During Year Two of Green Spiral Tours, families experienced many magical moments, and learned directly from local entrepreneurs, farmers, educators and leaders in the sustainable field, at a wide variety of locations throughout the Saint Louis area.

Experience really is the best teacher!  Plus, bringing friends along is more fun and helps create a vibrant learning community.  At Green Spiral, we especially welcome adventurous families who like to write and photograph, will reflect and debrief online, and will share the learning via social media.

Green Spiral hosted 10 field trips in Year Two, (up two field trips from Year One).

Field Trips Include: 

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Pie Making at BEGIN New Venture Saint Patricks Center

We learned how to make pies with “Pie Oh My!” entrepreneur Jane Callahan, at the BEGIN New Venture “kitchen incubator,” a cutting edge program for local food entrepreneurs, located downtown at the Saint Patrick Center. 

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IMG_2358Bocce Ball, Herbaria and Ravioli Tour of “The Hill”

One mother’s testimonyI’ve lived on The Hill for seven

years and didn’t know all this stuff was here!”

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mail“Living Building” Tour at Tyson Learning Center 

Saint Louis is home to one of the very greenest buildings

in the world, a “Living Building” built by Washington University as a lab

and learning center. We got to see it on a rainy day. Closed to the public.  

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2011-05-20 Loden BradstreetStrawberry Picking at Thies Farms at the Creve Coeur location

Still the best place for u-pick strawberries within easy reach.        

Don’t let your kids grow up without strawberry picking at least once!

The best strategy for organic strawberry picking in Saint Louis is still DIY.

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mailRue Lafayette Cafe and Lafayette Park Pond and Playground

Saint Louis has a rich french heritage and it’s important to know at least a little something about it. Renting sailboats for the Lafayette Park pond and eating chocolate croissants is a nice way to start! This was our third year to Rue Lafayette Cafe on Lafayette Park.

 

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2011-06-09 Earthdance (4)Farm Tour at EarthDance FARMS

One of the primary movers in the Saint Louis food movement, 

EarthDance FARMS hosts regular tours on Sunday afternoons in the summer. 

If you want to explore to the front edge of the food movement, it’s a must visit!

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A river runs through it...Arrowhead Hunting 

The historic drought made this year an excellent year for arrowhead 

hunting, and it’s fascinating to hunt for artifacts from past civilizations,

which may be hiding surprisingly near you!

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Crawdad Fishing 

Missouri is home to the biggest spring fed rivers in the world,

and this makes us a biodiversity hotspot for “crawdads” (crayfish). 

We went to catch a few with very young children in Forest Park.

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Schlafly GardenworksSustainable Sensory Tour of Maplewood

The City of Maplewood is a hotspot for sustainability, 

anchored by the Gardenworks at Schlafly Bottleworks. 

We went to visit the gardens, along with sustainable

chocolate maker Kakao, and two healing arts centers:

The Salt Room and Cheryl’s Herbs. 

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mailMetro Journey to the Whispering Wall at Union Station

Union Station is again in transition, and so the annual

Metro Journey to the Whispering Wall was cancelled this year.

We are holding a bright candle for Union Station and know

that this rich cultural landmark will continue to be part of Saint Louis’ living legacy,

well into the future.

 

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Friday 13 July 2012 – 

We returned to Lafayette Park and french

cafe “Rue Lafayette” for the third year in

a row, in keeping with the Green Spiral method.

(If you can’t make a field trip this year, it

is very likely to spiral around again next year.)

Meanwhile, we know lots of people track our adventures,

and venture out on their own, with friends.

Around Bastille Day every year, we like to celebrate

our rich french heritage with a visit to

“Rue Lafayette,” a french cafe serving

famous desserts and chocolate croissants

imported from Paris.

Rue Lafayette Cafe – across from Lafayette Park

2026 Lafayette Avenue; 63104

http://ruelafayette.us/

The nature connection

begins on the outdoor patio (dogs welcome!)

and continues at the pond across the street.

At Rue Lafayette, you can rent fancy little

sailboats (we got them for free) to sail on

the pond at Lafayette Park.

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The swans and geese are beautiful,

but teach kids to respect these birds,

as swans and geese can be surprisingly mean.

Since storytelling is the language of nature,

a cautionary tale about a mean old goose snapping

at a wagging finger can really drive the point home.

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Part of the fun of spiraling back

to the same great places

is watching the places evolve.

Like many parks, Lafayette

Park is “naturalizing” an area,

by planting in a less formal,

and more natural design, using

some native plants. Naturalizing

our parks is a fairly new trend

and one worth watching and

celebrating. This year, the park

is dry, and not so pretty, so no photo.

Just after Bastille Day, we explored our French Heritage

at “Rue Lafayette” a french cafe on Lafayette Square

that serves chocolate croissants flown in from Paris.

You can bring your dog to the cafe!

(This is me, Jessie Hoagland, along

with my boy Mack and puppy Lucy)

Rent little sailboats at Rue Lafayette, and sail them

on the pond across the street in Lafayette Square.

Many stories were told about the geese and swans

that call the pond their home..

One family happened to be travelling to Europe later

that summer, and was inspired to sail boats as was

the original inspiration for the Rue Lafayette sailboats!

Here’s the link for Rue Lafayette, great destination

for croissants, cafe au lait, quiche and dog lovers.

Tell them Green Spiral sent you.

http://ruelafayette.us/