World Chess Hall of Fame

June30-July 20 063Last week we visited the World Chess Hall of Fame in St. Louis’ Central West End neighborhood. As you may recall from past posts- we love the Central West End– it was one of the first places we visited when we arrived a year ago.

June30-July 20 060We made an afternoon out of it- visiting the historic building it’s in- all 3 floors of it. The first floor houses the gift shop and the current exhibition of Tom Hackney: Corresponding Squares: Painting the Chess Games of Marcel Duchamp. Excellent photography and art exhibit with a few nude photos so parents beware of the kids- my boys looked, snickered and ran away. A nice conversation around nudity as an art form followed to which they struggled to comprehend.

We spent the majority of our time on the second floor with the Kings, Queens & Castles interactive family exhibit. There is a giant medieval castle, life-size chessboard, large scale chess pieces and art-making stations. June30-July 20 048June30-July 20 047June30-July 20 046June30-July 20 043June30-July 20 042

The third floor houses the permanent exhibits. There are historic and artistic chess sets housed behind glass. This floor was too delicate for my rambunctious bunch of kids and so we spent very little time here.

We ate lunch across the street at KingSide Diner. Terrible, slow service- make sure you have 2 hours to kill at minimum but while you wait the kids can play in the adjoining room with chess sets at every table. June30-July 20 064

We wrapped up our day with a visit to Left Bank bookstore to peruse the used book section in the basement downstairs. A perfect way to end the day.



Exploring the City

I am counting the days until school begins. When I first heard that school began on August 12, I thought well that’s rather early. But now- I’m counting days, hours, minutes. I think part of it is that we are all out of our routines. Nothing is the same and we are all driving each other crazy in this suffocating brick house, in this environment of humidity, bugs and little friendships. In an effort to delay my check-in into the asylum we’ve been using our time to explore our new town. It has helped a little.

IMG_0434This past week, we explored a great part of the city – the Central West End of St. Louis. Imagine a cleaner version of Berkeley, California. Charming streets. An eclectic vibe. Hip, funky, young people of all colors. First stop- Left Bank Books! IMG_0421It was a lovely bookstore with a large downstairs used book section where you could get lost for hours. M found his way there immediately while I, C, and I took our time looking around the upper floor. Eventually, we made our way downstairs too. We wasted a nice two hours there and bought a few used IMG_0433books. We had worked up an appetite and it was definitely time for lunch. Our options were Gringo Tacos or Pi Pizzeria. Being the snobby Mexican diner that I am, we trotted off to Pi Pizzeria. Continue reading “Exploring the City”