Public Safety Director's Spotlight - Family Garden

Is a family garden on your to-do list? Here are tips, plus a few fun events and opportunities to support local organizations.

April 21, 2011 | 4 min reading time

The schedule for this coming weekend has a wide variety of fun, entertaining and exciting events for the entire family to enjoy, but before I highlight several of the activities I want to touch on the fact that with the arrival of spring, gardening may soon be on your to-do list. The website  has a gardening page full of resources on a variety of gardening related topics that I think you may find useful whether you're planning on six tomato plants in your backyard or a nice sized plot with a variety of vegetables. (Simply type Tips For Gardening in the search FAQs box on the front page of the site to get all information you need.)

Here are some tips to help keep you safe so that you can enjoy the many rewards gardening can bring:


  • Always gear up to protect yourself from lawn and garden pests, harmful chemicals, sharp or motorized equipment, insects, and harmful rays of too much sun.
  • Powered and manual tools and equipment can cause serious injury. Always be aware of hazards to lower your risk for injury.
  • Always monitor your activities and time in the sun to lower your risk for heat-related illness.
  • Gardeners are particularly prone to tetanus infections, so make sure your tetanus vaccination is up to date. (All adults should get a tetanus vaccination every 10 years.)

Gardening is an excellent way to get physical activity. I encourage you to try your hand at a family garden this summer and enjoy the harvest of benefits.

Listed below are several of the events that will be held in St. Louis in the next few days. I encourage you to stop by and take advantage of all that our great City neighborhoods have to offer. Also, if you haven't visited the City's new website ( I encourage you to do so. On its home page you will find a link to the Calendar of Events. Please feel free to submit an event and to see what activities are coming up. See you in the neighborhood!

Guns 'N' Hoses on Ice

St. Louis firefighters will take on St. Louis police officers this Friday, April 22 at Affton Ice Rink, 10300 Gravois for "Guns 'N' Hoses on Ice" Hockey. Face-off is at 7 p.m. and proceeds will go to The Backstoppers.

U.S. Chess Championship Games Continue

For the first time, the U.S. Chess Championship is being held concurrently with the U.S. Women's Chess Championship. And that's happening right here in St. Louis. Don't miss this opportunity to take in an exhibition game or match play before the closing ceremonies the evening of Thursday, April 28 at the Chase Park Plaza. For ticket information and schedules of all the match-ups, visit the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis website at:

Youth Garden Grants

Gateway Greening is offering YouthGarden Grants for 2011. If your group is interested in applying for a grant for a youth garden, you are strongly encouraged to attend the orientation session that will be held at the Gateway Greening office located at 2211 Washington Avenue this Saturday, April 23 at 11 a.m. Questions? Email Steve Eigsti at Deadline to submit the grant application is June 3rd.

Shakespeare Birthday Celebration

Tower Grove Park will be commemorating the 447th anniversary of the birth of The Bard, William Shakespeare, on Saturday, April 23 at 10 a.m. at the Shakespeare Statue located in Tower Grove Park at Center Cross & Main Drive. The wreath laying ceremony will include recitation of select passages from Shakespeare's body of work. Light refreshments will follow at the Lily Pond Shelter. To RSVP, call (314) 771-4484.

Easter Car Show

The 50th Concours d'Elegance Auto Show will take place this Sunday, April 24 in the Upper Muny parking area in beautiful Forest Park. Hundreds of rare, notable and interesting cars from the earliest days of automobiles will be on display from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Visit   for more information. 

Downtown Bike Station

The Downtown Bicycle Station, located at 1011 Locust Street in Downtown St. Louis, had its "soft" opening yesterday as a test run before the official opening set for Thursday, April 28. Hours will be from 4 a.m. to midnight. Membership options include yearly, monthly, and day passes. For all the particulars, visit


The year 2011 will mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of St. Louisan Vincent Price. A number of events are planned between now and the late actor's birth date of May 27. The kick off event is an exhibition of Price memorabilia at the Sheldon Art Galleries, 3648 Washington Blvd. It will be on display from Friday, April 22 through Aug. 6. For hours and more information on the exhibit, visit For more details about all the centennial events celebrating this noted St. Louisan, visit

                                                                                                                                                                                 Fundraiser for The Bridge

The Bridge is a 501 (c) (3) agency that provides food and support services for residents of Downtown St. Louis who are currently homeless. The "Getting' Down(town) with Ozzie" event on Monday, April 25 at Ozzie's Restaurant & Sports Bar, located at 1511 Washington, will raise funds to support The Bridge's efforts. The fundraiser will run from 5 – 9 p.m. Ozzie Smith will be on hand. There will be a live auction of baseball memorabilia. Tickets are available online through .


The Department of Public Safety's City Emergency Management Agency (CEMA) provides free emergency alert service through Nixle ( When you register for the service, you will receive our informative and timely text messages on your cell phone and/or as e-mails on your computer. Visit the Nixle website and sign up for the free service today. If you have any comments about the service, please let me know.


Will you be having an event in your neighborhood that we can support? If so, you may email the information about it to me at or to Cathy Smentkowski at for consideration of noting it in the Spotlight or you may post it on the City's Calendar of Events.

And remember, if you see something in the neighborhood that just doesn't look right, REPORT IT!


Charles Bryson

Director of Public Safety

City of St. Louis

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