But before we get to the Top 10, here are a few eventz who didn’t make the Top 10 but still made an impact on the STL social scene.
11.Martha Wash/Pride Event at Tower Grove Park June 29, 2008
12.Paris Hilton at Home Nightclub Feb. 23, 2008
13.Lil Wayne at Chaifez Stadium Aug. 30, 2008
14.Foxyfest at Forest Park Sept. 13, 2008
15 SYGU’s Teese ’08 at Old Rock House May 25, 2008
10.THE U.S. Bank Broadway Series Shows and Specials: Oprah Winfrey presents THE COLOR PURPLE at the Fox October 21-November 2, 2008
The was the most awaited show in St. Louis. Was it worth the wait? According to us, it was mixed. It was more the actual event of going than the actual show. To see young, old, white, black, religious groups all in one theater was still amazing to witness. (Pictured are Jeannette Bayardelle as Celie and Angela Robinson as Shug Avery)
9.Election Watch parties at Loft/ Exo and Ludacris’ listening party at Exo
Majic 104.9 had one at The Loft(pictured ABOVE LEFT are Clear Channel personalities Tony Scott, Tammie Holland and Darryl Eason), Harry and Fred had one at its spot Exo as well as Loose Cannon had one at Lush. All events were free watch parties for the 2008 Presidential election which were all packed to capacity. We saw the results at Exo and the moment Obama clinched the win was definitely memorable. And to top it off afterwards, there was a listening party that rapper Ludacris (PICTURED) had for his CD, “Theatre of the Mind” made it even more better. This event was THE LOCAL CLUB EVENT of 2008.
Punany founder Jessica "Ghetto Girl Blue" Holter (PICTURED) and her crew Bo "the MF" Ellis, St. Louis native Miss Golden, and poet/erotic dancer S.L.A.M turned out St. Louis with their erotic show of sex and poetry leaving everyone hot and bothered right before telling the crowd their message of safe sex .
Twenty artists --10 local, independent and national, from hip hop and R&B worlds including the St. Lunatics (and the return of City Spud to the group PICTURED ABOVE LEFT), Chingy, Webbie, Keyshia Cole (PICTURED NEXT TO SPUD) and T.I (LEFT), performed before a crowd of 12,000 in attendance, a first for a mostly local artist concert at this venue.
Because of the flooding on the Archgrounds, this year’s free Live on the Levee concerts were moved to Soldier’s Memorial. One of those concerts was with R&B singer Anthony Hamilton that brought over 50,000 people (half of the crowd came from the out of towners from the AME Church convention). It was one of the biggest crowds in the concert's 10 plus year history!
5.Kimora Lee Simmons comes to the Lou—Washington University/Synergy’s Lumen After Party March 14-15, 2008
STL native model/fashion mogul Kimora Lee Simmons was in town for an event in her honor at the Steinberg Auditorium at Washington University to kick off Alive Magazine’s Spring Fashion Week. There, she got the Key to the City from Mayor Francis Slay and various other awards. Later that day, she attended an event at Macy’s in the Galleria that was super-packed. Her stay culminated with a party for her at Lumen promoted by Synergy (PICTURED). Her stay was also filmed for her reality show "Life In the Fab Lane.”
International superstar Will Smith came through to the Lou during his red carpet tour for the advance screening of his film, “Seven Pounds.” Although only a few hundred was able to see the film, hundreds attended the event to catch a glimpse of the rapper/actor (PICTURED WITH FANS). The event, which gave the STL this year's Hollywood appeal event of the year, also doubled as a food drive for St. Louis Area Foodbank. It was definitely a memorable moment in St. Louis events.
3.Call to Oneness March June 1, 2008
As many as 50,000 black men including ministers, businessmen and everyday folk, marched at St. Louis' most historic black neighborhoods The Ville against crime and other ills that have infested some St. Louis neighborhoods. The "Call to Oneness" campaign was launched with panel discussions and neighborhood meetings on what organizers are calling a "state of emergency" in the black community.
2.Obama Rallies at the Edward Jones Dome Feb. 2, 2008 and at the Archgrounds Oct. 18, 2008
It was hard to not make this No. 1, but….Democratic Presidential candidate Barack Obama came through the Missouri area two times for free rallies. The first was in Feb. 2, at the Edward Jones Dome (ABOVE PIC) where over 20,000 rally goers showed up and stood on the floor of the Dome to see him and hear his CHANGE message fresh off his Iowa win in January. The second was Oct. 18 (BELOW LEFT)when then Democratic Presidential nominee candidate came through the Missouri area with two rallies. The first was in St. Louis which brought out a historic 100,000 plus people under the Gateway Arch. The huge showing set a record for an Obama event.
AND THE NUMBER ONE STL EVENT of 2008 IS:
Although 200 or so actually attended (nearly 8000 students entered a lottery to get inside) and more than Hundreds of journalists from across the world reported this spectacle, this event was THE SOCIAL EVENT of 2008. The debate reportedly drew nearly 70 million U.S. television viewers, making it the most watched vice presidential debate ever mainly due to the rising star, Palin. This event definitely put St. Louis on the map mainly because Missouri was a “bellweather” state and up for grabs for the political parties.
NOTE: The criteria for the Top 10 was based on mainly one-time out events that made the most impact in the St. Louis area. For annual events, to be considered in the running was based on its memorable impact on the social scene. Venerable events such as May Day Parade, Salute to Excellence events and the Missouri Black Expo were considered, but, although worthy, did not have a long lasting effect and impact.