Draper Journal | August 2021

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raper’s Jake Orr set out to “just do well and do it for the experience” at The Outdoor Nationals July 3 at the prestigious Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon. Instead, the Corner Canyon High graduate—and future BYU runner—won the 800 meters among nearly 40 of the top runners nationwide. “I put a ton of work into it, but came in seeded 10th so it didn’t even cross my mind that I could win,” Orr said. “It was incredible and still so unreal.” “Jake didn’t even know if he wanted to train for this event after barely losing state [to West Jordan’s Austin Klingler],” said Jake’s dad Troy Orr. “We knew he could do it, but we realistically didn’t know what his chances were. It was really an honor to be there.” The 6-foot-6-inch son of Troy and Alisa Orr of Draper set a personal-best time of 1:50.92 —nearly 1.5 seconds faster than his previous best—to edge out Michigan’s Miles Brown by .03 of a second. His time also tops the CCHS record books in the event as well. The event was divided into five heats with Orr competing in the fourth heat and the final results among the 38 runners simply came down to the clock. That fourth heat turned out to be the fastest grouping—with five runners ultimately finishing in the top 10—as one of the runners sprinted out of the gate and kept up a blistering pace early. “He pulled everyone else in our heat with him,” said Jake Continued page 6

Former Corner Canyon High runner Jake Orr edges out Michigan’s Miles Brown at the finish line of the 800 meters at The Outdoor Nationals July 3. (Photo courtesy Becky Holbrook)


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Never-Ending Network Evolution, Are All Broadband Providers Up for the Challenge? By Bryan Thomas, VP Engineering, Comcast Mountain West Region

Working and learning remotely for the past 15 months brought unique circumstances for all of us to navigate in several areas, and central to it all is having access to a reliable, secure internet connection. The pandemic posed the biggest technological test in the history of the internet. When offices and schools closed in March 2020, internet traffic across the U.S. surged by 20 – 35 percent, as millions of people transitioned to working, learning and consuming all of their entertainment at home. Now our communities are transitioning back to working from offices or making hybrid work arrangements, and schools are planning to reopen their doors beginning in August. A flexible, continuously evolving network staying ahead of customer demand is critical. The success of a network hinges on three factors: decades of strategic investment, continuous network innovation, and the best team in the business. Investment

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In the last three years alone, Comcast invested $389.6 million in technology and infrastructure in Utah, including upgrades to our network. Since 2017, Comcast devoted more than $15 billion nationwide to strengthening and expanding our network – including building more than 33,000 new route miles of fiber, which is like driving from Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine more than 10 times. Every two and a half years, the company has added as much capacity to the network as it has in all the previous years combined. One of the greatest advantages of our massive network is we already pass 60 million homes and businesses with a powerful, fiber-dense network, and we have the ability to quickly, surgically, and efficiently add additional fiber and capacity when and where it’s needed. Because of our continuous investment in our network, we can often complete targeted upgrades in weeks rather than months and years. We have a proven track record of completing network upgrades and improvements ahead of schedule, and delivering the performance our customers need well before they need it.

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In addition to investing billions in building and evolving our network, Comcast engineers, artificial intelligence scientists, and cybersecurity experts across the country are continuously developing and deploying new technologies to protect our customers and ensure our network can meet emerging threats and challenges. We have a team of cybersecurity experts scanning the network for threats and actively defending our network and our communities. Our teams are made up of elite talent working at every level of the network from software and artificial intelligence at the core, to the best field teams laying new fiber and upgrading the network year-round in all conditions. New network entrants who don’t have a plan or resources to support never-ending network evolution, cybersecurity protection, and hardening may put customers who rely on them at unnecessary risk. As the country shifts yet again, home and business internet connections remain essential for video calls, education, healthcare access, workforce development, streaming entertainment, and more. At Comcast, we remain relentlessly focused on connectivity, to deliver the smartest, fastest, most reliable network to the communities we serve – keeping you connected to more of who and what you love.

Draper City Journal

CANYON CONGESTION – CAN WE SOLVE IT? Utah’s growth and popularity as a year-round recreation destination are

Carbon Gondola = dioxide reduced 56%

Weigh in now through September 3 and tell UDOT to support the gondola.

having profound impacts in our canyons. This is especially evident in Little Cottonwood Canyon, where traffic often snarls the highway and backs up into neighborhoods. After decades of discussions, UDOT is nearing the end of a study to address these transportation issues and has identified two preferred options: widen the road to accommodate more diesel bus service and add a half-mile of snow shed tunnels or install a high-capacity gondola system.

SUSTAINABILITY A gondola is the only sustainable option that provides a carbon-neutral system


without impacting water quality and wildlife habitat. Building a four-lane highway,

A gondola system would open up reliable secondary access for the

pavement and disrupt existing climbing access. Building a gondola would take

and the hillside stabilization required to do so, will add hundreds of feet of

canyon during emergencies and road closures. This is critical for a canyon

that’s home to the most avalanche-prone highway in North America. Cars and buses not equipped to travel the steep canyon often bring traffic to a standstill, and avalanche cleanup can leave visitors stranded. A gondola would rise above the road, withstanding wind and snow to move people safely and efficiently from the base station to the top of the canyon in 37 minutes.

1,400 cars off the road per hour, decreasing daily emissions by 56%.

Scan above to submit your comment.

For more gondola information or to see a video rendering, visit www.GondolaWorks.com

SOLUTIONS While road expansion and a gondola would cost about the same, the gondola costs less to operate and maintain and lasts three times longer than a bus. The gondola base station proposed at La Caille provides 1,800 parking stalls with tie ins to regional bus service. A gondola preserves Little Cottonwood Canyon for future generations because it solves the congestion that exists now and offers a way to control access in the future. During peak hours a 30-passenger cabin could arrive every 30 seconds and, in coordination with in-canyon vehicle tolling, can also be used to limit the number of daily visitors.

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August 2021 | Page 3

Draper Arts Council salutes the Big Band era in Draper Amphitheater show By Katherine Weinstein | k.weinstein@mycityjournals.com


etween the swinging music and the singers and dancers in period dress, a time traveler landing at Draper Amphitheater on Aug. 20 or 21 might think they had arrived sometime in the 1940s. On those evenings, Draper Arts Council will present “Dancing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute.” Singers and dancers, accompanied by the Riverton Jazz Band, will perform a variety of songs from the “Great American Songbook.” Audience members are encouraged to get up and dance as well. “We usually have people who dress up and come to dance,” said producer Shauna Call. “We reserve the dance floor for the audience.” “Dancing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute” has grown in popularity over the years. The show is “a coalition of singers, dancers and the band,” explained singer and director Valaura Arnold. “This is all of us, creating together.” “The Big Band Tribute has turned into something I’m so passionate about,” Arnold exclaimed. “I love Big Band and that era of music. These songs just speak to people.” She noted that the music has an appeal that spans generations. Kerrie Neu, pianist and president of Riverton Jazz Band, looks forward to the opportunity to “share our appreciation of jazz and Big Band standards. We want to foster that love of music with younger people.” Neu also spoke of how the music invites older folks to take a trip down memory lane. “They might remember dancing, get a glint in their eye,” she said. “It brings back memories.” A record number of people auditioned for this year’s production. “Between the band, singers and dancers, we’ll have about 100 performers,” Arnold said. The production team has changed things up this year to accommodate the number of singers. “We’re going to do more of a pre-

Journals T H E

show with people singing with pre-recorded tracks,” Call explained. The pre-show performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. and go on while audience members are arriving. Additionally, there will be more group numbers than in years past. “We have so many artists, we can do lots of trios,” Arnold said. The music of the Andrews Sisters is ideally suited to this production. “We’re doing ones that bring back patriotic feelings, like ‘I’ll Be Seeing You’ and ‘Boogie-Woogie Bugle Boy,’” she added. The singers and dancers will be costumed in 1940’s-style outfits. “They will be dressed to the nines for whatever the song requires,” Arnold said. The program will also include Big Band hits such as “In the Mood” and “Sing, Sing, Sing,” and Broadway classics like “My Funny Valentine” and “Almost Like Being In Love.” More recent songs, “It had Better Be Tonight” and “Feeling Good” by Michael Bublé, will be performed as well. Some of the songs will be given new interpretations. “We’re doing a new arrangement of ‘Sing, Sing, Sing,’” Kerrie Neu said. “We’re excited to be able to showcase that one this year. When Valaura sings ‘Feeling Good,’ that’s very fun!” Neu has been performing with Riverton Jazz Band for 13 years. She mentioned the organization’s nonprofit status and noted that each musician is a volunteer. As with so many other performing arts groups, the pandemic prevented the members from practicing and performing together. “I am just so grateful for the dedication of the band members,” Neu said. “We’re so excited to get the ball rolling again.” “We hope that people are just ready to get out and enjoy live music again,” said Shauna Call. Draper Arts Council will present “Danc-

Valaura Arnold sings with Riverton Jazz Band in a past production of “Dancing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute” at Draper Amphitheater. (Photo courtesy Valaura Arnold/Draper Arts Council)

ing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute,” Aug. 20 and 21 at Draper Amphitheater. The preshow begins at 7:30 p.m. Draper Amphitheater is located at 944 Vestry Road. Tickets go




The Draper City Journal is a monthly publication distributed directly to residents via the USPS as well as locations throughout Draper. For information about distribution please email brad.c@thecityjournals.com or call our offices. Rack locations are also available on our website. The views and opinions expressed in display advertisements do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions held by Loyal Perch Media or the City Journals. This publication may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the express written consent of the owner. © 2019 Loyal Perch Media, Inc.



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on sale two weeks prior to opening night. For more information, call 385-351-9468 or visit the Draper Arts Council website at www. draperartscouncil.org. l


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Continued from front page Orr, who found himself dropped back to sixth or seventh place with about 300 meters to go. “I took a super risky move with a small opening I saw. It was my body telling me to go and I gave it everything I had. And then everyone thanked that runner for going so fast because most of us had personal bests.” After his heat, Jake Orr knew he had the fastest time with one more group to go, but he and the other runners were escorted to a tent outside of the stadium and didn’t see the final race. Klingler, who will also run at BYU, then ran in the fifth heat and was the first to inform Jake Orr that he had won the competition. “It didn’t even seem real,” Jake Orr said. “It was such an emotional experience, more than we could have ever imagined, and we were just in shock that Jake won,” his mom Alisa Orr said. Running wasn’t exactly the first option for Jake, but his father saw his talent early on. “When Jake was little, he would get bored at his sister’s soccer games so we would just tell him to run around,” said Troy Orr, who was a distance runner for Park City High School. “When he was two, I couldn’t catch him anymore. I knew then that running was in his blood. He wasn’t as convinced early on as I had to bribe him to run but he kept winning every race, dominating through middle school until he found a love for it in high school.”

Jake Orr is the last in a line of athletic siblings which include his sister Shaylyn— who played soccer at BYU—as well as another sister who competed at nationals in club volleyball and brother Logan, who was a state champion hurdler in the 110 meters and 300 meters four years ago and still holds the school record in both events. “As parents, we did not allow video games in our home which forced all of our kids to engage with sports and sports teams while many of their friends were home playing video games,” Troy Orr said. “There were many tough days along the way without video games in our home, but the memories we have now are well worth the sacrifices we made then.” Jake Orr played soccer for a few years before gravitating toward basketball, all the while continuing to run. “I broke the school record in the third grade and was always winning my age group. I was really good at running, but I despised it,” he said. As a freshman at Corner Canyon, he ran cross country and track and played basketball before choosing the track over the hardwood. He continued to improve his times, but began battling knee injuries and needed two separate surgeries over a couple of years while also suffering from ulcers which kept him out from the state cross country championships this past fall. He ended his high school career just .10 seconds off of a title in the 800 meters, earning All-State honors.

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“I have learned much more from my failures and injuries than from any success I have had. Your attitude and the way you view your life really determines your success and how happy you are,” said Jake Orr, who credited teammates pushing him and “one of the greatest high school coaches” in CCHS coach Devin Moody. “He is so motivated on his own and driv-

en for the love that he has for the sport,” said Alisa Orr. For now, Jake Orr will be off and running to Raleigh, North Carolina in early August to serve a two-year Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints mission before returning to compete for the nationally-renowned BYU track team. l

Former Corner Canyon High runner Jake Orr won the 800 meters at The Outdoor Nationals July 3 in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo courtesy Alisa Orr)

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August 2021 | Page 7

City offers water conservation tips to residents By Mimi Darley Dutton | m.dutton@mycityjournals.com

Memory loss that disrupts daily life may be a symptom of Alzheimmillion people are living er’s 6.2 or another dementia. Alzheimer’s is a brainwith disease that causes 6.2 million people are living with a slow decline in memory, thinking and reasoning skills. There are Alzheimer’s diseaseEvery in the United 10 warning signs and symptoms. individual may experience Alzheimer’s disease in the United one States. or more ofOver these signs in a different degree. If you notice any 34,000 people in Utah of them in yourself or a34,000 loved one,people please see in a doctor. States. Over Utah

alone. This disease kills more people

10 SIGNS OF This disease kills more people alone. each year than breast cancer and ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE

eachloss year 1. Memory that than disruptsbreast cancer and prostate cancer combined, and is the daily life prostate cancer combined, and is the 2. Challenges in planning or 4th leading cause of death in Utah. problem solving 4th leading cause of death in Utah. 3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, More than 104,000 people in Utah More than 104,000 people in Utah work or at leisure 6.2for millionsomeone people are living with Alzheimer’s provide living 4. Confusion withunpaid time or care disease in the United States. Over provide unpaid carepeople for insomeone living34,000 place Utah alone. This disease kills withunderstanding Alzheimer’s disease. The impact is 5. Trouble more people each year than breast cancer with Alzheimer’s disease. The impact is visual images and special and prostate cancer combined, and is the widespread and can be devastating to 4th leading cause of death in Utah. relationships widespread and can be devastating to 6. New problems with words families. More than 104,000 people in Utah proin speaking or writing families. vide unpaid care for someone living with 7. Misplacing things and Alzheimer’s disease. The impact is widelosing ability to Forthemore information, aboutto families. spreadto and learn can be devastating For more information, to learn about retrace steps Together we can work to findor a cure support groups or other resources, 8. Decreased or poor and ultimately have our first survivor! support groups or other resources, or judgment Join the fight and lend your to to get from helpwork immediately contact thevoice 9. Withdrawal or this critical cause by attending the to get help immediately contact the social activities Walk to End Alzheimer’s this fall. There Alzheimer’s Association’s free 24/7 are eight Walks throughout the state 10. Changes in mood Association’s Alzheimer’s free 24/7 of Utah: and personality Helpline at:

Helpline at:

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800-272-3900 800-272-3900 or visit our website at: or visit our website at: www.alz.org/utah www.alz.org/utah For more information or to get help immediately contact the Alzheimer’s Association’s Togetherfree we24/7 can work Together we can work Helpline at:

to find a cure to find a cure and ultimately have our first survivor! 800-272-3900 and ultimately haveRegister our first survivor! at: orJoin visit our thewebsite fight at: and lend yourtoday voice to www.alz.org/Walk Join the fight and lend your voice to www.alz.org/utah this critical cause by attending the this critical cause by attending the Page 8 | August 2021 Walk to End Alzheimer’s this fall. There Walk to End Alzheimer’s this fall. There are eight Walks throughout the state


reen and yellow are the trending colors of summer 2021, that is patches of dry yellow grass mixed with the traditional green. Utah is experiencing an extreme drought and all residents are being asked to conserve water. “I am personally going to flip my strip, re-doing it to water-wise. My lawn is practically dead. My family followed the governor’s recommendation and we’ve focused most of our watering on our trees and shrubs,” Draper Mayor Troy Walker said. “We’re encouraging residents to go out to the Conservation Garden Park to see what options there are. It’s really great what you can do that is beautiful and saves water. We’re hoping people will go to check those gardens out, apply for grants, and look for ways to change what they’re doing.” According to Walker, other cities are able to restrict water because they have their own water utility that controls the supply, but Draper does not. The city and its residents purchase water from Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District and WaterPro. “They’re telling us if we can continue to cut down lawn watering and move toward water-wise landscaping…Jordan Valley doesn’t feel like we’re in dire straits yet as far as supplying water. We are in dire straits as far as the drought is concerned. Conservation is a big deal. The more we do, the better we are,” Walker said. Draper residents used to pay a flat fee with WaterPro, but recently, customers began getting water bills based on usage. “If you get something for a flat fee, you use as much as you want. But if you’re paying for every gallon, I think it’s definitely changed people’s perspective. We’re the second driest state in the country. The amount of grass we have is silly. We all love lawns but it’s a big use of water,” Walker said. Linda Peterson, Draper’s communications director, said the city has tried to put water-wise education out at least once a week for residents. Inside June billing statements, residents received a letter co-signed by WaterPro’s general manager and Mayor Walker with six recommendations of ways to save water: • Water no more than twice weekly • Don’t water when it’s windy • Don’t water between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. • Prioritize watering: trees first, then shrubs, perennials, annuals, and finally grass (grass is resilient and will go dormant, then recover when conditions improve) • Mow your lawn higher: 3-4 inches is recommended for deep roots, better drought tolerance • Install a smart irrigation controller and get a rebate (visit UtahWaterSavers.com)

Like many lawns, this one at Summit Academy is dotted with dry patches. It’s an indication that people are taking measures to conserve water beginning with reducing sprinkler use. Grass can rebound more easily than trees and shrubs, so limiting lawn watering is a first step in water conservation. (Mimi Darley Dutton/City Journals)

Peterson said the Draper City Council approved a $250,000 investment in water conservation efforts. The city will be removing grass from medians and replacing it with xeriscape in some areas of city property. The Draper City’s irrigation clocks were updated with a technology that uses an analysis of data from weather stations to water more efficiently. For instance, if the data shows a rain shower just occurred in an area, the irrigation clocks would know not to run the sprinklers there. New trees and plants being purchased for the city’s parks and medians are chosen for drought tolerance. The city asks that if anyone observes broken sprinklers or irrigation lines on city property, or sprinklers running for long periods of time, contact the parks department during business hours at 801-576-6570 and after hours at 801-831-7194. “The city is doing our part and we hope residents will be aware of the severity of the situation. For this year, our water supply is sufficient to maintain this level of usage, but if things don’t improve by next summer, we might get into watering restrictions. We’re hoping everyone makes changes this summer so we won’t have to deal with more extreme measures next year,” Peterson said. Water-wise resources include: Conservation Garden Park, 8215 S. 1300 West in West Jordan, conservationgardenpark.org, UtahWaterSavers.com, Slowtheflow.org, Conservewater.utah.gov, waterpro.net or follow Utah Division of Water Resources on social media. l

Draper City Journal

Hi, I am Steve Van Maren. I’m excited to share that I’m a candidate for the South Valley Sewer District Board of Trustees. Following retirement I have sought civic engagement as a citizen. Over the last 13 or so years I have attended and participated in a wide range political subdivision meetings, including the South Valley Sewer Board, and brought the voice and perspective of a citizen to their deliberations. I appreciate that as a fellow user we receive good, reliable, out of sight – out of mind sewer handling. The most likely issue to cause a problem is improper use of the sewer system. Did you know the number of elected board members has been reduced from 3 to 1 this year? The board took action to eliminate two of the elected seats when the four appointed members had the opportunity to control the board with a 4-2 vote. This action makes it even more important to choose the best representation to serve you. I believe my regular attendance at the meetings, and monitoring the budget process has prepared me well to represent you.



I am hoping this introduction to me will either persuade you to vote for me, or to contact me to find out more. I would welcome the opportunity to meet with you, or a small group you might want to organize. Let’s setup a meeting.

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All-district marching band performs throughout the community By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


here wasn’t quite 76 trombones, but Canyons All-District Marching Band was in a big parade—Murray’s Fourth of July parade—to start out their summer performing season. Students from all of Canyons’ middle and high schools participated, after practicing 40 hours earlier this summer learning “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” by Whitney Houston, and the classic “Hey Baby!” The Canyons All-District Marching Band is in its second year, growing from 120 members in 2019 to 175 in 2021. There was no band last summer because of the COVID-19 pandemic. “We are so proud that students from a dozen different schools, who normally compete against each other, can come together in an amazing display of sportsmanship to make something amazing and fun,” said Caleb Shabestari, who co-directs the “mega band” along with Mikala Mortensen. “It has been awesome to The Canyons All-District Marching Band took to the streets, literally, as they performed in Murray’s Fourth of July parade. (Photo courtesy of Lynne Burns) see the collaboration from these amazing young musicians.” Mortensen, who also is enjoying build the activity in this part of the state. which was to feature several professional Butlerville Days’ parade July 24 in Cotcollaborating with Shabestari, added that On July 23, the group was scheduled drum corps, and they planned to finish tonwood Heights. l that she hopes this ensemble will get to perform at Drums Along the Wasatch, out their summer season by marching in more students involved in marching and

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Draper City Journal

Aquarium accomplishes toad-ally awesome release of Boreal toads in southwestern Utah By Katherine Weinstein | k.weinstein@mycityjournals.com


oreal toads are perhaps not the flashiest creatures at Loveland Living Planet Aquarium, but they are important to the ecosystem of southwestern Utah. “They are one of the only amphibians that can live in high elevations,” said Becky Penrod, a freshwater aquarist at the Aquarium. The toads help decrease insect populations and in turn provide a food source for other animals such as trout and some birds of prey. The Boreal toad is currently designated as a species of concern in Utah. The Aquarium recently announced the successful breeding and release of several Boreal toads into the wild last month. The project was the result of years of painstaking work in partnership with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (UDWR). In a press release, Aquarium freshwater curator Anthony Siegle stated, “This is exciting for us because it’s our first time releasing animals into the wild. We hope these healthy toads will thrive and help expand the Boreal toad population in an area where Chytrid Fungus is not a threat.” Chytrid Fungus has been implicated as a cause of the species population decline in Utah. “Boreal toads basically absorb water through their skin,” Penrod explained. The fungus causes their skin to thicken and prevents them from getting the water and oxygen that they need to survive. The Aquarium worked with UDWR to find a safe place for the toads to be released in Utah where Chytrid Fungus has not been found. It was determined that an area called Paunsaugunt Plateau near Bryce Canyon National Park was ideal. The plateau is landscaped by bristlecone pine forests, alpine meadows, lakes and streams—just the right environment for Boreal toads. Seven of the Aquarium-bred toads were released there on July 8. Creating the perfect conditions for the toads to produce healthy offspring at the Aquarium took years of trial and error. Everything from the temperature of their habitat as well as their food had to be just right. Siegle and Penrod supervised all aspects of breeding the toads. Within their indoor controlled environment, the Aquarium sought to replicate natural hibernation cycles in the toads to help induce procreation in the spring. Like other amphibians, Boreal toads enter a dormant state in cold temperatures called brumation. Last March, “We had to pull the parents out of brumation,” Penrod explained. The toads’ habitat had to be gradually warmed up to awaken them. She added that the toads were given hormones to put them “in the mood.” On April 1, the aquarists found eggs in the toads’ aquarium and tadpoles emerged

DraperJournal .com

Freshwater aquarists from Loveland Living Planet Aquarium, Becky Penrod and Anthony Siegle, along with Kevin Wheeler from the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, hike through Utah’s Paunsaugunt Plateau to release several hand-raised Boreal toads into the wild. (Photo courtesy Loveland Living Planet Aquarium)

Western is proud to announce our new physician: Dr. Wray is a husband and father of five children, and a Utah native. After spending eight years training in the Midwest, he and his wife have decided to bring their family back to Utah to be near the amazing experiences they had growing up. He has a love of the outdoors and is excited to drag his kids around on all the hikes and camping he experienced as a kid. He has a love of Utah sports including the Utah Jazz and the University of Utah (although he has been known to cheer for BYU on occasion).

A newly released Boreal toad from the Aquarium explores its new home in the wild. (Photo courtesy Loveland Living Planet Aquarium)

on April 7. By early May, the tadpoles had sprouted legs and they began to look more like toads. “We gave them grass to help them walk out of the water when they got to that stage,” Penrod added. The toads were fed a high-calcium diet including brine shrimp and worms. In the wild, Boreal toads eat all kinds of insects—“anything small enough to fit in their mouths,” she said. Caring for the Boreal toads was all-consuming, but also a labor of love for Penrod. “I love them,” she said. “They are so little and cute!” Loveland Living Planet Aquarium plans to continue their participation in the Boreal toad breeding and release project next year. Along with other collaborations such as coral rescue and sea turtle conservation, the Boreal toad project is part of the Aquarium’s central mission of promoting species conservation and overall stewardship of the planet. l

Adam Wray, D.O.

Undergraduate Education: University of Utah Medical Education: A.T. Still University - Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine Residency: Michigan State University, McLaren Hospital, Lansing Medical Licensure: Utah Professional Societies & Certifications: American College of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Junior Fellow American Osteopathic Association



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August 2021 | Page 11

Alleviating (at least some of) the post-pandemic social awkwardness


020 was an extroverted social butterfly’s nightmare. As we developed proper Zoomtiquette while in varying degrees of quarantine, many of us lost touch with our in-person social skills. Many of the friends and colleagues I have seen in-person recently shared a laugh with me over not knowing how to social anymore: yes, as a verb. And man, if you thought a room full of writers was socially awkward before the pandemic, imagine us now. I wanted to share some quick tips and tricks to improve social interactions this month. Before I do, I’d like to emphasize if trying to remember suggestions for social interaction detracts from engagement, forget it. The most important thing for any social interaction is to be completely engaged in the moment. Authenticity is what we seek in social interactions. Think about it. We instinctively know when they’re not. We notice when someone stops listening, even if they tune back in. We can sense when another is either too bored or too amped to be fully present. Even some of our commonplace language is indicative of our societal value of authenticity. “Fake” and “basic” are insults. “True to your heart; you must be true to your heart” are lyrics in a very catchy Disney song. (Daa da-da da.) I digress. Take these suggestions only to

By Cassie Goff | c.goff@mycityjournals.com store in the running background programs of your cognition. (I must add that these suggestions are highly Utah specific, socially and culturally. For 2021, the importance of facial expressions may be (re)discovered. We developed habits after realizing, even subconsciously, the majority of last year dragged on without others being able to fully perceive our faces. As the masks come off and the Zoom meetings become nostalgic, our faces are fully public again. Meaning, if you adapted to only smiling with your eyes, it’s time to retrain those smile muscles. Courtesy smiles are back. Speaking of faces, maintaining eye contact has become a new struggle for many. It’s natural for humans to look around when recalling a memory, formulating a lie, trying to find the right word, or simply taking in our environment. Instead of feeling pressured to maintain constant eye contact for the majority of a social interaction, try maintaining eye contact for only what feels comfortable and appropriate for the social interaction. (Someone once told me that if you’re uncomfortable with eye contact, stare at the person’s nose directly in between their eyes, as to gives the same effect.) Most of our communication is nonverbal (60 to 95%, depending on who you ask).

That means, pay attention to your body language, positioning, tone, and nonverbal cues. Maintain an open body language. (Is any part of your body slouched, crossed, or otherwise reserved?) Consider the positioning of your body in the specific environment. (Are you close to the door?) Feel the tone of your voice. (Are you speaking monotone?) Mind your gestures. (Are you speaking with your hands?) Lastly, show genuine interest in others. It’s likely we are interacting with humans who we want to spend time with, for differing reasons. Communicate valuing their time and relationship through both nonverbals and verbals. Ask questions that go beyond small talk, really listen to their answers, ask thoughtful follow-up questions about barely mentioned details or their own interpretations, make mental notes of any upcoming important events of dates, and allow for laughter. Okay, really lastly, be gracious with yourself. Any amount of social interaction after over a year of distancing and quarantining can feel draining. Our energy storage for socialing might deplete more rapidly. It’s okay to only want to go out one night per week, when we used to go out multiple nights per week; and to feel like going out to dinner was equivalent to running a marathon; and to accept a more introverted lifestyle. It’s okay to feel a little


In 2020, a group of writers mingle over Zoom….will they remember how to social when distancing is no longer required? (Cassandra Goff/City Journals)

socially awkward. Because we all do. Research from: Aragon, Bandura, Bargh, Burgoon, Darics, Duffy, Cherry, Clark, Dunbar, Ekman, Friedman, Guerrero, Guyer, Hendriksen. Houpert, Navarro, Nguyen, Pease, Perry, Rosenthal, Skinner, Thompson, and Willard. Dang. I’m not the only one who wrote about this phenomenom: “It’s not just you…” by Bonos; “We’re all socially awkward now,” by Murphy. l

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August 2021 | Page 13

New faces may welcome back students this fall By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


his fall, Draper Park Middle School will be missing some of its school history. Assistant Principal Jodi Roberts, who has welcomed eight years of student classes, has been reassigned to Brighton High. Putting that into perspective, those who were sixth-graders in 2013, when the school opened, graduated high school in 2020. “There were a lot of things unfinished, we just kind of had to roll with, and keep a positive attitude,” she remembered of the Vikings’ new home. “I’ve been here for such a long time, I really have made some great friendships and I’ve bonded with a lot of people, not just teachers or adults, but families and children. I love the sense of middle schoolers. I think they’re funny; I think they’re hysterical. I’m going to miss just the average middle-schooler. It’s going to be hard for me.” It’s not just the students, but their families that Roberts has gotten to know through several siblings who have attended Draper Park, she said. One of those is former DPMS and Corner Canyon graduate Zach Wilson, whom she plans to see play in his NFL rookie season in person. “He worked hard, and he deserves everything he gets in life. Zach and his friends, some of them are playing college level, played football every day at lunch, every day. He’s a great kid and so are his brothers and he has an adorable little sister who will start seventh grade. You just get bonded to these families, and not just the Zach Wilsons of the world, but there are kids who maybe their home lives are not great. You still bond and worry about them and you try to make things Draper Park Middle administrator Jodi Roberts, who will work at Brighton High this fall, loves to support students; she is seen here supporting a student at a Mias best as you can for these kids while they’re chael Jackson dance-off. (Photo courtesy of Jodi Roberts) with you,” she said. after serving as its assistant principal. It at Corner Canyon. ry assistant principal. Roberts is replacing Brighton’s assistant relieves Janet Goble, CTEC’s director, • Chanci Loran, who has been Bell View • Hillcrest teacher specialist Ari Tavo principal, Mark Mitchell, who will take her of the dual role of principal and direcElementary’s principal, will become an now is the high school’s assistant prinposition with the Vikings. tor. Equity, Inclusion, and Student Services cipal. Roberts and Mitchell are just two of • Margaret Swanicke, who has served as administrator. She replaces Colleen • Karlie Aardema, who has worked in the several administrative appointments the CanSunrise Elementary’s principal, now is Smith, who will become Copperview instructional supports department, now yons Board of Education approved for the Midvalley Elementary’s principal, reElementary’s principal after Jeri Rigby is Indian Hills Middle’s assistant prin2021-22 school year. placing Tamra Baker, who is appointed retired. cipal, replacing Halley Nelson. Nelson Other appointments include: Bell View Elementary’s principal. • Mary Simao, who has been a Jordan is Butler Middle’s assistant principal, • Elenoa Pua, who has been a charter • Angela Wilkinson, who has been East High intern administrator now takes on replacing Sara Allen, who transferred school principal, will be East Midvale Sandy Elementary’s principal, now is the role of assistant principal at Jordan to Ridgecrest Elementary as an assisElementary’s assistant principal, reSunrise’s principal. Bryan Rudes, who High. tant principal. placing Danya Bodell. has been Midvale Middle’s assistant • Jared Tucker, who served in the dis• Genny Poll, of the responsive services • Michelle Shimmin becomes the adminprincipal, assumes Wilkinson’s duties. trict’s responsive services department, department, now is Butler Middle’s istrator of Canyons Online. Texas educator Divya Nagpal comes to now is an Alta High assistant princiassistant principal, replacing Dan Ash• • Michelle Snarr, who has been Canyons District as Midvale Middle’s pal, succeeding Garry True, who has bridge, who is now Midvalley ElemenEdgemont Elementary principal, is assistant principal to replace Rudes. retired. tary’s assistant principal. now Willow Canyon Elementary prin• Wendy Dau, who has been Jordan • Former Alta High Assistant Principal • Kalisi Uluave, from the Salt Lake cipal, succeeding the retiring Marilyn High’s principal, is the Federal and Kelcey Kemp now serves in that role at School District, now is an Alta High asWilliams. State Programs in the Equity, Inclusion Jordan High, replacing the retiring Jana sistant principal, replacing Kelli Miller, • Elcena Saline, who has been Sandy Eland Student Services director. She reCrist. Union Middle Assistant Princiwho left the district. ementary assistant principal, replaces placed the retiring Karen Sterling. Corpal Shelly Karren is replacing Kemp • Amanda Parker, from the Jordan Snarr as principal at Edgemont. Anne ner Canyon High Assistant Principal at Alta. Midvale Elementary Assistant School District, is Albion Middle Hansen now is Sandy Elementary’s asBruce Eschler succeeds Dau as PrinciPrincipal Ashley McKinney is replacSchool’s assistant principal, replacing sistant principal, taking Saline’s vacant pal of Jordan High. Juab School Dising Karren and Copperview’s Carolee Sandy LeCheminant who has become position. trict’s Ken Rowley will replace Eschler Mackay now is the Midvale Elementaan achievement coach. l • Doug Hallenbeck is CTEC’s principal,

Page 14 | August 2021

Draper City Journal

Education and professional firework shows helped reduce fire threat in Draper By Mimi Darley Dutton | m.dutton@mycityjournals.com


ersonal fireworks happening during an extreme drought was a major cause for concern heading into the Fourth of July holiday. But multiple messages to the public about firework safety and restrictions paired with three nights of professional fireworks hosted by Draper City seem to have kept the fire threat largely under control. “All in all for that Fourth of July weekend, we fared very well. I give a lot of credit to my residents that took heed of the warnings and the education we put out, and information on the restricted areas. We observed very little violation in what I would consider the major restricted areas (east of 1300 East, south of 13800 South and west of I-15). We had a lot of visibility in those areas with fire and police patrolling and trying to make a presence,” Fire Chief Clint Smith said. Sirens could be heard in the city at approximately 10 p.m. the night of the Fourth of July. Two firework-caused fires flared up in roughly the same area of the city, 300 East and Bellevue Park. Firefighters first responded to the fire on 300 East. According to Smith, those involved were in a legal area to light fireworks, but they were in close proximity to a large, undeveloped field. “One got into that dry brush and immediately ignited that. Our crews were

In an effort to curtail personal fireworks because of fire concerns, the city put on three nights of professional fireworks shows rather than the traditional one during Draper Days. (Mimi Darley Dutton/City Journals)

able to respond really quickly. We sent a lot of resources and they were able to get a handle on that fire rapidly so it didn’t go beyond dry brush. Right on the heels of that we had a call for a small fire in Bellevue Park. When our crews arrived, they did observe individuals lighting fireworks. All of our parks within the city are restricted by ordinance. I do be-

lieve a citation was issued,” he said. Draper’s Fire Department has to make decisions to be fully staffed during high fire danger times, including holidays when fireworks are permitted, while also being able to send crews to other areas of Utah and other states when help is needed. Smith said a crew went to help with a fire near Moab prior to

the Fourth of July, but the crew returned to Draper to make sure the department was fully staffed for the July 4 holiday. Just before the Pioneer Day holiday, Draper was among several Utah fire departments that sent personnel to help battle the Bootleg Megafire in Oregon, the largest fire in the nation at the time. During Draper Days, a significant fire and police presence kept those gathered for concerts and fireworks in Draper Park safe. Fire department personnel could be seen guarding the roof of the Draper Library, watching for errant embers. According to Draper Mayor Troy Walker, the city used the same vendor who does the Stadium of Fire fireworks to do three, 12-minute shows for Draper Nights. They used some of the money they’d saved by not doing a firework show in 2020 to offset the cost of the three shows this year. Walker said the city had planned to do a firework show during the height of pandemic last year, but instead they opted to send Draper police to help with the riots that had broken out in Salt Lake City, so they decided against doing a firework show without extra personnel. Walker echoed Smith’s sentiments. “I want to thank the residents. They were very responsible,” he said following the Fourth of July. l

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August 2021 | Page 15

Adaptive PE students shine in their own outstanding ways By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com

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Bell View kindergartner Baldo Arriaga holds his Outstanding Sportsmanship Award trophy tightly as he’s joined by Canyons School District special education program administrator Tifny Iacona, district adaptive physical education instructor Kathryn Taylor and his principal, Chanci Loran. (Julie Slama/City Journals)


hortly before Bell View kindergartner Baldo Arriaga received a trophy from Canyons School District, his principal Chanci Loran described him as “very sweet, a super hard worker and deserving of the Outstanding Sportsmanship Award.” His classmates applauded and cheered for him and celebrated by jumping on a launch pad that launched a two-foot rocket high up to the sky. It was an indirect way of ensuring the diagnostic kindergarten students also were working toward their development skills and personal physical education goals as well as having fun, said district adaptive physical education instructor Kathryn Taylor, who works with Baldo as well as other youngsters. “We help them with their gross motor skills such as running, galloping, jumping, hopping on one foot and with objectives like throwing, catching, kicking and dribbling,” she said. The Outstanding Sportsmanship Award recipients represent each elementary school that has the adapted physical education program. They follow directions, have a positive attitude and work hard on learning new skills and on their personal physical education goals, said Tifny Iacona, district special ed-

ucation program administrator. “It’s important that we recognize students who have worked hard on their adaptive PE goals and with their peers, to congratulate all of them on their success,” she said. Other school winners include Marcus Fernandez, Silver Mesa; Weston McPherson, Crescent; Isaac Kilpatrick, Alta View; Connor Jones, Granite; Logan Martinson, Willow Canyon; Natalie Van Roosendaal, Willow Springs; Saxton Snowball, Edgemont; and Ava Baird, Jordan Valley. Traditionally, the students are recognized on the annual Sports Day, where they parade on the track as well as participate in a distance run and a sprint, an obstacle course, a parachute game, a dance-off and other activities with their classmates. “We’ve had mascots from across the (Salt Lake) Valley, Peer Leadership Teams or studentbody officers, cheerleaders and the (school district) superintendent and Board (of Education) members come and really cheer on these kids,” Iacona said, adding that this year and last year the event was unable to be held because of the COVID-19 safety and health concerns. “It’s a fun way to celebrate these students. It’s all about the kids.” l

Draper City Journal

Summit Academy event brings together community, donations for school improvement By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


his fall, there may be more security cameras at Summit Academy, thanks to the Warriorpalooza event held this past spring. Bringing together the beloved Jogapalooza, which was the school’s annual fundraiser for 11 years, with its new fundraising event, in its second year, Warriorpalooza, was a fun success, said Summit Principal Lindy Hatch. “The students ran around our track, but had to go through obstacles along the way,” she said. “The students loved it.” Fifth-grade teacher Victoria Scott said that many students opted to do the course, which included a tire run, army crawl, weaving in and out of cones, hopscotch, basketball shooting, a limbo and other activities, several times during their 45 minutes on the field. At the end of the course, students were sprayed with water. “It was kind of to see how many times they could do it in a certain amount of time,” she said, adding that afterward, the students had a dance party on the school field. The event raised about $17,000 in contributions, which will not only help with the increased security, but also update the baseball field and add tables and benches by the junior high field, Hatch said. Even though the amount was half of their goal, students still benefitted from half the event’s incentives, such as Assistant Principal Paul Lundberg promising to shave his hair and beard. “We only reached halfway to our goal, so he shaved half his head and half of his beard,” Hatch said. She took part in the incentives to raise funds as well. The names of all students that brought in $100 or more were added to a drawing to tape Hatch to the school wall.

Eight students’ names—four from kindergarten through fourth and four from fifth through eighth grades—were drawn to help secure their principal. “I was taped to the wall in the junior high atrium for all three lunches—and hour and a half—and outside the elementary building during loading,” she said. Also new this year was water derbies rather than the traditional dunk tank. One part of the derby allowed students to throw balls to soak their teachers and administrators. “It was much better than the dunk tank,” said Hatch, who taught at the school prior to being named principal this school year. Another part of the water derby, Scott said, allowed two people to compete against each other to fill up the other person’s huge bucket as fast as they could. As soon as it was filled, it would tip over onto the competitor. “The goal was to get more water filled in the other person’s bucket before they got you,” she said. Last year, a fundraising event did not happen as school went into a soft closure during the COVID-19 pandemic. In previous years, funds have been used for technology upgrades to playground equipment. Both previously and this year, the event included a dinner. With Jogapalooza, families purchased and ate a spaghetti dinner together the night before the fundraiser. This year, the Cinco de Mayo dinner was held a few weeks prior to Warriorpalooza, and families could pick up taco kits at the school to enjoy them at home together, Scott said. Hatch said she appreciated the bonding that came about from the event. “Like always, it was such a fun day,” she said. “It’s a wonderful way to bring our community together.” l


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Principal Lindy Hatch was duct taped to a wall as an incentive to students to raise funds for the school. (Photo courtesy of Summit Academy)

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922 Baxter Dr, Suite 110 South Jordan August 2021 | Page 17

August Open House will present framework master plan for The Point By Mimi Darley Dutton | m.dutton@mycityjournals.com


he Point will hold an Open House Aug. 12 to announce a framework master plan for the 600 acres of state-owned property that has been touted as a once in a generation project. After hiring internationally renowned firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill last December, much of 2021 was spent developing the plan with multiple public input opportunities. The Point also announced the hiring of Scott Cuthbertson as Director of Operations. “The Open House is an opportunity for us to roll out the framework master plan for the site. We want people to be able to see how their input has been transferred into plans and how the pieces come together,” said Alan Matheson, The Point’s executive director, who said they’ve listened to more than 10,000 people in the process thus far. “People will see a vibrant, future-focused community that tries to improve the quality of life for people in Utah.” According to Matheson, the main components of the framework plan are innovation, future-focused transportation, an emphasis on sustainability, and places for people to gather to enjoy entertainment and open space. Where innovation is concerned, Matheson said public and private sector partnerships will work to solve some of society’s challenges such as air quality, changing climate, advanced energy innovation, biotech-

Approximately nology, life sciences, 140 acres will be used and potentially cyber for an open space and security. He antictrails system. Features ipates cutting edge include a central park research will take for public gatherings, place at the site with a river to range trail “incubators and accelconnecting the Jordan erators that help take River Parkway to the those ideas to market.” Wasatch Mountain Future-fotrails that simultanecused transportation ously provides habiplans include transit tat for wildlife, and a throughout the site series of “green conso that people living nections” for people and working there to use for walking, can have but won’t biking, scooters, and need more than one Scott Cuthbertson, a real estate professional with vehicle. It will feature experience in multibillion dollar projects, has been whatever the future Gold Standard Bus hired as Director of Operations to lead development might bring. Regarding susRapid Transit with efforts for The Point. (Courtesy The Point) tainability, the framedesignated rights of work master plan way, signal prioritization (traffic lights change to keep the special works to reduce emissions and employs buses moving) and raised platforms. “It will practices and designs that lend themselves to be like light rail on rubber tires,” Matheson low-energy and low-water use. With the housing crunch, the plan is said. There are also plans for an autonomous circulator to move people throughout the site to provide a range of housing for various without a car and the possibility of “air taxis” incomes and backgrounds to create mixed neighborhoods. Housing will include sinor people-moving drones. “We’re building a community for com- gle-family homes, townhomes, condos and ing generations, not just for today, so we have apartments. By providing a variety of housto set our sights on what will be, not just what ing options, they hope that people can both live and work at the site. is,” Matheson said.

“We call this a framework plan because it’s not a final plan. It gives direction to our next steps but has built-in flexibility to accommodate changes in the economy, technology and other circumstances,” Matheson said. The current prison inmates will be moved in roughly one year to the new correctional facility. That will be followed by demolition, remediation, site preparation and backbone infrastructure such as major roads, water systems, trails and parks. Matheson anticipates vertical development to begin in 2024 or 2025. “We’ll start seeing some buildings go up. That will be exciting as this public vision becomes reality.” Cuthbertson was chosen as Director of Operations after a national search with more than 130 applicants. He’s spent 15 years working on major development projects around the world and he founded Sterling Capital Partners headquartered in Salt Lake City. He holds degrees from Brigham Young University, Georgetown University and the University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School. The Point’s Aug. 12 Open House will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Fred House Training Academy, 4727 Minuteman Drive in Draper. The public can participate in-person or via The Point’s YouTube channel during scheduled Open House hours. A recording will be posted online following the event. l

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Students come up with solutions to real-life problems in entrepreneur challenge By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


uan Diego Catholic High ninth-grader Erin Chan has realized that often, people with disabilities are excluded from physical activities and sports. She, and a group of friends, decided to do something about that. “My goal is to create an inexpensive, wearable product that will help the visually impaired navigate without the aid of another person or white cane,” Erin shared in a presentation to the Utah High School Entrepreneur Challenge. “This device will be more discreet than the usual assistive devices since disabled people can be self-conscious about their condition.” The group researched to discover that 70% of the 52,000 school-age children with visual impairments do not participate in a physical education program, which is against the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Their answer was to create a vest that uses ultrasonic sensors to calculate the distance between obstacles and a visually impaired wearer to warn them of nearing objects. “The frequency of vibration increases (as an object gets nearer to the person) as well as the intensity,” Erin said. The Acti-Vest team’s solution won the $10,000 grand prize at the Utah High School Entrepreneur Challenge. More than 130 teams or individuals entered the competition, which was held virtually this year. The finals were narrowed down to the top 20 teams and was hosted by the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, a division of the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah, and sponsored by Zions Bank. “(The win) means a lot, because it tells me that I can go on to support people with disabilities and help people live the lifestyle they want to live. I plan on expanding this company and using the money to further develop the vest to make it a better product,” Erin said. Since the competition, the Acti-Vest team has filed for a patent. They also have had a blind person test the vest and have been incorporating feedback to a second prototype. The team, which includes sixth-grader Lana Chan, sixth-grader Eli Ekstein, eighth-grader Sam Ekstein, and sixth-grader Sara Leng, brainstormed ideas to fit their FIRST LEGO League challenge, helping people to become more active through technology, and then, talked to experts about it. Upon learning about the entrepreneur challenge, they decided to enter. “We originally started out deciding between a ball that was really brightly colored and easier for visually disabled people to follow around and then we turned it into more

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of a thing that people can become more independent while using,” Erin said. “So, we developed something that they could wear and help them see objects around. This is where the whole idea of a wearable came from, with ultrasonic sensors and vibration motors. Then, we eventually extended it a little more so that they can use it within their daily lives as well, not just for playing a specific sport.” The team came up with the vest name by putting together the words “active” and “vest” and then, “we also liked the idea of activist, you know, someone who deviates from social norms. And that is what we’re doing with this, we’re activists in helping blind people do something that helps them be able to now live an independent lifestyle,” she said. Erin said that the initial prototype cost $55 to make, but with increased technology, it will cost more. She hopes that by mass-producing it, they could offer it for about $200. “We think that’s reasonable for a medical device and not really expensive for some-

Juan Diego Catholic High School student Erin Chan models the Acti-Vest, a vest that uses ultrasonic sensors to calculate the distance between obstacles and a visually impaired wearer to warn them of nearing objects. (Photo courtesy of Erin Chan)

thing with this capability,” she said, adding that the team is looking at attaching the circuit boards to a piece of cloth that can attach to the vest or a T-shirt. “That will make it wearable for all different types of weather and you don’t have to keep buying a new set of clothes with a set of circuit boards. You just have one circuit that you move to each different piece of clothing. We have a business plan in the making right now and are planning to make this into a long-term project, which we’re still developing, and possibly branching out to other products.” High School Utah Entrepreneur Challenge Student Director Peyton Williams said this year’s entries ranged from an eggshell remover to making standardized testing more equitable for all students despite their socioeconomic status. “We had a phenomenal set of finalists this year,” Williams said. “I’m proud that Utah is home to so many impressive and entrepreneurial high school students.” Second place and $5,000 went to Midvale’s Hillcrest High School team with their project, Pocket Garden. Tailored to novice gardeners, Pocket Garden simplifies plant purchases, connects customers with local nurseries and motivates plant care. The Pocket Garden team included junior Zoe Liu and seniors Anna Hsu and Anya Tiwari. “We went through a bunch of different ideas,” Liu said. “We wanted to do something climate-related because that was a global is-

sue that related to all of us, and we all thought it was really important. Over time, we came up with this idea of, ‘Oh, what if we do something that’s like a box that gets delivered to you with sustainable products,’ and then, we ended up with the idea of gardening. Our Pocket Garden pretty much makes gardening a lot easier and can be really helpful to the environment. It saves on shipping costs for food; it also prevents a lot of commercial pesticides and fertilizers going into the world if you’re eating your own food and can help create more oxygen which is better for air pollution.” She said that the modernizing of gardening “makes things a lot easier and not only do you get the products, but the app also comes with a tracker that gives you reminders on when to water your plants or what time might be a good time to sow your seeds” as well as a journal to track tasks. It also provides information on what plants work well in the climate of the gardeners. “All of our families garden quite a bit,” Liu said. “While developing the app, we were really talking about what gardening is to each of us. For my family, gardening has always been a way of almost like holding on to self-sustainability. My parents have a lot of pride in knowing that we grow and learn stuff. I like the idea that we can exist separately, and that sort of independence is empowering, regardless, if we still buy food from the grocery store. That was a little bit of a motivator for it.” l

The Acti-Vest team’s solution to help people with disabilities be able to lead an active and independent lifestyle won the top prize at the Utah High School Entrepreneur Challenge. (Photo courtesy of Erin Chan)

August 2021 | Page 19

CCHS golfers top 10 at National Invite By Catherine Garrett | c.garrett@mycityjournals.com


he Corner Canyon High golf team— consisting of 6A state champion Caysen Wright and the rest of the third-place Chargers squad—finished 10th at the National High School Invitational at Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina June 30. “Playing in this event is a big accomplishment,” said Chelsea Sedlar, PGA marketing and content coordinator. “The opportunity to be there was huge,” said CCHS head coach Derek Fox. “It shows where we have come in the last few years in becoming a title contender in the state and getting recognition nationally. The boys have been working really hard for this.” The Chargers began the tournament well, according to Fox, but battled “nerves on the bigger stage” over the three days. “We got better as we settled in and then on the last day, we shot the third-lowest score of the tournament and climbed up eight spots,” Fox said. “We felt pressure from some high expectations as we really thought we’d have a shot, but we learned a lot about not being able to force things.” Upcoming senior Jackson Mauss was the top Corner Canyon player, finishing all three rounds in the 70s—including a final round of 72—to tie for 17th place. “Jackson struggled the first two days and then just kept grinding,” Fox said. “On the

Page 20 | August 2021

first hole of the last round, he started out with a double bogey but then went two-under the rest of the way.” “The experience at Pinehurst was awesome,” said Mauss, the son of Justin and Jill Mauss of Draper. “Overall, I played well, but it could have been a lot better. Playing on that big of a stage is always fun and nerve-wracking but the more I do it the more comfortable

I get.” Others competing at the National Invite for the Chargers were Wright, Maddox Vincent, Zach Labrum, Harrison Dana and Coda Anderson. “It was a lot of fun hanging out with my teammates at such a cool place,” Jackson Mauss said. Fox said that his players were able to

play hole No. 2 on the prestigious course with their dads following the tournament. “It was such a good experience for our guys where it turned into a family trip for a lot of them,” Fox said. “This is definitely something the boys will remember the rest of their lives, and it has only motivated them more in golf.” l

Six Corner Canyon golfers represented with a 10th-place finish at the National High School Invitational June 30 at Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina. (Photos courtesy Derek Fox)

Draper City Journal


All Hours Plumbing, Heating & Air


10 years in ! usinuseatssryan.c@thecityjournals.com Business Spotlights are a service offered to our advertisers to help them inform our readers about their businesses. For information on scheduling a Spotlight, please call us at 801-254-5974 orbemail Winter is rough and expensive on your home’s systems. Older homes are less energy efficient and have unreliable plumbing. Newer homes need maintenance to keep up their systems. Chuck Staszkiewicz, owner of the complete home maintenance company All Hours Plumbing and Drain SLC, has a checklist to help you winterize your house. For information on all their services, go to their website at www.allhoursplumbingslc.com and chat with customer service, or call them at 385.213.0535. “There are indoor and outdoor tasks that will keep your home running well through the winter and minimize the need for emergency calls to us during holidays and cold weather,” Staszkiewicz said. “Make sure exterior water valves are turned off to prevent burst pipes. Walk around your house and check the foundation. Close any vents that are open. Put your shovel, snow blower and ice melter somewhere convenient,” Staszkiewicz said. Staszkiewicz started All Hours as a plumbing company 10 years ago. “As we grew, customers asked if we did HVAC services. They wanted someone in their home they trusted. So we began doing HVAC,” Staszkiewicz said. This year’s economy was unpredictable, but All Hours continues to hire and stay open as an essential business. They provide yearly plans so a technician can check your house during the year and do scheduled maintenance. “We’re always looking for the right kind of people to work with us,” Staszkiewicz said. “Employing the right kind of person is critical. When someone is in your home working on your systems and giving you quotes, it needs to be someone you trust,” Staszkiewicz said. All Hours builds their team with ongoing training, and they


have earned hundreds of high praise reviews. “Wow, so impressed. It’s never easy to let a stranger in your home. We received reminder texts with a picture of who we should expect the next morning. “From the moment we opened the door to when he left, the technician was professional, kind and courteous. We will definitely call All Hours Plumbing for any future needs,” wrote Gwen in an online review. The indoor checklist for winter has small projects like checking furnace filters and cleaning appliances, and big jobs like furnace tune-ups and water heater maintenance. “Drain your water heater until it’s cleared of sediment and then refill it. Utah’s water is hard on water heaters,” Staszkiewicz said. If draining a water heater doesn’t sound like your idea of fun, let the professionals at All Hours do it. While they’re there, have them check your furnace and plumbing. “Thanksgiving is one of our busiest days for emergency plumbing calls. We’re happy to come out, but we’d rather save people the inconvenience. “With our maintenance plan, we check those systems before the big family meal. We fix potential issues so you can enjoy your

warm, well-maintained home over the holidays,” Staszkiewicz said. The checklist also includes thinking about indoor air quality and respiratory concerns. “Utah’s air quality issues don’t stop at your front door. We’re a full service home maintenance company, and that includes duct cleaning and placing steam humidifiers,”

Staszkiewicz said. All Hours is a local company that earns Utahns’ trust and gives back to the community. “Recently, we helped a woman who had just gone through chemo and was having respiratory issues. We installed an air filter and donated our services. In addition to the service, I think it just made her feel better to know that someone cared,” Staszkiewicz said. Staszkiewicz knows customers today are well informed and have done research before they call around. “It’s imperative to find the right company, and we take earning your business seriously.” For more information on winterizing your house, emergency services or maintenance plans, give Chuck Staszkiewicz and his team a call at 385.213.0535 or check their website at www.allhoursplumbingslc.com. Technicians are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Government 101: Form of government in cities


n Utah, there are two possible types of government: Council-Manager or Council-Mayor. There’s a possible third type of government, a Charter, but none of the cities in which City Journals publishes has one. Council-Mayor The mayor is elected every four years and represents the entire city. They are the head of the executive branch, like a CEO (Chief Executive Officer) in a private business. All department heads within the city report to them. When a new mayor takes a seat, they can hire or fire department heads, but council advice and consent is required. City council members are also elected every four years, though usually not at the same time. This prevents the city from having an entirely new council at once. Each council member represents a portion of the city (district), or the city as a whole (at-large). The council is the decision making body but does not have any power over city staff. The council makes decisions for the city: budget, property, code, planning and zoning, etc. The mayor may be invited to attend, speak and contribute. Council meetings, usually twice a month, are run by city council members. The mayor is responsible for carrying out the decisions made by the council. The mayor can veto if they disagree with any legislation passed by the council. The council elects its own chair who conducts the public meetings.

DraperJournal .com

By Erin Dixon | e.dixon@mycityjournals.com

Council members do not have any administrative powers to direct staff. Council-Manager The mayor is elected and represents the entire city. They are part of the council. In this form of government, the council appoints a city manager to be the CEO. Department heads answer to the manager and the manager can hire or fire department heads, though hires are subject to council advice and consent. Council members are elected every four years, though usually not all at the same time. In some cities, the mayor votes with each decision. In others, the mayor only casts a vote if there is a tie. The mayor is chair and the face of the council. The manager attends council meetings, gives reports and advises council in decision making. Council meetings, usually twice a month, is run by the mayor. The city manager is responsible for carrying out the decisions made by the council. The mayor does not have veto power. Council members do not have any administrative powers to direct staff. Cottonwood Heights: Council-Manager, mayor always votes Draper: Council-Manager, mayor is tie breaker Herriman: Council-Manager, mayor always votes Holladay: Council-Manager, mayor always votes Midvale: Council-Manager, mayor is tie breaker Murray: Council-Mayor

Each city government operates differently, and elected officials have different responsibilities depending on the form. (infographic/Erin Dixon)

Riverton: Council-Manager, mayor is tie breaker Sandy: Council-Mayor South Jordan: Council-Manager, mayor always votes South Salt Lake: Council-Mayor Sugar House: Council-Mayor, governed by SLC Taylorsville: Council-Mayor West Jordan: Council-Mayor West Valley: Council-Manager, mayor always votesl

August 2021 | Page 21

Essential school bus drivers, nutrition, custodian staff needed for upcoming school year By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


s the school year approaches, many students and their families may be wondering who will open the door and greet them at the start of the school year as they board a big yellow school bus. Some area school districts also may be wondering as websites and signs across the Salt Lake Valley are posted, advertising bus driver positions. As of July 1, in Canyons School District, there were 40 positions open for bus drivers or 18% of its staff who transport about 20,000 students. In addition, 35 of the 55 attendant positions were available. Canyons School District Transportation Director Jeremy Wardle has worked in the industry the past 14 years, working his way up from driving while putting himself through college. “There’s always turnover,” he said. “I think the difference this year is COVID and the fallout from that.” Wardle said that a large number of the district’s drivers are on a second career, but with the extra protections during COVID-19 pandemic and drivers’ possibly health issues, there just were not enough drivers returning.

Plus, he said the area has changed, which means more drivers are needed to transport schoolchildren. “Twenty years ago, Draper was more farmland than it was houses and now it’s the complete opposite; we’ve seen a huge population boost not only in our district, but in other districts. We’re becoming more of an urban setting. It seems to be the same way in all districts across the country,” he said. Jordan School District also has a need for drivers. “We always are short bus drivers; Every school district in Salt Lake County, or probably in the state, there’s high turnover,” said spokeswoman Sandra Riesgraf. “And we’re a growing school district, so we always have more routes.” To attract more drivers, Canyons has boosted their salaries to $21.19 per hour for starting pay. Attendant pay is $14 per hour. Wardle said there are part-time and full-time positions available for the 180-day school year and full-time contracts come with benefits. Murray School District spokesman Doug Perry said Murray’s district also may be down a few drivers at any given time,

along with the same numbers of nutrition services staff and custodians; the district also increased pay for those positions. “We only have about a dozen or so regular bus drivers and about four dozen lunch workers and a couple dozen custodians in total so our shortages might be two-three positions at any given time out of those three groups, which is pretty manageable,” he said. Pay in Murray District for bus drivers is $22 to $25 per hour; nutrition service, $13 to $18 per hour; and custodians are $11 to $15 per hour. Granite School District also continues to see “traditional vacancy challenges” in transportation and custodial departments as well as classroom and school aides, said spokesman Ben Horsley. “Part-time para-professionals continue to be difficult to find in this economy,” he said. “One strange challenge is the amount of open school psychologist positions we still have at this point in the year.” Starting salaries are about $21 per hour for bus drivers; $18 for custodians and $11 for hourly para-professionals. In Canyons, commercial driver licens-

es are required before bus drivers take the wheel, however, there is free in-house training and testing, Wardle said. Drivers also are expected to perform a pre-trip “look over” that ranges from brake check to light cleaning. Eight mechanics on staff are responsible for repairs. Additionally, there are trainings for the position from first aid and CPR to student management and emergency evacuation. Attendants also have additional training for working with students with special needs and learn how to load a wheelchair and strap it securely, he said. Flexibility and schedules being similar to schools attract many personnel to the position. Wardle, when he was a driver, was able to study in between routes and said the position is attractive to parents, who start and end their day at about the same time of their kids and have the same school vacation schedule. “The kids are the highlights from drivers. They get to know them. They’ve seen them from kindergarten through high school. Some of them work well into their early 80s because they love the kids,” he said. While Riesgraf said Jordan School

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Draper City Journal

District has a “moderate” need for nutrition services staff, Canyons District is looking to hire 34 kitchen staff and 23 cashiers in schools for the upcoming school year, said Sebasthian Varas, nutrition services director. Starting wages increased for those positions in Canyons with starting pay at $15.50 per hour for kitchen staff who typically prep and cook meals and deep clean the kitchen afterward; and $12.16 per hour for cashiers, who are responsible for ensuring student meals meet with the USDA guidelines for reimbursement of the meal. There are advancement possibilities, he added. Canyons positions include training in equipment, first aid and district policies; each employee is responsible for having a food handler’s permit. Ideal candidates should be able to follow directions, work as a team, be able to meet some of the physical demands of the job and have a high school diploma or are working to earn a GED or equivalent, Varas said. He said that it’s an ideal position people who want day-time positions and especially, for parents. “If your kids are at the school, you work the time when they’re at school and you’re at home when they’re home. You don’t work any weekends or holidays and we provide you with a lunch and you’re making some extra money,” he said. “It’s a fun job. You get to interact with the students, which I think is fantastic. This is a great opportuni-

A friendly wave and smile is what students and parents expect this fall from their bus drivers, but some school districts are still hiring people to fill the vacant positions. (Photo courtesy of Canyons School District)

ty to make a difference in a student’s life. I think one thing that we’ve learned from the pandemic is how essential the nutrition services workers are. So, if they truly want to

make a difference in someone’s life, come and work with us. It’s hard work, but it’s a very rewarding position, knowing that we’re feeding students.” l

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Draper City Journal

School district leaders hope summer sessions slowed academic relapse By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


his summer, students across the Salt Lake Valley may not have experienced the summer slide as much as previous years. Summer slide is a term used to describe academic regression many students experience over the summer months, and nationwide, teachers and school districts are trying to make a point of helping students review, gain access to resources and learn individually or in smaller settings this summer through summer school options. Locally, many school districts invited students who may have fallen behind during the COVID-19 pandemic to summer session so they could review their previous instruction or enhance their learning through additional practice. In Murray, several hundred students of all grade levels were identified and took part in the four-week session. “We identified the kids we needed to reach most and worked with their parents to see if we could get them to come and get caught up,” said Doug Perry, Murray School District spokesman. “We feel really good about it and made some excellent progress with many students. It was not without challenge and there are still going to be some students who need support and resources, particularly those that did not take advantage of the opportunity. But we feel we are in better shape with many of them than we were at the end of the school year.” This was the first summer school session in the district after a number of years. Students attended a school per level—elementary, junior high or high school—where they typically spent three to four hours five days per week and received some individualized instruction. Meals and snacks were served, and incentives were given to “keep them engaged,” he said. In Jordan School District, spokeswoman Sandra Riesgraf said that students of every level were able to get help at their regular schools as the district used CARES Act funding to support teacher salaries. There were two voluntary summer sessions and meals were provided. “Some type of summer school was offered at every school in the district, both elementary and secondary,” she said, saying it was a change from just holding it at Valley High School. In the elementary level, students who needed extra help mostly with math and literacy were invited to participate from 9 a.m. to noon. In the middle school, students who needed extra help in a subject area as well as ninth-grade credit recovery attended the same time period. High schools offered credit recovery all day. While the total number of students who participated wasn’t available for press deadline, Riesgraf identified 1,908 secondary students who registered in the first summer session.

DraperJournal .com

Students have fun learning and reviewing concepts while attending summer school in Murray School District. (Photo courtesy of Murray School District)

“Our elementary teachers and principals I’ve talked to were pleasantly surprised by the number of kids that showed up for summer school, so it’s been a positive outcome,” she said. Canyons School District also offered its Summer Boost program, targeted to about 1,500 elementary and middle school students who needed the extra help or a bump up in their education. They also received free meals and other social services. “The biggest thing is that I hope our students can catch up and master their unfinished learning,” said Alta View Elementary School Principal Scott Jameson who had about 20 of his students attend morning lessons at nearby Altara Elementary. “They focused on their literacy and math. On the last day, I told them ‘nice job’ as they came off the bus and even walked partway home with a couple of them.” The program was housed in five schools throughout the district four mornings per week for three weeks. Natalie Gleave was a Summer Boost administrator at Crescent Elementary, which served about 300 students from 10 different elementary schools. “Our teachers and staff tried to make this a fun experience for students,” she said. “Stu-

dents were all there voluntarily and we tried to make it feel like a summer camp of learning. There were a lot of hands-on activities to enrich and strengthen students’ skills.” Gleave said each morning they held a meeting where students had the opportunity to get to know one another. “These meetings always had a life skills component tied into them to boost student’s social skills. Bringing kids together from 10 different elementary schools around the valley provided many opportunities to make new connections,” she said. Within Crescent’s camp, they also hosted a newcomer academy, which had two classes of kindergarten through fifth-grade students who are new to the United States. One of the classes served eight students who spoke five different languages, she said. “The best part of the Summer Boost program was the kids. It was amazing after only three weeks how connected we felt to each other; I saw new friendships grow and develop between kids of all different backgrounds and circumstances,” Gleave said. “I know the parents of these students were grateful for the opportunity to send their children to Summer Boost. I had several parents stop me before and after school to express their appreciation for the busing, meals and instruction that was

provided to them at no cost.” In addition, high schools offered other programs, such as credit recovery and also the regular AVID Summer Bridge program at Jordan High and Husky Strong program were offered to incoming freshmen. Jordan High also sponsored a six-week Code to Success coding camp as well as reading and math interventions. Jameson said his school had its second summer reading program where students could check out books and read in the library. They also partnered with Salt Lake County libraries so a librarian came in to hold storytime and do crafts with the students that tied into literacy. Another component of Alta View’s program was a PTA and School Community Council volunteer taught parents DYAD reading, or a side-by-side reading strategy, and they were able to practice it alongside their children. “It really is a good program and a good group of teachers, librarians, parents and volunteers all involved to help our students with their reading and literacy,” he said. l

August 2021 | Page 25

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he Salt Lake City International Airport is bustling. Visitors are pouring into Utah’s state and national parks. And the iconic Temple Square is once again welcoming visitors from around the world to our capital city. After the coronavirus pandemic dramatically impacted travel and tourism – along with so many aspects of our lives and our economy – it’s exciting to see travel returning to our state. In July, the Salt Lake City International Airport reported that passenger volumes were at 105% of 2019 levels – one of the strongest rebounds nationally. And a year after Covid-19 halted most international travel, our Zions Bank branches have seen an uptick in people coming in to get foreign currency for their summer travels, particularly the Mexican Peso, the Euro and the British pound. This return to travel is important. The travel and tourism sector generates over a billion dollars in state and local tax revenue each year, according to the University of Utah’s Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute. Tourism and visitor spending support more than one in 11 Utah jobs directly or indirectly. And in some parts of the state, the employment impact is much

larger. From the snow-capped mountains to the majestic red rocks, statistics show that not even a global pandemic can keep people away from all our state has to offer. Despite the pandemic, a record 10.6 million people visited Utah state parks in 2020 – a 33% increase from 2019. Similarly, Utah’s ski resorts saw a record-breaking 5.3 million skier days during the 202021 winter season, according to Ski Utah. The previous record was 5.1 million, set in 2018-2019. The business side of tourism continues to recover, although much more slowly than the leisure side of travel. It will take some time for business travel to fully recover from the effects of the pandemic, but the future is looking bright. More than a year after the economic recession caused by the coronavirus pandemic began, Utah’s economy has emerged as one of the strongest in the nation, with the second-highest job growth of any state. This busy season of travel is a great sign that our travel and tourism industry is making a strong comeback. A boost in summer travel will have far-reaching impacts on the economy, bringing back jobs

and stimulating additional growth. Robert Spendlove is senior economist for Zions Bank, a division of Zions Bancorporation, N.A.

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During pandemic: traditional schools may resume ‘normal’ look, online learning options will continue By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


s area students head back to school, it Granite School District spokesman Ben may look more like a “normal” school Horsley said that with their protocols in year. place, such as Test to Stay and Play, “we do Understanding that health and safety not anticipate any additional COVID restricCOVID-19 protocols and guidelines may yet tions or mask requirements for this fall at this change, “as of right now, things will be clos- time.” er to normal than not,” said Murray School However, he pointed out that COVID-19 District spokesman Doug Perry on June 30. has proven to be “a dynamic event that re“We follow state and local health depart- quires a lot of flexibility and adjustments. We ment guidelines and mandates as they are the are preparing for every potential scenario.” health experts. As of right now, schools will As of July 6, Granite District will offer be open, no masks will be required,” he said in-person “in the same fashion as it was prein late June. COVID,” five days per week. Families who Murray School District, like its neigh- still have concerns will have a distance learnboring districts—Canyons, Granite and Jor- ing option at all grade levels. dan districts, will offer in-person and online Jordan School District spokeswoman learning. Sandra Riesgraf said that “we are going to be “We will have two learning options, one in the classrooms and right now, the plan is to in-person and one online for those who don’t have classrooms back to normal.” feel comfortable or are at risk,” he said. “Our However, she added that could change bell schedule will revert back to what it was depending on the pandemic and guidelines before the pandemic, so that includes a short they receive from the county and state. day on Wednesdays. We have not heard of “Our Board of Education has a very any recommendations regarding distancing much hands-on (approach). They looked at and are presuming there will be no distancing these situations and our school administraguideline but that’s not fully determined.” tion and our cabinet, they came up with the Perry said that some sanitation protocols reopening plan when we reopened,” Riesgraf were good and may well continue, such as said on July 1, adding if it comes to re-adfrequent handwashing and surface cleaning. dressing the current health situation, “we will While it’s not certain what schools will decide what works best in Jordan.” look like when they start in mid-August, Perry A benefit from virtual learning during said, “Our decisions impacted by COVID-19 COVID-19 in Jordan School District was ofare influenced heavily by expert recommen- fering flexible Fridays, where teachers were dations from the health department; the State able to individually meet with students or Board of Education would be another import- small groups, in person or virtually, to offer ant partner, along with our colleagues in the additional instruction, enhanced learning or other four Salt Lake County school districts review. This year, as a result of parent surand those in neighboring counties.” veys indicating its benefits, Jordan will con-

tinue to offer the flexible Friday learning four times: Sept. 10, Nov. 19, Feb. 11, 2022, and April 29, 2022. Another positive outcome, Riesgraf said, was the establishment of offering online learning in their own virtual schools—Rocky Peak Elementary, Kelsey Peak Middle and King Peak High. “Every student in the district has the option to sign up and attend at one of those schools if they want to do online learning this year,” she said. “The elementary and the middle school will offer in-person learning one day a week so they will have the option one day to come in and have in-person learning.” She said that is unique and will give students an opportunity, if they choose, to have more hands-on learning and be able to work in small groups or partners to build community. “I don’t know anybody else in the state is offering that and nobody else in the state is offering K through 12 (online education),” she said, adding that students still are able to participate in extracurricular activities at their boundary school. Canyons School District also will offer in-person learning and online options. Last spring, Canyons students and faculty and staff had the option to wear face coverings its final week of school in the 2020-21 school year and like other districts, it will abide by health and safety guidelines and continue to monitor the situation, according to district spokeswoman Kirsten Stewart in late June. Alta View Elementary Principal Scott

Jameson said through use of technology, some positive aspects have come out of COVID-19. “With virtual learning, we likely won’t have snow days where we have to make up the learning day during the holiday breaks,” he said. “Our teachers have learned to use technology and use it effectively. Kids do well with it in general so I can see using that experience and integrate more technology into the classroom or if we need to switch to teach online or hybrid again. Even elementary schools are using Canvas (learning platform) in their classrooms, so if a student is absent, they can log in to see what assignment they’re missing and if able to, be able to do it.” Jameson also said that all the “good hygiene” of hand-washing and hand-sanitizers will be encouraged in his school. In the spring, the district did establish a new online opportunity, updating its virtual high school offering. Canyons Board of Education approved the launch of Canyons Online, a technology-driven educational initiative for grades three through 12 that will begin this fall. “This past year has taught us how important in-person instruction is because of relationships and connections students make with teachers and their schools,” Canyons School District Superintendent Rick Robins said on March 31. “What it also has taught us is how we can deliver education virtually. Some of our students have flourished online, while others have missed those relationships in our schools. We realize we can offer our students the flexibility of online learning while blending it with those connections.” That ability to make and maintain connections with their neighborhood schools is what makes Canyons Online unique among other online-learning programs, he said. Canyons Online elementary-age students will be able to participate in beforeand after-school music programs, science fair and debate. Middle-schoolers enrolled in Canyons Online can take electives at the local school, plus compete in science fairs and debate. Canyons Online high school students will be allowed to dual enroll so they can have full access to high school programs. “We’re re-establishing relationships with kids who have stayed online with their neighborhood schools to build that instruction and connection into Canyons Online,” Robins said. “The blended online format will have the academic component, whether it’s support and remediation or acceleration, plus the connection to their neighborhood school. This is really at the heart of what personalized learning can be.” l

Will mask reminder signs for students be a sign of the past this fall in schools? (Julie Slama/City Journals)

Page 28 | August 2021

Draper City Journal

Draper runners help set state record By Catherine Garrett | c.garrett@mycityjournals.com



HOME EVALUATION Draper runners Jack Jensen, Marcus Mellenthin and Taylor Bailey helped set a state record in winning the boys 4x400 relay event at the USATF State Championships at Utah Valley University June 10-12. Anna Dorny was part of the girls 4x800 relay team that set a region record—which includes four other states—while also breaking a 35-year-old state mark. Other state champions included Jensen (javelin, pentathlon) and fellow Draper athletes Ava Brinkerhoff (1500m), Jake Brinkerhoff (shotput), Ryan Brinkerhoff (pentathlon), Hailey Dorny (800m), Evan Eyink (400m), Carolina Henstrom (triathlon), Liberty Henstrom (javelin), Cooper Hurl (triathlon), Mia Lake (shotput), Jex Lujan (200m), Max Martinez (javelin) and Bond Milne (javelin). Those who earned AAU Regional titles at East High School June 24-26 were Ava Brinkerhoff (800m), Jake Brinkerhoff (javelin/shotput), Ryan Brinkerhoff (800m/1500m/long jump/pentathlon), James Coles (shotput), Giselle Fehrenbach (100m/80m), Teagan Harris (800m/1500m/high jump/pentathlon), Talon Heikkili (80m hurdles), Cooper Hurl (800m/ triathlon), Hunter Hurl (800m/pentathlon), Addison Henegar (400m), Hunter Henegar (javelin), Lewis Higginson (400m), Jensen (javelin), Mia Lake (1500m/long jump/shotput), Tyana Lake (400m/800m), Milne (javelin), Olivia Saley (200m/400m/long jump) and Briar Stevens (800m/1500m). (Photo courtesy Michele Brinkerhoff)

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Making sense of your property tax statement Did you get your property tax statement and feel overwhelmed trying to understand it? Every year we get calls from residents who need help making sense of their tax statement, so here is some info that might be useful. The county treasurer is responsible to collect taxes for over 70 different entities, not just Salt Lake County. That means that your city/township, school district, water districts, and other entities show up on your property tax statement. Once we get the money, we distribute it to the different taxing entities. The Salt Lake County assessor oversees the assessment of your property value. Once your value is assessed, then the tax rate is applied to that amount. If you think your assessed value is incorrect, you can appeal it between August 1 – September 15. Just go to slco.org/tax-administration/how-to-file-an-appeal/ to see instructions. One great thing about our state is that Truth-in-Taxation is required. That means you will be notified if a government entity is trying to raise your taxes. My property tax notice, for instance, showed an increase with my school district and two of the water districts. It also shows when the public hearing will

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then divides all the property values by the proposed budget amount. That is how we get the tax rate. Government cannot collect more than what they did the previous year without a Truth-in-Taxation hearing. If property values and growth are going up, your tax rate would go down if there was no additional tax increase. When taxing entities tell you the rate hasn’t changed, that still could mean a tax increase from that entity. Don’t worry, though… it should be crystal clear on

your property tax statement if it’s an increase. If there is a public meeting, that entity is raising your taxes this year. If you find yourself falling on hard times and need some tax relief, you can apply to the Treasurer’s office for a few different programs designed to help. The programs are as follows: Circuit Breaker– 66 years old or surviving spouse with household income below $34,666. Indigent – 65 years old or disabled with household income plus adjusted assets below $34,666. Hardship – Extreme financial hardship at any age with adjusted household income plus assets that do not exceed $34,666. This limit is increased by $4,480 for each household member. There are also programs to help veterans. Visit slco.org/treasurer for details. Although paying property taxes is not pleasant for anyone, keep in mind the many services that our cities, counties, school districts, water districts, and even the mosquito abatement district provides. And don’t hesitate to get involved in these government entities. The more that people get involved, the more taxes stay in check.

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raper’s Jake Orr set out to “just do well and do it for the experience” at The Outdoor Nationals July 3 at the prestigious Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon. Instead, the Corner Canyon High graduate—and future BYU runner—won the 800 meters among nearly 40 of the top runners nationwide. “I put a ton of work into it, but came in seeded 10th so it didn’t even cross my mind that I could win,” Orr said. “It was incredible and still so unreal.” “Jake didn’t even know if he wanted to train for this event after barely losing state [to West Jordan’s Austin Klingler],” said Jake’s dad Troy Orr. “We knew he could do it, but we realistically didn’t know what his chances were. It was really an honor to be there.” The 6-foot-6-inch son of Troy and Alisa Orr of Draper set a personal-best time of 1:50.92 —nearly 1.5 seconds faster than his previous best—to edge out Michigan’s Miles Brown by .03 of a second. His time also tops the CCHS record books in the event as well. The event was divided into five heats with Orr competing in the fourth heat and the final results among the 38 runners simply came down to the clock. That fourth heat turned out to be the fastest grouping—with five runners ultimately finishing in the top 10—as one of the runners sprinted out of the gate and kept up a blistering pace early. “He pulled everyone else in our heat with him,” said Jake Continued page 6

Former Corner Canyon High runner Jake Orr edges out Michigan’s Miles Brown at the finish line of the 800 meters at The Outdoor Nationals July 3. (Photo courtesy Becky Holbrook)


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