In early 1978, Ballwin Mayor Richard Andrews brought together a group of volunteers to research and plan an event for the entire community. The inspiration for the community event “Ballwin Days” has become much larger than the original planners would have ever thought. The Ballwin Days festival has become one of the premiere annual festivals in the West County area. The festival, hosted by the Ballwin Days Committee in conjunction with the city of Ballwin, is one of the only area events exclusive in promoting local non-for-profit groups on the Midway.
The Ballwin Days committee, with over 140 volunteers in 2004, manages the various functions surrounding the event, including activities not held the weekend of the festival or at Vlasis Park itself. A variety of City departments including, Parks and Recreation, Street Department, Police Department, and Administrative staff, are also involved with the labor-intensive portion of the festival. Without the combined effort of the all volunteer Committee and City staff, Ballwin Days would not be the festival the community has come to expect.
For 24 years, Ballwin Days took place the weekend in August preceding the Labor Day weekend. Generally, this was the fourth weekend of the month; however, in 2001 Phase 2 of Vlasis Park redevelopment project forced a change to the annual August festival date. Nevertheless, from 2002 – 2010, the Ballwin Days festival took place on the third weekend of June. In 2011, the committee moved the date to early June after the St. Louis heat and humidity became too much for festival guests. The early June date lasted until 2020. For 42 years the Ballwin Days festival ran without a single cancellation. In 2020, committee and City staff made the decision to cancel the event due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The resiliency of committee members was evident, as plans continued to develop throughout the pandemic. In 2021 the festival returned with all its glory and enthusiasm, moving yet again to a new date in August.
Ballwin Days is a festival for the community with activities and events for the entire family. The committee's goal, to maintain a family atmosphere, has proven successful for the past 42 + years.
This is a photo of the 8th Ballwin Days Festival, which was held in 1985.