Way back in the 1980s, St. Louis punks had to rely on smeary fanzines, photocopied fliers, the New Wave Hotline and good old-fashioned word of mouth to find out which VFW hall, abandoned storefront or suburban basement was hosting their favorite bands. Information Age punks have it made: With the click of a mouse, they can plan their weekend, promote their shows, shoot the shit with like-minded souls and get the skinny on local bands.
The best place for local punks to (virtually) congregate is the St. Louis Punk Page (www.stlpunk.com), which tells you everything you could possibly want to know about the local punk scene, past and present. Jerome Gaynor created the popular site -- which gets more than 100,000 hits a month, thanks in part to its salty message boards -- and maintains it at his own expense. Now some of the bands he's helped are returning the favor in the inaugural STLPunk Heavyweight Championship. For a mere $8, you not only support the Web site but get to check out eleven -- count 'em, eleven! -- bands, ranging from the raunchy, impossibly charismatic garage punk of the Electric (pictured) to the high-energy skater punk of Split 77, from the classic Cali-styled punk of Ultraman (formed in 1986 and still going strong) to the ghoul-rock/horror-punk stylings of Crypt 33. The all-ages marathon starts at 4 p.m. and lasts until 1 o'clock the next morning. For more details, see www.stlpunk.com/benefit.asp.