St. Louis shut down for a snow day Thursday but that just meant Forest Park’s Art Hill was bustling.
Hundreds of sledders bundled up and hurdled down the iconic hill for a snow day tradition, using anything to make it down, from lunch trays to snowboards, to a kayak.
“You can’t pass this up,” said Matt Strucker, who skipped work to sled for the morning with his wife, Becky, a teacher who had the day off.
Schools and businesses throughout the region closed as the St. Louis area was covered by one of its largest November snow storms on record — almost 10 inches fell in Wright City with several other locations measuring more than seven inches.
For David Driver, a 25-year-old city worker, it was a wish come true.
“I used to wish it would snow when I was 12 or 13, so it’s been a long time. I’m happy about this, this is good,” he said.
He brought the wooden sled from his childhood to use with a friend’s 4-year-old nephew.
“I forgot I even had it. I found it at my mom’s house in the basement,” he said.
It was a first time sledding for Ava Barwari, who just turned 1. Her dad, Redir, was carrying her back up the hill.
“She was getting a giggle earlier,” Barwari said.
By afternoon, the hill was starting to turn back to green but hundreds were getting in more runs for St. Louis’ biggest autumn snow storm in decades.
A woman and child enjoy a ride down Art Hill in Forest Park. More than seven inches of snow fell across the St. Louis region, making for some of the best fall sledding in many years.
A girl looks back for the rest of the tube's passengers as she slides down Art Hill in Forest Park.
Sledding on Art Hill has been a St. Louis tradition for decades, experienced Thursday for the first time by some of the region's youngest residents.
Matt and Becky Strucker get air and a face full of snow going over a jump. "You can't pass this up," Matt said about skipping work for the morning. Becky is a teacher whose school closed for the day.
Abdullah Alqahtani throws snow at his wife, Sarah, while the family takes a walk in the snow in Forest Park.
Follow Ryan on Twitter: @rpatrickdelaney