Posts Tagged ‘Dogtown’

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St. Patrick’s Day 2011 – Dogtown

March 19, 2011

Life on Tamm Avenue is usually quiet and calm, but one day each year the neighborhood turns itself over to the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day.

Schlafly Keg Dude

For many, the event is an excuse for excessive drinking and general silliness, but luckily this year’s attendees turned out to have more diverse motives for participating. One family watching the parade in front of my house came all the way from Tulsa, Oklahoma to celebrate their spring break in Dogtown.


Guitar Players on a Float

With floats representing everything from Police and Firemen to Irish Dancers and Large Irish Families, the parade lasted almost 2 hours.  Beads and Tootsie Rolls were tossed by the hand-full to join empty beer cans on the sidewalks, yards and streets of Clayton-Tamm.

Bead Throwing at the Parade

Meanwhile, entrepreneurs strolled up and down Tamm taking money from the intoxicated. In addition to the more established vendors of Pizza, Cheesesteaks and Gus’ Pretzels, individuals peddling buttons, beads, hats and other swag played their role in the crowd.

Leprechaun Hats –
$2.50

Police also maintained a very obvious presence, restricting the day’s festivities to good natured fun.

Police in Dogtown

The day turned out to be a lot of fun. If you didn’t make it this year, be sure to come next time. By then maybe we’ll have settled the debate over whether or not the Irish Dancing girls wear wigs.

Wigs?

I still think that a lot of these girls are wearing wigs but I’ve heard people sound really convinced that they all curl their similarly long hair just for the parade. Either way it’s ridiculous.

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Modern Infill in Dogtown

March 5, 2010

Yesterday, since the weather has been so wonderful I decided to explore my own neighborhood, Dogtown, about which I know too little.  My intent was to visit Franz Park and convince myself to somehow make use of its proximity to benefit my health.  Now that I know how nice and close it is, I hope to play a game of tennis there in the near future.  Speaking of nice and close, I live in the Clayton-Tamm neighborhood. Our neighbor in Dogtown is the Franz Park neighborhood, and how nice and close it is!  The one thing about walking around Franz Park that really got my attention though, is the large number of homes that appear to have been built very recently.  Fairmount Ave (between Dale and Mitchell) is the most prominently modern street I walked down,

Modern Infill on Fairmount Ave - Note the Hybrid Escalade parked out front

but other areas like Forest Ave North of Mitchell or Glades on the East side of Forest, or the North-East corner of Forest and Garner also have new homes standing out alongside old ones.

Forest and Glades

Steve Patterson mentions these homes back in December of ’04 on UrbanReviewSTL, and points out that there is no public alley behind this block (I did see one but I guess it’s “private”) justifying the street facing garage (if there’s no alley to hide the garage in where else are you going to put it?).  He is not a fan of the street facing garages and driveways, but I see less of a problem with them when the houses themselves are close enough to the sidewalk to make the street still feel urban (and when there is no alley which was the case for every one of the modern homes I noticed yesterday).  I will admit that the developments on Fairmount are ridiculous but I don’t blame developers for doing what they did.  The rooftop views there are so valuable that they wanted properties that would add to the premium price.

Downtown from an empty lot on Fairmount

I am happy to see new development in my neighborhood and in the city of St. Louis in general and I understand why people would want to live here and the draw of a brand new house over an antique, but personally, I am a much bigger fan of this:

Brockschmidt Place near Tamm

than this:

New Houses on Fairmount

Still, pretty much any house is better than the vacant lot pictured in the foreground above, and new city residents are just fine with me.