Everyone knows that the Young Zoo Friends' Jammin' at the Zoo fundraising parties (sponsored in part by the RFT) are St. Louis' biggest who's-who events. But not just for the humans -- the animals totally get into the jammin'. Don't believe us? If you attend one of these outdoor wine-infused fiestas -- held on Wednesday, July 20, and August 17 -- we guarantee you'll share the bar with folks you've never dreamed of. For example, Zelda Zebra really likes the zinfandel. And watch the Chardonnay bottles: We don't like to name names, but let's just say that Chutney and Chauncey the Chimpanzees have been known to chug some white wine. Plus, as we all know from television, Blake the Banded Day Gecko is the life of the party with his dance moves -- he's sure to break it down with musicians like R. Scott Bryan and Farshid Etniko playing.
Now, back around the wine-tasting area -- where you can sample more than 200 different wines (included with your $5 admission) -- we bet you'll also find Mulva the Mountain Bongo sipping her merlot like only a member of the antelope family could. And perhaps the penguins will endure the heat to try a taste of what the Little Penguin brought: A winery named in your honor is a pretty big deal, you know. Also, the sea lions are looking forward to the four different picnic dinners offered (we don't know how to tell them that herring isn't on the menu).
So come on out: All the animals -- including Sam the Somali Wild Ass and Wilson Warthog -- are waiting! The festivities run from 6 to 10 p.m. both nights (park for free in the south lot along Highway 40); visit www.stlzoo.org/yzf or call 314-768-5450 for more information or to place your dinner order (meals are $13.50 to $18.50; check out the Web site for choices). -- Alison Sieloff
Man at Work
And it's hard work
If you've always wondered if the life of the high-priced male escort is as glitzy and exciting as it seems, let Mr. Night reassure you that it is. Oh, it totally is. But if you want to see an alternate take on the boy-toy lifestyle, one that takes into account the darker truths of loneliness and desperation (on the part of both escort and client), check out Thomas Long's new drama, Out Calls Only, on Friday and Saturday (July 22 through 30) at the SPOT nightclub (4146 Manchester Avenue; call 314-371-1330 or visit www.spotbar.net for times). For $250, Cody Diamond will be anything you want, but you can see him in action for just $15. -- Paul Friswold
Oftentimes, having a real-live chef cook right in front of you is a privilege reserved for the very rich (or the dishwashers, though they're often too busy to enjoy the experience). But now regular folks like you who trek to the Wildwood Farmers' Market -- which happens every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Gilberg Perennial Farms (2906 Ossenfort Road, Wildwood; 636-458-2033 or www.wildwoodfarmersmarket.com) -- can have the same opportunity as the aforementioned lucky groups. When Chef Jackie from Malmaison visits there at 11 a.m., expect her to chef it up with the market's fresh ingredients, and look forward to a little bit of a taste made especially for you. Yes, you'll probably love the food, but no, you can't take Jackie home with you -- remember, she already has a job. -- Alison Sieloff
Out Comes the Art
If you have yet to make the drive out to St. Charles to see the gorgeous Foundry Art Centre (520 North Main Center, St. Charles; 636-255-0270 or www.foundryartcentre.org), well, this would be a perfect time. Emerging Artists: An Invitational Exhibit of Works by Recent MFA/MA Recipients opens with a public reception at 6 p.m. Friday, July 22; you're a member of the public, so why not go? As the title implies, all of the artists exhibiting are newly minted MFAs or MAs, so the work is bound to be fresh and new. Mmm, fresh art. The image pictured is of Omya Alston's Passed. If you can't make it out for the opening reception, the Foundry is open Tuesday through Sunday, and the show remains up through September 16. -- Paul Friswold