Currently Wandering » Outdoor Family, Adventure Travel, Simple Living - Family of 5 Traveling the United States in an Airstream.

St. Louis Missouri and the Gateway Arch

“Look mom! We can go to the top!”

“No, you can’t. I’m sure you can’t.”

This was supposed to be a quick stop. We had spent the afternoon at the St. Louis Science Center and were just stopping by the Gateway Arch on our way back to Carlyle, Illinois when a quick stop turned into an extended stay. Here’s where my clueless self comes to light. I had no idea that the Gateway Arch is actually part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial. Also included are the Museum of Westward Expansion, and the Old Courthouse.  Turns out Jefferson was quite the man. He played a huge roll in the Louisiana Purchase and the westward expansion of the United States. The Gateway Arch is a perfect symbol representing the spirit of the western pioneers and was appropriately named after him.

As it was, my kids only had time to convince me to ride to the top (once again, no idea you could) for the stunning view over St. Louis, Missouri. They totally played the “Washington-Monument-is-closed-so-we-can’t-go-to-the-top-of-that-but-can-we-PLEASE-go-to-the-top-of-this-one” card. I feel for it hook, line, and sinker and loved every minute. The Gateway Arch is actually taller than the Washington Monument anyway, so props to that.

I actually feel pretty dumb – usually I do a little more research on places we are going but this one took me completely by surprise. It was the most spontaneous, fun thing I think I’ve done with the kids yet and the excitement was evident all over their faces. Except for Cara who got extremely anxious and climbed into my lap the second we stepped into the small, circular elevator car. She won’t admit it though. Her memory of the event involves zero scaredy-catness.

Oh- and props to the awesome Ranger that entertained Cara with Candy Crush when she had a panic attack/tantrum about waiting 15 minutes for the next elevator (and I use that term loosely) down.

When we visited: August 2013

Ages of Children: 7,6,3

 

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  • danielle - We go through here twice a year and have never been inside the arch! I went into the museum as a child but have never done it with my boys! I am hoping to change that really soon!ReplyCancel

    • danielle - Well we did it! We just went through St. Louis on the way to visit family and actually stopped this time! Thanks for the extra push! Seeing your post pushed me to not pass it again without stopping!ReplyCancel

      • Jess - Hooray! I’m so glad you did. Wasn’t it awesome? Did you have time to explore the museum underground? I’m so sad I didn’t know about it and didn’t plan time to earn our Jr. Ranger Badges. We are just going to have to go back!ReplyCancel

        • danielle - We did! We did not go to the top this time but we did look around the museum. It was a little dry for the boys but they really enjoyed all of the scenes that were set up. We have never actually done Jr. Ranger Badges! I know my boys would enjoy it but usually spend most of our time hiking. We tried it at the Grand Canyon but never finished it!ReplyCancel

  • The Gateway Arch and The Museum of Westward Expansion ~St. Louis, MO « daniellehuddlestonphotography.com - […] seeing this blog post at Currently Wandering I was determined to stop this […]ReplyCancel

  • What is the National Park Junior Ranger Program? » Currently Wandering - […] Ranger programs. Many people don’t realize they are even in a NPS run site – when we visited the St. Louis Arch three years ago I was shocked that there was an entire museum below ground run by the National park […]ReplyCancel

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