Northern Italy’s Soave Wine Region Featured in New Wine Enthusiast Column Monday, Jun 20 2011 

Northwest St. Louis County, particularly the historic municipalities through which St. Charles Rock Road runs, have begun a suburban image renewal effort. St. Charles Rock Road began as an “Indian trail” and has a fascinating local history that may come as a surprise to those in the metro St. Louis area unfamiliar with it.

St. Charles Rock Road is the main drag through St. Louis, and long-time St. Ann resident, Steve Erdelen, has taken a lead in the image renewal strategy. He has begun a new publication (in newspaper “tab” format for now) to bring good attention back to the businesses and residents of this Northwest St. Louis County area just south of Lambert-St. Louis International Airport. I am doing my part to support the publication by writing a wine column for it.

Click on the link here to see the column.

**  Rock Road Reporter_Summer Wine Column  **

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Today, in terms of place-marking, the best known image along St. Charles Rock Road in St. Ann is probably the animated majorette sign at the Airway Centre. The sign dates back to the mid-century days when the Airway was one of multiple drive-in theaters along “the Rock Road.” Mid-century describes the vintage vibe the area largely retains.

In addition to the Airway sign, other familiar mid-century landmarks here include:

  • Chuck-A-Burger, and its summer “Cruise Nights”
  • McCarty Studio Photography, and its retro Lustron building storefront
  • Carhop Auto Sales, and its “bat-wing” service station building (formerly housing a vintage modern Phillips 66)
  • Post-World-War II housing styles in a walkable village environment
  • Commercial buildings dating to 1943 in a small-town downtown strip (corner of St. Charles Rock Road and St. Gregory Lane) originally occupied by a grocery, hardware store, realty office, drug store, barber and beauty shops

St. Charles Rock Road was laid out by the Spanish in 1772 and was the first road through St. Louis County, largely following the old “Indian trail.” It served as the road to St. Charles, Missouri—the state’s first capitol.

I hope you enjoy the column and will enjoy a bottle of Soave while reading it!


Save the Date: Wednesday, April 1, 2009, 5:30-7:30 pm Sunday, Mar 15 2009 


St. Louis-based writer Diana Losciale and a few of her colleagues are hosting a casual networking night for the St. Louis creative community on Wednesday evening, April 1 at One Campbell Plaza, a St. Louis Landmark.


About the Event

** This is a free event.  **
TIME: 5:30 to 7:30 pm, Wednesday evening, April 1, 2009
PLACE: One Campbell Plaza on The Hill, Suite 2B – St. Louis, MO 63139
(directions will be attached to the formal Invitation–coming soon)
BRING:  Business cards to share
RECEIVE:  Light refreshments (drinks, appetizers and Red Velvet cupcakes)
WHO: Writers, graphic artists, journalists, editors and other communication specialists 
WHAT: A gathering, meet-and-greet, catching up, saying hello, making connections
WHY: Because  we need to connect with one another in terms of projects, opportunities, what’s what, openings, and networking (old word, new meaning). And because LinkedIn and emails are not enough. This is about face time.
Let me know if you any questions, and I’ll put you in touch with the answers. Diana says to spread the word: forward this, and post it anywhere you like to get attention. Thanks! 

Editor’s note: Diana, you had me at the Red Velvet cupcakes … .   istock_000005154086xsmall_red-velvet5

About The Venue

Inside the Plaza

Inside the Plaza

I ran over to One Campbell Plaza today to take photos to include with this post to help orient anyone not familiar with the venue. The name sounds new, but the building has an incredible local history that I will share with here. I was completely fascinated by the massive, red-brick building and courtyard. It’s at 59th and Arsenal and sits on its own piece of elevated ground—kind of “a hill on The Hill.”  

The Missouri Institute for Mental Health Web site ( says this about the origins and history of the buildings at Campbell Plaza: “It all began with Kemper College, the Protestant-Episcopal counterpart of St. Louis University. Situated at Kingshighway and Arsenal, its 129 acre tract extended along Arsenal to Hampton. When Kemper went bankrupt in 1847, they sold their property …  Thus, the college’s buildings were converted to Poor House #1. Poor House #2 was later erected at 5900 Arsenal. Today, it is called the Campbell Plaza Building … .” 

Wow:  There really were such things as “Poor Houses.”

For a bit more detail, here is another > LINK < with historic photos by the current owners and reators.

One Campbell Plaza is a renovated historic structure that has had the TLC of Duffy Nuerenberger Realty. They have been behind a lot of historic renovations and historically appropriate in-fill properties throughout the City of St. Louis. I took some photos over there today to help orient everyone to the general location, parking, etc., but here is a > LINK < to a brief virtual tour of the property that is worth your time. Click that link, and then click on Tour on the Web page that comes up. So, come and network and see this building and courtyard.

Here are my photos from today, plus one from Nuerenberger Duffy’s Web site, above, an overview that’s better than anything I took.

From Arsenal & 57th, the Plaza is south

From Arsenal & 59th, the Plaza is south

Back of Plaza, from Arsenal & 59th Streets

Back of Plaza, from Arsenal & 59th Streets

Inside the Plaza, plenty of parking

Inside the Plaza, plenty of parking

Charmingly renovated.

Charmingly renovated.