Public Safety Director's Spotlight - 2015 Severe Weather Awareness Week

Weekly dose of timely safety tips plus info on fun events taking place in #STL City

March 5, 2015 | 7 min reading time


2015 Severe Weather Awareness Week

Potentially dangerous spring storms are just around the corner. What better time for Missourians to observe Severe Weather Awareness Week and to review their emergency plans, update their emergency kits, verify the numbers on their emergency phone lists and go over safety tips, especially with younger members of the family.  Following are a couple of things to keep in mind:

In Missouri, flooding has resulted in 46 deaths and $147 million in property damage since 1995.  The moment you realize that a flash flood is imminent, act quickly to save yourself.  Do not attempt to walk across flow streams. Water moving swiftly, even just 6 inches deep, can sweep you off your feet.  Do not underestimate flood waters.  Remember: Turn Around, Don't Drown!  NEVER drive through flooded roads or low water crossing.  The road bed may not be intact under the water.

Lightning kills more than 50 people in the U.S. each year and inflicts life-long debilitating injuries on hundreds more.  Remember:  When Thunder Roars, Go Indoors!  Once inside, keep away from corded telephones, electrical appliances and plumbing.

During a tornado warning, the safest place in your home is the interior part of a basement or storm cellar.  If there is no basement, use an inside room on the lowest floor. Avoid windows, skylights, or glass doors.  If driving, do not try to outrun a tornado in your car.  Park and take shelter in a nearby building.

By planning ahead and knowing what to do before, during, and after a severe weather event, you can increase your chances of survival.  For more safety tips, visit the web site.

Upcoming Events

March 4 – 8 – 2015 Progressive Insurance® St. Louis Boat and Sportshow®, America's Center, opening times each day vary

The 2015 Progressive Insurance® St. Louis Boat and Sportshow® has dropped anchor at America's Center and will be in town through Sunday.  This year's show features hundreds of boats to shop, from pontoons and fishing to luxury cruisers, plus the latest in outdoor accessories and numerous attractions for all ages to enjoy. Visitors will be able to get boating tips from pros, experience a boating simulator, see native fish in action in a 12-foot tall, 40-foot long mobile glass aquarium, and scuba dive for free in a tropically heated pool, just to name a few of the activities.  For ticket information and more details, visit the web site.

March 5 – 8 – 2015 Missouri Valley Conference Men's Basketball Tournament, Scottrade Center, various times

It's Arch Madness time!  Four days and nine games of exciting college basketball beginning Thursday, March 5 through Sunday, March 8 at Scottrade Center, 1401 Clark Avenue in exciting Downtown St. Louis.  For more details, visit the web site or call (800) 745-3000.

Mar. 6 – Fish Fry Friday

A number of churches and organizations are holding Fish Fries on the Fridays during Lent.  This week I want to spotlight two of them:

St. Cecilia's Mexican Fish Fry, 5418 Louisiana, 4:30 to 8 p.m. St. Cecilia will host its Fish Fry every Friday in Lent, except for Good Friday.  Diners can enjoy live entertainment while feasting on menu items such as salmon, cod, shrimp, chile relleno, tostada, quesadilla, rice, beans, tamales, chips and more.  To learn more, visit .

St. Louis the King School, 4430 Maryland Avenue, 3:30 to 7 p.m.  The School will hold a Fish Fry every Friday in March.  Fish may be purchased in a sandwich or in a dinner.  Selections include fried and baked Tilapia and Cod, plus sides and desserts. Cheese pizza will also be available. You may eat in or take out.

March 6 – First Friday, Grand Center, 5 to 9 p.m.

Enjoy an evening of art, music, and culture the First Friday of every month from 5 to 9 p.m. at participating venues in Grand Center.  For example, stop in at Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis for an exhibition tour led by Museum staff, enjoy a drink at the bar and music from a different DJ each month.  For more information, visit the web site.

March 6 – STLive on Washington Avenue, Downtown St. Louis, 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Washington Avenue is alive with the sound of music every Friday night all year long at various Washington Avenue restaurants.  Invite your co-workers and friends to join you for the live music, drink and dinner specials, and a fun night out on Washington Avenue at participating venues such as Tigin Irish Pub, Pi, Takaya, Dubliner, Flamingo Bowl, Hair of the Dog, Rosalita's, Flannery's, Hiro Asian Kitchen, Sen Thai and many more.  For more information, visit the STLive Facebook page.

March 6 – Piano Duo, Christ Church Cathedral, 7:30 p.m.

Everyone is invited to the free performance this Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Christ Church Cathedral, 1210 Locust Street in exciting Downtown St. Louis.  You do not want to miss Russian and Israeli pianists Stanislava Varshavski and Diana Shapiro perform music for Piano Four-Hands.  For more information, visit

March 7 – Free Landlord Training, Missouri Botanical Garden, 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Free Landlord Training on the Eviction Process will take place this Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Avenue.  Sponsored by the Tower Grove Neighborhoods Community Development Corporation, the training is being offered for landlords, investors and other interested parties.  Topics in upcoming months include leasing practices, property management practices, lead remediation and nuisance prevention and abatement.  To learn more, visit .

March 7 – Community Education Workshop, The Carriage House, 10 to 11 a.m.

Wondering what to do with your garden this season?  If so, then plan to attend the "Planning the Spring Garden" Community Education Workshop this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. at The Carriage House, 3815 Bell Avenue in the Covenant Blu / Grand Center neighborhood.  The workshop will cover the variety of spring plants, prepping your garden beds, and garden planning and crop rotation.  To reserve your spot and to learn more, contact Gateway Greening at (314) 588-9600.

March 7 – Trailnet's Beans, Bikes & Brews Kick-off Party, T-REX, 6 to 9 p.m.

Trailnet's annual kick-off party, Beans, Bikes &Brews, will take place this Saturday from 6 to 9 p.m. at T-REX, 911 Washington Avenue in exciting Downtown St. Louis.  This year's chili party will feature live music, a fun atmosphere, food, drinks, raffle prizes, and the unveiling of the 2015 Event Calendar.  Attendees may join or renew a Trailnet membership, explore programs that build community and advocate for safe streets, and check out volunteer opportunities.  Trailnet will provide the chili – both vegetarian and with meat.  Attendees can choose to bring sides, salads, or desserts.  Tickets are $5 per person if you bring a dish and $10 person if you do not bring a dish.  The event is free to children and all 2014 Trailnet volunteers.  This new venue is convenient for MetroLink users and T-REX will have indoor bike parking (bring a lock).  Questions?  Contact Carol Schmidt at

March 7 – Senior Home Repair Services Workshop, SDCC Office, 10 a.m.

The SDCC Neighborhood Services Committee will be presenting a Senior Home Repair Services Workshop at 10 a.m. this Saturday at the SDCC Office, 6008 Kingsbury in the Skinker-DeBaliviere neighborhood.  Representatives from the City of St. Louis' Healthy Home Repair Program and from Home Services, Inc. (formerly Senior Home Services) will share information about their home repair services for seniors.  Come learn about how to access their services and get your questions answered.  For the latest details, visit the web site.

March 7 – The Rosenball, German Cultural Society of St. Louis, 6 p.m.

Enjoy traditional German food, drink and entertainment at The Rosenball which will take place this Saturday at the German Cultural Society of St. Louis, 3652 S. Jefferson Avenue in the Marine Villa neighborhood.  Doors will open at 6 p.m.  Dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m. and the Society's Jugendgruppe will entertain with a ballroom style performance beginning at 7:30 p.m.  Admission is $15 for adults and $5 for children 10 years and under.  After the performance, enjoy dancing and music by The St. Louis Express Band.  Need more information, call (314) 616-9044.

March 7 – Peregrine Society 7th Annual Trivia Night, Electrical Workers Hall, 6:15 to 10 p.m.

The Peregrine Society will host its 7th Annual Trivia Night this Saturday at the Electrical Workers Hall, 5850 Elizabeth on The Hill.  Proceeds will benefit the Society's service programs to area cancer patients including the annual three-day trip to Branson for pediatric cancer patients and their families.  The cost is $25 per person or $200 for a table of 8.  Price includes beer, wine, soft drinks and snacks.  Please see the web site for more details.

March 7 & 8 – "Marshall the Miracle Dog" Movie Premiere, Wehrenberg Movie Theatres, various times/locations

Invite your family and friends to join you this Saturday or Sunday for the premiere of the movie, "Marshall the Miracle Dog."  Based on the true story written by Cyndi Willenbrock, the movie was filmed in Edwardsville, Troy and St. Louis in 2014.  Ten percent of ticket sales will go toward 4-H programming which includes bullying prevention.  For Wehrenberg Movie Theatres locations and show times, visit the web site.

Save the Date

Mar. 13 – In Celebration of Black History, Washington Tabernacle M.B. Church, 5 to 8 p.m.

Mar. 14 – 46th Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade, 18th & Market, Noon

Mar. 14 – 37th Annual Michelob ULTRA St. Patrick's Day Run, Broadway & Market, 9 a.m.

Mar. 14 – Landlord Training, North Newstead Association, 10 a.m. to Noon

Mar. 14 – 18th Annual Youth Symposium, O'Fallon Park Recreation Complex, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Mar. 14 – Tenth Life Trivia Night 2015, IBEW Hall, 6 p.m.

Mar. 14 – St. Patrick's Day Dinner, Lafayette Park United Methodist Church, Noon to 7 p.m.

Mar. 15 –Free Concert, Second Presbyterian Church, 4 to 5 p.m.

Mar. 17 – 32nd Annual Ancient Order of Hibernians' Dogtown St. Patrick's Day Parade, Tamm & Oakland, 12:30 p.m.

Promoting Your Neighborhood Activities

Is there a neighborhood event on the schedule that you would like noted in the Spotlight?  If so, you may email the information about it to me at or to Cathy Smentkowski at for consideration.  You may also post it on the City's Calendar of Events on the City's web site:  The link to submit an event is at the very bottom of the home page.  The listing is free.  I encourage you to take advantage of this free way to promote your event.

Volunteer Opportunity

First Book, a nonprofit that provides books to kids in need, has nearly 500,000 brand-new books in a warehouse in St. Louis.  The organization needs volunteers to help sort, pack, label, and organize these books for distribution to programs serving children from low-income families.  The work will take place from Monday, March 30 to Friday April 3, 2015.  Volunteers may sign up for the morning shift (8 a.m. to Noon) or the afternoon shift (1 to 5 p.m.).  Volunteers must be able to lift 10- to 30-pound boxes of books.  Interested?  You may sign up through www.firstbook.or/BBVolunteers.  For more information, email or call (866) 732-3669

Col. Richard Gray

Director of Public Safety

City of St. Louis

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