ST. LOUIS, MO (KPLR)-Crews descended on the St. Louis Archgrounds Sunday to clean up after the end of Fair St. Louis 2013. Mary Jo Hemkins is the special events coordinator for Lohr Distributing. She watched as coworkers packed up just one of several mobile bars.
”Chuck right there and Ross are breaking it down. It takes a long time to break it down. It’s a big piece.”
She expected to be on Lenore K. Sullivan Boulevard for at least two hours, while the tables were lowered by hydraulic supports. On the ground around the bar, there were several plastic bottles and cups. But, there was not the accumulation of trash one would expect from a weekend full of partying with tens of thousands of your neighbors. She said St. Louis City Street Department crews were cleaning up debris almost as soon as it hit the ground.
“They had crews out here every day at the end of the day they clean up,” she explained. “They get around to it. It just takes a little while.”
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Production crews started taking down the main stage under the Gateway Arch. They would be there for two more days.
”We bring in trucks, start pre-staging everything,” said Fair St. Louis producer Mike Kociela. “And then when the crews come in, we just start knocking her out.”
There was a consensus on the Archgrounds. There seemed to be an undeniable perk to cleaning up in 2013 over 2012.
“It’s ridiculous,” Kociela laughed. “I think at one point, it was 30 degrees colder than it was last year, so. When it’s 110 degrees, you move slower and it is just miserable. But, this is awesome.”
A man introduced himself as Brad, “Servant of the Lord”. He said he has stood at the river, ready to fulfill prayer requests for the past four months. He stood again, even with the sound of forklifts, trucks and ATVs carrying away gates, equipment and lots and lots of trash.
”You know, it’s a little rough right now,” he looked around. “But hopefully, they’ll get the cleaning crew down here and clean it up.”
”It will be better than we found it,” Kociela said. “That’s what we always do.”