Public Safety Director's Spotlight - Back to School Safety

Food Truck Friday, CWE Local Social, Trivia Night, Moonlight Ramble, Neighborhood Beautification event and more!

August 7, 2014 | 6 min reading time


Back to School Safety

As summer draws to a close, preparations for back-to-school season are well underway.  Safety should be a priority for every family as children return to classrooms during the next few weeks. Whether children walk, ride their bicycle or take the bus to school, it is extremely important that they take proper safety precautions.  Also, not just parents, but all motorists need to know how to safely share the road with school buses, pedestrians and bicyclists.  This is especially true for the many teens going back to school that are making the transition from the safest mode of transportation –school buses, to the most dangerous –driving themselves.  Here are a few basic tips courtesy of the National Safety Council:

Walking:  Always walk on the sidewalk, cross at a street corner or intersection, look both ways before stepping off the curb to cross the street, and don't dart out in front of a parked car.

Biking:  Always wear your helmet when riding, ride on the right side of the road, and come to a complete stop before crossing the street.

Riding the Bus:  Be sure the bus driver can see you and you can see the bus driver; never walk behind the bus; never put head, arms, or hands out of the window; and stay away from the wheels of the bus at all times.

Motorists:  It is illegal to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children; be alert as children are unpredictable; never pass a school bus on the right; generally, pedestrians have the right-of-way at all intersections; bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as other roadway users; and take extra precautions in school zones and neighborhood areas where children and teenagers might be bike riding.

Teen Drivers:  Parents need to make a commitment to work closely with their teens to manage their driving experience and also set a good example by modeling the behavior they expect; set a passenger restriction; ban cell phone use while driving; make safety belts mandatory; and prohibit alcohol.

Upcoming Events

August 8 – Professional Diversity Career Fair, Hilton at the Ball Park Hotel, 11 a.m.

Missouri Black Expo is sponsoring the Professional Diversity Career Fair this Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Hilton at the Ball Park Hotel, 4th and Market Street, in exciting Downtown St. Louis.  Admission is free to the Fair.  Representatives from companies such as Enterprise and Edward Jones will be attendance, ready to hire new employees.  For more information, visit the web site.

August 8 – Food Truck Friday, Tower Grove Park, 4 p.m.

Invite your family and friends to join you for Food Truck Friday this Friday in Tower Grove Park, S. Kingshighway and Arsenal.  From pizza to tacos, cupcakes to crepes, you're sure to find culinary treats that will tantalize your taste buds.  The event will run from 4 –8 p.m.  Don't be let down by showing up too late.  Enjoy the food, the park and the people.

August 8 – Friday Evening Tours, Contemporary Art Museum, 6 p.m.

Come take advantage of the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis' late hours on Friday evenings and stop by for a special 30-minute tour of the exhibitions.  The Museum at 3750 Washington Boulevard in Grand Center will be open until 8 p.m. this Friday.  For more information, visit the web site.

August 8 – Local Social, Central West End, 5 p.m.

Come stroll the Central West End neighborhood's beautiful sidewalks and enjoy street art and unique entertainment from 5 –9 p.m. this Friday during Local Social.  Look for the specials at participating shops and restaurants.  For more information visit, the web site.

August 8 – Trivia Night, IBEW Local #1 Union Hall, 6 p.m.

The St. Louis African American History and Genealogy Society and The Dred Scott Heritage Foundation will hold a Trivia Night on Friday, Aug. 8 at the IBEW Local #1 Union Hall, 5850 Elizabeth (off Hampton).  Doors will open at 6 p.m. and Trivia will begin at 7 p.m.  The Master of Ceremonies will be Dan Dillon, author of "So, Where'd You Go to High School?"  Cost is $25 per person or $200 for a table of 8.  Attendees must be at least 21 years old.  Walk-ins welcome.  For more information or to reserve a table, call Sarah at (314) 330-5715 or visit web site.

August 8-10 – Second Annual St. Louis International Children's Film Festival, various locations, various times

The Second Annual St. Louis International Children's Film Festival will conclude this weekend.  The festival will feature 19 films screened at venues that will include Webster University, St. Louis Art Museum, COCA, St. Louis Public Library's Central Library, Lindenwood University and Wildey Theatre in Edwardsville, IL.  Films are free to all attendees, both children and adults.  No tickets required; seating is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Visit the web site for the remaining Festival schedule or call (314) 289-4153 for more information.

August 9 – 51st Annual Moonlight Ramble, Busch Stadium, 9 p.m.

The world's original nighttime bicycle ride will ramble through the streets of St. Louis beginning at 12:01 a.m. Sunday, August 10 from Busch Stadium Parking Lot C, located at the corner of 8th and Cerre.  Moonlight Ramble Riders will have a choice of a leisurely 10.5 or 18.5 mile bike ride followed by an after-party from 1 a.m. to 3 a.m.  The ride will take place rain or shine and helmets are required.  Registration the night of the race will begin at 9 p.m. Saturday.  For more information and to register, visit the web site.

August 9 – 2014 St. Louis Metropolitan Area Amnesty Project, St. Louis Community College at Forest Park, 7 a.m.

The 2014 St. Louis Metropolitan Area Amnesty Project will conclude this Saturday.  The Amnesty Project provides citizens the chance to clear their records of outstanding traffic and misdemeanor warrants.  The event will run from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Mildred E. Bastian Center for the Performing Arts at the St. Louis Community College at Forest Park campus, 5600 Oakland Avenue.  Participants will be assessed a $10 processing fee to cover all warrant vouchers.  For more information, visit the web site or call (314) 381-8200.

August 9 – Neighborhood Beautification event, starts at Walbridge School, 9 a.m.

The North Newstead Association; Family Ties Holidings, LLC; Future ACC; and Emmanuel Community Seventh Day Adventist Church will be sponsoring a Neighborhood Beautification event this Saturday.  The event will start at 9 a.m. at Walbridge School, 5000 Davison, and expand into the Walnut Park East neighborhood. Volunteers will pick up trash and debris, clean streets, sidewalks, and yards and plant flowers.  For more information about this event, please visit or call the office at (314) 385-4343.

August 11 through August 17 – 10th Annual Downtown Restaurant Week, various locations, 5 p.m.

The 10th Annual Downtown St. Louis Restaurant Week will take place from Monday, Aug. 11 through Sunday, Aug. 17 at 26 diverse and delicious Downtown destinations for your dining pleasure. Invite your co-workers to join you at a participating restaurant for a special three-course dinner menu for $25 per person, plus tip and tax.  Rediscover an old favorite or experience one St. Louis' hot new eateries.  Reservations are highly recommended.  For all the particulars, visit the web site.

Free Concerts

Invite your family, friends and neighbors to join you at one of the neighborhood concert series currently underway.

August 9 – Summer 2014 Soulard Concert Series, Farmer's Market Plaza (8th and Lafayette), 6 p.m.  Questions?  Call (314) 436-0282.

August 10 -- Free Concert in Carondelet Park, Loughborough and Eugene, 5:30 p.m. To learn more, visit

Wednesday, August 13 – Free O'Fallon Park Jazz Concert Series, 4343 West Florissant, 6 p.m.

Save the Date

Aug. 16 – The Ball's In Your Court:  Ball Up Tryouts, Fairground Park, 11 a.m.

Aug. 16 – BBQ, Watson Terrace Christian Church, Noon

Aug. 16 – Free Festival, Lemp Brewery, Noon

Aug. 16 – Bicrobrews Microbrewery Bicycle Tour, 4 Hands Brewing Co., 11 a.m.

Aug. 16 – Free Concert, Lafayette Park, 6 p.m.

Aug. 17 – 6th Annual Top Chef Challenge, Soldiers' Memorial Plaza, Noon

Aug. 17 – Ice Cream Social, Francis Park, 6:30 p.m.

Aug. 17 – Free Concert, Benton Park Lakeside, 3 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.

Meeting the Fair Housing Challenge Conference

The City's Civil Rights Enforcement Agency will hold a one-day Fair Housing Conference on Sept. 5, 2014 at the Sheraton St. Louis City Center, located at Spruce and S. 14th Street in exciting Downtown St. Louis.  The conference goal is to inform and educate parties as to affirmatively furthering Fair Housing laws, rules and regulations as well as how it impacts various segments of our society.  Conference cost of $35 includes seminar and lunch.  The deadline to register is Aug. 29.  Don't wait, sign up today!  For more information and to register, visit

Col. Richard Gray

Director of Public Safety

City of St. Louis

Related Stories

Was this page helpful?      

Comments are helpful!
500 character limit

Feedback is anonymous.