A STL Night Out: The Grand Experience

If you've followed my blog for a bit, or you know me personally, you know that I really do love my city. Saint Louis has been my home since birth, and although I've been tempted to move away, I never have. This city just always has more to discover, and I'm forever grateful for opportunities that come my way to explore it more deeply!

Saint Louis is home to a thriving, diverse arts scene. One of the driving forces behind our artists is the Kranzberg Arts Foundation. I recently had the privilege of visiting several of the Foundation's locations throughout Saint Louis's city center, such as the Kranzberg Arts Center, the .ZACK, the Grandel Theater, and The Dark Room at The Grandel. A group of influencers and their guests were invited by Socially Jen to explore, taste, and enjoy a few our way through a lovely summer evening - and I've been dreaming of the night since! Follow along with us below! 

My darling friend Ellie joined me for the evening, and you can find her blogging over at Eudaimonia. We began the evening meeting up with the other influencers at .ZACK, where we sipped cocktails at Sophie's Lounge and learned the Foundation's mission. From programs that give proceeds directly back to artists (Sophie's, for example, puts any profits from its bar directly back into the artist scene), to maintaining multiple venues and galleries, and supporting emerging creators, the Foundation has its hands in just about every aspect of the arts community. 

After we sipped cocktails on Sophie's rooftop patio, we were treated to a tour of .ZACK, which houses Music Record Shop, the .ZACK Theatre, a wedding venue, small business offices, and more. I had a little too much fun climbing into the tub featured in the wedding venue's suite. 

 Photo courtesy of  We Eat Stuff STL .

Photo courtesy of We Eat Stuff STL.

After peeping .ZACK, we took a stroll through Grand Center over to the Grandel Theater. This gorgeous theater is inside an old church, and we were invited to not only view the theater's seating area (which I've seen productions within when the space used to house the St. Louis Black Repertory Co.), but also climb all the way up into the bell tower. I was already fairly hungry, but we all certainly worked up an appetite on a 90+ degree day traipsing around in the belly of a church - luckily, dinner was next. I'd heard some pretty stellar reviews of the Dark Room, but this was my first time eating there. I have to say I was delightfully surprised with the quality and flavor of everything! Add in an expansive wine menu and a stunning charcuterie board, and you know I'll be back soon.

After filling up on some phenomenal food, we walked a little further south to the Kranzberg Arts Center. The group checked out the "Variations and Adaptations" exhibition, which is brought to the Center by Artists First - a non-profit that nurtures and cultivates the talents of artists with disabilities. We then sat down in the Center's cozy black box theater for a production of "Tangled," a feisty tale of three women vying for power, money, and attempting to maintain a friendship in the face of their struggles. With the perfect amount of drama and comedy, and perfect pop culture references, "Tangled" kept me engaged and was a perfect end to a fun evening. I have to admit that prior to this Friday night, I didn't even know there was a theater inside the Center! I'll be keeping their show calendar in mind for future entertainment. 

Thanks again to Socially Jen for the invitation to such a art-ful evening, and to the Kranzberg Arts Foundation for being wonderful hosts!

Photos (unless otherwise attributed) courtesy of Socially Jen

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