Kiener Plaza and Morton D. May Amphitheater
6th, 7th, Market, Chestnut Streets
Sitting in the heart of downtown St. Louis, Kiener Plaza and the Morton D. May Memorial Amphitheater command a dramatic view of the Old Court House and the Gateway Arch.
The park's centerpiece is a pool and fountain containing a statue known as "The Runner" by sculptor William Zorach (1887-1966).
Kiener Plaza is named in honor of Harry J. Kiener, the donor of the sculpture and fountain. Kiener, who was born in St. Louis on February 27, 1881 was an amateur boxer, wrestler and swimmer, but he is most noted for his position on the U.S. track team at the Olympics held in St. Louis in 1904 during the World's Fair. While his main occupation was a steel company executive, he was very generous throughout his life. He served on the Zoological Board and was active at Shriner's Hospital. Kiener died in 1960 at the age of 80.
Architecture defines the plaza and amphitheater, adding formality and providing the character needed to be compatible with the surrounding cityscape. Visitors can find quiet seating areas, paths, and lawn areas for leisurely strolls. The cascade fountain provides a focal point and its background sound provides some acoustic privacy from the sounds of the city. Both the plaza and the amphitheater provide a peaceful haven for tourists, conventioneers, and thousands of workers from downtown who routinely frequent the plaza during the lunch hour to "soak up the sun."
Kiener Plaza is host to countless St. Louis Cardinal, Ram and Blues rallies and victory celebrations. Concerts, festivals and a myriad of other special events hosted by civic, private, marketing, and not-for-profit organizations all take advantage of the plaza and the "best view in town."