St. Louis is one of the major cities of the Midwest. Nicknamed the "Gateway City" because of its location on the Mississippi River, St. Louis is one of the more gay-friendly areas of the Midwest. According to a Gallup poll, 3.6% of its population identifies as LGBT. The city is full of resources for its LGBT community, from social groups to non-profit agencies.
There are several neighborhoods in St. Louis that are gay-friendly. But the Central West End is the city's original "gayborhood." The main strip of the gayborhood is Manchester Avenue, nicknamed The Grove. The avenue is home to many popular gay bars, such as Just John Nightclub and Attitudes Nightclub.
Just a few miles south of The Grove is McCormack House at Westminster Place, luxury independent living apartments. Specifically for mature adults over age 62, the apartment community offers free parking and free transportation to the many shops, restaurants and clubs in the Central West End.
South Grand is another St. Louis neighborhood known for LGBT-friendly businesses. MoKaBe's coffee house is proudly LGBT-owned, for example. Open late, until midnight, the coffee house serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. It also hosts regular events, such as a board game meetup.
Tower Grove Manor offers people over age 55 easy access to all that the South Grand neighborhood has to offer. The independent living facility has complimentary transportation, as well as onsite activities and meal plans. It's a pet-friendly community, so cats and dogs are welcome too.
Every year, PrideSTL holds PrideFest, a weekend-long parade and party. Attendance at PrideFest has increased every year since 2011. About 85,000 people attended in 2011. In 2016, an estimated quarter of a million attended the event. PrideFest usually includes a number of performances from well-known and up-and-coming artists. In 2016, American Idol winner Jordin Sparks headlined the concert.
GroveFest is another annual LGBT-friendly event. The yearly festival takes place in the heart of St. Louis' gayborhood. It features musical performances, activities for kids and a large, outdoor paint-by-numbers mural.
St. Louis is full of organizations that provide support and social opportunities for the LGBT community. Prime Timers St. Louis provides mature gay and bisexual men the opportunity to mix and mingle. The group holds membership meetings on the second Saturday of each month. Other activities include dinner and theater outings, Halloween parties and monthly board game groups. Current members in the group range in age from 21-years-old to 90-years-old.
Sage of Promo is an nonprofit organization created specifically to improve the quality of life of older gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender adults in St. Louis. It's a local chapter of a national organization. The organization connects those in the LGBT community with a variety of resources. Those resources include advocacy groups, healthcare providers and religious groups.
Find out more about nursing homes in St. Louis and get to know why the city is one of the most LGBT-friendly spots in the Midwest.
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