March 14 is celebrated nationally as Pi Day in honor of the mathematical constant π. But in St. Louis, the local community acknowledges another aspect of the 314 numerical value – the city itself.
For years, locals – especially in the black community – have embraced showing pride for St. Louis through informal gatherings or St. Louis-themed parties in clubs and venues such as 2720 Cherokee Performing Arts Center.
One common way residents celebrate is by wearing Cardinals or Blues sports gear – and previously Rams jerseys, but that’s not so acceptable anymore since the team’s relocation back to Los Angeles.
People also jam to hit songs from St. Louis music artists, order St. Louis-style Chinese food or visit local eateries such as Imo’s and St. Louis Wing Company – and wash it all down with Vess or Fitz’s soda.
The tradition has caught on and gets bigger every year. This year, event coordinator Sie Brown and hip-hop duo Ryan Escobar and Tenelle Donta – a.k.a Souls of Liberty – joined Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air to discuss how the local community started the tradition and their upcoming “STL MADE” 314 Day celebration at the Ready Room.
Afterwards, Jeff and Randy Vines – owners of STL Style House, a local retail and custom design shop – continued the conversation by discussing more of the quirks that make St. Louis unique, from food and accents to the thriving local artist scene.
“[314 Day is] real community based,” Escobar said. “We’re a unique city because the city of St. Louis isn’t in the county, and with the surrounding St. Louis [area] counties, I think that we don’t really have one connector … the area code 314 really is just a connector for people surrounding the whole entire area. [It’s] one common thing we can all come together on.”
What about those from area codes 636 or 618?
“They’re kind of like cousins, we claim them too,” Escobar said. “If you’re from Illinois or the east side, you still associate seeing the Arch every day as part of your life,” Donta added.
Lee Broughton, founder of Broughton Brand Company, also briefly joined the program by phone to discuss the “STLMade” initiative that aims to “showcase the individuals and accomplishments found in every corner of the region that are moving the area forward, helping to create more opportunities for all and addressing our challenges.”
“St. Louis on the Air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Alex Heuer, Evie Hemphill, Lara Hamdan and Jon Lewis give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region.