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Archive for the ‘Old North St. Louis Restoration Group’ Category

Friday, May 16, 2014

Old North House & Community Tour: More Reasons to Attend than a Top 10 List Can Contain

If you haven’t started yet, time is running out to start spreading the news that TOMORROW, Saturday, May 17th, from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. is our annual celebration of all that is enriching, inspirational, sustainable and just plain cool about living in walkable, bikeable, transit-friendly, diverse, historic neighborhoods; or, in simpler terms: the Old North House & Community Tour.

For a limited time only - the rest of today, to be precise - you can get your tickets for the advance ticket price of just $10.  Click HERE to get your tickets now.

We’ve posted numerous reasons for attending this tour already, but we now offer the following highlights, in no particular order:

AWARDS, AWARDS, and more AWARDS in this Award-Winning Neighborhood

Come see what all of the buzz is about and why so many unbiased, outside observers have deemed Old North and various components of the community here to be worthy of special recognition and awards.

Old North has more Landmarks Association “Most Enhanced Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation” per acre, per capita, or per total number of buildings than just about any other neighborhood in St. Louis.  As reported here a couple days ago, the most recent Landmarks award in Old North has yet to be presented but has been announced.  Come on out Saturday to see the incredible work done on the insides of 1303 North Market, one of the projects that will be recognized with a “Most Enhanced” Award by Landmarks on May 22.

Other properties that have won Landmarks awards will also be on this year’s tour, including 1408 Wright Street and spaces at Crown Square, which received a “Most Enhanced” Award in 2010 for the project as a whole.

Crown Square also won a National Trust for Historic Preservation / HUD Secretary’s Award for Overall Excellence in Historic Preservation in 2010, a Missouri Preservation “McReynolds Award” for historic preservation in 2011, and a J. Timothy Anderson Award from the National Housing & Rehabilitation Association.

The biggest award, however, came from U.S. EPA, which presented Old North with their National 2011 Overall Excellence Award for Smart Growth Achievement.  Old North is the only neighborhood to receive this distinction in the entire Midwest. The only only other overall award-winner in the Midwest was the whole greater Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area in 2006.

Other awards for the comprehensive revitalization in progress around here have come from East-West Gateway Council of Governments (just last year for public-nonprofit collaboration), U.S. Green Building Council -Missouri Gateway Chapter (also in 2013), American Society of Landscape Architects, St. Louis Chapter (their Civic Stewardship Award in 2011), and Focus St. Louis (with a What’s Right with the Region Award in 2007).

And, did we mention the FREE ICE CREAM?  All ticket-holding tour-goers will receive a free cup of ice cream, courtesy of Crown Candy Kitchen - but being distributed at the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group Gallery.

And a FREE CUP OF COFFEE for all ticket-holding tour-goers from La Mancha Coffeehouse.

SPOTLIGHT ON CROWN SQUARE BUSINESSES

In addition to an incredible variety of relatively new and historically-rehabbed homes, apartments, and gardens throughout Old North, the tour also will feature businesses in Old North, including Blackmun Footcare and Firecracker Press.

OLD NORTH’S FIRST “LITTLE FREE LIBRARY” in Wingmann Park

As reported here on May 14, this Saturday will mark the official opening of our new Old North Little Free Library in Wingmann Park (along the 1400 block of Wright Street), which also will be one of the stops on the tour.

Environmentally-Friendly SHUTTLES to Transport you between tour stops

This year our shuttle options will include pedi-cabs from St. Louis 3-Wheel Taxi (as shown in our post from Wednesday the 12th) and electric-powered golf carts from St. Louis Golf Cars.

MEET CHARLOTTE

Our post from earlier today introduced Charlotte Harris (click HERE if you missed that).  But, just a reminder now that Saturday will be a great chance to stop by to meet Charlotte and welcome her to ONSLRG.

We’ve got everything set and ready to go - all we need is YOU.  Get your tickets now at the advance-ticket prices by clicking HERE (or on the image below) or by stopping by the ONSLRG office before 5 p.m. today.

And, as noted above, you can always pick up tickets on the day of the tour between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. at St. Louis Avenue and North 14th Street.  We look forward to seeing you here!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Don’t Worry & Be Happy: the Weather Will Be Fantastic for Old North House & Community Tour Saturday

We’ve had a lot of rain lately - and some cool temperatures in the past day or so, but Saturday will be a beautiful day for the Old North House & Community Tour.  If you don’t believe us, take a look at the forecast from the iPhone weather app people:

Now that we’ve got the weather all cleared up, there’s no excuse for not showing up to take a pleasant stroll through “one of the country’s best revitalization stories” (as Kaid Benfield of the Natural Resources Defense Council described Old North a few years ago).  So, get your tickets now by clicking HERE or stop by the ONSLRG office at 2700 N. 14th Street, St. Louis, MO 63106.  If you can’t get them today, tickets will still be available on Saturday at St. Louis Avenue & N. 14th Street for the day-of price of $12 each.

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Friday, May 16, 2014

Come Out Saturday to Old North House & Community Tour to Meet Charlotte Harris, ONSLRG’s New Receptionist

Thanks to the AARP Senior Community Service Employment Program, Old North resident Charlotte Harris is now working as Old North St. Louis Restoration Group’s receptionist, providing much needed help with a broad range of tasks.  Charlotte, who lives just two blocks away from the ONSLRG office, learned about the program while working at our 13th Street Community Garden.

Please join us in welcoming Charlotte to ONSLRG!  A great opportunity to stop by the office to meet Charlotte will be on Saturday during the Old North House & Community Tour from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Charlotte will be staffing the front desk throughout the day and will be happy to greet you.

To get your tickets for the tour for the advance ticket price of just $10, stop by the office TODAY or purchase them online by clicking HERE. If you can’t get your tickets today, you still can join us on the day of the tour when tickets will be sold for $12 each at the registration booth at the southwest corner of North 14th Street and St. Louis Avenue.

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Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Landmarks Award Will Celebrate Phenomenal Transformation of 1303 North Market - Yet Another Cool Site to See at Old North House & Community Tour

We are happy to share the great news that Landmarks Association of St. Louis has selected 1303 North Market as a winner of one of their 2014 Most Enhanced Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation!  Congratulations to the Lane Family for the many years of hard work, creativity, and determination to make that transformation possible.  As Landmarks Association’s Executive Director, Andrew Weil, put it: “It is an awesome project.”

As cool as the garden space along the eastern side of the building is, the interior of the former abandoned warehouse building demonstrates what can happen when creative people have the freedom to take something others considered unusable and re-shape it to suit their style and needs. The before and after shots below are just a sample of what the Lanes have been able to accomplish at 1303 North Market.

The award from Landmarks will be presented to the Lanes on May 22, but YOU can get first-hand views of this home THIS SATURDAY, May 17 when 1303 North Market will be one of the 17 sites on this year’s Old North House & Community Tour.

For tickets to the Landmarks reception and award ceremony at the Sun Theater on Thursday, May 22, click HERE to purchase them online.  The reception includes food and drinks and lasts from 6:00 until 7:00 with the Award ceremony to follow.

On the topic of Landmarks “Most Enhanced Award”-winning properties, another home that received this award a couple years ago will also be open for this year’s tour.  The two-family residential building at 1408 Wright Street has been on the tour before, but this year the home features a completely different style that represents the building’s new occupants who moved into Old North last year.

Across the street from 1408 Wright is another product of Graham Lane’s creative hands that will also be on display at the Old North House & Community Tour this Saturday: the neighborhood’s first Little Free Library, which was installed today in Wingmann Park.  Graham converted an old safe into the box which will hold the books that will be free to take and return on an honor system.  Old North’s resident metal-smith, Janet Sanders, will soon complete fabrication of a new door for the box so that the library can be fully stocked by Old North’s resident librarian, Gina Sheridan, in time for its grand opening on Saturday.

Old North’s Little Free Library is part of an international movement to bring books and other reading materials to communities that don’t have full-fledged libraries.  As described on the LittleFreeLibrary.org website, a little free library is “a ‘take a book, return a book’ gathering place where neighbors share their favorite literature and stories. In its most basic form, a Little Free Library is a box full of books where anyone may stop by and pick up a book (or two) and bring back another book to share.”

But wait, there’s more…

In addition to getting a chance to visit the Little Free Library and all of the award-winning homes, gardens, businesses on the tour, visitors with tickets to the tour will be able to stop by La Mancha Coffeehouse at 2800 N. 14th Street for a free cup of coffee before heading down to the ONSLRG Gallery for a free cup of Crown Candy ice cream.

To take advantage of the advance ticket price of only $10 for a home & community tour unlike any other in St. Louis, get your tickets now by clicking HERE.  Tickets will also be available at the ONSLRG office between now and Saturday.  Tickets can also be purchased on the day of the tour for $12.

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Monday, May 12, 2014

5 Days to Go: Still Time to Buy Tickets & Recruit Others to Join You at Old North House & Community Tour

We’re down to the final 5 days, so time is running out to get your tickets at the advance ticket price of only $10 for the Old North House & Community Tour, scheduled for Saturday, May 17 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.  Click HERE to purchase your tickets online now.

This year’s tour features a chance to get inside views of an eclectic mix of homes, businesses, and gardens, some of which are shown below, as well as in our previous post.

Although each of the 17 stops on the tour would be worth a visit on their own, the Old North House & Community Tour showcases more than distinctive but scattered places.   Our tour allows visitors an opportunity to see how all of these pieces fit together to create a vibrant community in the midst of dynamic, positive transformation.

While you’re in the neighborhood for the Old North House & Community Tour, be sure to visit the two stl250 cakes in Old North, in honor of our city’s 250th birthday.  Above: the stl250 cake in front of Crown Candy Kitchen. By the way, it’s worth noting that, once again, Crown Candy will be donating ice cream to ONSLRG to distribute to ticket-holding attendees of the tour.

The second stl250 cake can be found in front of the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group office.

Speaking of public art, Jamaica Ray’s mannequins will most likely be hanging out somewhere in the vicinity of St. Louis Avenue and N. 14th Street, while Jamaica Ray himself will probably be playing his steel drums somewhere nearby or riding his bike along N. 14th Street (see below).

Among the other sites to admire along the street: the recently completed pocket park / garden at 2709 N. 14th Street (above), made possible with funding support from Equifax Foundation, design work by St. Louis ArtWorks apprentices, volunteer labor from Scottrade and Equifax employees, and oversight by Rebuilding Together St. Louis.

And, as with every visit to Old North, a leisurely stroll along the streets of the neighborhood provides multiple occasions to pause and appreciate the rich architectural character of the building stock that gives Old North an authentic sense of place.

However, if you’d rather catch a ride along the tour route or from one tour stop to the next, we’ll provide a couple of different, environmentally friendly shuttle options: golf cart shuttles and pedicabs from St. Louis 3-Wheel Taxi (see below).

So now it’s just a matter of getting your tickets - and rounding up as many friends as you can to join you in Old North this coming Saturday, May 17.  Click HERE or on the image below to buy your tickets online.

If you’d like to purchase advance tickets in person, stop by the ONSLRG office at 2700 N. 14th Street between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. the rest of this week.  For more information or to volunteer to help with the tour, give us a call at 314-241-5031 or send an email to info@onsl.org.

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

What Distinguishes the Old North House & Community Tour from Other House Tours?

Diversity. Old North is a community that welcomes in people from all walks of life - different ages, racial and ethnic backgrounds, household formats and sizes, income levels, occupancy status and professions, religions, worldviews… and the list could go on and on.  That diversity is also reflected in the selection of what we will feature on Saturday, May 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. as Old North Saint Louis Restoration Group hosts our annual Old North House & Community Tour.  Some neighborhood house tours only show off the “nicest” and most elegantly furnished and decorated homes.  In Old North, we have our share of meticulously and lovingly restored historic houses (including a large and growing collection of Landmarks Association “Most Enhanced” Award-winning buildings), but we’re also not afraid to admit that the neighborhood is a work in progress - and we embrace the fact that there isn’t just one house style that works for everybody.

With the aid of a tour booklet, Old North’s House & Community Tour is a go-at-your-own-pace, self-guided tour, which provides an opportunity for visitors, friends of the community, and residents of Old North to get up-close and inside views of the award-winning revitalization in progress.

The tour will feature about a dozen & a half stops, including beautifully-restored, historic homes; a recently built home with universal design components; houses in the midst of multi-year rehabs; adaptive re-uses of formerly obsolete structures (including one which now has state-of-the art energy-efficiency and sustainability technology); and apartments in buildings that once had been severely dilapidated, crumbling into the street, and abandoned (such as the one in the photo above).

Because the architecture and building stock represent only part of what makes Old North an attractive and desirable community, several non-residential spaces will also be stops on the tour: community gardens, including one with a soon-to-be-unveiled, “little free library”; neighborhood businesses, and much more.

To see more of Old North - and to get inside views of some of these buildings, please plan to join us on Saturday, May 17.  And get your tickets now!

Advance tickets are available at the ONSLRG office, 2700 N. 14th Street, or online by clicking HERE or on the image above.  Tickets on the day of the tour will be sold at $12 each at the registration tent.

Check back often between now and May 17 for updates and more info about other stops and activities at the 2014 Old North House & Community Tour.

P.S. - if you’d like to help out with the tour, we still could use more volunteers - and we still have sponsorship opportunities.  Call the ONSLRG office at 314-241-5031 or send an email to info@ONSL.org to request more information or click HERE for the tour information page on this website.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Annual Old North House & Community Tour - Saturday, May 17

Get your tickets now! Old North Saint Louis Restoration Group’s Annual Old North House & Community Tour is rapidly approaching.   The big day which celebrates and shows off the comprehensive, neighborhood-wide sustainable revitalization of Old North will take place on Saturday, May 17th from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Advance tickets at $10 per person can be purchased online (on the “Buy Stuff” page of ONSL.org) by clicking HERE or they can be purchased in person at the ONSLRG office, 2700 N. 14th Street during regular business hours up until the day before the tour.  Tickets on the day of the tour will be available for $12 at the registration tent on the corner of St. Louis Avenue & N. 14th Street.

Proceeds from the tour help support the continued work of the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group throughout the year.  We have a lot more work to do.  With your support we will achieve our goal of becoming a sustainable, urban, neighborhood neighborhood of choice on the edge of Downtown.   In the days ahead, we’ll be posting more updates about the tour and previews of the various homes, businesses, gardens, and other sights that will be on the tour.  Until then, you can get a feel for the tour and enjoy some images of past tours by clicking HERE.

Although time is running out, there is still time to support the tour as a sponsor.  Click HERE for sponsorship benefits and details. The tour is made possible by the generous support of many sponsors, including PNC Bank, our lead sponsor and “Tour Presenter” once again this year.  We also thank other sponsors, such as Commerce Bank, Duffe-Nuernberger Realty / ND&S Management, Equifax, Husch Blackwell, and U.S.Bank.  A full list of sponsors will appear in future posts here.

If you have any questions or would like to volunteer, please feel free to contact ONSLRG staff at the office, in person or by phone at 314-241-5031, or by email:  info@ONSL.org.

Special thanks go out to Firecracker Press at 2612 N. 14th Street for designing and producing the really cool poster for this year’s tour, which also will be available for purchase through ONSLRG or Firecracker Press.

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Sunday, March 16, 2014

Have you picked up a copy of the latest Old North Newspaper?

The latest edition of the Old North Saint Louis Restoration Group’s neighborhood newspaper has been delivered to homes throughout Old North.  If  you haven’t received a paper yet, feel free to stop by the ONSLRG office to pick one up - or to get multiple copies for sharing with others at your place of business, church, or wherever you’d like.  Or, you can always read it online by clicking HERE.

The previous issue from this past November is also posted on ONSLRG’s website and can be viewed by clicking HERE.

Do you have news or information about Old North - whether interesting stories from the past or features about the fascinating people who call Old North home -  that you’d like to get into our next issue?  Would you like to be a contributing writer? Do you know of a business that would be interested in getting an ad in the paper? If so, just give us a call or send a message Claire Wolff (claire AT ONSL.org).

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Sunday, March 2, 2014

Please Join Us This Week for Multiple Visual, Performing & Community Arts Events in Old North

This coming week features multiple occasions to celebrate the arts right here in the heart of Old North.

Wednesday, March 5, 7 p.m.: 3-Time World Champion Spoken Word Artist Buddy Wakefield

The Old North St. Louis Restoration Group Gallery at 2700 N. 14th Street will play host to a performance by world champion poetry slam / spoken word artist Buddy Wakefield.

Friday, March 7, 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.: CAT Cafe Open House in Old North

Please join Old North St. Louis Restoration Group and the Community Arts Training (CAT) Institute of the St. Louis Regional Arts Commission for CAT Café Open House in Old North St. Louis as we convene the CAT community and the greater St. Louis community to experience what arts-based community action looks like in the Old North neighborhood.

The evening will offer opportunities to experience some of what the arts organizations located in Old North have to offer. Participating locations include Old North St. Louis Restoration Group Gallery, Firecracker Press, STL ArtWorks, and 14th Street Artist Community.

Friday, March 7th, 2014

5:30 p.m. - 6:15 p.m. Reception

6:15 p.m. - 6:20 p.m. Welcome

6:20 p.m. - 6:45 p.m. Arts in Old North

6:45 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Neighborhood Exploration & Activities

Featured Artwork in Old North St. Louis Restoration Group Gallery:
Reflections of a Private Public
Prints & Works by Matty Kleinberg
A visual dialogue about places left behind and re-discovered.
Artworks about Old North St. Louis presented in the neighborhood they depict.

RSVP through Eventbrite is requested by clicking HERE.


Families are welcome!

Location: Old North St. Louis Restoration Group is located at 2700 N. 14th St. (intersection of 14th St. & Montgomery Ave.), 1 block south of Crown Candy Kitchen.
Free parking is available in the lot behind the building.

For more information, please contact Claire at claire@onsl.org.

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Friday, February 21, 2014

Celebrating the Life of Teresa Leahey Johnson, 1934-2014

We recently learned that former Old North resident Teresa Leahey Johnson has passed away after a short illness.  Although Teresa had lived all over the world at various points in her life, when she moved into Old North, she indicated that she wanted it to be her last move.  As it turned out, declining health forced her to move out of her apartment on Wright Street and into assisted living at Little Sisters of the Poor a few years ago, and then again to a senior living community closer to family in Kirkwood.

When Teresa was in Old North, she could be counted on to show up for just about every event or meeting that she could fit into her schedule - and if she couldn’t make it to one of our meetings, it was usually because she had already made a commitment to another meeting elsewhere.  Even after Teresa was no longer in the neighborhood, she managed to recruit a friend to drive her back into the neighborhood as often as she could make it.  And since Teresa enjoyed the art of conversation, she could be counted on to be one of the last people to still be there, long after everyone else had gone home.

Demonstrating her initiative and support for the causes she believed in, Teresa held a sidewalk sale along 14th Street to support the Urban Studio Cafe.

Demonstrating her initiative and support for the causes she believed in, Teresa held a sidewalk sale along 14th Street to support the Urban Studio Cafe.

Teresa showed up for almost every community event, such as the opening day celebration for North City Farmers' Market in 2009.

Teresa showed up for almost every community event, such as the opening day celebration for North City Farmers' Market in 2009.

As seen in the photo above, Teresa was always ready to lend a hand, as she did with volunteering to help dispense ice cream at the 2010 Old North House & Community Tour.

Teresa was always ready to lend a hand, as she did with volunteering to help dispense ice cream at the 2010 Old North House & Community Tour.

We were greatly enriched by Teresa’s stories, and even though her visits had been less frequent in recent years, we will all miss Teresa’s positive outlook on life and her passion and commitment to community-building.  Because Old North meant so much to Teresa, we’re happy that her friends will pay tribute to her by gathering at the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group gallery at 4 p.m. Saturday after stopping by to pick up a treat from Crown Candy Kitchen.  The gathering is open to all who wish to celebrate the life and contributions of Teresa.

WHAT'S NEW IN OLD NORTH

Welcome to the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group's blog. What's New in Old North chronicles the dramatic transformation under way in the neighborhood of Old North St. Louis. As a neighborhood just north of Downtown St. Louis, Old North is becoming a dynamic urban village of new and historic homes, a landmark eating establishment, beautiful community gardens, and a diverse, friendly, and engaged community.

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