St. Louis Events Calendar > July 2006

Saturday, July 1
"Celebrate Your Independents" Festival
Schlafly Tap Room parking lot, 2100 Locust, downtown
Free admission, all ages, 3 -9 p.m., (314) 808-8032,

There's a reason BUILD St. Louis was named "Best Non-Profit" recently: they are all about lots of the same things we here at TheCommonspace love (community, local biz, etc.), and the St. Louis populace apparently appreciates the efforts.

So, there's no better time than 4th of July weekend to come out to their annual "Celebrate Your Independents" festival, happening this year downtown, to partake in a independent merchants' bazaar, enjoy local independent music (from City Folk, the Red Headed Strangers and Folknbluesgrass) and observe (or participate in!) the locally grown pie contest.

Mmm, pie.

Wait, I lost my train of thought there for a minute. A couple of bucks even gets you onto the bike tour of downtown, leaving the festival at 5 p.m.

(Posted by Amanda)

Saturday, July 8
City-Wide Open Studios/Starving Artists Barbecue
Starting point: Contemporary Art Museum-St. Louis, 3750 Washington Blvd.
Free admission (BBQ $10/person), all ages, 10 a.m.-8 p.m., 314-535-0770, ext. 215,

Wonder where artists come up with their ideas, what makes it to the drawing board and what ends up wadded in the trash? Get inside the creative process today with the first-ever city-wide day of open artists' studios: pick up a map of participating locations at the Contemporary from July 5-8 (or, save yourself a trip and download it here), and then Saturday morning, get cracking! Media from wood to fiber will be represented, and you'll be encouraged to chat up the artists to get some insight into their work. When you're full up with art, there's still room for BBQ, am I right? So mosey back to the Contemporary, belly up in the courtyard and enjoy food and drink with other arty peeps.

(Posted by Amanda)

Saturday, July 8
Friedens Neighborhood Foundation BBQ
Hyde Park
$5 plates / $1.50 hot dogs, all ages, 2-6 p.m., 314-772-5947,

Come eat yourself silly for a good cause. The spread will include hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken, Polish sausages, brats, ribs, spaghetti, potato salad, coleslaw, baked beans, chips, cookies, cake and drinks. DJ Play will be serving up a soul/funk/hip-hop stew on the side. Proceeds benefit the much-needed employment, health and community lunch programs of the Friedens Neighborhood Foundation in the Hyde Park neighborhood.

(Posted by Brian)

Sunday, July 9
Free Candy! with Amanda & Julia
Hartford Coffee Company, 3974 Hartford (@ Roger)
Free, 7 p.m,

Free Candy, with Amanda & Julia, returns with a special mid-summer show!

Let's review the basics: it's a talk show, yes; it's live, in front of a live audience (that's you!), non-broadcast or recorded in any form. That's what makes it fun: one night only! Be there to experience it! This installment brings: the return of wayward co-hostess Julia Smillie, a rare reunion performance by our one-time house band, the Sugar Daddies, and guests Bill Chott (an actor and improv comedian who appeared most recently in "The Ringer," with Johnny Knoxville) and Karen Tedesco (a cooking wizard who's racked up big wins at several national cooking contests, including the Holy Grail, the Pillsbury Bake-Off). Plus free candy! Plus shenanigans! Do join us, and check the web site for more info.

(Posted by Amanda)

Thursday, July 13
Reading/Signing: Victor S. Navasky
Ethical Society, 9001 Clayton Rd.
Free admission, all ages, 7 p.m., 314-367-6731

A long-time standard bearer of the political left, Victor S. Navasky relishes his time spent "running America's oldest (and least profitable) magazine," The Nation. Now he's doing the rounds in support of his newest book, "A Matter of Opinion," in which he argues that opinion journals must survive if they are to serve their function as a counterbalance to the current trends in journalism that lead, he says, to a dumbing-down of our culture. If you're more The Atlantic or National Review type than Star and Us Weekly, you'll be cheered to hear this vigorous defense of substantive reportage...and it's sponsored by our pals at Left Bank Books!

(Posted by Amanda)

Friday, July 14
Exhibit Opening: "On the Tip of Every Tongue," the German Harmonica Museum's traveling exhibit
UMSL Gallery 210, Telecommunity Center, One University Blvd.
Free, all ages, 7-9 p.m., 314-516-6620,

See, here's the thing: every week I get emails from eager event promoters, wanting to know what it takes to break into the coveted events calendar of It's ineffable, you know? But I know it when I see it: German Harmonica Exhibit! *That's* the kind of stuff I like to see!

So, here's the scoop: 700 harmonicas and accordions (if they called it an "accordion exhibit," no one would come, natch) dating from as early as the 1850s, plus interactive stations, documentary film and photographs. During the opening, Martin Haeffner, director of the German Harmonica Museum in Trossingen, will speak, and the Gateway Harmonica Club will perform.


(Posted by Amanda)

Friday, July 21
Film: "2001: A Space Odyssey"
Saint Louis Art Museum, auditorium, One Fine Arts Drive in Forest Park
$5, 7 p.m., 314-721-0072,

Hal? Is that you, Hal?

Get yourself creeped out again by the futuristic masterpiece that is Stanley Kubrick's film (got him nominated for 1969's Best Director Oscar, among other things, in this special presentation in conjunction with SLAM's current exhibit, "Remote Viewing: Invented Worlds in Recent Painting and Drawing."

(Posted by Amanda)

Wednesday, July 26
Reading/Signing: Andrew Lam, "Perfume Dreams: Reflections on the Vietnamese Diaspora"
Carpenter branch of the St. Louis Public Library, 3309 S. Grand
Free, all ages, 7 p.m., 314-772-6586

With the significant population of Vietnamese-born (and subsequent generations) people living in St. Louis, interest should be high for this talk by the author of the new book "Perfume Dreams: Reflections on the Vietnamese Diaspora." Lam left Vietnam as a young boy with his family immediately before the 1975 fall of Saigon, and led a somewhat typical American teen life in San Francisco. Still, he was always keenly aware of his status as a "Viet Kieu," (a.k.a. "boat people"), and his book explores this group's many paths to find their true identities. He'll speak twice: today, in English, and at the same time tomorrow, in Vietnamese.

(Posted by Amanda)

Monday, July 31
Compton Heights Concert Band Musical Monday
Tower Grove Park bandstand, near Magnolia and Center Cross Dr.
Free, all ages, 7:30 p.m., 314-776-2227,

Many outdoor concerts trot out the old favorites: the 1812 Overture and its showy cannons, the rockin'ish band that does every cover song proud, and so on. But it's not just every day you can sit outside (in the steamy, steamy heat) and enjoy the stylings of, yes, the theremin and the musical saw. But rejoice, dear hearts, for tonight that opportunity is yours! Dr. Robert Froehner is the master of those instruments, and will make strange and captivating noises on them, for your listening delight. Fun fact: Thomas Crone is an aficionado of the theremin.

(Posted by Amanda)

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