For the cheapskates, happy hour at Helen Fitzgerald's really happens from 5 to 6 p.m. every weekday, when the free appetizer buffet is in play. For everyone else it's from 2 to 6 p.m. and all day Sunday. The menu features plenty of standard bar fare, as well as a few surprises (psst: the filet mignon at Helen's adjacent restaurant is one of the area's best-kept secrets). It's awfully easy to get comfortable around one of the ten or so TV sets in the bar area, to say nothing of the two dozen to be found everywhere else. Plus, there's a game room jammed with pinball machines, Golden Tee, darts, air hockey and even an arcade version of the bean-bag lawn game known as cornhole. Its stage rocks with some of St. Louis' most popular cover bands four nights a week, and the dance floor is a fun, sweaty mess. You can even rent out a spacious private room for a special occasion. Such as, oh, a class reunion, for example. And if you happened to have attended a south-county high school, you'll discover that little, unexpected reunions happen here all the time, so be fully prepared to run into your old chemistry-lab partner.
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