key Treasure Hunt.

We followed the trail of clues from Gus' Pretzel Factory (they are called Bretzels in Germany and they are served with beer) to the Old Courthouse (where Dred Scott and his wife waited 11 years for the appeals process).

I didn't realize the local court granted them their freedom, but the Supreme Court ruled they were constitutionally protected property and was another spark that ignited the Civil War. We went to find clues at the New Cathedral (100 years old) and stayed for 5:00 mass.

Then we found another clue at Ted Drewe's Frozen Custard - Yum! And our final clue was in the lobby of Union Station (that worked out well, but I planned it that way). I can't reveal the solution, but it was a fun treasure hunt. The boys are now headed to dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe, and we parents are putting our feet up!

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