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Today, Forest Park is the sixth most-visited urban park in the United States and is widely renowned as one of the country’s greatest urban natural spaces, voted as the favorite city park in the nation by USA Today readers in 2016. More than 13 million annual visitors enjoy the park’s 1,300-acre landscape, which showcases a variety of forest, wetland, prairie, and lake ecosystems and terrains, containing more than 45,000 native and non-native trees. The park is free and open to the public for exercise, relaxation, and social gathering.
The park’s 22,000-square-foo.Dennis and Judith Jones Visitor and Education Center, originally constructed in 1892 as a streetcar pavilion, serves as an entrance point for visitors to the park, offering a banquet facility, meeting rooms, locker rentals, and an information desk staffed by volunteers from the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission. The Center’.Forest Park Cafe offers light American breakfast and lunch fare, and it.Variety Wonderland Playground serves as a safe play space for children of all ability levels. The Center also serves as a trailhead for the park’s Dual Path system, which offers hard paved and soft thatched pathways for exploration and exercise, and offers bike rentals through it.World’s Fair Bike Rental service.
Five major cultural St. Louis cultural institutions are located within the grounds of Forest Park, including the Saint Louis Art Museum, founded in 1881, which showcases a collection of more than 35,000 works of art from around the world. Notable holdings include classical European works by master artists such as Picasso, Monet, and van Gogh, a substantial collection of World War II-era German works, and a rotating Currents contemporary art series. Founded in 1866, the Missouri History Museum showcases the collections of the Missouri Historical Society, offering a variety of exhibits on the state’s social and cultural history, including artifacts connected to the World’s Fair, the Lewis and Clark Expedition, and the historic transatlantic flight of Charles Lindbergh. The park’s most-visited attraction, the Saint Louis Zoo, showcases a collection of more than 18,000 animals from around the world along with a state-of-the-art veterinary hospital. The Saint Louis Municipal Opera Theater, typically referred to as the Muny, presents seven musical theater productions throughout its summer season, and the Saint Louis Science Center features a historic planetarium facility, an Exploradome educational center, and 300,000 square feet of science and history-themed exhibits for young visitors. Other facilities within the park include the Jewel Box Art Deco-style greenhouse, the Dwight Davis Tennis Center, the Steinberg Skating Rink, the Forest Park Golf Course, and the preserved histori.World’s Fair Pavilion.