Pick the City UP

Pick the City UP Tour presents Saint Louis Story Stitchers unique brand of urban storytelling, featuring live original STL hip hop, spoken word and story magic on public health issues St. Louis cares about including gun violence. Pay tribute, join the fun, and make a difference. Bringing positive change to the Lou.
Pick the City UP broadens and deepens participation in and access to the arts by targeting teens and young adults living in St. Louis City neighborhoods that are 70% or more black, underserved, and underrepresented.
Pick the City UP brings the arts to the forefront through a unique form of “urban storytelling,” collecting and reframing stories through the arts.

16-24 years old and livin’ in the Lou?? We want you to Join us!!

It’s free!

2023 Line UP!


Juneteenth in JVL Neighborhood!

June 17, 2023

1:30-7:30 PM at 1717 Coleman St

Our Presenting Partner is People Planning and Working Together

OVP Kickback!

July 15, 2023

2:00-6:00 in O’Fallon Park

799 E. Taylor Ave., St. Louis, MO 63147

Our Presenting Partner the City of St. Louis Office of Violence Prevention

A Showstopping SAFE! Team Performance

at the City of St. Louis Office of Violence Prevention (OVP) KickBack Party!

OVP announces the winner of a city-wide design contest and Story Stitchers SAFE! Team performs “3StepsBack” for Gun Safety at the July #OVPKickback in O’Fallon Park

As the headline act, Story Stitchers will perform their “3StepsBack” dance routine to demonstrate an easy strategy for zero contact with firearms.. The youth are advocates for staying SAFE! from shooting incidents and accidental gun deaths and star in a series of PSA’s while teaching their #3StepsBack dance to audiences and hosting beat battles.

Karaoke Couture 

August 5, 2023

6:00-9:30 PM

Free and All ages

HIGH LOW at 3301 Washington Ave in the Grande Center Arts District

Grab a mic to share a song and browse leading local designers’ street wear. 

Designers: Natt Burns, Nuski, Darryle Lyndsey, Rugged Ragz Lucas, LetzWin LyfeStyle

Cash bar

Video Watch of Pick the City UP, Story Stitchers’ new video that was commissioned by The Lewis Prize for Music and released nationally July 25th.

Story Stitchers will release the music video and new single Aug 5th! 

PreOrder Now!

7th Annual Marquette Community Day

Sunday, August 6


Marquette Park at Minnesota Ave

Our Presenting Partner is Allies of Marquette Park

OVP Kickback!

September 16, 2023


Columbus Square Park
16 Columbus Square Dr, Saint Louis, MO 63101

Our Presenting Partner the City of St. Louis Office of Violence Prevention

Pick the City UP on

National  Night Out!

Tuesday, October 3, 2023


5:00 Story Stitchers performance

Beckett Park

1200-1246 N Taylor Ave, St. Louis, MO 63113

6:00 Story Stitchers performance

Herbert & Grand with Great Rivers Greenway

Story Stitchers Pick the City UP performances are supported in part by

the Regional Arts Commission

For inquiries on accommodations, please contact Susan Colangelo at 314-899-9001 or susanc@storystitchers.org.

“Gun violence is a health crisis that consumes our youth,” says Story Stitchers Youth Artistic Coordinator Branden Lewis.  “Our focus on healthy expression helps youth work through their pain and loss.  We develop original music and dance to share safety tips that can save lives. We encourage teens 16-25 years old to reach out to storystitchers.org and join in.”

16-24 years old? Living in St. Louis region? Join Stitchers Youth Council to get involved! Reach out to storystitchers@gmail.com to learn more!

Saint Louis Story Stitchers does not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, religion, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran or national guard status, handicap status, or any other factor prohibited by law in admission or access to, or treatment or employment in its programs and/or activities.

Sign up for e-news to follow and come to Tour events!

Meet the 2023 Pick the City UP Crew!

Will James aka Sillo is Tour Director

Branden Lewis, Story Stitchers Youth Artistic Coordinator, is MC

DJ BlueBeatz is lead Audio Staff serving as Teaching Artist and Producer at Saint Louis Story Stitchers

DJ S.K. Banga, is a Story Stitchers Teaching Artist on Audio Staff


Llord Brown oversees Story Stitchers Social Media


All events are free and family-friendly.

Programs provide fun, safe, creative spaces for youth in St. Louis. Your support through attendance, donations and sharing our story with friends and family is very much appreciated.

We especially thank the following organizations, government offices and programs, and foundations for their support:


Presented with support from the Regional Arts Commission


Presented with support from the City of St. Louis Office of Violence Prevention


Presented with support from a 2021 Accelerator Award from The Lewis Prize for Music


Presented with support from Trio Foundation of Saint Louis


Presented with support from Deaconess Foundation


Saint Louis Story Stitchers is a Charter Member of the St. Louis Area Violence Prevention Commission
Saint Louis Story Stitchers has been a resident organization at Kranzberg Arts Foundation since 2014


Saint Louis Story Stitchers has been a worksite for youth since 2015.


Highlight Reels from Past Tours





Cali, Stitchers Youth Council 

To me I think it is because for 3 or 4 hours in a day, people get a break from what’s going around in their neighborhoods. They get to hear what we have to say and just a break from the mainstream music that’s all talking ‘bout just selling drugs, guns, girls then they come hear our stuff to hear about how to help and how to better our community, how to provide more stuff, not even physical just lyrical and I think that’s a good benefit.

Please consider making a donation to keep the Tour rolling along.

Thank you for your support!

See you soon!