The Gateway Arch is the world famous landmark in downtown St. Louis right alongside the Mississippi River. The view afforded by a trip to the top is magnificent, especially on clear days, but the elevator may not be appropriate for those that are claustrophobic. The wait may be long, especially on the weekends, but is well worth it.
Also a tourist tip: if you lay on the ground near the arch, you can usually take a picture of someone and still get the whole arch behind them.
PROS: Beautiful views
CONS: Long waits
The St. Louis Zoo is a world class zoo not only for kids but also for adults. Its difficult to see the entire zoo and one should plan a full day to see everything or if you live close, just check out a couple of exhibits. Admission is also free (although it does cost extra to ride the train or get into the petting zoo). There is ample pay parking available or limited free parking is usually available on the side roads.
Purdue University is a top-notch school in many areas, including engineering. The faculty and staff are, for the most part, excellent and also easily accessible. Just like any big university, Purdue does have downfalls such as large classes for introductory classes and a large spreadout campus with difficult parking. The night life is excellent with a variety of bars and clubs within walking distance of the university.
Franklin College is a very small liberal arts college, in which everyone knows everyone else's affairs. The professors are pretty good, especially in light of the size of the school. However, the size causes the number of available majors and courses to be severely limited making it difficult to change majors after your first year. Make sure that you are sure of what you want to do and enjoy a small town and small campus life. There is also not a lot of nightlife in the area. There are also no sorority houses.
While many of the teachers are adequate, the majority were born and raised in Indy and know little outside of midwestern life. Likewise, the majority of the students have parents that also attended the same school (sometimes even with the same teachers). This creates cliques of predominately white middle class students that feel that they are better than anyone else. The school does little to eliminate the problem and, in fact, tends to foster it through, for example, an honors program that lacks requirements and is solely devised to allow the "privileged" to rank higher in the class and get into a better school.
This can be a difficult school to attend if you do not fit the mold of the average student in the area.
The staff at Smith Jewelers is very friendly and knowledgeable. They have a very good selection of jewelry, especially for a smaller jeweler. Their prices are a little more than the mall-type national chains, but the service and quality more than makes up for it. One minor complaint would be that they have limited hours making it harder to find a time after work to look around. Recommended.
We brought in an older model Pontiac to Andy Mohr and the service staff was wonderful. They performed all the work at a fairly reasonable price and were quick in getting it back to us. The staff was friendly and all of the salespeople we encountered were as well. We weren't pressured to get every possible repair done - only what was necessary to take care of the problem. Recommended.
The Bicycle Garage Indy folks are very knowledgeable and courteous and the store has a wonderful selection of bikes of all brands and sizes. The staff was great in assisting us with the purchase of a new bike and installed our bike computer and kickstand we purchased seperately at no additional charge. Definitely worth checking out if you are in the area.
Granada Cyclery has a nice selection of bikes from a limited number of dealers. The staff is very friendly and their recommendations seem to generally be on the mark. They have a good variety of accessories - we picked up a great bike rack there and they even took it out and showed us how to put it on the bike. Their prices seem pretty reasonable as well. Overall, it seems to be a nice store if they carry the brand you are looking for.
Sunset Cyclery is a top notch bike shop located conviently off of Olive Road in Chesterfield. Their selection is great - with a variety of different makes and there prices are very reasonable, especially if you can buy a previous year's model. The staff will allow you to try out any bike you like and are happy to help you with any questions. They also really stand by the products they sell and will offer tune ups on the bike as necessary.