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Archive for 2011


Eighteen people attended a free training session for proper service techniques for the sale and dispersing of alcoholic beverages on Feb. 18 at Grey Eagle Distributing in Maryland Heights. The training opportunity for servers, conducted by the Missouri Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Control covered a wide range of topics including a detailed explanation of hours of limitations, identification of customers who’ve consumed too much alcohol and methods dealing with intoxicated individuals and techniques for spotting fraudulent IDs. Mastermind of the program is the agency’s state supervisor Gene Lacy.


Emmy Award winner Ed Asner performed before a full house in his one-night performance of “FDR” at the Florissant Civic Center Theater. Asner, who portrayed Lou Grant on “The Mary Tyler Show” and later as the tough city editor in “Lou Grant”, dined at Hendel’s Market on Tuesday night with stage manager Ron Nash, Florissant Mayor Bob Lowery and his wife Carole, Keith and Mary Schildroth, John and Mary Grib, Tom and Rachel Schneider, Lora and Pat Click, Hank and Frieda Bruemmer, the Rev. Ed Stanger and Gary Gaydos. Asner recalled he was well acquainted with our town because his sister once served as a buyer with Stix, Baer & Fuller department stores. He was fascinated with the Lowery family, that dad and three sons were police officers.


It’s been a tough month for several Catholic bishops who hail from our town. New York Archbishop Tim Dolan is accused of “hiding” millions in the Milwaukee archdiocese to keep the funds from going to clergy sex abuse victims involved in litigation. A Texas newspaper reports that Omaha Archbishop George Lucas, who headed Kenrick-Glennon Seminary here, kept silent for months last year after receiving a report of suspected child sex abuse by a priest. This week, Knoxville Bishop Richard Stika, who oversaw clergy sex cases for years, is criticized in a Louisville newspaper. Victims and advocates are blasting Bishop Edward Braxton for appealing a 2008 jury verdict in a clergy sex case to the Illinois Supreme Court. And, most notably, Philadelphia Cardinal Justin Rigali has been excoriated by a scathing new grand jury report there which concludes that his archdiocese “continues to engage in practices that mislead victims, that violates their trust, that hinder prosecution of their abusers and that leave large numbers of credibility accused priests in ministry” and the procedures “designed to help victims that instead are helping the abusers and the archdiocese itself.”


It seems that everyone from here to downtown Bangladesh has denied that Tony’s is moving into the born-again Cheshire Inn & Lodge.  So howzacome there are plans on Lodging Hospitality Management (LHM) desks, that are stamped “Tony’s” and calling for 8,000 square feet?  The space includes a 5,000 square-foot kitchen, 3,000 square-foot dining room and a mammoth banquet room.  (Could it all be for Tony’s in Alton? Don’t think so.)

Posted Feb 23, @ 10:45


Posted at 9:25 a.m., Feb. 23

Orthopedic surgeon Dr. Rick Lehman has teamed up once again with former bank prez-turned developer Don Davis to buy Purus Vodka from AB InBev, which has shelved the brand.  Lehman and Davis hope that the brewery will distribute the liquor made from organic Italian wheat. The 80 proof vodka is distilled five times and refined through a charcoal filtration process. This is not the first time Lehman and Davis have combined their skills having bought stakes in Behlmann Automotive and served together in various capacities with Truman Bancorp. Lehman is the noted sports medicine practitioner; Davis is the former Centrue Bank prez.


Founder of Bommarito Wines Tony Bommrito is throwing his hat into the ring as candidate for mayor of the 75 year-old City of Ladue in the April 5 election. Mayor Irene Holmes will not seek reelection having served three two-year terms.  Mary Berner, a resident of the city of 8,000, will also run.  Bommarito, a member of the city council, is the brother of Vince Bommarito of Tony’s Restaurant fame. . .St. Charles philanthropist and chairman of the Corporate Group Jerry Scheidegger, with wife Ruth Ann, were nestled having cocktails at one of the most underrated restaurants – Chez Leon in Clayton. Jerry tipped that a major shop center is in the works across from Lindenwood University and will house a giant Schnucks Market.  Both Schnucks’ Desco realty and Lindenwood are involved in the project.  BTW:  Boniface Leon Bierbaum is touting the encore of composer/entertainer Steve Ross on April 1-2-3 with two dinner sets and at brunch on Sunday. “April in Paris – Cabaret in St. Louis” will be the theme.  Reservations? Call Leon, 314-361-1589. (Chez Leon has yet to win a Michelin star and that’s only ONE of the good things about it). . .Holy Dream Farms’ Steve Zamler is heading for Mexico to sell baby yearlings from his quarter-horses.  Wife Fran will remain here doing what she loves most – charity work. . . The swellegant Four Seasons Hotel has had standing-room-only for its spa, which is undergoing expansion with additional, luxurious stations for pedicures, manicures, hair and makeup departments. . .Here’s a heads-up on prolific author Tom Birkenmeier‘s new thriller, “Whammy Two.”  “TWA #922, the fifth plane that took off on 9/11/01 with hijackers on board now lands here in 2012, just days before the end of the Mayan calendar.  The race is on between the CIA, Mossad and Illuminati.”


How ’bout that rotund St. Louis Circuit Judge, who has a notorious reputation for sleeping through trials?  He frequently misses the majority of testimonies and evidence and gives the maximum sentences allowed on most cases and has the nickname of “Maximus.”  Isn’t it unfair to any defendant when the judge who will sentence him/her to
prison and sleeps through the trial?  Is justice blind or asleep?


Another name lost in the long list of our town’s achievers.  Jay Landesman has died in London, where he and wife, Fran, have lived for so long after leaving their footprints in the sands of culture. According to pals, Jay was in his early 90s while still writing his memoirs.  In the 1940s, he wrote a novel, “The Nervous Set,” which was adapted into a brilliant and truthful jazz musical of the Beat Generation.  It became a Broadway offering in 1959.  Fran wrote the lyrics.  In its embryonic state, it was presented at the Landesmans’ legendary Crystal Palace in Gaslight Square. The venue was formerly his family’s Landesman Galleries. Later, Fran became a poet and singer. Jay’s nephew is Broadway producer Rocco Landesman.

Readers Comments

Jay wrote a book “Rebel Without Applause” published by The Permanent Press in 1987. The cover says he was born “Irving Ned Landesman” and changed his name to Jay when he learned to read having decided that “The Great Gatsby” was the life for him. He had a brief career as a stand-up comic in Greenwich Village before coming back to St.Louis. He moved to London in 1964.

Joe Pollack reported in the StLP-D that Jay’s biography was written by Philip Travena in 2004 and published by Tiger of the Strip, Richmond Upon Thames, Surrey in 2004. Polloack reported that at 85 Jay “still lusts for martinis.” Travena described Jay as a man who desperately sought the spotlight but almost never found it, mainly because of a shortage of talent and discipline.

Jay was my landlord in a furnished apartment on Olive when I returned to St. Louis from the army. He told me I was the only tenant whom he knew would not move out over the weekend and steal the furniture.

– Don Beimdiek


While 350 guests filed into the Ritz-Carlton for the American Heart Association’s annual ball, Bob Solomon and his family checked into the hotel.  Solomon, the prez of the uber-competitive Groupon website, that provides deals-of-the day, gave a quick dib that his Chicago-based company now serves more than 50 million customers throughout North and South America, Europe and Asia. With Solomon was his wife, Jessica, and their children Samson, Sophia and Joshua.  In the ballroom, Dr. John LaSala, medical director of the cardiac catheterization lab at WashU School of Medicine, was lauded as doctor-of-the year.With his wife, Carolyn, Lasorda spoke of “research that has pushed the envelope on replacing the aortic valve without surgery.”  Called percutaneous aortic valve, it’s like a new stint and should be approved by the FDA within a year, explained Lasorda. Faces in the crowd: Circuit Judge Donald McCullin with cardiologist Dr.Angela Brown; Catherine and David Knocke, prez of BJC Medical Group; ever popular exec director of the association, Tracy Brazelton; youthful and beautiful news anchor Jasmine Huda with attorney Peter LeBlanc and Amy and Dr. Michael Lim, new director of SLU’s division of cardiology.  Dr. Lim said he’s seeing high school and college students, who are concerned with heart rhythm disturbances and palpitations due to exercise. “By the time they reach 60, it can be too late,” he said.

Catherine and Dr. John Lasala

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