Best of Missouri Market
Missouri Botanical Gardens
4344 Shaw Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63110
Hours: October 5-7, 2012
Price: $12 adults, $10 age 65 and older, $5 Missouri Garden members, free for children under 3 and children of Missouri Garden members 12 and under
As the name implies, the 21st annual Best of Missouri Market is, quite frankly, the best Missouri has to offer. Come and sample more than 120 Missouri food producers and crafters amidst the sounds of entertaining hand-clapping, foot-stomping bluegrass music. Savor the aromas of fresh-baked goods, pick up the best of Missouri’s fresh produce and enjoy artwork of jewelers, hand-painted gourds, wood-crafted toys and hand-woven baskets. Bring the family because there is something for everyone. Kids enjoy the Kids Corner sponsored by the Doris L. Schnuck Garden where they can milk a cow, frolic in the pumpkin patch or hammer away at a craft booth just for the little ones.
Limited free parking is available at the Missouri Botanical Garden lot with additional free parking at the Metro multi-modal lots on the corner of Shaw and Vandeventer. These lots will have shuttle buses running regularly throughout the event. Bicycle racks are provided at the Ridgeway Visitor Center and electric vehicles can recharge in the west lot. Valet parking is offered during First Look Friday.
Must-See Events and Vendors
First Look Friday
Date: October 5 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Waiting for the Best of Missouri Market is the difficult part, so why wait? Be among the first to enjoy an evening under the big white tents. Come get an early taste of the best Missouri has to offer at First Look Friday. Preview more than 120 food vendors, get a glimpse of handcrafted art and enjoy live music from The Cumberland Gap Band at this abbreviated first glimpse.
Just west of Doris L. Schnuck Children’s Garden
Bring your cameras as you won’t want to miss a candid moment in the Kids Corner. Delight even the smallest Best of Missouri Market fans. Reach out and touch an alpaca or a llama at the petting zoo. Get hands-on and milk a cow. Decorate a pumpkin and make a pint-sized craft. The fun activities are endless.
Park Avenue Coffee
Park Avenue Coffee is one of the newest vendors to the Best of Missouri Market. Park Avenue has been satisfying St. Louis coffee-loving taste buds since 1930 with St. Louis’ own Cahuvin Coffee and four generations of family owned service. If you think it’s all about coffee at this vendor’s booth, think again. Allow its 76 gooey butter cake flavors to melt in your mouth as your taste buds soak up the ware. Try the key lime, triple chocolate, turtle, red velvet, pumpkin or more than 70 other flavors of gooey butter cake.
Pie Oh My!
Come visit this pie maker who normally specializes in delivering pie directly to your door. Bite into gourmet-inspired, in-season flavors such as peach blueberry, pear apple, coconut cream and other choices of homemade pie. Pie Oh My! doesn’t just bake a pie, it handcrafts each one with incredible local ingredients such as Missouri-grown walnuts and pecans. Pick up a pie at the Best of Missouri Market then plan on ordering one from your home for a personal delivery.
The Blue Owl Restaurant and Bakery
Get a taste of The Blue Owl Restaurant and Bakery without driving all the way to Imperial. Tackle a slice of mile-high pie one bite at a time. Open your mouth wide and delight in a large slice of caramel apple pecan pie. Enjoy the various baked goods and sweets.
Savor the aromas that surround you when you walk up to the Ronnoco Coffee booth. Ronnoco gets its name from its founders, the O’Connor brothers, spelled backwards. However, its brew is anything but backwards. From the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis to the 21st annual Best of Missouri Market, Ronnoco has been brewing the finest coffee in the Show Me State for years.
Tere Scott is a freelance writer and author of e-books and two educational blogs. She loves to research information to share. She currently resides in St. Louis. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.