family dinner program:
Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How many people should I prepare for?
    You should expect to buy and prepare enough food to feed:
    West County House: 50 People
    West Pine House: 40 People
    Park Avenue House: 30 People
  2. What time are meals served?
    Dinner is served at 6:00 p.m. and breakfast is served at 9:00 a.m. Please arrive in plenty of time to prepare for these times. For breakfast, please do not arrive prior to 7:00 a.m.
  3. How many people can I have in my group?
    Please limit your group to 10-14 people (8-10 people at West Pine). If your group has children, please plan for eight children and three to five adults. Children must be 12 years of age to assist with cooking.
  4. What should I prepare?
    The menu is up to your group. Click here to see a list of recently prepared meals.
  5. What is in the kitchen?
    The kitchens are stocked with standard kitchen equipment, including a grill at each locations. Each kitchen also has plates, bowls, silverware, and everything you should need for serving. The houses provide coffee and tea. If you would like to bring other types of drinks, you can, but it is not required.
  6. Do I need to stay and clean up?
    Please plan to stay until approximately 7 p.m. to put food away and clean up the kitchen and dining room areas. If you are unable to stay for cleanup, please advise the Manager on duty.
  7. Why are there not more families here at mealtime?
    Not all families are here when meals are served as they may be at the hospital. However, the food you prepare will be eaten when they return to the house.
  8. How do I get there?
    West County House: 300 Ronald McDonald House Lane, Creve Coeur, MO. It is located on the campus of Mercy Hospital which is at the corner of Conway and Ballas Roads.
    West Pine House: 4381 West Pine Boulevard, St. Louis, MO. It is located in the Central West End.
    Park Ave House: 3450 Park Avenue, St. Louis, MO. It is located off of Grand Blvd.
  9. Where do I go when I get there?
    West County House: Parking is limited. Please do not park in the circular driveway area in order to leave parking open for families. There is parking on the left, all the way to the white fencing where there is a pad of concrete in front of the garage door. You may park double in order to park as many cars as possible. It is okay to block the loading dock areas. There is also parking available in the bottom level of Mercy’s parking garage. Once parked, enter via the front door of the house, ring the buzzer to the right side of the door, and a staff member or volunteer will greet you.
    West Pine House: Five days before your scheduled date you will receive an email with the parking gate code. Use this code to enter the parking lot. Ring the doorbell to the right side of the door and a staff member or volunteer will greet you.
    Park Avenue House: Park in the right-side lot behind the house and enter via the front doors. You will need to ring the doorbell and a staff member or volunteer will greet you.
  10. Are we allowed to eat?
    Yes, please enjoy your meal with the families, just make sure to account for additional servings.
  11. Why is it so hard to find available dates on the calendar? 
    We have been very fortunate with the support of the St. Louis community, many of the opportunities to prepare meals book up several months in advance.

For more information, please be sure to review the Family Dinner Program guidelines.