Public Safety Director's Spotlight - West Nile Virus

A slew of fun activities in St. Louis City neighborhoods this weekend. Make plans now to stop by a few.

September 13, 2012 | 11 min reading time
Eddie Roth, Director of Public Safety
Photo by UPI/Bill Greenblatt Title: New portrait of Eddie Roth, Director of Public Safety
Source: UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Protect Your Family from West Nile Virus

I want to begin this week’s Spotlight by passing along some information from the Team.  West Nile Virus is a potentially dangerous illness that is primarily spread by bites from infected mosquitoes.  So far this year, there have been 1,993 cases of West Nile Virus reported in the United States, including 87 deaths.  Seventy percent of those cases occurred in six states:  Texas, South Dakota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Louisiana, and Michigan.

Eighty percent of infected people show no symptoms at all.  About 20 percent of people can have symptoms for up to several weeks.  People over the age of 50 are more likely to develop serious symptoms.  About one in 150 people infected with the virus will develop severe illness that could cause permanent neurological effects or death.

The easiest and best way to avoid West Nile Virus is to prevent mosquito bites.

  • When you are outdoors, use    insect repellent containing an EPA-registered active ingredient.  Follow the directions on the package.
  • Many mosquitoes are most    active at dusk and dawn.  Be sure to    use insect repellent and wear long sleeves and pants at these times or    consider staying indoors during these hours.
  • Make sure you have good    screens on your windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out.
  • Get rid of mosquito breeding    sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets and    barrels.  Change the water in pet    dishes and replace the water in bird baths weekly.  Drill holes in tire swings so water    drains out. 

To learn more, visit the Centers for Disease Control web site at


Upcoming Events

Sept. 14 – 9th Annual United We Grill, Kiener Plaza, 11 a.m.

Sponsored by Laclede Gas Company, the 9th Annual United We Grill event will take place on Friday, Sept. 14 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Kiener Plaza, located at Broadway and Market in beautiful Downtown St. Louis.  The BBQ lunch includes hamburgers, bratwurst or chicken with chips and drink all for $6.  Other highlights will include live music, a corporate washer challenge, and celebrity servers.  All proceeds will benefit the United Way of Greater St. Louis.  Come out for a day of fun and great food.

Sept. 14 & 15 – Epiphany Homecoming, Smiley & Ivanhoe, 6 p.m.

Enjoy food, games, rides, bands and more this Friday and Saturday at the Homecoming (Fall Festival) at Epiphany of Our Lord, located at 6596 Smiley Avenue (at Ivanhoe) (1 block east of Jamieson and 1 block south of Arsenal) in the Lindenwood Park neighborhood.  The Festival will run from 6 – 11 p.m. on Friday.  The parade will step off at 11 a.m. on Saturday and the Festival grounds will be open from Noon to 11 p.m.  Join your neighbors for great food, fun and entertainment.

Sept. 14 – Food Truck Friday, Tower Grove Park, 5 p.m.

Sauce Magazine’s 2012 Food Truck Friday Series continues this Friday from 5 – 8 p.m. on the southwest side of Tower Grove Park.  Whether you have a taste for pizza or tacos, cupcakes or crepes, you are sure to find a delicious answer to your cravings from at least one of the mobile culinary mavens that will be on site.  Invite your friends to join you at this fun event.

Sept. 14 – The Great Forest Park Balloon Glow, Forest Park, 7 p.m.

One of St. Louisans’ favorite events will take place this Friday in Forest Park – the Great Forest Park Balloon Glow.  Hot air balloons that will be participating in the Great Forest Park Balloon Race on Saturday will be on Central Field in Forest Park on Friday night from 7 to 8:30 p.m. and will light up the night with a magical display for visitors to walk through.  The event will conclude with the PNC Bank fireworks finale display beginning at approximately 9 p.m.   For more information, visit the web site.

Sept. 15 – 10th Annual Lewis Place Neighborhood Festival, 11 a.m.

Historic Lewis Place will be holding its 10th Annual Lewis Place Neighborhood Festival this Saturday on Lewis Place Parkway at Marcus.  This free, family-oriented event, sponsored by Lewis Place Historical Preservation, Inc., will feature live music, spoken word performances, fun activities and games for the kids, and BBQ dinners for purchase.  To learn more about this extraordinary site where a struggle for civil and economic rights was fought and won, visit  Everyone is invited to stop by to experience this rich cultural and artistic experience.  If you have any questions or comments, please contact Pamela Talley at (314) 535-1354.

Sept. 15 – CHIPS 12th Annual Community Health Festival / 5K Run/Walk, CHIPS Health Center, 7 a.m.

The CHIPS 12th Annual Community Health Festival and 5K Run/Walk will be held this Saturday from 7 a.m. to Noon at the CHIPS Health and Wellness Center, located at 2431 N. Grand Blvd. in the JeffVanderLou neighborhood.  This event will include a competitive 5K race, a 5K untimed run/walk and a one-mile fun walk.  After the race, enjoy live entertainment by local talented musicians, vocalists and dance groups.  Cost is $25 for adults; $10 for children.  For more information, call (314) 652-9231.

Sept. 15 – Run for the Hills 5K Run & 1-Mile Walk, Francis Park, 8 a.m.

This year’s Run for the Hills 5K Run will take place this Saturday starting at the intersection of Donovan & Itaska Streets along scenic Francis Park. The 5K will step off at 8 a.m.  The 1-Mile Walk & Youth Timed Run will start at 8:45 a.m.  The Awards Ceremony will begin at 9:15 a.m.  Interested parties may register online at the web site. Race-weekend entries ($25) will be accepted.  Questions?  Call (314) 352-5621.  Run for the Hills is dedicated to the continued improvement and maintenance of Francis & Willmore Parks and is sponsored by the St. Louis Hills Neighborhood Association.

Sept. 15 & 16 – Fiestas Patrias Saint Louis 2012 Festival, Cherokee  Street, 11 a.m.

Mark your calendar for the grande fiesta that will be presented this weekend by the Cherokee Street Latino Business Owners Association.  The annual Mexican Independence Day Festival on Cherokee Street (from Iowa to Nebraska) will run from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.  The Fiestas Patrias Saint Louis 2012 Festival will bring the local Mexican and Mexican-American communities together to celebrate the rich heritage, history and culture of their Mexican ancestors who fought for their independence from the Spanish government during the early 1800s.  Enjoy fajitas, carne al pastor, chimichangas, margaritas, piña colada, corn on the cob and ice cream.  There will also be musical acts appearing on the stage at California Avenue, special guests and plenty of activities for adults and children.  For more information, visit the web site at  

Sept. 15 – Dogtown Street Musicians Festival, 1200 Tamm, Noon

The Dogtown Historical Society will present the 3rd Annual Dogtown Street Musicians Festival this Saturday from Noon to 7 p.m.  Two dozen street music acts are scheduled to entertain festival-goers and compete for the Best of Show trophies as well as the People Choice Award.  Each festival-goer will use dollars to vote for his or her favorite musician.  For more information, call (314) 623-2120.

Sept. 15 – The Great Forest Park Balloon Race, Forest Park, Noon

The Great Forest Park Balloon Race will take place on Saturday.  Festivities will begin at Noon at Central Field in Forest Park.  The Opening Ceremony will begin at 3:30 p.m.  The Energizer Hot “Hare” balloon will launch at 4:30 p.m. followed by the “Hound” balloon launch at 4:45 p.m.  In case the race is weathered out on Saturday, it will be rescheduled for Sunday, Sept. 16.  For a complete list of related activities, please visit the web site.

Sept. 15 & 16 – St. Raymond Parish Annual Lebanese Festival, St. Raymond Maronite Cathedral, 6 p.m.

The annual Lebanese Festival:  “A Taste of the Middle East in the Heart of the Midwest will take place this Saturday from 6 – 11 p.m.  and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at St. Raymond Maronite Cathedral, located at 931 Lebanon Drive (across from Nestlé on Chouteau) in the La Salle neighborhood. Stop by before the Rams game this Sunday and enjoy authentic Lebanese / Middle Eastern cuisine.  Park for free.  If you would like more information, call (314) 621-0056.

Sept. 15 – Moonlight Ramble, 9 p.m.

Originally scheduled for Sept. 1, the annual Moonlight Ramble will take place on Saturday, Sept. 15.  Riders should plan to arrive at 8th and Cerre (just south of Busch Stadium and Ballpark Village) between 9 p.m. and 11:45 p.m.  The Ramble will start at Midnight.  The last rider must start no later than 1:30 a.m.  Attracting thousands of riders each year, the annual Moonlight Ramble is the “World’s Original Nighttime Bike Ride” held in St. Louis on a date near the full moon in August.  All ages are welcome to participate, but riders under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult.  So grab your bicycle and join your neighbors under the light of the moon for a bike ride adventure.  To register and for more details, visit the web site.

Sept. 16 – St. Anthony of Padua 150th Anniversary German Choral Concert, 3 p.m.

Celebrate St. Anthony of Padua’s 150th Anniversary and its German heritage with an afternoon of songs performed by the St. Louis German Cultural Society’s Damenchor (women’s chorus) and Liederkranz (mixed choir).  The free concert will feature a variety of German religious, contemporary, and folk music that will be sure to please all in attendance.  St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church is located at 3140 Meramec Street in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood.  Need more information?  Call (314) 655-0550.

Sept. 18 – Twilight Tuesdays Concert, Missouri History Museum6 p.m.

The Twilight Tuesdays Concert Series at the Missouri History Museum will continue this coming Tuesday, Sep. 18 with the Fabulous Motown Revue delivering that classic Detroit music sound.  The concert will begin at 6 p.m. on the front lawn of the Museum in Forest Park at Lindell and DeBaliviere.  Please note that BBQ grills are not allowed at the event.  For a complete listing of all the concerts in the series, visit the web site.

Sept. 19 – Free Concert, Forest Park, 7 p.m.

The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra will hold a free concert at Art Hill in Forest Park on Wednesday, Sept. 19, beginning at 7 p.m.  The Symphony is encouraging everyone attending to tweet before, during and after this Tweet Up concert.  Use the hash tag #slsolive to get in on the conversation.  Ward Stare will be conducting the orchestra in a variety of arrangements.  For more details about what should be a fun evening, visit

Sept. 19 – South Side Shindig, Bluffs on Broadway, 6 p.m.

Mark your calendar now for the South Side Shindig:  A DT2 Fundraiser.  Experience one of St. Louis’ premiere event venues located in the South St. Louis neighborhood of Dutchtown.  The Bluffs on Broadway is a distinct and contemporary mansion with an amazing view of the Mississippi River from a deck above the magnificent river bluffs.  Sample signature foods from various South City restaurants including Crusoe’s, Iron Barley, Merb’s Candies, and Urban Eats among others.  Also enjoy a full bar, music by Three of a Perfect Pair and assorted games.  All proceeds will benefit DT2 Improvement and Event Promotion funds.  Tickets are limited so buy yours today at Twice Blessed, Urban Eats or online at  If you would like more information, contact Ann Smart at or (636) 328-6146.

Thursday nights - Thursdays @ The Intersection, Grand Center, 5 p.m.

Enjoy the free outdoor concert series, Thursdays @ The Intersection, at 5 p.m. every Thursday at Strauss Park, located at Grand and Washington in Grand Center, now through Oct. 4. For a complete schedule of performers, visit .

Sept. 24 – Map Your Neighborhood Meeting, Our Lady of Sorrows Gym, 7 p.m.

Everyone is invited to attend the next Map Your Neighborhood (MYN) Meeting which will take place on Monday, Sept. 24 at the Our Lady of Sorrows Gym, located at Kingshighway and Rhodes.  Sign in will begin at 6:45 p.m. and the meeting will begin promptly at 7 p.m.  MYN helps neighbors organize a timely response to disaster when 9-1-1 responders are unavailable.  All of us, working together, can reduce the serious consequences of a disaster in our neighborhood.  For more information, call John Asbury at (314) 752-3290 or email him at

Sept. 29 – Tailgate Sale, Werner School, 8 a.m.

Call and reserve your space today for the Woerner School Tailgate Sale to be held on Saturday, Sept. 29 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.  Cost is $15 for a Single Space (approx. two parking spaces) and $25 for a Double Space.  This is the perfect opportunity for people with home businesses to sell their products.  Set up a table and sell your goods.  Crafters are welcome.  Woerner School is located at 6131 Leona in the Bevo Mill neighborhood.  Call (314) 481-8585 to reserve your space.


Save the Date

Sept. 20 – Yappy Hour at Pooches on the Patio, Sonny’s in Soulard, 5 p.m.

Sept. 22 – Walk to End Alzheimer’s & 5K Run, Busch Stadium, 8 a.m.

Sept. 22 – The Big Day (Girl Scouts 100th Anniversary), Soldiers’ Memorial Park, 11 a.m.

Sept. 22 – Trivia Night, Concordia Gymnastic Society, 6:30 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 on the home page. The listing is free. I encourage you to take advantage of this free way to promote your event.

Urban Hayrides Bring the Country to Forest Park

The City of St. Louis Department of Parks, Recreation and Forestry will offer hayrides in Forest Park on Friday and Saturday nights on fall weekends starting Friday, Sept. 28, 2012 and ending Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012.  The wagons, which are pulled by tractors, leave from Faulkner Drive (at Clayton Road near the Science Center) and take a 45-minute ride.  They return to the picnic grounds where a bonfire is waiting.  Groups can bring hot dogs and marshmallows to roast.  The bonfire has a one-hour time limit.  Reservations are required and are taken from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday by the permit section of the Parks Department.  For more details and to make reservations, call (314) 289-5330.


Eddie Roth
Director of Public Safety
City of St. Louis


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