As the school year fast approaches and the summer winds to an end, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the question everyone asks one another when they get back to campus: “So, how was your summer?” In one word, my summer was incredible.
Throughout the summer, I have had countless people ask me why I chose to stay in St. Louis rather than to go back home to Hawaii. People generally find it strange that I would choose to stay here instead of relaxing on beaches and hiking through rain forests. But honestly, I chose to stay in St. Louis this summer because I love WashU and I love this city. I’ve had some of the most wonderful experiences this summer. From working as a Program Assistant for the Freshman Summer Academic Program and getting to meet a bunch of the incoming freshmen, to interning in the admissions office and interacting with so many prospective students, this summer has honestly been a whirlwind of activity. But the best part of this summer is having time to really explore and interact with the city of St. Louis
One of the nice things about having an 8am-4pm job is not having homework to do when I get home. There is nothing better than knowing that I don’t have an essay I should be writing or a test I should be studying for. Instead, I get to use the rest of my afternoons and evenings to do things in St. Louis. Just the other weekend I went to Forest Park (which is literally across the street from our campus) and watched the Sound of Music on Art Hill. Hundreds of St. Louis residents came out for the event, which included free music, entertainment, and food trucks. They even handed out free bug spray! For me, it was a really fun way to spend my evening with my friends and to get off campus.
Another highlight of my summer was also going to Slide the City St. Louis. For this Saturday, they essentially blocked off a portion of Market Street in downtown St. Louis and turned it into a massive waterslide. It was so much fun to see everybody out and about and enjoying the summer weather. They had food and drink stations, as well as great music. It was truly a perfect way to cool off on a hot summer day in St. Louis.
One of my favorite memories from this summer was Fair St. Louis, a Fourth of July Celebration in Forest Park that lasted for three whole days. This was a massive attraction that brought hundreds of thousands of people every night throughout the weekend to see live music performances from people like Parmalee, Chris Young, American Authors, Blondie, and Kool and the Gang. All of these concerts were free and I even made it to the 2nd row for Chris Young’s performance! They ended every evening of the weekend with an all-out fireworks show that blew my mind.
I know that I’ve started to ramble, but I have had the most incredible summer here in St. Louis and fitting it all into one post is tough. Call me crazy for wanting to spend my summer in the Midwest instead of Hawaii, but honestly it has been one of the best summers of my life. St. Louis is such a fun and vibrant city, and I can’t imagine what my summer would have been like anywhere else.