“Our mission is to inspire people to feel good ... feet first.” This is the mission for St. Louis-based Caleres — formerly known as Brown Shoe Company — and an apt description for how so many people enjoy Forest Park.
Every day, hundreds of walkers, runners and cyclists can be found using the Park’s many miles of recreational paths; in addition, families can often be found walking together to settle in for a summer-afternoon picnic or make their way to their next cultural destination.
What so many of these visitors have requested over the years — better, more welcoming restroom facilities and amenities along this path — will become a reality, thanks to a lead Forever campaign gift of $750,000 from Caleres.
In 2015, Forest Park Forever made the first phase of essential upgrades to the restroom facility near the Park’s Hampton roundabout entrance, its most popular. This includes upgrading the building with heat for year-round use (it used to close for five months each year); creating a new connection to the popular recreational path; adding a bike rack; and planting new trees to enhance landscaping.
As the first lead partner for this comprehensive improvement project, Caleres has made a multi-year campaign commitment that will go well beyond this initial phase of improvements, which touched on three additional restroom sites. The company’s support will ultimately transform the facility at the popular Hampton entrance into a full gathering plaza, with comfortable seating, more beautiful landscaping, enhanced accessibility and additional visitor amenities.