What to Do in St Louis (Besides Me)

By Kendra Holliday | September 5, 2019

I’ve been having lots of national speakers (Joan Price! Marty Klein!), friends, and esteemed clients travel to St Louis to see ME or attend conferences, events or fulfill prestigious speaking engagements, and they often ask me what St Louis has going on.

Well, let me tell you – there’s A LOT going on between the legs of The Arch!

Lady Lascivious Liberty! BE FREE!!!!

Lady Lascivious Liberty! BE FREE!!!!

From the honorary sex-positive Ambassador and Queen Whore Madame of St Louis, here are my suggestions!

The City Museum downtown is the MUST SEE place in St Louis. TRUST ME AND EVERYONE ELSE AND GO THERE. You can climb around and explore so many levels – from the rooftop to the underground caves! Listen to my friend Max talk about the interactive features of this hardcore unique museum. Kids love this place, and so do adults. (Pssst, there are nooks and crannies for getting injured, or a little nookie with your sweetheart if you’re lucky!) Seriously, I love taking people there. Every time I explain it to them on the way there, they say, “yeah we have something like that in our city”, and then when they get there, they shit their pants and I feel crazyproudsmug. 🙂

Shameless Grounds is a rare gem – we are SO happy to have it! It’s a sex-positive community space and coffee shop. The food is really good! They host so many great events and have a sex library! (Psst – look for the wall of beautiful vulvas backlit above the bookshelves 😉 ) Be sure and check out their calendar while you’re in town, and while you’re at it, check out SEX+STL calendar, too. We cross pollinate all the time, and the entire community benefits!

Joan Price and me at Shameless Grounds!

Joan Price and me at Shameless Grounds!

And while you’re in the neighborhood, go pay your respects to the Anheuser-Busch Clydesdales. Not only are they spectacular beasts, but they offer better hospitality than most people — free beer!

If you have a car (public transportation is NOT the best in St Louis, but now we have Uber and Lyft!), drive around the city and marvel at all the green and red – so many trees and brick buildings. Beautiful architecture. There’s even a documentary on St Louis BRICKS by my friend Bill Streeter!

HOLY SHIT – did you know that most of our attractions in beautiful Forest Park are FREE?! You just have to be aware of $Parking$, incidentals, and Special Exhibits.

If you like art, you better get your ass to our incredible Art Museum. Be sure and say hi to my boyfriend (he may or may not practice Responsible Hedonism…):

I just want to climb on him!

I just want to climb on him! But omg I better not.

When I used to strip on the East side back when I was 19, I would often be driving to “work”, feeling a sense of dread, then I would declare a silent scream FUCK IT, and bust a U-turn and spend the day at the glorious Art Museum instead. One placed sucked my soul, the other place nourished it…

I like taking different people to the museum and pretending it’s a giant Art Mart, and we get to pick one thing out of each gallery. I’ll say in a loud voice, “Where are the price tags on these things?!”

But whatever you do, DON’T TOUCH ANYTHING in the museum, unless maybe a toilet seat. Otherwise, the security guard stationed next to every piece of art will cut you.

The History Museum is nice, if you’re into that kind of thing. They had a fun Prohibition exhibit a while back, as well as one on Lingerie throughout the decades. And Little Black Dresses! And toys! They have a great marble selection in their gift shop! I have a lot of them in my bedroom…

I took this pic at the History Museum!

I'm ready to see you!

I’m ready to see you!

And if you like history, The Campbell House Museum downtown is splendid.

The Griot Black History Museum is enlightening. You’re guaranteed to learn new things there.

Our ZOO is one of the best. Every year, they update a section so it is better for the animals, and fun for all us gawkers. One of these days, they will get around to the lions and tigers and bears, oh my!



Get your geek on at the Science Center. They’ve featured some really fun exhibits in the past, like Bodyworlds, Dr Who, and Sherlock Holmes.

If you fancy gorgeous gardens, visit our Botanical Garden. I’ve been to gardens in other countries, and this one rivals all of them. This is one of those places I go when I want to have a ME date.

Iris Garden at MoBot

Iris Garden at MoBot

Beautiful Tower Grove Park is right next door, and has the most variety of trees in the city.

(PSA: Before I go any further, I should tell you that St Louis has a bad rep for crime, but don’t let that keep you quaking in the closet of your hotel room. Be smart and observant. Pay attention to your surroundings. Keep your head on swivel. Don’t leave valuables in your car.)

If you seek creative therapy, book some time at Mauhaus Cat Cafe and Lounge – very relaxing, and good people (mostly geeky cat-loving women!)

If you want even MORE immersive relaxation, I highly recommend FLOAT STL – meditation tanks – now two locations! I bring my own silicone earplugs.

If you like books, The Central Library downtown is not to be missed! It is GORGEOUS!

And The Union Station downtown is a magnificent building to behold. It possesses much symbolism (most everything is showcased in sevens – seven ladies, seven windows, seven lamplights) and it has this amazing stained glass triptych above one of the main entrances – the proud goddess of St Louis, flanked by the goddesses of San Francisco and New York. The women are supposed to represent major train stations from the 1890’s, but I like to pretend they represent sex-positivity – we have so much of that on the East and West coast, and Sex Positive St Louis bridges the gap. Oh, and you’ve seen the huge Arch at the river, look for the mysterious whispering arch that is tucked into one of the entrances.

Stained glass at Union Station

Stained glass at Union Station

Now that I’ve shared all my suggestions, check out all my friend’s suggestions. I put a request up on facebook asking for their favs, and I got treated to a LANDSLIDE of great ideas!

Next door to Washington University, home of sex researchers Masters and Johnson, is The Delmar Loop, which has lots of fun restaurants and locally owned shops. I saw Iron and Wine at Blueberry Hill before they got bigger, and then again at The Pageant, which is right next to The Moonrise, a swanky hotel with a rooftop bar. So many great shops and restaurants, including funky Blue Ocean for sushi, and Seoul Taco for Mexican Korean fusion. Further down the road is Third Degree Glass Factory, where I’ve gotten a couple glass pumpkins, so pretty!

South Grand in the city has some amazing ethnic restaurants to choose from – my favorite restaurant Meskerem is there! And Merb’s has bombalicious chocolate covered strawberries (they explode all juicy on you!) and molasses puffs! Best spring rolls go to Banh Mi So!

Speaking of fine chocolates, St Louis is home to one of the Top 10 Chocolatiers in North America – Rick Jordan Chocolatier. You’ll have to drive out to Chesterfield for it, but it’s worth it. Rick is very talented and personable.

If you want to get all custardy, then go to Ted Drewes Frozen Custard. It’s kindof like the Arch and shitty St Louis style pizza, but better – you have to try it at least once. I actually like Crown Candy Kitchen better, which is right near my sister’s cute Little Free Library!

How to be a King among women!

How to be a King among women!

We have many beautiful cemeteries, including one of my favorites, richly peaceful and historic Bellefontaine Cemetery.

If you’re a vegetarian-friendly, local supporting gal like me, you’ll appreciate SweetArt and LuLu’s Local Eatery, both near South Grand.

About five minutes away is Cherokee Street. SO MUCH FLAVOR THERE. You might get burned, watch out! Mexican galore, The Fortune Teller Bar, The Whiskey Ring… and STL-Style, where you can’t spell “style” withouth “stl”!

Like jazz? Go to the super slick Jazz St. Louis! This swanky club is right next to Powell Hall, The Fabulous Fox Theatre, and Saint Louis University (SLU without the T :), one of the prettiest college campuses.

If you want to have a gay ol’ time, check out the Manchester Grove district. Of note is The Monocle, which features live music and burlesque. My kind of decor – I’ve been featured on their beautiful Emerald Room stage for a sold-out Dirty Birdie Story Hour!

Maplewood has some amazing shops to check out – art, microbrewery, spices, coffee, beard cream supplies, gourmet dog treats, deep fried deviled eggs at The Crow’s Nest, which features a Heavy Metal brunch, eek!

If you have toddler people, you can visit The Magic House (ugh, the last time I was there, I gave my man a blowjob in the bathroom just to make it tolerable). I actually try and do something naughty at any location in St Louis, so don’t feel scandalized about that. Assume that I’ve left a symbolic sexual mark at every location, and feel free to follow in my frisky footsteps (but for the love of goddess, don’t get caught! Responsible hedonism, people!)

And speaking of kids, Faust Park in Chesterfield has The Butterfly House and the Carousel, which are both marvelous places to go on a cold winter day.

If you’re interested in Ferguson, there’s a lot of good stuff buried in the infamy – Cathy’s Kitchen, Ferguson Brew Co (re-opened after a kitchen fire!), Whistle Stop (just stick with the frozen custard) and Montrey’s Cigar Lounge.

If you’re in the St Charles area (over the MO River), check out historic Main Street – it is soooo romantic! Lots of good shops and history there, including the First Capitol of MO! In December they go all out with Victorian holiday cheer.

If you’re down near South County St Louis, you can visit Laumeier Sculpture Park. It’s a hidden treasure, and one many former St Louisans visit when they are in town. (Psst! Look for dear Leelinau up in one of the oak trees along a hiking trail…)

If you want screen free, cozy bars, try Fox and Hounds, Dressel’s, and Planter’s House – ooh the Bullock RoomIron Barley is also rustic as fuck.

If you like getting high and mighty, run over to the East side and check out Cahokia Mounds in Illinois. Cahokia was larger than London in AD 1250! (Psst don’t tell anyone, but I had a moongasm there once!)

Full moon

Full moon

And if you want to see other kinds of mounds, you can visit the strip clubs over there, like The Hustler Club and PT’s in Centreville. I got fisted there one time !!!

National Blues Museum – how did WE get so lucky?! If you’re into the St Louis Blues music, go to BB’s Jazz, Blues and Soup Kitchen, or Blues City Deli. And if you’re fun-loving and like hanging out with hot chicks wearing body paint in lieu of bikinis, The Social House is nearby. Or if you like fresh veggies and weird wares, go to Soulard Farmers Market (get the mini-donuuuuts!) They SAY the Soulard area is named after Antoine Soulard, but I think it really translates to “drunken.” 🙂

PHEW! Did I miss anything?! Leave comments below!



Beth 2015-11-04 20:25:26

The Grove! http://www.thegrovestl.com/
“The Grove is a growing vibrant business and entertainment district along Manchester between Kingshighway and Vandeventer in St. Louis City. In the Grove you can find a diversity of independently owned restaurants, nightlife, retail, and services. It is also home to the premier nightlife in the area, and is a thriving center for the LGBT, artist, and cycling communities in the St. Louis area.”


Algernon 2016-11-20 00:04:18

Excellent, a longer version of an email you sent me once, when I believed I was about to visit St. Louis. That was very helpful, and this even more so – if I ever get to reschedule that trip.


Rhett 2016-11-21 19:44:21

Blueberry Hill was a fun place to eat. The owner’s memorabilia collections are a lot of fun to see.


Joan Price 2017-08-27 11:40:57

Thank you for sharing your city with me! You made my visit so much more than a speaking gig — you shared your favorite places, your favorite people, and your sweet home with me. I’ll always remember my time in St. Louis.


    Kendra Holliday 2017-08-27 11:49:20

    Aww thank you so much! I’m so glad your visit was a success, full of fun people and experiences. I hope we can spend time again soon.


Chris 2019-09-16 11:02:44

St. Louis gives the US not only so many beautiful red brick buildings still standing, but the Mesker Brothers Iron works that operated in St. Louis from about 1880 to 1950 gave the downtown of just about every city and town reachable by river from St. Louis decorative facades of sheet steel, tin, and iron. I live in one of those “Meskers” as they’re known in a small town up-river. Unfortunately, because the buildings are so old, and many small river towns in the Midwest are dying, our Meskers are in disrepair or being torn down. Here’s a link to a beautiful 1889 example of St. Louis craftsmanship that made its way all the way to Washington State and that still looks stunning today.


Erika 2019-10-02 07:06:31

Hamburger Mary’s

Great Sunday Brunch, Live Drag shows and bottomless mimosa’s



    Kendra Holliday 2019-10-02 08:10:39

    oh yes!! They were closed for a bit, glad they are open again!!


Andrew 2021-06-19 23:30:34

Than you for sharing about St. Louis. When I was about ten my parents and older brother, took a vacation from Desmoines to St Louis. We saw the Arch. Went to a Cardinals baseball game. To the Royal Queen on the Mississippi. That year we saw Field of Dreams. 1988 or 1989. I’m hoping to use your suggestions to catch some of the the things I missed during that first trip. Again, Thank you


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