I’ve been working at Integrity for over six months now, but have just begun to scratch the surface of what my work neighborhood – The Loop, on Delmar Blvd – has to offer. The Loop might be the only area of St. Louis where one can work a full day, enjoy a happy hour with colleagues, meet friends for dinner, and end the night with a concert, a film festival, or a game of bowling…all within a few city blocks.
The strength of the Loop stems from diversity, exemplified by both its businesses and its people. Visitors from all over the region come to the Loop with a particular destination in mind, but find themselves exploring new foods, cultures, and activities thanks to proximity and earnest, and welcoming shop and restaurant owners.
The Loop story also encompasses an important piece of St. Louis history. The six-block strip on Delmar runs between University City and St. Louis City proper, and earned its nickname when it became a turnaround spot for trolleys heading back downtown until the 1960s. And because the Loop was a transit hub, the neighborhood became a destination for young people who patronized eateries, the theater, and other nightlife. These streetcars will be returning to the Loop this spring as civic leaders keep experimenting with how to improve the area.
One such testament to our city’s cultural past and present is the Loop’s St. Louis Walk of Fame, a collection of brass stars and plaques embedded into the sidewalk. The WOF honors citizens who influenced “the cultural heritage of St. Louis.” Being a bit of a history nerd, the Walk of Fame is one of my favorite places in the Loop. And being a bit of a tech nerd, I used my appreciation of the WOF stars to learn how to create an Alexa Skill.
Alexa Skills are voice-driven apps that run on Amazon products like Echo or Echo Dot. There are many cool skills out there that allow you to play music, order products, control smart home devices, and answer general questions. I decided to make a skill that will tell you a fact about one of the WOF stars. Once loaded onto your Echo, you can simply ask “Alexa, ask Loop Stars to give me trivia” and it will answer with a short biography. Check it out and get the skill on Amazon.
Want to work with a team of cool tech nerds? Drop us a line.