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St. Louis Planting Calendar From Seed St. Louis!

Want to know when is the best time to plant your veggies and fruits in St. Louis?

Seed St. Louis has a local planting calendar to help!

Check it out here: 542c0a3c-46e3-432b-9bc4-0379f7d1453e.pdf (ctctusercontent.com)

 

Join MDC and partners March 19 for an epic cleanup and festival in Meramec River Watershed

Photo: MDC

Missouri Stream Teams and Dome Life are organizing a large-scale cleanup event, followed by a festival with food and live music.

The Meramec River is an aquatic gem in the St. Louis region—a great river for floating, fishing, and recreation.  Part of what makes a great river great is the watershed that surrounds it and feeds it.

The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), Missouri Stream Teams, and Dome Life invite the public to be part of an epic cleanup event to help make the Meramec and its watershed a better place, and to a festival after to celebrate the success.

The Dome Life Stream Team Mid-Meramec River Cleanup will take place Saturday, March 19 starting at 8 a.m.  The public is invited to join in this effort that includes both land and water trash cleanups, and invasive plant removal projects along 26 miles of the Meramec River.

“This is an extraordinary opportunity for all of us to improve the Meramec watershed and its natural communities, and to make the area a better place to recreate, enjoy, and live in,” said MDC Resource Science Aid, Brian Waldrop.

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Missouri Severe Weather Preparedness Week is March 7 – 11

Missourians are reminded to prepare and plan for severe weather and participate in Statewide Tornado Drill on Tuesday, March 8

On Dec. 10, 2021, severe storms and six confirmed tornadoes in Missouri killed two people and destroyed or damaged hundreds of homes and buildings, as well as 20 large transmission towers and lines that move power between Missouri and Arkansas. The storm system serves as another reminder that deadly tornadoes can strike any time of year.

To prepare, from March 7 to 11, the National Weather Service, State Emergency Management Agency and local emergency managers encourage Missourians to learn more about severe weather and how to protect themselves during Missouri Severe Weather Preparedness Week. Missouri’s annual Statewide Tornado Drill will also be held on Tuesday, March 8 at 10 a.m. (Some Missouri communities may choose to conduct the drill on a different day due to conflicting local events.)

“Although many Missourians associate severe weather with the spring and summer months, there is no tornado season,” State Emergency Management Agency Director Jim Remillard said. “Dangerous and sometimes deadly tornadoes, thunderstorms and flooding can happen year-round. That’s why it’s incredibly important to have an emergency plan in place and talk to your family about when to take action before severe weather strikes your area.”

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Just Moms STL Blasts Inaction On Radioactive Landfill After Years Of Promises To Clean Up St Louis Atomic Legacy

West Lake Landfill

By Don Corrigan

Co-Founder of Just Moms STL Dawn Chapman is expressing anger that there is no clear schedule to clean up radioactive waste in a Bridgeton landfill. She is joined by state lawmakers who are tired of years of the EPA dragging its feet.

The landfill could be releasing radioactive pollution due to an underground fire in the area landfill. Environmental experts fear that if the fire mixes with the contamination, North County residents could face more woes and possible evacuation.

The radioactive waste was generated in St. Louis when weapons-grade uranium was refined for use in the top-secret Manhattan project. St. Louis is increasingly known around the country as “Atomic City” for its problems from careless procedures used in producing the first atomic bomb.

Radioactive byproducts from producing yellow cake for bombs was shipped away from riverfront operations in open trucks. It was simply dumped haphazardly in sites around North St. Louis County.

Just Moms STL launched the campaign for the long overdue cleanup in 2013. In 2019, the EPA agreed to remediate the site after Chapman, Karen Nichol and their group campaigned to protect their community from radiation placed in the landfill nearly 50 years ago.

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March Promises Us Some Weird “Wizard of Oz” Weather

North of Hannibal, Mo, 2003. Photo: STL NWS.

By Don Corrigan

March brings us Mardi Gras, Irish revelry, International Fanny Pack Day and wild-ass weather. Tornadoes are just around the corner, which is why it is an American family tradition to watch “The Wizard of Oz” on TV in March.

There is no better movie tornado scene than Dorothy and her little dog Toto trying to find shelter as a Kansas cyclone bears down on them. The tornado in “Oz” is every bit as scary as anything in the more recent movie, “Twister.”

If “The Wizard of Oz” classic were filmed today, the setting would have to be moved from Kansas to Missouri. That’s because changing weather patterns have meteorologists telling us that Tornado Alley is moving eastward.

Missouri and states to the southeast are seeing more and more tornadoes. On a recent drive to the Florida Panhandle, this scribe witnessed plenty of tornado damage in Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama.

Meteorologists are predicting twice as many tornadoes this spring because of what used to be called “global warming.” That terminology has changed to “climate change,” because a warming atmosphere gives us weather extremes of hot and cold.

February 2022 has exhibited this phenomenon. It has been a roller coaster. Sunny, balmy days followed by ice, sleet and snow and an occasional polar vortex. It has been roller coaster weather.

The weather roller coaster of extremes in February has put us on a track for violent tornadoes in March. So grab Toto and be ready to take shelter as dark and ominous roll clouds wind their way up I-44 in Missouri, a super highway which has become Missouri’s very own Tornado Alley.

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Washington State Park Celebrates Civilian Conservation Corps Company 1743 With Open House & Hike On Feb. 26

In honor of Black History Month, team members at Washington State Park invite the public to join them in celebrating the work of Civilian Conservation Corps Company 1743 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 26. Park team members will be available during this open house event at Thunderbird Lodge to discuss Company 1743’s contribution to the park, display historic photographs and discuss historical record accounts of the company’s time at the park.

Since Black History Month 2022’s theme is “Black Health and Wellness,” interpretive tream members will lead a guided hike on the 1,000 Steps Trail at 1 p.m. to support this initiative. This trail was built by Company 1743, and displays their stonework and highlights the park’s natural resources. The hike is 1.25 miles long over a natural surface.

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WGHS Hall of Famer: Joseph Sohm’s Lens Captures The Best Of America

All Photos: Joe Sohm photos from his work in early February along the Great River Road near Alton, Illinois, for his compendium of Images of America covering all 50 U.S. States.

By Don Corrigan

Sometimes a photographer points the camera lens on a subject and creates a great profile. Sometimes the camera lens turns 180 degrees and creates a great profile – of the pro behind the camera.

Such has been the case for professional photographer and videographer Joseph Sohm, a 1966 Webster Groves High School graduate, who was inducted onto the school’s prestigious Wall of Fame.

Sohm has been profiled by CBS MarketWatch, PBS NewsHour, Esquire magazine, USA Today, the San Francisco Examiner and more. Sohm has received this “earned media” because of literally hundreds of thousands of images he has produced in a five-decades career.

Photographer and videographer Sohm has had his work appear in National Geographic, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Time Magazine, Newsweek, Sports Illustrated and Vogue.

His images of U.S. Presidents have appeared – everywhere. Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush also have drawn on Sohm’s iconic images to celebrate the American spirit during their White House years.

If you want to talk about U.S. Presidents, Sohm will start with Teddy Roosevelt. That’s because of T.R.’s keen interest in protecting natural landscapes and establishing national parks.

Sohm’s favorite park is Yosemite known for its granite towers, deep valleys and the tranquility of the High Sierra. Yosemite is where T.R. met with the legendary John Muir and was converted to become a conservationist president.

“John Muir outlined to Teddy ‘why’ we need to save our natural heritage,” said Sohm. “Since then, many U.S. Presidents added onto this heritage, including President Clinton, whom I worked for during the 1992 campaign and for his inaugural.

“What makes America unique is our belief in democracy,” said Sohm. “But what also makes us unique is our heritage of creating these national parks. We must preserve this natural heritage and our democracy.”

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Hey, Valentine, Ready For A Local Lovers’ Leap?

Starved Rock

By Don Corrigan

Lovers’ leaps, bluff areas where romance and intrigue once intertwined, are to be found all over the Midwest. However, it’s not necessary to drive 100 miles to capture the spirit of these places on Valentine’s Day.

In Webster-Kirkwood, happy couples can catch the spirit by visiting high points overlooking Deer Creek and Shady Creek in Webster Groves. A bluff trail at Emmenegger Park in Kirkwood can also offer romantic inspiration.

“Emmenegger Park is a good Valentine’s Day destination because it rises on its western side to a bluff overlooking the Meramec River,” said Bob Rubright. “There are some nice vistas and rocky outcroppings for sitting.

“People once referred to the area below as Chrysler Valley because of the car factory. That’s gone,” said Rubright. “In any case, it must have been a lovelier site before the factories and Interstate 44.”

Kirkwood resident Rubright has been to many of the more distant lovers’ leap sites in the region to research his books on hiking trails. His 2002 book is “Weekend Walks in St. Louis and Beyond.” A new one is in the works, titled, “Two Feet in St. Louis and Nearby.”

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2 Big Winter Storms Began in St. Louis on 2/2/22

by Don Corrigan

Few St. Louisans realize that two of this season’s worst winter storms in succession began on 2/2/22. Surely Channel 2 News in St Louis must have taken note of this on “Twosday” when it all began.

A numerology anomaly will be repeated again this month on 2/22/22, and conspiracy theorists are already predicting two rounds of storms for the Gateway City in late February — around 2/22/22.

Here is another fear factor factoid for February: the weather service has released a spring forecast for the Midwest predicting twice as many tornadoes in spring 2022  – compared to 2021. This would mean a jump from about 72 to 142 twisters in year 2022.

The sequence of 2’s, which started two decades ago, will end this February 22, 2022. This month will witness three such dates altogether – February 2, 2022, February 20, 2022, and February 22, 2022.

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Ozark Forests Find Advocates At Webster University

Protester on upturned vehicle. Photo by Orin Langelle, photojournalist, environmentalist and a graduate of Webster University 1978.

By Don Corrigan

Trees have never been so important as now. Stands of trees can help counteract harmful climate change. That’s, in part, why a national and local fight continues to halt destruction of old growth forests.

Residents interested in the fight for trees may want to attend the film, “Shawnee Showdown: Keep the Forest Standing.” The documentary will show at 7 p.m., Feb. 18, at Winifred Moore Auditorium on the campus of Webster University.

It documents a past battle in the 1980s and 1990s, when a dedicated group of activists fought on the ground and in the courts to stop clear-cutting, oil and gas drilling, and ATV use in the Shawnee National Forest located in Southern Illinois.

Jan Wilder, Rene Cook and unidentified child. Photo by Orin Langelle.

The activists were successful for a time, but the battle begins anew because the prohibition on many such activities in the Shawnee National Forest was lifted several years ago. That gives the film particular relevance.

Karla Armbruster, an English and Sustainability Studies professor at Webster University, was instrumental in bringing the documentary to campus. She cited some photos in the film that were taken by world-renowned photographer, Orin Langelle, who honed his talents in Webster’s media studies program.

“I associated this kind of protest with the Pacific Northwest and was thrilled to learn that it happened here in the Midwest,” said Armbruster. “It sounds like more activism of this kind is needed now to keep our forests healthy.

“This film offers not only a history lesson but also encouragement that ordinary people, who care, can really come together and make a difference,” she added.

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