Friday, April 10, 2009

Cardinal Red

Working downtown, I get to watch the parade of Cardinal fans walking through downtown before and after games. The fans are easy to tell apart - they're mostly wearing Cardinal Red.

Cardinal fans are for the most part good natured people. They're here for a good time, and they love the Cardinals. But for a lot of them, for years, attending Cardinal games would be one of the few reasons they would visit downtown.

However, for the past couple of years, there's been an interesting change. Now before and after ballgames, you see more and more baseball fans actively exploring downtown. They are parking further and further from the ballpark and walking to the stadium.

On the way, they are stopping and looking in lots of storefronts. They are noticing lots of redeveloped buildings and cleaner streets. By the curious and sometimes a little surprised looks on their faces, I think their impressions of St. Louis are changing, for the better.

Lots of people were critical of the deal to keep the Cardinals downtown. They didn't like taxpayer financing of a stadium for rich players and richer owners. Yet, if you think in terms of the improved goodwill for downtown and the rest of St. Louis, those tax payer investments just might be paying off.

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