After driving by the famous Gateway Arch next to downtown St. Louis about a million times, thanks to my friend Skip I was finally able to visit it. Constructed of pre-fabricated stainless steel panels, the Gateway Arch was completed and opened to the public in 1965. It's become one of the most recognizable symbols of America up there with the Statue of Liberty and the Golden Gate Bridge.

This photo of the northern base of the Arch with people milling about gives a bit of perspective as to the sheer size of it.

The Arch soars 630 feet up in the air. By law, no skyscraper in downtown St. Louis may exceed the height of the Arch.

In this close-up crop of the bottom of the very top of the Arch the "dotted lines" are actually observation windows that look out on St. Louis on the west side, and the Mississippi River and East St. Louis, Illinois on to the east. Visitors ride small egg-shaped elevator tram cars up inside the Arch to the observation deck inside the top.

This is a view of downtown St. Louis taken through one of the Arch observation windows as nightfall was approaching.

This is Busch Stadium in use, which is scheduled to be demolished and replaced. Busch Stadium was modeled after the Roman Coliseum.

This is a view of East St. Louis, Illinois and the Mississippi River.

The Gateway Arch is a tangible symbol of the promise of America. We often take it for granted, but the fact is if you dream big dreams and really believe in them they can be achieved. If you visit St. Louis, the Gateway Arch merits a visit.