185 W. Trendley Avenue, East St. Louis, IL, 62201 / Cake artist: Theresa Hopkins
The Malcolm W. Martin Memorial Park was a longtime dream of Martin himself, opening in 2009. It was Malcolm W. Martin’s dream to have a park on the Illinois side, paralleling the Jefferson Memorial Expansion Park. Martin (1912-2004), accomplished many things in his lifetime, including serving World War II, became involved in civil rights cases in St. Louis, being one of the co-founders of Nine Network, among many other things. But he did not live to see his ‘dream’ fulfilled, as he passed away a few years the park opened.
The 40″ platform is always an exciting thing for people to view at any time of the day. At the end of the walkway is a statue of Martin sitting. The top of the ramp serves as a panoramic view of the Mississippi River and the St. Louis skyline.
The park is also home to the Gateway Geyser, which is the tallest fountain in the Americas. (The tallest in the world is King Fahd’s fountain in Saudi Arabia (853 ft.)) This one gushes at 630 feet tall, between April 15 to October 15 each year (with weather as an exception at times), at scheduled times. It is considered a counterpart to the Gateway Arch, which means when viewed at the right angle, you’ll see it cutting through the middle of the Arch! The geyser was also the brainchild of Malcolm W. Martin, after he admired a similar fountain in Geneva, Switzerland. The geyser was completed in 1995, even though the park didn’t happen until years later.
Cake placement date: February 21
Where is the cake now?: The cake stayed there until mid-2015. Its whereabouts are unknown, but it is believed to be in storage. (February 2018)