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St. Louis to celebrate 250th birthday next year

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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI)-- In 2014, along with singing 'Happy Birthday To You,' St. Louisans will be singing 'Happy Birthday To Us.'

It is all because of a year-long celebration planned to mark the 250th anniversary of the founding of the City of St. Louis.

The celebration begins at First Night on New Year`s Eve, and ends the following New Year`s Eve, but in between there will be a wide variety of events, some cultural, some sporting, and some spiritual, all paid for by private donations.

The STL250 committee is hoping local groups will help keep the momentum going through the year.

"We have reached out to almost 3000 organizations, and already our calendar has almost 100 events on it and we know of 100 more that are getting finalized," said Erin Budde, STL250 Executive Director.

The signature event, the 'Burnin` Love Festival' is scheduled for Valentine`s Day weekend on Art Hill in Forest Park. The actual founding of the city is believed to have been either February 14 or 15, 1764.

Along with fire dancers and live music, the festival will feature an attempt to break a world`s record for the number of people proposing marriage at one time.

The year will also be marked all year in another unusual way.

"We will have four-foot-tall fiberglass birthday cakes decorated by local artists placed at 250 locations of note throughout our 15 county region," Budde said.

Only 200 of the locations have been chosen so far.  The rest will be up to internet voters who can nominate and vote for 50 other locations on the group`s website

The voting closes January 3.

St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay Making is also emphasizing the event is about more than just the city itself.

"What we are trying to do is put on a regional approach to this," Slay said.

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