The Metropolitan Zoological Park and Museum District is a cultural district in St. Louis Missouri that, through the citizens and taxpayers of St. Louis City and County, aims to maintain five sub-districts that are unique and essential to the area. These sub-districts are the St. Louis Art Museum, St. Louis Zoo, St. Louis Science Center, Missouri History Museum and Missouri Botanical Garden. Aside from the Botanical Gardens, each attraction is a public non-profit and thus provides free admission for all visitors and tourists.
The Metropolitan Zoological Park and Museum District was formed in 1972 following a 1969 vote to create the tax district. Today, each one of the sub-districts is an extraordinary attraction, helmed by visionary leadership and supported by donors and friends of the institutions. At its foundation, however, is the taxpayer money that allows the Metropolitan Zoological Park and Museum District to continue to flourish and serve as a model for other locations throughout the country. The Zoo Museum District is the first of its kind.
The 2017 District Board Members are:
Thomas J. Campbell – Chair
Christine A. Chadwick – Vice Chair
Robert E. Eggmann – Treasurer
Robert G. Lowery, Sr. – Secretary
Darnetta Clinkscale – Assistant Secretary
Michelle Harris – Board Member
Thomas C. Mummert – Board Member
Saint Louis Art Museum
The Saint Louis Art Museum, founded in 1881, is one of the top art museums in the country. The building itself is three-stories high and sits in Forest Park. While collections vary, pieces used come from different time periods all around the globe, featuring over 33,000 pieces of work. The museum is divided into 18 collections: African American Art, African Art, American Art, Ancient American Art, Ancient Art, Arms and Armor, Art of the Pacific Islands, Asian Art, Contemporary Art, Decorative Arts & Design, European Art, Islamic Art, Modern Art, Native American Art, Photographs, Prints and Drawings, Sculpture Garden and Textile Arts.
St. Louis Zoo
The St. Louis Zoo includes nearly 17,500 wild animals and brings in over 3,000,000 visitors every year. Originally forming in 1910, the zoo is well-known for its diverse range of species and exhibits. There are six major zones within the zoo: Lakeside Crossing, River’s Edge, Discovery Corner, The Wild, Historic Hill and Red Rocks. Dr. Jeffrey Bonner currently serves as president of the zoo.
St. Louis Science Center
Originally founded as a planetarium in 1963, the St. Louis Science Center features over 700 interactive exhibits, as well as the James S. McDonnell Planetarium. It is open to those of all ages and brings in over 1,000,000 visitors each year. However, those under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult.
Missouri History Museum
Founded in 1866, the Missouri History Museum is run by the Missouri Historical Society. Its aim is to inspire and engage visitors with different historical perspectives as well as modern day issues. While some exhibits are only available for viewing for limited periods of time, the Seeking St. Louis, 1904 World’s Fair: Looking Back at Looking Forward and History Clubhouse exhibits are open all year round.
Missouri Botanical Garden
The Missouri Botanical Garden is the oldest botanical garden in the nation and the second largest in North America after the New York Botanical Garden. It was founded in 1859 and is the only institution of The Metropolitan Zoological Park and Museum District that requires paid admission. It contains over 6.6 million specimens and serves as a beautiful oasis for the city.
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