Go Here: City Museum in St. Louis
When a friend found out that I was visiting St. Louis a few years ago, she made me promise to visit City Museum. I wish I was the kind of person who asked more questions, so that I would have been dressed more appropriately for climbing into metal sky tunnels that lead to abandoned planes.
City Museum is, hands down, the most awesome place I have ever paid to get into. The building itself is a sprawling, 600,000 square-foot shoe factory which has been transformed into an incredible hybrid of funhouse, junkyard, fantasy, and...indoor cave? Oh yeah, and aquarium with a tunnel through the shark tank?!
City Museum was created by sculptor and entrepreneur Bob Cassily, and opened to the public in 1997. Most of the materials he used for the project came from the city itself, including old building materials, salvaged bridges, bank vaults, chimneys, and two abandoned aircrafts. Uh, also, there's a bar that's open late on the weekends, so you can drink whiskey and climb around in the giant ball pit, which is both huge, and full of gigantic rubber balls, instead of small ones.
Is City Museum for kids? Yes. Is it for adults? Yes. Is it for sour-pusses? Yes, even a sour-puss will have trouble suppressing a smile while sliding down a six-story, twisting slide made from an old shoe-chute inside of a man-made cave. Go ahead, try.
I'm sure the rest of St. Louis is lovely, but I didn't see much of it. This place is worth the trip all on it's own. Be warned, though: In St. Louis, "pizza" means a weird, thin cracker with ketchup and Cheese Wiz on it, apparently. And they love it.