Public Safety Director's Spotlight - Strong Neighborhoods

The summer fun in St. Louis continues; many exciting activities planned in the days and weeks ahead.

August 4, 2011 | 5 min reading time

Charles Bryson, Director of Public SafetyThe summer fun in St. Louis continues with a number of neighborhood activities on the calendar during the month of August. Before I highlight a few of them, however, I want to take a moment to touch on a couple of items of interest.

First, I want to thank all the neighborhood associations and block units that had events on National Night Out. I visited several neighborhoods across the City Tuesday night and despite the heat many neighbors gathered together and enjoyed food, fun and fellowship. Your efforts go a long way in keeping our city strong.

The next item you might find of interest, if you have school age children or grandchildren, is that starting at 12:01 a.m. Friday, Aug. 5 to midnight Sunday, Aug. 7 Missouri will enjoy a sales tax-free weekend on qualifying back-to-school purchases. Qualifying items include: clothing priced $100 or less; school supplies not to exceed $50 per purchase; computer software with a taxable value of $350 or less; personal computers not to exceed $3,500. For a full list of items and municipalities opting out, go to .

Finally, the American Society of Association Executives Annual Meeting & Exposition will be in St. Louis from Saturday, Aug. 6 to Aug. 9. The convention is expected to draw about 5,500 people, who decide where to hold conventions. St. Louis has many great attractions and historic neighborhoods, so I am sure the delegates will take away with them many fond memories of their visit to St. Louis.  The convention's opening night celebration will be a concert on the Arch grounds on Saturday from 6 – 10 p.m. The public is invited to attend the event.

Listed below are just a few of the events that are coming up in St. Louis. I encourage you to 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 our home page you will find a link to the Calendar of Events. Please feel free to see what activities are coming up and to submit an event that your organization will be holding. The listing is free. See you in the neighborhood!


Twilight Under the Train Shed

The next Twilight Under the Train Shed free movie screening will be Friday, August 5, at St. Louis Union Station. The movie "Big" will be shown starting at 8:15 p.m.


Serbfest 2011

Holy Trinity Serbian Eastern Orthodox Church is holding its annual Serbfest this weekend, Aug. 6 and Aug. 7. Enjoy great Serbian food and entertainment. The church is located at 1910 Serbian Drive in the McKinley Heights neighborhood. Stop by from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. For more details visit Holy Trinity's website at .


Back to School Event

The St. Louis Public Schools, Community Empowerment Foundation, HDC, and Offices of the License Collector and Collector of Revenue have joined together for a Back to School & Community Empowerment Festival / Licensing and Business Resource Fair this Saturday, Aug. 6 at Chaifetz Arena, 1 S. Compton. The Festival will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Families can take care of getting their children enrolled in school while taking care of their business licenses. Banks and other City agencies will be in attendance. For more information, call (314) 345-2520.


Back to School Concert

The Benton Park Neighborhood Association will be holding a Back to School Concert in Benton Park (S. Jefferson & Arsenal) on Saturday, Aug. 6. In addition to the live music from 4 – 9 p.m., the event will also feature a motor scooter show, a school supply give away and a fire truck display. For further information, visit


Movie Night in the Park

The Arts Council of Lafayette Park and Frontyard Features will present Movie Night: "Akeelah and the Bee" on Saturday, Aug. 6 in Lafayette Park, by the Gazebo, Mississippi and Lafayette. Fun, family activities will begin at 7 p.m. and the movie will be screened at 8:30 p.m. For more details, visit .


South Grand's Back Lot Films

Bring the family for South Grand's Back Lot Films, an ongoing film series featuring artistic, award-winning animated films. On Tuesday, Aug. 9 Hayao Miyazaki's "Spirited Away" will be screened. It is an epic tale of a young girl's adventures through the Spirit World to save her parents. Visitors are encouraged to bring their families, friends, lawn chairs, and picnic at the South Grand Parking Lot, 3500 Hartford.


Party on the Plaza

The next Party on the Plaza, at Old Post Office Plaza in Downtown St. Louis, will take place on Thursday, Aug. 11. Jake Austin and the City Limits will perform at the free concert. The event will run from 5 – 8 p.m.


Amnesty Project

Better Family Life is once again hosting an Amnesty event as part of its Family Week Celebration. If you or someone you know has an outstanding misdemeanor warrant, it can be processed at the event. For the convenience of City residents, one of the Amnesty Project locations is St. Louis Community College at Forest Park, in the Theatre, 5600 Oakland Avenue, on Saturday, Aug. 13 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. There will be a $10 processing fee. For more information, call (314) 746-0760.


Concerts in Parks

Each Wednesday through Aug. 17, the O'Fallon Park Jazz Concert Series will take place in O'Fallon Park by the Boathouse, starting at 6 p.m. Bring food and drink and enjoy the show in the company of your friends and neighbors.

The concert series in Carondelet Park continues on Sunday, Aug. 7 with a performance of "Memories of Elvis." August concerts begin at 5:30 p.m.

The next concert in Fanetti Park, located at Michigan and Ivory, will be on Tuesday, Aug. 9. The group "Ship of Fools" is scheduled to perform. The concert will run from 7 – 9 p.m.


Wednesday Night Out

The Downtown CID and Alive Magazine are inviting everyone to participate in Wednesday Night Out - the Downtown-wide Happy Hour, from 5 - 7 p.m. every Wednesday night through August. More than 20 Downtown bars and restaurants are participating and offering drink and appetizer specials. Invite your friends and co-workers to join you for some fun after work.

Thursdays @ The Intersection

Every Thursday through August, you can catch live music and a movie from 6 - 10 p.m. in Strauss Park, Grand and Washington, as part of Thursdays @ The Intersection. Music will begin at 6 p.m. and the movie will begin at dusk, around 8:30 p.m. For all the details, visit .


Save the Date

Aug. 12 – Rough Riders Rally, Roosevelt High School

Aug. 13 – Community Development Carnival in DeSoto Park

Aug. 13 – Clifton Heights 3K Run

Aug. 13 – Moonlight Ramble – Forest Park

Aug. 13 – Arts & Craft Fair – Soulard Market Park

Aug. 13 – Concert in Lafayette Park

Aug. 15 – School starts for Saint Louis Public Schools, et al


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 emails 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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