St. Louis Zoological Park

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1 Government Drive, St. Louis, Missouri  314-781-0900

In The Glass Menagerie:

Laura: I went in the art museum and the bird houses at the Zoo. I visited the penguins every day! Sometimes I did without lunch and went to the movies. Lately I’ve been spending most of my afternoons in the Jewel Box, that big glass house where they raise the tropical flowers.”

In Real Life:DSC_8454

I love that Laura, in The Glass Menagerie visited the penguins every day. I was particularly interested in seeing those penguins she talked about. I easily found the zoo in Forest Park. At the entrance I stubbornly looked for a cashier. Finally, a woman asked me if I needed help. I told her I couldn’t figure out how to pay to get in. She said you don’t – you don’t pay – it’s free. I thought that was a little weird so I cautiously and incredulously went through the turnstile. That’s when it hit me – when I realized how Laura could go and see the penguins every day. It was free. And it still is. However, my luck quickly turned. I asked the first zoo worker I saw for directions to the penguins. He told me their pen was getting cleaned so they were not in residence. But I headed over there anyway and found a few penguin statues which looked like the real thing. Standing there – looking around – I was pretty sure I had found one of the places Williams loved in a town he also loved to hate – publicly. It wasn’t hard to imagine Williams and his sister Rose wiling away a summer day at the exhibit, and even his character Laura wiling away her days – too shy and afraid to go to school.

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