Booneville, Lunch and the Cardinals Game

Trip Start Apr 02, 2011
Trip End Sep 29, 2011

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Where I stayed
St Louis

Flag of United States  , MO
Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Up at 8:00 and out of the hotel by 8:45. Re-explored Booneville, MO. Why? We stopped there on our canoe trip from KC to STL almost 20 years ago. Back then, a nice guy gave us a lift into town for lunch. I'll never forget this. We went into into a local restaurant where they had some of these paper place mats with local advertisements around the edge. I'm sure you've seen them before. Well, this one advertisement was for State Farm Agent such and such..(I don't remember his name). A nice young waitress came over to take our order and I asked, "Do you know this State Farm Agent, whatever his name was?" And she sort of smiled and said, "Well, I would hope so, he's my Dad." It's a small world....but I still wouldn't want to paint it!

Booneville has changed a great deal. Still some historical significance as a place where Lewis and Clark stopped on their journey up the Missouri River. I stopped and took pictures of the river. Biggest change I saw was a casino, the Isle of Capri...I don't think it was there when we floated the Missouri. On to St Louis.

One more historical entry. Ever hear of Westminster College in Fulton, MO? Well, you come very close to it when traveling I-70 between KC and STL. Westminster College hosted a famous statesman, Winston Churchill in 1946 after he failed to win re-election in England after WWII. During Churchill's speech, he uttered two words that would become part of our vocabulary for the next 40 years...he noted that the Soviet Union was erecting an "Iron Curtain" across Europe. The two words stuck.

Got to St Louis around Noon and headed for a restaurant I'd seen on TV called Iron Barley, only to find a sign out front of the restaurant saying, "Closed 5/31 - 6/7. So much for the Monte Cristo Dog. I found a small neighborhood bar katty-corner (or do you say ktty-corner?) from Iron Barley and went in (I know you're surprised!). It was perfect for me. It was called Tin Cup and had a great golf motif. Very nice neighborhood bar. I started blogging and waited for Brian Schaefer to show up. Brian is a SFer in HR. He and I along with two other guys go to the IHSA Class 1A and 2A basketball tournament in Peoria every year. He's a die-hard Cardinals fan and offered to go to the game with me...his tickets. I jumped at the chance. I knew he would know another place to eat in STL. He lived here for a while.

Brian showed up around 1:00 pm.  We had a beer and headed to "The Hill."  Brian used to live down here, so he knows the neighboorhoods.  We went to a place Mama Campisi's.  Brian said we had to try some of their fried ravioli.  That as an appetizer and spaghetti with huge meatballs was more than enough lunch.  We were told that fried ravioli was first made (by accident) in this restaurant when a chef accidentially put the ravioli into oil instead of water.  People loved it and it has become a mainstay at  Mama's ever since. 

Then we headed over to the Anheiser Busch Brewery Tour.  Great tour.  One hour long, and led by two great kids;  Jimmy and Amy.  Amy will be Jr. at Mizzou and interestingly Jimmy just graduated from Westminster College (see reference above) in chem engineering and will be working for a chemical company starting next week.  We learned a lot and Jimmy took a liking to me, making fun of the Cubs fan on the tour.  He said I was his favorite person on the tour.  What fun.  At one point in time he pointed out a particular building that had "1918" on it.  He said, while looking at me and smiling, "And that's 10 years after the Cubs won their last World Series."  Ouch!  Got to the end and were suppose to have two free beers...two, three, whatever!  

Then we got a Hotwire hotel (Crown Plaza)...the old Holiday Inn.  $70.  Brian uses Hotwire alot.  My first time.  Worked well.  After checking in and dropping dropping our stuff off in what was a gigantic room, we headed to the ballpark, three blocks away.  Brian wanted to walk around to a special entrance he always uses.  What I thought was superstition, turned out to be a nostalgic labor of love on the part of Brian.  It was a brick Brian purchased to coommemorate his Dad, who took him to his first Cardinals game and I am sure spent many a fine afternoon and evening with his sons at the games.  Brian always pays homage to his father who has since passed away when he goes to the game. He touched his lips and then the brick Very cool tradition.   

The ballpark is beautiful. Have to love the Arch in the bakcground over the center field wall.  And they also mow a part of the grass into the shape of the arch...very nice.  Once again a city has torn down a stadium and built a ballpark in its place.  Very nicely done!  Seats were in the second level between second base and right field.  Very good view of everything.  

The game was interesting.  I actually didn't find it difficult to cheer for the Cardinals.  And it looked like it would work.  The Cardinals took a 5-4 lead into the 9th and were about to beat the San Francisco Giants ace, Tim Lincecum.  In fact, the Cardinals had two out in the 9th and everyone standing on thier feet to cheer on the third out when a single, a stolen base and a base hit sent us to our seats.  My first extra innings game.  Unfortunately, the Giants scored 2 in the top of the 11th and went on to beat the Cards 7-5, but not before the lights went out.  With two out and one on in the bottom of the 11th, part of a bank of lights went out and it was noticibly darker.  Strange!  Being in Ad Services, I could just hear the maintenance guys saying...What the H-E-Double Hockey Sticks is going on!!!  After a 15-minute delay, the lights came back on.  The Giants pitcher threw one pitch...grounder to over.  Sadly, I'm now 11-6 for the home teams.

As we headed back to the hotel, I was having trouble finding a kid to give the ball to.  After all it was 11:30 pm.  Most of the kids had gone home.  Then I saw just ahead of us a little girl, pigtails hanging out her ballcap with her Mom and Dad.  I patted her on the head and asked if she got a ball at the game tonight.  No, she said.  I said, "Well here's a Cardinals baseball."   She looked at her Mom and Dad, as if to say, "Should I accept this from this stranger?"  Mom and Dad were very thankful.  Loved what the little girl said next.  "Look Mom, it's not even dirty!"  Mom said to me, "You have made her evening. This was her first game!"  That made me feel good.  And I have now become an equal opportunity ball giver!      

Brian and I were too tired to go anywhere else.  It was past my bedtime.  I did start this blog and then headed to bed.

Up at 8:00 and on the road home by 8:45.  Many thanks to Brian for the Cardinals tickets.  Enjoyed the whole experience in STL.  

On to Texas next week. 

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John Patton on

Next time down....OT Hodge Chili Parlor and get the Slinger. Two open face cheeseburgers with a fried egg on each. All over hash browns and the entire mess covered in chili. Certain to take a couple years off your life.

Brian Schaefer on

Sorry that the Cards didn't give you another home victory but I had a great time spending the day with you regardless. Pretty funny that you ended up being the "favorite person of the tour" even after you told him you were a Cubs fan....must have felt sorry for you...ha ha.

Keep up the great blogging...I love hearing about all these neat places. I hope to do something just like this when and if I ever retire! :)

Safe travels!

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