Central West End Cocktail Party returns Saturday, June 10
The annual Central West End Cocktail Party returns Saturday, June 10, once again featuring local St. Louis restaurants serving freshly made food and drinks, with live music, street performers, and all-age activities filling Euclid Avenue between Maryland and McPherson avenues.
Every year, the CWE Cocktail Party honors what many believe to be the first ever recorded cocktail party, hosted in 1917 by Mrs. Julia Walsh in her home at 4510 Lindell Blvd. To pay respects and recreate the essence of the original cocktail party, several restaurants from the Central West End present and provide their own original “specialty cocktails,” many of which are sold in a unique cup or container. This year, the vendors include Twisted Ranch, The Drunken Fish, El Burro Loco and Taste of Lebanon, to name a few.
As a continued tradition, local St. Louis bartenders compete on the middle stage to earn the title of “best bartender,” a decision that is awarded and announced toward the end of the night as a final culmination. Executive director with the CWE North Community Improvement District Kate Haher described the competition as one of the most lively and exciting aspects of the event.
“We have a number of different bartenders, not just from the Central West End, but a few from our neighboring businesses and some others from throughout the city,” said Haher. “It's a very fun, very spirited piece of the whole festivities.”
Throughout the night, local St. Louis musicians will be performing both on the main stage near McPherson Avenue and another stage closer to Maryland Avenue. Starting at 5 p.m., soul musician Golliday will be performing on the main stage, followed by Sean Canan’s Voodoo Players starting at 7:45 p.m. On the Maryland stage, Brother Francis and the Soultones begin at 5 p.m., with the Dave Stone Quartet performing at 7:30 p.m.
Along with live music and the cocktail competition, festivities will include roller skaters, stilt walkers, hula hoop dancers, and aerial performers across Euclid Avenue, along with Drew the Cotton Candy Man and The Joy of Pancakes both vending from open to close. For the first time ever, artwork from local galleries will be raffled off, and several artists will be designing art to be sold on site during the event.
When asked about the significance of the cocktail party, Haher described it as a way to showcase the essence of St. Louis culture and bring the entire community together in celebration.
“This is an event that, for the St. Louis area, really stands out as far as speaking to the neighborhood, speaking to history, and speaking to who we are,” said Haher. “It's a perfect event to have the community and people from all over out to enjoy the neighborhood and a wonderful summer night in the Central West End.”
The Central West End Cocktail Party runs from 5 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, June 10. For more information on parking, schedules and how to sponsor the event, visit the Central West End Scene website.
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