In the press: Boardwalk Waffles to move to prime Maplewood corner, famous STL chef selling Richmond Heights home

Maplewood’s Boardwalk Waffles moving to Manchester and Sutton; St. Louis County restaurants learn to deal with new restrictions, and more in the news. Feast — Boardwalk Waffles & Ice Cream to Reopen in Larger Space in Maplewood on Aug. 15
KMOV — ‘Seems like we’re battling our own government;’ Restaurant owners react to new StL Co. restrictions
KMOV — Safety of shopping malls questioned after deadly shooting inside St.

Maplewood History: Gerry Vazis’ Red Album of Photographs – Part One

Gerry’s Red Album survived the conflagration that destroyed the Golde’s department store and the Citizens Bank in 1966.  It had been stored in the bank vault.  It contains 21 images spanning from 1949 until 1962. All of the images are dated.  That’s handy.  Nearly all of them have some information with them such as the location or a title. Once you have seen these images, perhaps you can tell me why this album was kept in the vault.

Gerry’s last name was Vazis.  Maybe the title should read “Vazis’s?”  And I said “was” because I am assuming she (see comment below) is no longer with us but I don’t know that for sure. We are indebted to Mary Piles, the curator of the historic images at Citizens National Bank in Maplewood and Greater St. Louis (6 locations), for allowing me to copy this album.  Thanks, Mary!

Saint Mary Magdalen School plans in-person restart

Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of St. Louis are making plans for returning to in-person learning. Saint Mary Magdalen Catholic School will be returning on August 20 and prioritizing the health of the children. Saint Mary Magdalen has been working diligently over the summer to clean and disinfect all areas of the school for the safe return of the children. A Coronavirus operations/safety plan handbook has been developed outlining all of the precautions that will be set in place.

Immaculate Conception again not a polling place

Maplewood residents with Immaculate Conception Church as their polling place in the past will cast their vote at Maplewood City Hall on Aug. 4, as they did in recent elections. The reason is COVID-related. An official at the election commission said Monday that fewer of past election workers are willing to work the polls in the current situation, so countywide, the number of polling places has been reduced by almost 50%. Polling places that are privately owned, such as a church, can also decide not to participate.

Maplewood History: The Fennell Trove – Now At SHSMO

The mission of the State Historical Society of Missouri is to collect, preserve, publish, exhibit, and make available material related to all aspects and periods of Missouri history. SHSMO also seeks to generate interest in and appreciation of the rich cultural heritage of the state and its people through education and outreach. The main archives and storage facility of SHSMO is located in Columbia. In addition SHSMO has an office on every state university campus.  Persons interested in items in the collection can request that they be brought to the campus office most convenient for them. This courier service is an important feature that is not offered by other libraries or historical societies.  This is why I recommend SHSMO over the Mercantile Library which is also on the campus of UMSL.  The SHSMO office, called the St.

Gina Mitten endorses Jo Doll: her letter

State Representative for the 83rd District Gina Mitten previously endorsed Jo Doll as her replacement. Doll’s campaign forwarded Mitten’s endorsement letter on Thursday. Mitten’s endorsement:

First, thank you to every resident of the 83rd for their trust in affording me the opportunity to serve as their State Representative for the past eight years. It has been an honor to be of service by representing you in Jefferson City. I am forever grateful for the support of our friends and neighbors all these years.

Maplewood city council discusses food pantry boxes, and potential liability

The Maplewood city council met on Tuesday via Zoom, and the subject of the various food pantry boxes around the city came up. Maplewood resident, Donna Parks Ratkowski, summarized on Facebook a portion of the meeting where council members discussed the food pantries (boxes stocked by residents for anyone needing food) found in various parts of the city. The group called Maplegood organizes stocking the boxes, some with food and some with personal care items.

Ratkowski noted that some of the council members’ biggest concern about the food pantries seem to be about liability. Her notes are below:

Big concern about attracting homeless folks to our community, especially as they are driven out of locations in the City. They said until a couple of weeks ago we had 2-3 unhoused folks that camped at Kellogg Park, and now there are more like 15 people.

Maplewood History: Shearer Chevrolet and later…Hudson

This post and my earlier post (titled, A Startling Glimpse of a Stertzing Past) are both a response to a particular vintage photograph.  Two buildings are visible in this image.  The Stertzing building can be partially seen on the far right.  But the main subject of the photograph is the Shearer Hudson dealership. A quick search on revealed an interesting story that concerns this dealership.  First, let’s take a look at the image again.  

There are a few folks in high places today who don’t want their tax returns examined.  One fellow who would not wonder why is F.W. Shearer. This is another sad story.  History is full of them. I ordinarily choose not to post stories that are depressing or would open old wounds.  With that in mind I apologize to any family and descendants of F.W. who might someday read this.  But there are several lessons one can take away from this.  The obvious, the bigger they are…

MRH, Brentwood schools decide how to begin coming year

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic continuing in the area, the Maplewood Richmond Heights School District Board decided on July 23 to begin the 2020-2021 school year with full-time virtual instruction, beginning August 25. The plan is for students to transition back into the buildings when it is safe to do so. Below is the statement from the school district. MRH Staff, Families and Community,
Leaders of the Maplewood Richmond Heights School District believe the current scope of the COVID-19 pandemic in our area at this time will prevent us from starting the school year safely with in-person learning. When students resume learning on August 25, our District will launch the school year with full-time virtual instruction for grades K-12.

In the news: School reopening plans, Galleria shooting

In the press lately:

Fox 2 — Galleria Mall shooting: Person of interest in custody
Kansas City Star — Police ‘investigating an incident’ at Galleria Mall in St. Louis
KSDK — Grab your rafts: Maplewood aquatic center hosting 2 ‘dive-in’ movies
KSDK — St. Louis County school districts release reopening plans
KSDK — Police searching for suspects in robbery at Maplewood CVS
KSDK — Restaurants, religion and doctors: See which St. Louis industries led the way for PPP funding
Riverfront Times — Galleria Mall Shooting Under Investigation in Richmond Heights
St. Louis Post-Dispatch — School reopening plans across St.

MRH board member announces plan to vote for remote start for the fall

Maplewood Richmond Heights School District board member, Nikylan Knapper, announced on Facebook Tuesday her intention to vote for a remote start to the upcoming school year. The Board will hold a special work session at 6:30 p.m. on July 23. This is the video link, supplied by the school district. From Nikylan Knapper:
Transparent. During my campaign for MRH School Board, I told community members I would be transparent and tell you what I would vote for and why.

Maplewood History: It was May-May, Not May-December by Mary Piles

Mary Piles, who has seen a lot in her 43 years of employment at the Citizens National Bank, recounted this story while commenting on the relationship between Waldemar Stertzing and his newly adopted daughter, Gertrude Madden. I started to include it in one of the posts about Stertzing but then thought that this is such a great story that it deserves its own post. 

Mary wrote:

Adult adoption must have been a kind of common thing to do, to adopt a person no longer a child. Many did it through unconsummated marriage.  We had a customer who was a maid in a home as a teenager.  She cared for the mother of the family during the diphtheria epidemic. The mother eventually succumbed to the diphtheria as did their 20 year old son. 

After the son’s death she remained in the father’s employ.

Maplewood History: A Startling Glimpse of a Stertzing Past

If you are today as I once was, which is nearly totally ignorant of things Stertzing, then this post is for you. Six-and-a-half years ago, I created a post titled, Mr. and Mrs. W.W. Stertzing and the Building They Left Behind. If you read the comments, I think you’d say it was well received.  Of course, we couldn’t have known then how much more there is to this story. There are mainly two reasons we didn’t know more about this story.  One is I hadn’t yet subscribed to  The other is that Mary Piles, generous curator of the historic images at the Citizens National Bank of Maplewood and Greater St. Louis (6 locations), had not yet provided us with what is, without a doubt, so far, the most mind blowing (and the oldest known) vintage image of the Stertzing building to come to light.

Maplewood resident, city Sustainability Commission member, chosen for scholarship

Maplewood resident Jonathan Spencer has been chosen for a scholarship from the Midwest Renewable Energy Association. Project Dragonfly (Miami University, Oxford, Ohio) made the announcement on Facebook. The award is designed to help students pursuing degrees and/or relevant credentials in renewable energy, energy efficiency, sustainability, or clean technology. From Project Dragonfly: (Miami University, Oxford, Ohio) student Jonathan Spencer, was honored with the The Midwest Renewable Energy Association & Straubel Foundation Clean Energy Leadership Award for his work to empower citizens to launch sustainability commissions in their own municipalities. Spencer is a member of the Maplewood Sustainability Commission and an AIP student through his home institution, the Missouri Botanical.

In the press: Ice Cream Month, CVS manager wrestles robber, Covid

Area news found in the press:

Fox 2 — Police suspect same individuals behind pharmacy robberies Sunday night
KSDK — Celebrate National Ice Cream Month with ‘The Great Ice Cream Chase’
KSDK — Windows smashed, gun stolen from car in Galleria parking lot Wednesday
KSDK — Blackout Day highlights Black-owned businesses in the St. Louis area
St. Louis Business Journal — Employee at Richmond Heights Schnucks tests positive for Covid-19
St. Louis Post-Dispatch — Surveillance video: CVS store manager punched while trying to stop Maplewood robbery
St. Louis Post-Dispatch — Photos: Swimmers hit the pools as the temperatures rise into the 90’s

Local press mentions — it’s all Covid, masks, etc.

Class pets are pandemic houseguests, and more COVID-related local news. KSDK — This Richmond Heights business requires everyone to wear a face mask
St. Louis Post-Dispatch — With local tax revenues hit by COVID-19, state offering loans to small cities across Missouri
St. Louis Post-Dispatch — Class pets become long-term pandemic houseguests while St. Louis schools are out
The New York Times — Does Your Local Doctor Have a Coronavirus Test for You?

Pick up The Healthy Planet – now at Scheidt Hardware in Maplewood

The Healthy Planet, “St. Louis’ Magazine of Green & Healthy Living,” has joined The Gateway Gardener on the free pick-up table just inside the door of Scheidt True Value Hardware. Gnomes on July edition’s cover hale from the editor’s garden. Now in its 24th year, The Healthy Planet spun from the orbit of the Webster-Kirkwood Times, when Times co-founder J.B. Lester was looking to start another publication. Lester says he’s confident that his chosen editing/publishing focus on Health, Wellness and The Environment will never go out of style.

MRH principal is first to arrive, and helps out, at crash site on I-55

On July 4, MRH Middle School Principal Mike Dittrich was traveling north on I-55 in central Illinois and saw a car traveling south lose control and spin multiple times for about 50-75 yards taking out the cable barriers, he reported on Facebook. Dittrich stopped and crossed over to help the three passengers out of the car. All three were OK but shaken up. He stayed until EMS arrived. By that time all three were up and walking around.