Celebrating St. Louis on 314 Day

Named after the St. Louis metro area code, 314 Day, or March 14, is a day to celebrate St. Louis and all its unique attributes. To highlight the city home to Washington University School of Medicine, faculty and residents from the Department of Surgery answer the question:

What is your favorite thing about living in St. Louis?


Timothy Eberlein, MD

William K. Bixby Professor & Chair, Department of Surgery

Forest Park is my backyard. My wife and I go on walks every day. There is almost never a time that my wife and I are in Forest Park and we do not bump into somebody that we know. Everyone goes to Forest Park, and there is something there for everyone.

Mary Klingensmith, MD

Mary Culver Distinguished Professor of Surgery

Many things! We have all four seasons, but never a long, cold winter, and we have gloriously long spring and fall; my garden grows like crazy—both vegetables and flowers; the schools are outstanding—my two children have received excellent public education; the “food scene” with great restaurants at all price points; and great friendships with hospital colleagues, neighbors, and my church community.

Paul Wise, MD

Professor of Surgery

Having lived in Nashville, Sacramento, Baltimore, New Orleans, D.C., Boston, Cleveland and San Antonio, what I love most about St. Louis is that it is so diverse and cosmopolitan, while also having a wonderful Midwest personality, great sports, excellent food and minimal traffic. This is an especially wonderful place to raise a family.

Erica Traxel, MD

Associate Professor of Surgery

I appreciate the rich, deep history of St. Louis. Not every house is from the same cookie cutter mold. We have such treasures as the St. Louis Symphony & Orchestra, Fabulous Fox Theater, St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri Botanical Gardens and St. Louis Zoo. I am proud of us for coming together this year to protect ourselves, our families, our resources and our city.

Steven Hunt, MD

Associate Professor of Surgery

St. Louis has big city amenities, while still being an easy place to live. I cannot hear traffic from my house, yet my commute is under 15 minutes. I can stay for the last pitch of a ball game, and be home in 25 minutes. The airport is easily accessible, yet I can book direct flights almost anywhere in the country.


Carrie Ronstrom, MD

Urology PGY-4

St. Louis is a great place to live as a resident. There’s a variety of free things to do in town, including Saint Louis Zoo, Art Museum and History Museum. I personally love hiking and camping at the many nearby state parks and at Mark Twain National Forest, which is just a few hours away. If I want to have a fancy night out, I head out to a show at the Fox Theatre or the symphony.

Vivi Abud, MD

General Surgery PGY-2

I love how St. Louis feels like a big and small town at the same time! It is so culturally rich and diverse that there’s always more to explore, but at the same time you don’t have to deal with annoyances of living in a big city.

Darren Cullinan, MD

General Surgery PGY-5

My favorite thing about St. Louis is that it is both a very livable ad affordable city. There is a great food scene, a great arts and cultural scene, and it is a great sports city.

Anna Rose Johnson, MD

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery PGY-1

St. Louis is a hidden gem! Apart from being an affordable place to live, it offers a myriad of activities (The Zoo, Science Museum, Botanical Garden—to name a few) that I am very excited to explore in the post-COVID-19 era!

Britta Han, MD

General Surgery Lab Resident

There are a lot of great things for free or at low cost. Each area of the city and county has a different personality, and you can always find something neat or interesting.

Andrew McLaughlin, MD

Urology PGY-2

The food! And the affordability. Having lived on the East Coast, it makes such a difference to be able to live comfortably on a resident salary here. But seriously, the food scene in St. Louis is very diverse and after 5+ years of living here I’m still finding new favorites.

Kerry Swanson, MD

General Surgery PGY-2

There are so many free activities to do — especially close to the hospital — including the St. Louis Zoo, Art Museum, History Museum and Science Center, all of which are high quality.

Momodou Jammeh, MD

Vascular PGY-3

Lots of great food and ginger beer, beautiful parks and mild winters.

Jorge Zárate Rodriguez, MD

General Surgery Lab Resident

St. Louis is a great place to live because it has a small town feel but it still has plenty of stuff to do, with tons of sports and arts/music events going on all the time. It’s also pretty affordable. It’s probably one of the few cities where one can afford to buy a home on a resident’s salary!

Tiffany Brocke, MD

General Surgery PGY-1

It’s so bike-friendly! I love being able to bike to and from the hospital and around the parks and restaurants of Central West End.

Annie Hess, MD

General Surgery Lab Resident

We have demanding jobs, but St. Louis makes life outside of the hospital fun and exciting, all while being easy and affordable. You can go to great Broadway shows, amazing breweries, James Beard-winning restaurants, all about 10 minutes from a house you bought.