Day 2, St. Louis

Yesterday, I was reminded why I love traveling.

It was a long, hot, but fulfilling day. Temperatures in St. Louis were in the upper 90s so we sweated our way through the day.

For this being our only day in St. Louis, I think we made out well.

The day began in good old Effingham, Illinois. We grabbed a quick breakfast and made a quick pit stop at the local Walmart. After that, it was on the road to the Gateway to the West, St. Louis.

Coming into St. Louis.

The drive took about an hour and a half. A straight shot to where we were headed. Once we got into town, we found parking in the shade. So the car would stay “somewhat cool” while we explored.

Before I go in to the details of the day, I want to give some thoughts about St. Louis.

I like the layout of the city. It seemed pretty easy to navigate around (at least the area we were in) and the tall buildings were spread out well. Yes, I know that’s corny.

Sports wise, St. Louis is a baseball town through and through. The Cardinals have won 11 World Series, second most all time. Busch Stadium (the third one to go by that name) has been the Cardinals home since 2006. For all four of us, this was our first visit to Busch Stadium.

Busch Stadium has quite the backdrop

I’ll get more in to the details about Busch Stadium when I write my actual ballpark blog about it. The Cardinals were taking on the Braves, Gary’s favorite team. I was thinking to myself, please let the Braves win this game. I don’t want to deal with an angry Gary because his team lost.

The way the game started out, had the Braves lost, it would’ve been pretty ugly. The Braves took a 6-0 lead in the 7th before the Cardinals put together a rally to make it into a game.

Trailing 6-2, the Cardinals Jose Martinez hit a three run homer to make it a 6-5 game. The Busch Stadium crowd was really into the game for the first time. Neither team would see any more offense.

One happy Braves fan after his team swept the Cardinals.

3 hours of baseball in mid nineties weather. We at least had shade.

After the game, it was back to the car to drop off our stuff. Then, dinner time.

While we were walking back to the car, we passed a restaurant called Caleco’s. They advertised themselves as a bar and grill that served breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

One thing you want to try and do while on vacation is eat at the local spots. Caleco’s had Google reviews and looked to have food we all would like, so we chose them.

Caleco’s was a solid choice for dinner.

When we sat down to eat, our waiter told us they were well known for their pizza and pasta. I can’t ever turn down pasta, so I ordered the baked lasagna.

YUM. Not the best lasagna I’ve ever had (I’ll always be partial to my Aunt Barb’s lasagna) but still pretty damn good. Give me golden brown cheese all day.

With full bellies, it was off to the one other thing I knew we needed to check out in St. Louis. That thing would be The Gateway Arch.

Many of my trips are baseball centered, but I’m always wanting to explore other famous sites.

To enter the Arch, you go down and enter into the main lobby. After that, you walk through security which is sort of similar to what you would see at the airport.

I was kind of kicking myself because on July 3, 2018 a brand new museum at the Arch is opening up. It’s something I would love to come back and see another time. After all, this is primarily a baseball trip.

Once we were through security, it was down the stairs and on our way to the tram ride up to the top. It’s like riding in a little space pod up to the top of the Arch. Very tight and cramped with other people in the pod.

This picture gives somewhat of an idea what the pods are like.

When we got up there, the view was spectacular. Looking out one side you can see the Missouri River, and on the other side, you get a great look at downtown St. Louis. Definitely worth the $13, in my opinion.

It’s tough to beat views like this one.

Even though it was only one day in St. Louis, we made good on it. Hopefully one day, I’ll be able to come back.

Kansas City, you’re next.

-Evan Lewis