This past week I covered for the Sunset Hills-Crestwood Patch site while its editor, Alyssa Stahr, was on a very-well deserved vacation.
Having covered Town and Country, Kirkwood and Webster Groves Patch sites before, I felt confident I could cover Sunset Hills and Crestwood swiftly, but then the realization hit me that I knew absolutely nothing about these two Southern St. Louis County municipalities.
After a week of doing my best to bring you relevant news about Sunset Hills and Crestwood, I feel I leave with a desire to follow up on both of these cities. They have some problems and a tremendous potential.
When I first arrived to this country, I recall how puzzled and overwhelmed I felt going to the Chesterfield and West County malls. I remember the nauseating smell of strong scented candles and the heavy bodies of hundreds of souls pushing against me to get their bargain. But I felt even more puzzled this week as I walked through the lonely aisles of the Crestwood Mall.
The space was empty, like a ghost town, except for a few walkers getting some exercise.
“There is not much left to see,” one of them shouted at me.
The only store doing any business in the mall was Sears, which announced last year it was closing its doors and is holding a closeout sale until next weekend. But even then, it was just strange to walk around a desolate mall in a Friday afternoon.
An empty mall in America? Not in my wildest dreams.
The scene seemed even more dramatic later that day, as I wrote a story about Crestwood’s declining sales tax revenues. Crestwood City Administrator Karl Kestler said April sales tax revenues of were 9.8 percent less than what was projected for the month.
Resilience and light at the end of the tunnel
Not everything was bad news, however. Far from it.
“New biz in Crestwood - YAY!” wrote one of our readers on our Facebook page.
But this wasn’t the only good news.
Panera Bread Co., based in Sunset Hills, announced the company’s net income profits rose by 26 percent in the first quarter of this fiscal year, for a total of eight quarters of profits of 20 percent or more.
The company also announced between 115-120 new store openings in the 2012 fiscal year.
If it seems the future is hopeful for the economy of Sunset Hills and Crestwood, I am more than confident in the children's education.
Missouri Commissioner of Education Chris L. Nicastro said the schools receiving the award were “noteworthy examples of excellence in education across the state of Missouri.”
And Crestwood Elementary School, which has 14 countries represented in its student body, hosted the third annual Cultural Day and Evening Celebration, where its students learned the different backgrounds, nationalities and cultures of their classmates. (You can check out the photos by clicking here).
Out and about
On a last note, who knew Sunset Hills and Crestwood would be so much fun? This week I covered two events at Mile 277 Tap & Grill. The restaurant’s karaoke night and the model search were both full of energy and good music. (Click on the links for photos of both events).
There are many more events happening here, of course. Make sure to check out our events calendar to find out what, when and where.
Count on Patch
These were just a few of the stories covered on the Sunset Hills-Crestwood Patch this week. Make sure to visit our site regularly for uptodate information on your community.
Or, if you don’t feel like doing all that, sign up for our free daily newsletter here and have all the news delivered fresh every morning in your inbox.
So long, Sunset Hills and Crestwood. I hope to write about you again soon.