UPDATE: We checked it out on July 4th and it was fun and everyone seemed to be social distancing and wearing masks.
ORIGINAL ARTICLE: By Suzanne Corbett, STLSportsPage.com Food/Travel Editor
I grew up on South County truck farm, which was located in Affton. Contrary to the name, we didn’t raise trucks. Truck farms were called that because the truck literally put horse and wagon out to pasture. As for calling these operations farms, the old German gardeners, like my father, preferred the term garden. And what do we truck gardeners grow? Mostly row crops – tomatoes, squash, green beans, lettuce and the like.
Each week during the height of the growing season, the pick-ups or flatbed panel trucks were loaded and driven to market. A tradition that inspired the name of the new 9 Mile Garden, which opens July 4th weekend in Affton. Not far from where several of those old truck gardeners were.
9 Mile Garden is an open air public truck garden. But don’t look for homegrown produce. Instead, expect fresh-made culinary specialties created with fresh ingredients from 9 Mile Garden’s participating food trucks. A group numbering 30 trucks, which have signed up for 9 Mile’s inaugural year. A venue that provides plenty of space for social distancing, thanks to its unique urban park setting. A place to safely graze the food trucks, with table space available on the main promenade or on the terraced patio. Perfect place to perch with family and friends and where one is encouraged to bring your own lawn chairs or blankets.
A place to sit, nosh, sip and enjoy the free entrainment such as live music on select days and Saturday night movies on the big screen. Sports fans will be delighted to know games will be streamed on the big screen once games resume. Until then, get your game on and play few games of washers to pickleball. A few of the free activities made available for 9- Mile patrons.
To keep the experience fresh, and considering there are only nine slots available on food truck row at any given time, food trucks will rotate throughout the week. Changing up the culinary offerings from a food fleet that includes, Seoul Taco, Heavy Smoke, Zia’s, Blues Fired Pizza, The Saucy Iguana, Scoops and Zacchi Jordanian Cuisine.
To quench your thirst, stroll onside 3,500 square foot The Canteen, located on the north-eastern edge of the garden. A spacious bi-level bar space where one can hang-out and imbibe, has dozens of taps lining the back bar. Filling those taps are craft beers, craft cocktails and cold brew coffee.
9 Mile Garden, which by the way is nine miles away from the Old Courthouse – once the standard in tracking the distance from the downtown St. Louis during the 1800s – will officially open July 4th weekend. Grand opening lineup of food trucks and entertainment are well as the daily feed on which food trucks are scheduled will be posted on Twitter. Look closely, you can get a sneak peek at the tap line-up.
Operating six days a week, 9 Mile Garden’s hours for lunch are Monday – Saturday 11 am – 2 pm; dinner hours Tuesday – Saturday 5 pm – 9 pm; Canteen hours Monday – Thursday 11 am – Midnight, with hours extended to 1 am on Friday and Saturday night. Ample free parking is promised within 9 Mile Garden’s borders of Gravois, Weber and McKenzie Road. For more information on Grand Opening events visit 9milegarden.com