Planes, Trains and Automobiles on Display at the Museum of Transportation

The most complete collection of American railroad power is not in Chicago or New York, or Memphis. It’s tucked away in St. Louis County, just a few miles south of West County Center. The Museum of Transportation, at 2933 Barrett Station Road, has more than 70 vintage locomotives. The museum also has a variety of historic cars, buses, streetcars, aircraft (twin-engine 1943 Douglas Aircraft) and even … Continue reading Planes, Trains and Automobiles on Display at the Museum of Transportation

Gypsy Music arrives in Maplewood

Born over a century ago in Belgium, a Romani gypsy named Django Reinhardt took an American art form and turned it on it’s ear. Touted as the first European jazz master, Reinhardt pioneered a blend of American jazz and gypsy campfire music, and rose to fame in pre-war Paris with his Quintette du Hot Club de France. The new style quickly jumped to U.S. shores and inspired not only American jazz musicians, but generations of country artists from Bob Wills to Chet Atkins.

Continue reading “Gypsy Music arrives in Maplewood”

Sports Card Collecting Is Alive And Well

If you root through your basement or attic and find a box of baseball cards, you might have more than childhood memories on your hands. You could have a hidden treasure. Consider that a 1954 Ted Williams card in near-mint condition has a street value of $50,000. A 1959 Bob Gibson is even pricier, at $53,700. Sports card collecting is a rite of passage for … Continue reading Sports Card Collecting Is Alive And Well

Dean Christopher, A St. Louis Gem Not to be Missed – by John Hoffmann

If he could enter Mr. Peabody’s time machine and go back to 1970, Dean Christopher would be the guy sitting next to Johnny Carson instead of Rich Little – he is that good as an entertainer, comic and impersonator. Give Dean a big band and he will put on a fine show as Dean Christopher, but when Dean does his Rat and Pack and More … Continue reading Dean Christopher, A St. Louis Gem Not to be Missed – by John Hoffmann

World Bird Sanctuary – Valley Park

Hidden on 305 acres of Forest 44 in Valley Park is the World Bird Sanctuary (WBS), a fascinating opportunity to get up close with raptors and birds like eagles, hawks, owls, pelicans, and many other variety of  large fowl. Founded by Walter Crawford in 1977, the program was created with the blessing of the Saint Louis Zoo’s Director Emeritus, Marlin Perkins. By 1982 the sanctuary … Continue reading World Bird Sanctuary – Valley Park

The Black Madonna Shrine, a Life’s Work

Before we tell you the story of our local Black Madonna Shrine, we should give a little background about the original.

There are legends surrounding the origin of the Black Madonna of Częstochowa, a revered icon of the Jasna Góra monastery in Poland. Some say that St. Luke painted the image on a tabletop in the home of the Holy Family over 2,000 years ago. Art and history scholars disagree and say the original painting was probably a Byzantine icon created in the sixth or ninth century and that it was brought to the monastery by Prince Ladislaus of Opole in the 14th century.

Continue reading “The Black Madonna Shrine, a Life’s Work”