St. Louis has one of the best zoos in the country -- not to mention it's free -- and it's a summer staple for families. However, the St. Louis Zoo (Forest Park, 314-781-0900) is looking to attract a different demographic with its annual Jammin' at the Zoo, Wednesday, July 24 at 6 p.m. -- this year, with beer!
Hosted by the Young Zoo Friends, Jammin' at the Zoo will feature a wine and beer tasting from over 50 wineries and several St. Louis micro-breweries. The Zoo's Ginnie Westmoreland says this is the first year since 2008 that beer has been included. "The zoo gets over three million visitors a year -- we know how to get moms with strollers. This is for the twenty and thirtysomethings who think the zoo isn't for them," she says.
The regular zoo menu will be available -- you know, hot dogs, nachos -- but there will also be cheese to complement the wine, barbecued pulled pork, grilled chicken and other sandwiches. You can also turn into a date night and go on the "Wild Romance" tour and learn about different animals' mating habits. Really.
Local bands 3 Pedros, Dirty Muggs, American Idle and Paint the Earth will be playing, and Westmoreland assures us that these are not lame classic rock cover bands. If you can't make it, there's another Jammin' at the Zoo on August 28 with Groove Thang, Griffin & The Gargoyles, My Friend Mike and Boogie Chyld.
It's free for zoo members, and $10 for non-members. The tasting package, which is $10 for members and $20 for non-members, gets you wine and beer from 6-8 p.m. from over 200 wineries and breweries like 4 Hands (1220 South 8th Street, 314-436-1559) and Schlafly (7260 Southwest Avenue, Maplewood, 314-241-2337). Call 314-646-4771 for tickets.