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Blues at the Arch

Perhaps more than anything else, Gateway Arch Park Foundation is most known to St. Louisans as the host of two of the biggest, non-sports-related annual events in Downtown St. Louis: Blues at the Arch and Winterfest.

These two signature events bring tens of thousands of people to Gateway Arch National Park and Kiener Plaza each year. They also support dozens of local businesses, artists and entrepreneurs and bring ample economic activity to Downtown.

Blues at the Arch Festival

Together with the National Blues Museum and NPS, the Foundation produces a large-scale Festival in the park’s North Gateway, featuring top national and regional blues talent.

This event is totally free, inviting the community to enjoy live music and celebrate St. Louis’ heritage as a blues city. 

In previous years, Blues at the Arch was a weekly August concert series, but in 2022 (after two years of virtual concerts due to the pandemic), we reimagined it as a weekend-long Festival, making it possible to engage even more renowned blues musicians and burgeoning its ability to serve as a destination for out-of-town travelers. In 2022, we welcomed nearly 9,000 attendees to the park, including Friday and Saturday concerts in addition to Sunday’s bonus Blues Brunch event next door at Laclede’s Landing.

We hope to continue to build the Festival’s reputation as one of St. Louis’ premier music festivals – and the only free festival of its kind to take place on national park grounds.

View the 2022 Blues at the Arch Festival video.

Mark your calendars for our eighth annual Blues at the Arch Festival: Aug. 11-13, 2023!

Blues at the Arch
Blues at the Arch

Winterfest

Gateway Arch Park Foundation is also proud to have hosted seven years of Winterfest, presented by Bank of America and World Wide Technology. 

Winterfest is a six-weekend-long event in Kiener Plaza inviting St. Louisans to ice skate in the shadow of the Gateway Arch surrounded by 100,000 twinkling lights and enjoy the holiday merriment. Winterfest also includes s’mores stations, igloo rentals, visits from princesses and superheroes, free ice skating and hockey lessons, New Year’s Eve fireworks, special guest appearances and much more. 

In 2021, we also introduced the Winterfest 5K, presented by Caleres and produced in partnership with Big River Running, to kick off the Winterfest season. The Winterfest 5K returned in 2022 as an annual tradition and is the only official run/walk of its kind that routes through the beautiful Arch grounds and supports the park. It doesn’t get more “St. Louis” than this!

In 2022, Winterfest welcomed 38,500 visitors to Downtown St. Louis over 22 days, a 46% increase over 2021, and the Winterfest 5K had 209 registered participants on one of the coldest days of the year.

The Winterfest Cafe was helmed for the second year by award-winning celebrity chef Juwan Rice, who curated an incredible menu and an all-star team. This year included a two-day Winter Market, presented in partnership with Greater St. Louis, Inc., and New Year’s Eve smashed attendance records with 6,649 guests, who enjoyed fire dancers and a figure skating showcase before the family friendly fireworks spectacular. Learn more about 2022's Winterfest.

Save the date for 2023's Winterfest 5K on Saturday, Nov. 18, and the Winterfest season, open from Nov. 18 through Dec. 31 (Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, plus bonus holiday week).

Foundation members are invited to skate for free the day before Winterfest opens to the public, on Friday, Nov. 17: become a member and enjoy the perk!

Couple at s'mores station
Fredbird ice skating at Winterfest
Kid eating marshmallow at Winterfest
Men walking next to rink with Arch and Old Courthouse in background
s'mores station
women taking selfie with hot chocolates
kids on ice rink
wreath photo
market vendor
child ice skater