Halloween at Union Station!

All Aboard! The Union Station Halloween Experience brings family fun to the fall season in St. Louis, October 9 – 31.

Created for children 12 and under and their families, the Union Station Halloween Experience is a themed walking journey through the historic railroad terminal’s stationary rail cars. Each train car features a spooky theme including pirates, witches, dark creatures and a candy wonderland. 
Guests can purchase tickets and start their Halloween journey inside a huge tent filled with a not-so-scary maze, a series of boo-rific decorated rooms and a big barnyard where guests 12 and under receive a free pumpkin.
Onboard the rail cars, characters read a story with clues and interactive elements to solve the Riddle of the Werewolf. Kids get a special treat at the end of the journey.

The Union Station Halloween Experience is open daily, October 9 – 31 from 1 to 9 p.m. with the last ticket sold at 8 p.m.

My two kiddos LOVED the Halloween Experience at Union Station. It was just the perfect amount of scary for them. My son is six and he was holding my hand so tight while walking through the spooky maze. My daughter is ten and wasn’t as scared but just loved how everything was setup.

With a magic show, a balloon artist, and much more, the first part of the Halloween Experience was already worth checking out. The second part, which consists of going through several train cars that are decorated with some crazy Halloween flair was just as fun. Listening to the story and putting together the clues provided a unique experience that kids and adults should really enjoy.

Ticket options allow guests to incorporate package deals with Union Station’s other attractions, adding a visit to the St. Louis Aquarium and the 200-foot-tall St. Louis Wheel at a reduced price.

Timed tickets for the Union Station Halloween Experience are $20 per person and may be purchased on site or online at: https://www.stlouisunionstation.com/halloween-train-ticketing.

With normal Halloween plans changed due to COVID-19, the new event has been created with guest safety in mind. Just 12 people will be admitted to each train car at a time to allow for appropriate social distancing. Masks are required and family groups will be seated separately. The train cars and tent areas will be sanitized throughout the day according to Union Station’s strict safety protocols.


STAY AND PLAY
Hotel room packages with Halloween Experience tickets start at $150/night for families that want to continue the Halloween fun with an overnight stay at the St. Louis Union Station Hotel after the event.
Parking for the event is $5 per car.

ACTIVITIES ON THE PLAZA
A fall festival market tent will house shopping and activities on the Purina Performance Plaza. Halloween items will be for sale, including decorating kits for pumpkins distributed during the event. 

Fun festival-style food and drinks will be available on the Plaza and Soda Fountain, Union Station’s popular retro diner, is adding Halloween Freak Shakes to the menu.


HALLOWEEN ON THE WHEEL
Scan the skies for witches and ghosts from the top of the St. Louis Wheel. The 200-foot-tall observation wheel at Union Station will be lighted in Halloween color themes during the event and a scary soundtrack will play on the Plaza. Hourly fire and light shows will entertain families on the Union Station lake. 


UNDERWATER SCARES
The St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station gets in on the Halloween fun with underwater pumpkin carving. The Aquarium’s talented divers will create Jack o’ Lantern treats for the fishy residents of Shark Canyon. Carving demonstrations will take place on Saturdays and Sundays during dive shows at 11 a.m. and 1:30 and 4 p.m.

The Union Station Halloween Experience is located under the historic train shed at 201 S. 18th Street, St. Louis, MO 63013.

5 Fun Days Out With Kids For A Rainy Day

“Rain, rain go away come again another day” – thankfully there’s no reason to wish away rainy days any more because now there are so many great activities that can get you out of the house and doing something fun, no matter the weather outside. So put down the TV remote and  get out of the house to give one of these five days out a try the next time the rain comes. 

  1. Let the kids monkey around at a climbing centre
    Days cooped up inside can have both you and your kids climbing the walls so put that energy to good use and try climbing the walls at your local climbing centre. If you don’t fancy harnesses and heights then why not try your hand at bouldering which involves no equipment (except some climbing shoes which are usually available for hire) or find a centre with some auto belays and have a go on some larger walls. Climbing is a great workout and a full body energy burner that will be enjoyable for the whole family. Just remember that as with any sport, climbing can be dangerous and so will involve some parental supervision, but don’t let that put you off trying it. 
  2. Bowl a strike at your local bowling lanes
    Looking for an indoor activity that’s fun for all the family? Then why not visit your local bowling lanes and bowl away those rainy day blues. Bowling is a sport that’s very easy to pick up and great for kids, with simple lane adaptations available to make it accessible for all ages and skill levels. Most bowling alleys also have fun arcade games and great dining facilities on site making it the perfect way to while away an afternoon otherwise spent on the sofa.
     
  3. See history in action at a local museum. Become a tourist in your hometown and visit your local museum to get out of the house and learn something new. If you don’t have a museum near you then make a daytrip to one nearby and let history keep you entertained.  Most museums have kid-friendly activities such as treasure hunts, quiz sheets and interactive exhibitions which will keep your family entertained for hours while also keeping their brains active.
  4. Get wet anyway and go swimming
    Did you know that swimming has been proven to reduce stress levels in parents? Science aside swimming is another great indoor activity that will get you and the kids out of the house and having some active fun, making it perfect for a rainy day otherwise spent indoors.
  5. Visit an aquarium
    If you don’t fancy swimming yourself then why not watch the fish do it at your local aquarium. Unlike zoos, aquariums are usually entirely indoors meaning that although you’ll be surrounded by water you won’t be getting wet. What’s more, you can see and learn about all manner of marine life from clown fish to jellyfish, stingrays to sharks. Aquariums are often designed with children in mind and again will quite offer kid friendly activities and a range of interactive marine activities.

This post is a collaborative effort by St. Louis Dad.

The St. Louis Gateway Arch is #YourArch This Summer

The St. Louis Gateway Arch Park Foundation invited my family and I down to get an exclusive tour of the new St. Louis Arch Museum before it opens to the public on July 3rd this summer. Getting a sneak peek of the new museum was something that I could not say no to, so I agreed and patiently waited for the details to arrive.

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Once the details were sent we began scheduling and planning our day. First up was some yoga down at Kiener Plaza for #KienerKids! Several kids and adults participated in an early morning yoga session in beautiful downtown St. Louis. With a fantastic view of the Gateway Arch and some yoga getting us ready and focused for the day ahead of us we were ready for our tour. But first we finished up the awesome #KienerKids activities. A long with yoga, there were a few games, the Kiener Plaza playground, and an awesome story teller that was just fantastic at keeping the kids attention with his stories and songs.

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After story time we took a quick restroom break and took a quick walk from Kiener Plaza to the entrance of the museum. A quick introduction from our tour guide and we were in! A really cool feature to the new museum that we did not try out because, well, we didn’t bring extra clothes and we didn’t think it was “open” yet was this little pond like feature right in front of the museum doors. It isn’t a fountain so much as it’s a water feature that kids can play in and view the amazing light reflections that you will see at various times of the day. It was very interesting to hear about and I cannot wait to see it in action.

Upon entering the museum you are immediately able to see it’s open design. There’s so much space AND light!!! Before when entering the museum you felt as though you were entering a bunker and the sunshine stays behind and never entered, that is no longer the case. The new layout and construction now allows for natural light to spread all through-out the museum, removing that claustrophobic feel that was once there. Check out St. Louis Dad on Instagram or search #YourArch to see more photos!

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Wide open spaces, class rooms, and more, the new St. Louis Gateway Arch Museum is worth visiting again and again. There are many great photo opportunities within the museum as well as from the top of the arch.

The St. Louis Gateway Arch Park Foundation has done a terrific job with everything! The path you take to get to the Arch from Kiener is as simple as a walk in the park, no longer are you needing to cross an interstate to get from one spot to the next! The displays within the museum are all up to date and incredible. Kids and adults will have a blast learning about St. Louis, Missouri, and the rest of the mid-west while exploring the numerous interactive features and displays.

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When you’re done learning and playing with all of those awesome features you can easily grab some tickets to the top of the arch and get that 653 feet view of St. Louis. It is breathtaking looking out over the city, or even spinning around and looking across the river and at all of the action happening everywhere. Maybe you can even see my house!

Our experience of the sneak peek tour was worth every second of time spent at the arch. The kids are already asking to go back, especially my little monument fan. She is so fascinated by our nations monuments that she wants to see them all! We can at least cross the Gateway Arch off of her list. She loved it and so did the other kids. I have a feeling my blogger buddies over at AndHattieMakesThree.com, SippyCupMom.com, and STLMotherhood.com all had a great time as well!

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We always have a blast downtown. From Cardinal games to trips to Kiener Plaza and the various parks all around the city. We even got lucky and were able to stop the ice cream man on our way back to our car. The kids devoured popsicles in the likenesses of their favorite cartoons. That left us with just a few more awesome picture opportunities that we totally took advantage of. So not only does St. Louis have some great parks, great museums, we also have some amazing photo spots all over the city. So come on down and check it all out!

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Last but not least, St. Louis Dad and the St. Louis Gateway Arch Park Foundation wants your help!

The Gateway Arch Park Foundation invites the public to participate in the #YourArch campaign, a one-of-a-kind collaborative photo montage to celebrate the grand opening of the Museum at the Gateway Arch and new West Entrance on July 3. Images will be sourced through social media, Instagram and Twitter, using the hashtag #YourArch. Photos can also be uploaded through the campaign’s website, www.YourArch.org.

The crowd-sourced and Arch-inspired masterpiece will be unveiled at the Museum at the Gateway Arch grand opening celebration on July 3. The #YourArch photo call is open to lovers of Gateway Arch National Park near and far, and can include both newly-snapped selfies and vintage throwbacks of people with the Arch and the surrounding Gateway Arch Park. A new #YourArch inspired video launches May 4 as part of the campaign, and captures the connection visitors and St. Louisans have with the monument.

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“The Arch is part of so many shared memories – grade school field trips, an iconic backdrop for stunning wedding photos and those first futuristic tram rides to the top revealing a spectacular view of St. Louis,” says Eric Moraczewski, executive director of the Gateway Arch Park Foundation. “We see millions of visitors, from St. Louis and around the world, taking their photos with the Arch. The #YourArch campaign celebrates that shared pride and awe of the monument and reminds us that the Arch belongs to everyone.”

To enter photos, use #YourArch on Instagram or Twitter (profiles must be public), or visit www.YourArch.org to upload them directly to the campaign. For more information, visit archmosaic.yourarch.org.

About Gateway Arch Park Foundation: The Gateway Arch Park Foundation is a non-profit organization with a mission to ensure that the Gateway Arch, its grounds, neighboring public space, and attractions are a vital, active, welcoming, well-supported resource to the community and nation for generations to come. The Foundation is part of an alliance that helps meet this mission, which includes the National Park Service, Bi-State Development, Great Rivers Greenway, Jefferson National Parks Association and the City of St. Louis. For more information, visit www.ArchPark.org.

Shopkins are Coming to St. Louis!

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If your kid is anything like mine than the word Shopkins has been thrown around your house like crazy these last few years. Season 1, season 2, season3 etc, etc. I have heard about them all. Not only from my daughter, but from my son as well. The little characters are pretty cute and the names are hilarious. Taco Terry anyone? We have hundreds of these little plastic toys and the checklists to make sure we have those ultra rares in our sights. So when the kids heard about the Shopkins stage show they asked when it was coming to our town and without even realizing it, it’s this month!!!

While Shopkins might seem like a total girl toy, my son loves them just as much and I have heard of other boys liking them as well. They are really cool and a great idea for kids to start learning about collecting. I love the checklists and the mystery figures. I only wish I had thought of Shopkins!

Shopkins Live on Tour will be pushing their cart through St. Louis on November 26th at the Fabulous Fox Theater at 1PM. There is only one showing for this amazing event so be sure to purchase your tickets soon before you miss out!

Want a chance to win four tickets from St. Louis Dad?

All you have to do is do two very simple things…

1) Share this post on Facebook! (I will be checking)

2) Comment on this post with your favorite Shopkin’s name!

3) Include a valid email when you comment so I can contact you if win. The winner will have 24 hours to respond with their details to claim their tickets. If you do not respond in 24 hours another winner will be selected.

Shopkins Live! is finally here! The #1 kids toy in North America is live and on stage in Shopkins Live! Shop It Up! Your beloved Shoppies make their theatrical debut in an original new live show featuring musical performances by Jessicake, Bubbleisha, Peppa-Mint, Rainbow Kate, Cocolette, Polli Polish and more! The fun and fashionista Shoppies are joined by the Shopkins – the grocery store-themed mini collectable toys – Apple Blossom, Strawberry Kiss, Lippy Lips, Kooky Cookie, Poppy Corn, Slick Breadstick and Shady Diva. An ensemble cast of multi-talented performers brings the show to life on stage through urban style music, song and dance.

All of Shopville is in a tizz as preparations get underway for the annual “Funtastic Food and Fashion Fair.” Shady Diva showcases her latest fashion designs; Lippy Lips gives colorful advice at the nail salon; Kooky Cookie tries to get in a beauty nap! But wait – no event is complete without a few hiccups! Who has high-jinxed the fashion pageant? Where is the super-secret celebrity guest? Will Slick Breadstick ever find a dance partner? The Shopkins and Shoppies need your help – the show must go on!

Shopkins Live! immerses audiences in the world of Shopville using custom-designed theatrical costumes, creative onstage characters, state-of-art video and set design, and original pop songs and music! Grab your besties and check out Shopkins Live! Shop It Up! Check ya later!

St. Louis Dad was compensated with complimentary tickets to the show in exchange for promotion of the event.