Monday, April 3, 2017

MLS2STL Proposal Is Good For Soulard And St. Louis

The April 4th general election is a big one here in the city of St. Louis. The city will most-likely elect it's first female mayor, Lyda Krewson. How cool is that?

Among the propositions on the ballot Tuesday, Propositions 1 & 2 have probably received the most press. 

Proposition 1 would raise the sales tax 1/2 of a percent. The expected $20 million in yearly proceeds would go to things like transit and public safety. 

Proposition 2 is tied to Prop 1. If Prop 1 passes, the city's use tax will automatically go up that same .5 percent. Prop 2 would authorize that increase in the use tax, expected to be $4 million per year, to be used to build a 20,000-seat outdoor stadium. Among other events, the stadium would be the home of St. Louis's entry in Major League Soccer. 

A .5 percent increase in the sales tax would cost you 50 cents on a $100 purchase. Keep in mind that the food tax is 3% lower when you see reports of a high base sales tax in the city. The use tax is something businesses pay on out-of-state purchases. 

It is good for the city's youth according to Demetrious Johnson and according to the co-founder of World Wide Technology, David Steward. 

In addition to that, it is good for Soulard. In Minnesota, proximity to the new Minnesota United stadium is influencing home-buying decisions. 

We all see how busy Soulard is with Cardinals and Blues fans on the days those teams are playing. People visiting before heading over to the games or taking the Soulard shuttles to the games, help keep these businesses in business the rest of the year. Crowds also help deter crime. 

People looking to rent apartments make their decisions partially on being close to things they like to do. There are plenty of young professionals that will see being close to an MLS stadium as a perk of living in Soulard. 

The city of St. Louis will earn tax revenues from things that happen at the stadium. These tax dollars will go to pay for needed city services. Over the course of the next twenty years, these tax dollars generated for the city will be more than if the stadium didn't get built. The city's contribution is capped and can only be paid for from that increase in the use tax. General revenue funds can not be used. The owners of the MLS team are responsible for any construction cost overages. 

Vote whatever way you think is best for St. Louis on Tuesday. Keep an open mind about Propositions 1 & 2 and the benefits they could have for Soulard, in particular.

P.S. Vote For Jack Coatar too. 

Sunday, April 2, 2017

The Wood Shack Opens In Old Feraro's

The Wood Shack is now open in Soulard.
The old Feraro's finally has a new tenant. The Wood Shack is now serving sandwiches at 1862 S 10th Street. The Riverfront Times had the story on the restaurant's opening, which happened Tuesday. The RFT describes The Wood Shack as a "playful little sandwich shop."

Many, including this writer, will remember the location as the old Feraro's. The pizza shop with the fantastic deep dish pie left The Island in 2013. Feraro's Jersey Style Pizza has a carryout location in South County and their main location at 7704 Ivory in South City. They still deliver to Soulard so, you can give them a call at 314-256-0500.

Before Feraro's, 1862 S. 10th was apparently the private dining room for Mike and Min's. Most recently, it was Spring Center Gourment. It had signage for a new sandwich shop that was always "opening soon," but never opened.

Chris Delgado and Patrick McGinnis co-own the restaurant with Delgado serving as the chef. He most recently spent six years at One 19 North Tapas. The sandwich shop will smoke their own meats in-house and make delicious sandwiches from it. Delgado will also make his own sides, including potato salad and mac 'n' cheese.

Check The Wood Shack out on Facebook or on their other Facebook page, apparently.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Verizon Installs Temporary Cell Sites For Mardi Gras 2016

Verizon has again installed temporary cell sites in Soulard for the biggest events of the 2016 Mardi Gras season.

Two temporary cell sites were recently installed and different locations in the neighborhood. The temporary sites are called COLT sites, or Cell on Light Truck sites. They support both 3G and 4G networks, according to a representative of the company.

Cellular telephone service is notoriously spotty for the big Mardi Gras events in Soulard, Taste of Soulard, Beggin' Pet Parade and the Bud Light Grand Party.

While we suggest you have a plan that doesn't rely solely on having cell service, these temporary sites have helped in years past. Also, make sure you show up to Soulard on Saturday with a full battery, it's not like there are just outlets all over for you to plug you phone in at.

How can you ensure you have a fun and safe time even if you don't have cell service?

If you are meeting friends, plan on meeting them at a set location at a set time. The intersections along Ninth are usually some of the more crowded points. We suggest 8th & Soulard, Allen & 10th or anything South of Russell as a meeting point.

That goes for when it's time to go home too. Don't get left behind or be the bad friend that leaves someone behind. We suggest planning on meeting around 6 or 7 pm at the latest to at least talk about your exit strategy.


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

What To Eat At Taste Of Soulard 2016

The menu is out for the 2016 Taste Of Soulard event happening this weekend. If you aren't familiar already with the event, you have really been missing out. $25 gets you a booklet with six food vouchers and one voucher good for a Southern Comfort cocktail. You then get rally your best buds together and form your own pub crawl through the neighborhood using your vouchers. The event goes from 11am - 5pm this Saturday (Jan. 30) and Sunday (Jan. 31). While the event is technically happening on Sunday too, many restaurants aren't participating on Sunday due to the traffic they experience during the Beggin' Pet Parade.

The list of offerings for Taste 2016 has been made available in advance of the event so that you can plan your attack before Saturday. I've combed the menu, made my color-coded map and now share with you six suggestions of places to hit as well as a few dessert ones.

These are submitted in no particular order and are by no means the only things your should shoot for. I have very particular tastes, meaning I don't like spicy foods and my choices reflect that.

2016 Taste of Soulard menu

2016 Taste of Soulard Suggestions


Old Man Sandwich

House-roasted brisket and corned beef covered in Swiss and Provel. Add horseradish and put in all on marble rye. It's amazing. 


Bacon and Caramelized Onion Flatbread

For many of us, Franco is a luxury that we don't get over to enough. Take this opportunity to visit and enjoy.

Molly's Bar

Nola BBQ Shrimp with French Baguette

If there's one thing Molly's does great, its Nola seafood dishes. 

Soulard Preservation Hall

Fried Hot Dogs

What kind of person could say no to this?

Twisted Ranch

Big Kid Mac and Cheese

You are doing yourself a disservice if you haven't dined at Twisted Ranch yet. Take this opportunity to try this delicious dish.

Epic Pizza and Subs

Slice of Cheese Pizza

I have enough of these so, believe me when I say to try it. It's also likely the most filling choice on the menu.


You're going to want to use one of your vouchers for a dessert option.the Bread Pudding with Whiskey Sauce at Soulard's is a personal favorite of mine. Also, you can't go wrong with mini cupcakes from Sweet Divine. You'd rather drink your dessert? Try a Red Bird with a SOCO floater at Tropical Liqueurs.

Ticket booklets are available at all participating establishments or online through Mardi Gras, Inc.

Looking for more of my ramblings about the 2016 Mardi Gras season? Check out this post I wrote for RealLifeSTL.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Mardi Gras 2016 In Soulard Begins With Tonight's 12th Night Celebration

The official 2016 Mardi Gras poster
Islanders will congregate tonight outside on Russell Blvd outside the birthplace of Soulard Mardi Gras for a highly anticipated announcement. At approximately 7 PM tonight, Mardi Gras Inc. Director Tim Lorson will emerge from the front doors of Johnny's at 1017 Russell. The crowds will hush as Lorson announces the Mardi Gras Board's decision. If revelers have their way, glorious words will emerge from Lorson's lips.

"The Board Has Decided That We Will Have Mardi Gras 2016", he will boom.

With those words, a joyous tradition will take place. Islanders, Mardi Gras revelers and other St. Louis dignitaries will march through the streets of Soulard singing the praises of the men who started the party, Bob Brinkman, Hilary Clements, Bill Coleman, Jim Rabbit and Bill Stubbs and the many who have kept it going in the years since. Barkeeps and restaurant owners will emerge from their establishments to give toasts to Soulard and the Mardi Gras season.

The parade will end at Rudy Commons in front of Soulard Market Park in honor of longtime Soulard and Mardi Gras friend Rudy Piskulick. More speeches will be made and the 2016 Rex will be crowned.

As the Soulard Mardi Gras flag is then raised over this glorious island neighborhood we call home, the 2016 Mardi Gras season begins in St. Louis. The next month will be marked with parades, concerts, a Family Winter Carvnival, parties and more. More than a few gallons of Bud Light and Southern Comfort Hurricanes will surely be consumed as well.

For more on the 2016 Mardi Season in St. Louis, check out this calendar over at RealLifeSTL.

We'll see you at 7 PM tonight in front of Johnny's. Be sure to bundle up.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Brewery Lights 2015 Opens November 19

The annual Brewery Lights celebration at the Anheuser-Busch Brewery kicks of tomorrow night, November 19. MLB Hall of Famer and St. Louis Cardinals great Ozzie Smith will be on for the ceremonial "flipping of the swtich".

Brewery Lights will run from November 19 to January 3 at the historic Brewery in south Soulard.

For more on the holiday celebration, check out this post from RealLifeSTL.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Spend Back To The Future Day at iTap

You live under a rock if you didn't know that today is the day that Marty McFly traveled to in Back to the Future Part II. In honor of Back to the Future day, International Tap House is showing Back to the Future Part II on their patio tonight. The movie will start at 8pm and their will be specials on canned beers from Tallgrass Brewing Company.