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Celebrating Pride in St. Louis

St. Louis, Missouri, often called the "Gateway to the West," is a city known for its rich history, architectural wonders, and diverse communities. Among its many vibrant communities, the LGBTQ community stands tall, making significant strides towards equality, and acceptance, and fostering a culture of inclusivity. St. Louis has emerged as a beacon of hope for LGBTQ individuals across the Midwest.

St. Louis is a welcoming city for LGBTQ individuals, with numerous organizations, businesses, and community centers dedicated to providing support and resources. I saw this firsthand during St. Louis Pride, a two-day festival consisting of a parade stretching 10 blocks in length. This year’s festival was headlined by superstars Idina Menzel, Kat Graham, Betty Who, and CeCe Peniston.

St. Louis boasts a range of safe spaces and supportive institutions that cater to the needs of the LGBTQ community. Places like The LGBT Center of St. Louis and the Metro Trans Umbrella Group provide invaluable resources, counseling services, and support networks.

Those looking to experience the city’s nightlife should head to The Grove, a neighborhood consisting of LGBTQ bars, nightclubs, and restaurants. Swing by Just John, Rehab, or Prism to party with the locals, who are very friendly and quite attractive.

Unwind at the Angad Arts Hotel which embodies the fusion of art, design, and hospitality. This boutique hotel, located in the historic Grand Center Arts District, offers guests a truly unique experience where every corner is a canvas waiting to be explored. Each of the hotel's 146 rooms is curated and designed by local artists, featuring vibrant colors, eclectic decor, and artistic installations that ignite the imagination. We stayed in a blue room as blue is my favorite color. The spacious suite offers a private sitting area, dining space, a large walk-in shower, and a king-size bed.

With an emphasis on creativity, the Angad Arts Hotel also houses a rotating art gallery, showcasing the works of local and international artists, as well as hosting engaging art events and workshops. The rooftop bar serves as an epicenter for nightlife in the neighborhood and offers unobscured views of the St. Louis skyline.

From its stylish accommodations to its immersive artistic atmosphere, the Angad Arts Hotel is a destination that art enthusiasts, culture seekers, and travelers alike will find truly inspiring.

During our visit, Beauty & the Beast was taking place at The Muny, an outdoor amphitheater nestled in picturesque Forest Park which stands as a cherished and historic institution dedicated to the enchanting world of musical theater. For over a century, The Muny has captivated audiences with its grand open-air amphitheater, exceptional productions, and a commitment to providing accessible and high-quality entertainment.

Founded in 1919, The Muny, short for Municipal Opera Association of St. Louis, holds the prestigious title of being the largest and oldest outdoor musical theater in the United States. Since its inception, it has become an integral part of St. Louis's cultural landscape, attracting millions of theater enthusiasts each year. Later this summer, the Muny will welcome Chess: The Musical, West Side Story, Little Shop of Horrors, Rent, and Sister Act.

To complete your St. Louis arts experience, head to the Contemporary Arts Museum (CAM), located just a few blocks from the Angad. The CAM is a dynamic and influential institution dedicated to showcasing cutting-edge contemporary art. With its striking modern architecture and thought-provoking exhibitions, the Contemporary Arts Museum provides a platform for emerging and established artists from around the world to showcase their work.

The museum's ever-evolving exhibitions encompass a wide range of artistic disciplines, including visual art, sculpture, photography, performance art, and multimedia installations. Through its thoughtfully curated exhibitions, educational programs, and community engagement initiatives, the Contemporary Arts Museum in St. Louis fosters a stimulating environment that encourages dialogue, challenges perceptions, and celebrates the diverse and ever-evolving world of contemporary art.

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Beauty & the Beast photo by Phillip Hamer


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