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The summer has arrived, and that means that the beer festivals are moving outside. Seasonal specialties are now on tap, and breweries around the country are rolling out the kegs and offering some new stuff on tap. If you’re looking to toast to the warmer weather, here’s three beer festivals where you can do just that this June:
Omaha Beer Fest
We’ll assume that the final preparations are now underway for the third annual Omaha Beer Fest, as things are set to take place on Friday and Saturday—June 7 and June 8. The lagers and ales will be flowing at Stinson Park at Aksarben Village, as the fun is set to run between 5pm and 9pm the first night, and then between 4pm and 8pm on Saturday. Advance general admission tickets cost $30, and that gets you unlimited two-ounce samples and access to Beer Academy sessions. Blue Blood Brewing Company, CIB Brewery, and Jaipur Company are just a few of the breweries scheduled to be in attendance—cheers!
St. Louis Brewers Heritage Festival
The best in beer are scheduled to gather over in St. Louis at Forest Park, as the St. Louis Brewers Heritage Festival does its thing on June 14 and June 15. Buffalo Brewing Company, Six Row Brewing Company, and of course plenty of options from the folks at Anheuser-Busch will all be on hand to show off their seasonal sips. There’s a few different general admission sessions from which to choose, and each will set you back $35 if you order online. Your ticket includes unlimited beer samples from over different local breweries, and organizers are even bringing in plenty of live entertainment as well.
With the warmer weather comes theme park season, as parks across the country dust off the rides and attractions. In addition to bringing down the decorations from the attic and testing out all the old favorites, there’s also the opportunity to try out some new stuff.
There’s one coaster that we’re particularly intrigued with during this season, as we’re eager to check out the latest offering over at Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri.
We’ve always had a spot in our hearts for the wooden roller coasters. Sure they might not go as fast as their steel siblings, but the twists and turns—not to mention the shimmies and shakes—more than make up for things. However, Outlaw Run is looking to change everything, as it’s going to be the world’s first wooden roller coaster to offer a double barrel roll. They’re not stopping there either, as the thing will also feature plenty of other firsts.
If you’re looking to get a little culture this summer there’s always the option to visit a museum, and if you’re into airline this and that like we are, we’ve got a new one to recommend. You know we’re all about taking a sneak peek into the past lives of passengers, pilots, and flight attendants, so it’s only natural that we’re already enamored with the TWA Museum in Kansas City, Missouri.
For just $5 visitors are welcome to take a step back in history and observe how it used to be up in the skies, and of course feel the jealousy that comes with seeing how air travel used to be.
The museum just moved into their new digs at the site of the airline’s former 1931 headquarters, 10 Richards Road, so now even the building holding the exhibits, artifacts, and treasures contributes to the history. The museum has displays on everything from old uniforms to actual flight decks, and of course everything in between. It’s just enough to keep you entertained as you relive the glory years of flight. Some of the stuff even travelled around the country almost twenty years ago, as TWA was one of the main sponsors of the Smithsonian’s 150th anniversary, and they sent out some their goodies on a road trip across the country.
This week marks the one year anniversary of the tornado that destroyed more than 2,700 homes in Joplin, Missouri. The community has come a long way in the past year, but volunteers are still needed to continue rebuilding homes for those who are still displaced.
Yesterday Missouri's Governor, Jay Nixon, announced the Governor's Joplin Challenge, a partnership between Missouri sports teams and Habitat for Humanity to build 35 homes this year. To meet their goal, Habitat for Humanity needs all of the volunteers they can get. To be included in their build schedule, fill out the application at joplinchallenge.mo.gov/volunteer.
The St. Louis Zoo went out of its way to attract park-goers this summer, from opening a new Panda Trek to hosting a summer concert series. As the summer winds down, though, they're shifting to a more basic and straightforward strategy: reminding potential visitors that there are a bunch of cute baby things on exhibit, and that people who come to the zoo can see them.
Just this week the zoo let loose their new baby lion cub "Imani," which drew exactly the kind of press that you'd expect a rambunctious lion cub to draw. She's not technically on exhibit yetapparently this was just a supervised excursion into her future home in Big Cat Countrybut some visitors still managed to catch a glimpse of the cub.
Those who weren't lucky enough to be at the right place at the right time, of course, were still able to see the zoo's Amur Leopard, Amur Tiger, Jaguar, and Snow Leopard, all in nearby exhibits along the trail.
The situation in Joplin, MO since the May 22 F5 tornado has been so bad that volunteers haven't been able to get into town until this week, when the area was again deemed safe-ish.
Now that volunteers are able to enter the city and help rebuild, the challenge has become organizing those who want to help. That's why Project 195, a non-profit environmental organization in the U.S. which helps organize and lead community clean up, is currently recruiting and managing more than 1000 volunteers to help with Joplin's clean-up and rebuilding.
Your bracket has been busted, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t be tuning in this evening to check out the men’s NCAA championship game in Houston. However, once it’s over, things always become somewhat of a downer. Sure the winning team is excited, but fans like us get a little depressed without the thrill of the buzzer beater, so that’s why we’re suggesting a trip to the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame.
The hall of fame is just one part of the College Basketball Experience in Kansas City, Missouri, so if strolling down memory lane gets a little boring, you can always hit up some of the place’s interactive displays.
We knew that St. Louis was busy looking for some help giving a facelift to their city’s most famous attraction. However, it now looks like things are getting pretty serious as park officials and organizers have finalized an open call for plans, suggestions, and proposals to improve the Gateway Arch.
Specifically they’re looking to update and upgrade the park that surrounds the monument, the one dedicated to the American dream of heading west. Already there are plenty of naysayers that dislike that the current park, as it and the monument are detached from the rest of downtown and a huge intestate next to the Arch doesn’t really help things either.
We’ve talked about Branson and airlines plenty of times before, but this time we’re talking about the place in Missouri not the man behind the Virgin brand. The family version of Las Vegas might not be your idea of the ultimate vacation, but there’s apparently enough people looking to go to justify a brand new airline.
The city built its own airport last year, and now they are going a step further to ensure that there are plenty of flights to fill its gates. Branson AirExpress is going to whisk passengers into the city beginning on May 17 from destinations including Des Moines, Shreveport, and Terre Haute, Indiana. Austin will have service as well even though we thought they were too cool for Branson. Officials are hoping the promise of infinite family entertainment and country music is enough to fill up these planes for years to come.
Now that Southwest Airlines has announced that they are all about St. Louis, the city is eager to get to work on their most famous attraction. After all, with an influx of new visitors thanks to cheap flights, the city needs to show off its offerings. Late last week the National Park Service released an almost 300 page set of plans dealing with the future of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial—that’s the Gateway Arch for those less familiar with its full name.
The park service is looking to preserve and maintain the grand lawn area beneath the Arch and wants to add some snazzy new stuff to the north and south ends of the area. The entire memorial is almost 100 acres large, so they have a lot of room to play with. One of the biggest updates would be to expand the park across the Mississippi River. That would provide East St. Louis with a little Arch love, and would allow the Arch to be better connected to the downtown area. Certain blocks downtown could be cleared to allow for new walkways for pedestrians to check things out.
It’s hard to believe, but the end of summer is just around the corner. That’s why it’s time to start thinking about your Labor Day plans, so you can make it a priority to attend this year’s SantaCaliGon Days Festival in Independence, Missouri. If you preferred Oregon Trail to Number Munchers back in computer lab class, this festival is right up your alley. It celebrates the heritage of the Missouri town as the starting point of the Santa Fe, California, and Oregon Trails. See, the name of the festival does make sense.
More than 225,000 people hit the streets to take in the sights, sounds, and smells of this Labor Day festival. Of course there’s a carnival to entertain the kids and kids at heart, and it opens on September 3 so you can get an early start to your holiday weekend. Just remember to dedicate some time to practicing for the Watermelon Seed Spitting Contest, as you’ll want to make your family proud.
It’s pretty clear that the folks in St. Louis take their beer pretty seriously. After all, this is the proud home of Budweiser, as long as you just forget about that whole InBev buyout thing. That’s why it’s a pretty safe bet to predict that the 2009 St. Louis Brewers Heritage Festival is one of the must-do drinking fests of the year.
There’s three different schedules over the weekend of June 5 and 6 that all take place within Forest Park, but unless you’re hardcore we’d only recommend throwing down for one of them. Tickets start at $30 and cost $35 on the day of the event. It’s a pretty good deal as it grants you access to unlimited sampling of over 60 different beer styles, live music, and a commemorative glass.
Brewmasters will be on hand from some of the nation’s most well known breweries, as well as some smaller ones. We’d head straight to the Trailhead Brewing Company booth, in hopes of downing a few samples of a hoppy ale. Just remember to bring a couple bucks in case you get the beer munchies, as there’ll be quite an assortment of food vendors as well.