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April 2019 | Vol. 19 Iss. 04

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MURRAY HS ATHLETIC ADMINISTRATORS WANT THE MULTI-SPORT ATHLETE TO RETURN

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By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com

port athletes themselves, Murray High School Co-Athletic Directors Lisa White and Keeko Georgelas are frustrated with the growing trend of young athletes devoting year-round training to a single sport, while missing out on other opportunities to play for additional teams. “I don’t agree with it and have never agreed with it,” White said. “In my coaching experience, by best athletes were always involved in two or three sports.” “These kids are missing out on so many opportunities to meet other athletes – on various teams – and to benefit from cross training among different disciplines,” Georgelas added. “I think the kids – and their parents – are being sold a lie, by coaches who can earn more money if they recruit more kids into their sports, to practice and play 11 months out of the year.” Way back when the film “Rocky” was making Sylvester Stallone a household name, Georgelas was wrapping up a South High School athletic career that included football, basketball and track. White was involved in even more sports: volleyball, soccer, basketball, track and softball. That was the trend all the way up through the 1980s, for star athletes to routinely split their attention among different sports. Back then, high school basketball coaches often quietly hoped their school’s football team did not make a lengthy state tournament run. The sooner they were done on the gridiron, after all, the sooner their attention could shift to the hardwoods. Then the athletic landscape began to change. And Georgelas says, not for the better. “These kids – and their parents – are being sold a line that is simply not true,” he said. “Some coaches – particularly AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) coaches – have a financial interest in getting young athletes to commit to their sport, year-round. So, promises get made, or things are insinuated, that entice kids to specialize. Then they miss out on a more well-rounded high school experience.” There’s plenty of evidence to back up the Murray athletic directors’ claims – coming from the very top of the coaching profession. Fifteen years ago, the University of Utah football team became the first so-called “BCS Buster,” when Urban Meyer guided the Utes to their first undefeated season since 1930, and a dominating 35-7 Fiesta Bowl victory. The win launched quarterback Alex Smith into a lengthy NFL career, while carrying Meyer to the University of Florida.

Local Postal Customer ECRWSS Scan Here: Interactive online edition with more photos.

Murray High School Co-Athletic Directors Keeko Georgelas and Lisa White believe some of their athletes are missing out on a more enriching school experience, because they are accepting claims that they need to focus only on a single sport to earn college scholarships. (Carl Fauver/ City Journals)

Long a supporter and recruiter of multi-sport athletes, Meyer said in a “New York Times” article that the debate even divided his own family, when his wife insisted one of their daughters be allowed to specialize only in volleyball in order to strengthen her chances of earning a college scholarship in the sport. Meyer disagreed with the strategy then and still does now in retirement. “I got upset,” Meyer told the “Times,” about his wife’s insistence their middle daughter concentrate only on volleyball. “I said, ‘She’s going to play basketball,’ but I lost that argument.” Meyer said his wife told him he didn’t “understand,” which prompted him to retort, “I don’t understand? I’ve been coaching and in athletics my whole life and I don’t understand?” Quoted in the same December 2016 “Times” article, defending national football champion Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney sings from the same hymnal.

“I want the multisport guy; I just love that,” Swinney told the New York newspaper. “I just think the cross-training, the different types of coaching, the different types of locker rooms, the different environments that you practice in, the different challenges – I think it develops a much more competitive, well-rounded person.” Georgelas and White say, ‘here, here!’ “There are at least two other big problems when young athletes specialize in a single sport,” Georgelas continued. “First, burnout can be a real problem. I have talked with a lot of kids who have focused on just one sport – and by the time they are seniors in high school they are sick of playing it. “The second problem is the increased risk of injury. Obviously, if kids don’t have a little more down time – and a little more practice time, as opposed to playing that many more games – their chances of injury increase.” Studies have shown, burnout and injury rates are much higher for athletes who devote all their energy and time to one sport, while they are still growing and developing. “I particularly have a hard time when kids are specializing at young ages – sometimes at the elementary school level,” White added. “Kids can’t know what their favorite sport is at that age. I just think parents need to give their kids more time to really learn which sports they like best, and which sports they most excel at.” While Murray High School – like so many others, across the state and nation – are losing many top athletes to single-sport specialization, they are not losing all of them. MHS juniors Kasen Nielsen and Adelai Moore each hope their athletic skills will earn them scholarships in particular sports – Kasen in football and Adelai in track. But that’s not stopping them from lending their skills to several different Spartan teams. “Football is definitely what I want to play in college,” Nielsen said. “But I also enjoy track and field events like shot putt, javelin and discus. And this last winter I tried wrestling for the first time, and qualified for state. I did it after coach (Theros) Johnson gave me a list of all the NFL players who also wrestled in high school. It included (2017 NFL Hall of Fame inductee) Ray Lewis.” At 6-foot-3 and 270 pounds, Nielsen has the size to attract college and even NFL attention. Not long ago, he was briefly pulled out of an MHS class – along with two football teammates – to speak with a Utah State recruiter. His mother, Becky Smith, says the multi-sport approach by Kasen – and his younger brother, Kyler – follows a Continue on page 4...

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MURRAY

family tradition. “Their dad and I played multiple sports and we wanted to let the kids do the same,” she said. “We always wanted our kids to do new things and meet different people. I believe it is helping both of them to become better people. We were never seriously approached by any coaches (seeking to have the boys become single-sport athletes). But if we had been, it’s not something we would have supported.” Meantime, Adelai Moore splits her Murray Spartan athletic endeavors between cross country, basketball and track. “My mom and dad ran track and so did my older sisters,” Moore said. “So, I never really thought about not doing cross country and track. I have had some coaches talk to me about playing basketball year-round. But, honestly, it feels like I would get sick of it if I played basketball that much.” Although she has lettered for the Murray girls’ basketball team for three years

C ITY OURNAL The Murray City Journal is a monthly publication distributed directly to residents via the USPS as well as locations throughout Murray. For information about distribution please email circulation@mycityjournals. com or call our offices. Rack locations are also available on our website. For subscriptions please contact: circulation@mycityjournals.com 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.

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– and has been the Spartans’ starting point guard for two – Moore would rather run track at the next level. “I would prefer to run (in college), even if it is at a smaller school,” she added. “It is a great way to make new friends. I also love running cross country now, because it keeps me in that much better shape for basketball. I don’t have the greatest skills; but speed makes up for a lot of that.” Adelai’s father, James Moore added, “There are great cross-training benefits (to being a multi-sport athlete). It’s also a good social outlet for her. She’s been able to make a lot of different friends. I like the benefits of her keeping busy with different sports.” Clemson coach Swinney had perhaps the most salient closing point on the issue – also in the previously-quoted “New York Times” article – when he said, “Parents should get out of the way and let kids be kids. I think it’ll all work itself out. If you’re good enough (to play any sport, at the college level or beyond), you’re going to be good enough.”

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Murray City Journal


Golden Spike helped make Murray shine By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com

The last remaining landmark of Murray’s smelting days, the Utah Ore Sampling Mill, shows how railroads and smelting were integral to Murray’s past. (Photo courtesy Murray Museum)

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he Golden Spike was driven 150 years ago at Promontory Point. This historic junction of the railroads not only impacted the nation but had major impacts on Murray as well. May 10 marks the sesquicentennial of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad, an event that tied the nation, and eventually Murray, together. In the 1860s, Murray was little more than the farming hamlet of South Cottonwood. The Overland Stagecoach route took over the Pony Expresses’ No. 9 Station, calling it Traveler’s Rest, and was really the only ticket to and from Murray. However, nearly one year after the joining of the rails in 1869, Murray itself became a station on the railway map and was dramatically changed by it. Historian Korral Broschinsky writes, “The arrival of the railroad in 1870 made the smelting operations not only possible but also profitable. Several area farmers were able to sell their land to the smelters. Hundreds of workers, mostly single men from Greece, Sweden, and a number of eastern European countries, came to Murray. Many eventually settled in Murray to raise families. As the smelters expanded the community’s economic base, many of Murray’s early subsistence farmers became merchants to serve the city’s increasing population of smelter workers.” Only seven months after the Golden Spike Ceremony, LDS Church President Brigham Young drove the last spike connecting the rail line from Ogden to Salt Lake City. The Utah Southern Railroad pressed further southward toward the Woodhull Brothers’ smelter. Henry, William, and Sereno Woodhull had staked a claim in Little Cottonwood Canyon and built a smelting furnace near 4500 South at the junction of State Street and Big Cottonwood Creek. From these works was shipped the first bullion produced from Utah mine ore. The Woodhull Brothers’ venture was shortlived, as Henry was killed in a mining dispute, and the remaining brothers carved up their wealth and left Utah by August of 1870. Yet the marriage of the railroad and smelting turned Murray into an industrial center, lasting until the last smelter

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closed in 1950. Smelters sprouted up along the Utah Southern Railroad, and soon railroad spurs were connecting Murray with Park City, Alta, and Bingham. Of course, as the railroads shipped ore out, they shipped people in to fill processing jobs. In 1881, the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad, which owned the Alta lines, built Murray’s railroad depot on 4800 South and Box Elder Street. A competing smaller depot built in 1910 by the Oregon Short Line Railroad opened on the opposite side of the tracks. In 1890, the Rapid Transit Company laid tracks down State Street, bringing street cars to downtown Murray. Utah Light and Railway, at the beginning of the 20th century, started running trolley cars to Murray, and they operated until the 1920s. As automobiles helped end the era of the trolleys, they also helped end the era of Murray’s train depots; the railroad companies consolidated passenger service to larger depots. After the closure of Murray’s landmark ASARCO smelter, the railroad lines were all that was left of Murray’s industrial heyday. Then a new era of mass transit breathed new life into Murray’s old rails. Light-rail passenger trains are now using the old train tracks, and three TRAX stations opened in Murray in 1999. The Utah Transit Authority utilized the old Bingham rail lines to connect the southeastern part of the valley with Murray. The success of TRAX has led to the return of commuter rail to Murray in the form of FrontRunner, which runs from Ogden to Provo. Murray’s Central Station is one of two stops where passengers can connect between TRAX and FrontRunner. Due to Murray Central’s location, talks are under way to upgrade the station into a large intermodal transit center that will also connect with UTA’s new Bus Rapid Transit system. To learn more about events honoring the 150th celebration of the Transcontinental Railroad, go to spike150.org.

April 2019 | Page 5


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By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com her care. Sexual abuse involves a caregiver forcing an older adult to watch or be part of sexual acts. Elder abuse can also be financial abuse, including forging checks, taking someone else’s retirement and Social Security benefits, or using another person’s credit cards and bank accounts. It also includes changing names on a will, bank account, life insurance policy, or title to a house without permission from the older person. Seniors can also be abused by the health care system. Health care fraud can be committed by doctors, hospital staff, and other healthcare workers. It includes overcharging, billing twice for the same service, falsifying Medicaid or Medicare claims, or charging for care that wasn’t provided. Research from NIA stated, “Most victims of abuse are women, but some are men. Likely targets are older people who have no family or friends nearby and people with disabilities, memory problems, or dementia. “Abuse can happen to any older person, but often affects those who depend on others for help with activities of everyday life— including bathing, dressing, and taking medicine. People who are frail may appear to be easy victims.” It’s estimated that one in 10 adults over the age of 60 are abused, neglected or financially exploited. Nearly 42 percent of all seniors will, at some time, be victims of theft; 58 percent will be victimized through Medicare and Medicaid fraud. The Utah Division of Aging and Adult Services advised, “Appoint a trusted person to have view-only access or have an extra paper statement in order to be a second pair of eyes to watch for exploitation. Because a trusted person knows Grandma’s spending patterns best—like when she went shoe shopping and not gambling in Vegas.” If you suspect someone is being abused, NIA recommends you According to the National Institutes on Aging, one in 10 adults over age talk with him or her when the two of you are alone. You could say 60 are abused, neglected, or financially exploited. (Graphic courtesy you think something is wrong and you’re worried. Offer to take him NIA) or her to get help, for instance, at a local adult protective services ast summer, an elderly Millcreek man, with a younger man agency. For more information or to register for the symposium, the in tow, approached a bank teller and withdrew $3,000. The 90-year-old man thought he was giving money to someone who Murray Senior Recreation Center can be reached at (801) 284-4237. told him that they were there to fix his roof. Trouble was, the roof was fine and the young man wasn’t a roofer. Instead, the scammer tricked the elderly man out of his money and was never seen again. Unfortunately, incidents like this are on the rise, and senior service agencies are putting out a warning. On April 9, the Murray Senior Recreation Center will present their Third Annual Symposium, this time focusing on the topic of senior and caregiver protection; the Murray Senior Recreation Center have noted increased concerns about elder abuse from family and caretakers. The symposium will speak to these concerns by providing information and presentations on how to prevent elder abuse. Registered participants can hear two keynote addresses and choose from four presentations. The cost is $8 per person, which includes a continental breakfast and lunch. Early registration is requested. According to the National Institute on Aging (NIA), there are many types of elderly abuse. Physical abuse happens when someone causes bodily harm by hitting, pushing or slapping. Emotional abuse, sometimes called psychological abuse, can include a caregiver saying hurtful words, yelling, threatening, or repeatedly ignoring the older person. Keeping an elderly person from seeing close friends and relatives is another form of emotional abuse. Neglect occurs when Miss Murray 2019, Savannah Angle, visits with patrons at the Murray Senior the caregiver does not try to respond to the older person’s needs. Recreation Center. (Photo courtesy MSRC) Abandonment is leaving a senior alone without planning for his or

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Murray City Journal


Historic Murray Carnegie library gets a second chance By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com

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MEET BOOMER If you are looking for a bundle of energy, look no further! Meet Boomer. This handsome German Shepherd mix is approximately a year old and has lots of energy to spare. He loves to play ball, loves to run and run and run, and he just wants to find someone to love. Boomer came into the shelter as a stray and would love to find his forever home. Come see him at the shelter during normal business hours.

The historic Murray library, foreground, has been purchased, and plans are being made to renovate it. The First Ward Chapel’s future is still unknown. (Photo courtesy of Preserve Murray)

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etting a breath of new life, the historic Murray Carnegie library (184 East Vine Street) has been sold, and a new owner plans to restore the library to its former glory. Last year, a judge halted demolition and major remodeling of the library and the historic Murray First Ward chapel after preservationists sued the city. The buyer, Gloria Kummer, posted inquiries on Facebook seeking old photographs of the building. “I’m in the process of purchasing the Carnegie Library in Murray for the use of my interior design firm (Gloria Hayley Interior Design). My desire is to renovate and restore the historical building.” Built in 1911, as part of steel tycoon Andrew Carnegie’s efforts to provide libraries to communities that would provide a financial commitment to support them, the library has always functioned outside the Salt Lake County Library System. The neoclassical building was expanded in 1979, which included modification of the original entrance. It later was sold to Mount Vernon Academy, along with the Murray First Ward building. Janice Strobell, who is part of Preserve Murray, a nonprofit organization whose mission is preserving and restoring Murray historical landmarks, stated, “Gloria’s attention to detail is greatly evident in her line of work, and to have her apply that attention to the renovation of the Carnegie library will be a huge asset for our community. This project can be a major kick start for many more exciting renovation efforts in Murray’s historic downtown. We applaud Gloria and her team’s tireless work of not taking shortcuts as they seek for every detail to complement the original architectural beauty of this building.” Kummer, who specializes in classical interior architecture and design, is on the board of the Institute of Classical Architecture and Arts, and among her clients is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In her de-

MurrayJournal .com

sire to restore the library to its pre-expansion days, Kummer has put out a call for photographs that can assist her renovation work. “It could be a family photo showing a detail of the shelving and interior elements. My goal is to have the interior restored to look like the library, which would also function for my firm due to the many fabric samples we put on shelving,” posted Kummer. “The original doors, metal grate transom, exterior lights, and windows were removed in the 1970s. Did anyone, by chance, save these items? I can’t imagine the contractors would throw them out. Maybe there is a family out there that has them. I plan to restore the original facade.” According to Strobell, “This is a wonderful example of adaptive reuse where the integrity of the building is not compromised and the planned uses meet valuable needs for the community — both for Gloria’s design company and her desire to provide space for members of our community that are too often overlooked. We wholeheartedly support this endeavor and urge the community to express to our Murray City leaders the value of extending this revitalization vision throughout our historic downtown corridor. We are excited for the future of downtown Murray.” Next door, the future of historic Murray First Ward is still uncertain. A group of Murray residents has set up a domestic nonprofit corporation, the Historic Murray First Foundation, for the preservation, restoration, and maintenance of the historic Murray First Ward Church on Vine Street. The nonprofit’s founding is a direct response to attempts to demolish the 111-year-old Gothic church. The foundation will hold a series of lectures regarding the history of Murray architecture and the historic church on Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. at the Murray Public library (166 E. 5300 South) starting April 11 and running through May.

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April 2019 | Page 7


Murray teen’s vaccination project goes viral By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com

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he Girl Scout Gold Award is not only the organization’s most prestigious award but also the most difficult to earn. There are many girls who have earned the award, but one Murray girl is getting national recognition for her Gold Award project. Brekke Pattison, a senior at Murray High School, has been a Girl Scout for 13 years. In addition to being a clarinet player with the Murray Band, and hanging out playing video games with friends, she was able to earn the Girl Scouts’ top honor. “My Girl Scout Gold Award project was Vacc-U-Cation: An Education on the Science of Vaccines. My project was directed to the vaccine-hesitant and attempts to clear up misunderstandings that exist towards vaccines,” said Pattison. For a project to qualify for a Gold Award, Girl Scouts must show leadership by working on one of a broad range of the most challenging problems facing the world today—from human trafficking to ocean pollution to education access to expanded STEM training for girls in underserved communities. “I created my website, www.vaccucation. org, to make this information accessible to everyone. I addressed the science of vaccines by being specific but also using words that are easy to understand. I also included a YouTube video on how vaccines teach your body to fight diseases,” noted Pattison. Misinformation about vaccines spread through the Internet has spurred unfounded rumors. A significant number of people have either put off vaccinating their children or have outright refused to vaccinate their children due to confusion about the actual risks of vaccines. “I chose this project because a family friend had a son born prematurely. He was born safely, but his vaccinations were scheduled based on his due date,” remarked Patti-

She also acknowledges that she couldn’t have done this all on her own. “One of the best mentors in my life from Girl Scouts was Edith Gates. This amazing woman taught me how to speak my voice and to present my opinions to a group of people. Edith set me on the path that helped me join the GSU News Crew, earn my Gold Award, and become a leader that younger Girl Scouts look up to.” Pattison plans to go to college and medical school after graduation this year, and, as you might have guessed, wants to become a pediatrician. She may be in good company: one of the comments left on her website stated, “As a pediatrician and Girl Scout troop leader, I applaud your efforts. Great work!”

Brekke Pattison mixes the sound for her Girl Scout Gold Award project. (Photo courtesy Brekke Pattison)

son. “During the period of time between his birth and his vaccinations, he caught whooping cough. His family did nothing wrong, but I want to keep people who are susceptible to diseases safe.” Pattison met with the medical director of immunology at ARUP Laboratories and learned about how vaccines work. She also had to learn to communicate effectively with people who may not appreciate or comprehend her message. “The hardest part was expressing the answers to these people in a kind and educational way, even when they were being aggressive and unpleasant.” Pattison’s kindness and hard work paid off after she posted her video and website on-

line in September 2018, and the results have been, well, viral. Dr. John Kaplan, a professor of molecular and cellular physiology at New York’s Albany Medical College, saw Pattison’s video and loved it. “I have linked your page to the Facebook page of the Alden March Bioethics Institute at Albany Medical College,” he wrote. “My project has been used by a local, major hospital’s NICU. Several nursing and medical schools use Vacc-U-Cation in their online materials, and health professionals on a global scale use it. It has been shared on various groups and Facebook pages around the world,” said Pattison. “I have been recognized Brekke Pattison visits a pregnancy resource center by the Girl Scouts of Utah at their annual Rec- with information from her Gold Award project. (Photo courtesy Brekke Pattison) ognition of Excellence.”

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Historic Murray Baptist Church closes By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com

O

ne of the oldest churches in Murray, dating to before the city’s incorporation, has voted to close its doors. The Murray Baptist Church (184 E. 5770 South), which survived several moves, including one due to fire, heard its last sermon preached on March 31. Liz Pattison, a member of the congregation (her father, O. Ray Kerley, was the pastor of Murray Baptist Church from 19902018, until he retired), stated, “Attendance at Murray Baptist has been slowly declining through the years due to a number of reasons. After my dad retired, several more people left... there wasn’t enough growth to continue to pay the bills.” The church and the small house next door, which the church also owns, will be placed on the market to be sold. The current church was constructed in the 1950s and sits on several acres of land near State Street. “It was decided to sell the church and its assets so it could be used by the American Baptist Church to [support] missions around the world and in the United States (examples include hospitals in developing countries, such as Haiti, disaster relief in the US, and growth of new churches here and abroad). Some of the proceeds will also be given to Camp Utaba, the American Baptist Church camp near Liberty, Utah,” said Pattison.

Congregants will be able to attend Murray Baptist’s sister church, First Baptist Church (1300 E. 800 South), in Salt Lake City. “I will miss the people. Murray Baptist Church was a very loving and caring congregation. There were so many good memories from that little church. Whenever we learned of a need, we always did everything in our power to fill it. The church always loved helping others,” reminisced Pattison, who added the congregation won a few awards too. “We always participated in, and many times won, the Crossroads Urban Center’s annual July Golden Celery Cup competition, because we donated more non-perishable food per person in attendance than any other church in the competition,” she said. “Food banks run low on inventories during the summer months, and we wanted to do our part to help with this need. We were a small church, but we had a big heart.” The original Murray Baptist Church was founded in historic downtown Murray. The meetinghouse hosted everything from the large revivals of visiting out-of-state preachers to speeches promoting temperance. That building met tragedy when the publishing company next door caught fire in 1924, and nearly the entire block burned down, includ-

The Murray Baptist Church has voted to close its doors after more than a century in Murray. (Shaun Delliskave/City Journals)

ing the Murray Baptist Church. The Salt Lake Telegram reported, “The Murray Baptist church was a complete loss of $7,000, and no insurance being carried on the building. The church organ was destroyed and only the church benches were saved.” The members rallied and rebuilt their church by 1926. In 1949, faulty wiring in the attic started a blaze in the new chapel during the middle of Sunday services. Fortunately, the ministers noticed in time to help everyone evacuate and the fire department was able to limit the damage to the roof. The chapel was repaired, but, by the 1950s, the small building was running out of space. Members started a “Buy-A-Brick” cam-

paign in 1952, at 50 cents a brick, to construct a new church. By 1958, they had moved from downtown Murray to their current home on 5770 South. The older chapel was purchased by Murray City and now functions as a meeting hall. Over the years, the Murray Baptist Church contributed to Murray through various ways, from service projects to fielding a championship women’s bowling team in the 1970s. While parting may be bittersweet, Pattison hopes the members reflect on the reason for the church. “In my dad’s last sermon on April 15th, 2018, he had a simple insert in the bulletin. It read ‘God loves you. Work harder: Love God. Love your neighbor.’”

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Salt Lake Valley’s epic pranksters show us ‘how to April Fools’ By Jennifer J. Johnson | j.johnson@mycityjournals.com

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rom placing a pair of live lobsters in the glove box of a paramour’s car to endorsing their boss as a disco-loving ninja on a global career website, to punking fans of the third-largest professional sports league in the world, Utahns know how to April Fools. The City Journals wanted to get up close and personal with some of the pranksters and the pranked in a sort ohall of fame. Look forward to hearing more of your stories, in the comments and for next-year’s piece. Food and fools: Lobsters, an imposter waiter, and under-the-table pranking Long-time radio and web celebs Todd Collard and Erin Fraser (“Todd and Erin”) involve one particular type of food, lobster, as an ongoing April Fools’ staple. One year, Todd, recalls, he actually placed the lobsters in the glove box of Erin’s car. There were no fatalities to report. Rather, the frenetic lobster game is part of the ongoing love affair of Salt Lake City area’s longest on-air-turned-over-web morning personalities. The imposter waiter… Dean Pierose is owner of Cucina wine bar, restaurant, and deli in The Avenues neighborhood of Salt Lake City. Pierose is long-term best friends with comedian Pat Mac. An April Fools’ prank provided the perfect opportunity for Pierose to meet his best friend’s wife. But a simple meet-and-greet is not Pierose’s style. Instead, Pierose convinced a fellow restaurant owner to let him stand in and wait the table that Mac and his wife occupied the night of April 1, 2011. Prepped about the woman being a teacher and her having attended the University of Idaho, the imposter waiter set out to be as insulting as possible, first complaining that the table’s former customers, “who must have been teachers,” stiffed him for a tip. On another visit by the table, Pierose slammed the University of Idaho, the woman’s alma mater, making fun of the college’s “Joe the Vandal” mascot, and identifying himself as identifying with the rival “Broncos” of Boise State. “He hit every button he could, to set her off,” laughed Mac. “Dean is a master prankster.” A little Disney’ll do ya, on April Fools Disney Channel actor, writer, and voice talent Jerry Straley just celebrated 30 years with Disney. “My goal is to make 10 million people laugh,” he shared. Straley estimates his role on the “Good Luck, Charlie” sitcom got him about halfway there, with more than five million views of the sitcom’s four seasons. Holladay-dwelling Straley routinely pokes fun at the area’s wealthy, and says

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When not loving on her husband and on-air/over-internet personality Todd Collard, Erin Fraser’s go-to food is lobster. Not surprisingly, Todd has turned it into an April Fools’ go-to that enhances the couple’s relationship. (Photo Credit: ToddandErinDailyStream.com)

April Fools’ jokes include replacing upscale Grey Poupon whole-grain mustard with plain-yellow mustard at hoity-toity Holladay restaurants and making early-morning prank calls, indicating peoples’ butlers are taking the day off. Getting paid ‘under the table’ Saralynn White, a Cottonwood Heights copywriter and creative director/chief storyteller/owner of Salty Dog Marketing, recalls hijinks from now-defunct, but ever epic ad agency Dahlin Smith White. “They taped a sandwich under his desk and it started to reek,” she recalled, “but he couldn’t find what was smelling up the place because of where it was.” Writing the April Fools’ playbook Writer White has not only been pranked, but has pranked upon. One year, colleagues posted “disco” and “ninja” expertise as some of her unique skills on the LinkedIn professional website, comprising 500 million members globally. Professional colleagues of White can still find these skills on her profile today. Another year, White could not get her computer to respond to her keystrokes. Absolutely frustrated at the technological stalemate, she dialed in corporate 911 – the IT or information technology department. Who she credits as “ingenious” colleagues had taken a screenshot of her computer desktop. Pranksters made it so that every keystroke the increasingly frustrated White entered did nothing more than ping a static image, doing absolutely nothing to engage the computer’s functionality. April Fools’ Day: A Team Sport For the Utah Jazz franchise, April Fools’ Day has been good to the Jazz, with the team winning 65 percent of the games played April 1 over the past 33 years, including last year’s 121-97 blowout over the Minnesota Timberwolves. This year, at 7 p.m. on April 1, the Jazz

square off against the Charlotte Hornets in hometown Vivint Arena. The team’s best prank came a few years ago, in 2015, when the Jazz punked fans, commentators, and even readers of the National Basketball Association by launching a new “look-and-feel” three-quarter-length pant. The news went official, with a mock press release and photo featuring Rudy Gobert (27) and Derrick Favors (15). April Fools’ DNA Brothers Jamison and Truman Carter grew up with their prank-playing family first in the Avenues and then Herriman. The two now reside in Salt Lake’s Marmalade neighborhood. The brothers recall stories of their mother’s receiving an April Fools’ Day bouquet of already-dead flowers from high-end florist Every Blooming Thing. Knowing that the bouquet likely cost her then-husband at least $50, their mother called in to complain. Right at that moment, while on the phone ripping the prank-engaging florists who were emphatically denying her description of the bouquet, an incredibly stunning, much bigger and more expensive arrangement arrived from Every Blooming Thing, with the same delivery person. Order restored. The Carter sons were pranked themselves, waking up one April Fools’ morning to a breakfast of meatloaf, gravy, and mashed potatoes. Luckily they tried the odd meal. Their mother, this time, was the prankster, having made Rice Krispie treat “meatloaf” with butterscotch “gravy” and ice-cream “potatoes.” And regarding our last set of pranks? Confession time: I am the mother of the Carters, recipient of dead bouquets, and chef of dreamy April Fools’ breakfasts. Even though it sounds like it could be, that is not a prank. Happy April Fools’ Day, Salt Lake County!

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International Women’s Day events support, celebrate women By Jennifer J. Johnson | J.Johnson@mycityjournals.com

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arch 8, the official “International Women’s Day,” is ever-growing in international and social-media buzz, and prompted a flurry of local activity on par with the weather happening that day. City Journals presents a recap on several Salt Lake Valley-based activities and commemorations of Women’s Day. First-time celebrators — for the youngest of young — Discovery Gateway Children’s Museum Nearly 900 members and guests of the Discovery Gateway Children’s Museum were treated to a celebration of women’s social, cultural and political achievements, through the lens of gender equality. On March 8, children up to age 11 learned “the amazing things women can do,” recounted marketing coordinator Anna Branson. Children used unique materials and media to create artistic renditions of historic and current women leaders, including the late Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, anthropologist and conservationist Jane Goodall, and human rights advocate Malala Yousafzai. All received “Believe in Girls” stickers and had the chance to walk through a unique kaleidoscope, featuring all of the wonderful possibilities for girls and women. Rising up, lifting up at the U of U – for

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Page 12 | April 2019

college students, staff, faculty and community. At the University of Utah, the “day” has become a week-long celebration of women. The Women’s Leadership Summit, themed “Rise Up, Lift Up” was preceded by the “Empower U” Symposium, where president Ruth Watkins provided the keynote address. The Women’s Leadership Summit, now in its fifth year, offered a resources fair, with everything from women’s health information to voting engagement. The fair was presented in booths lining a wall of windows in the Ray Olpin Student Union building. The university assembled a roundup of nearly 20 breakout sessions, dealing with topics as edgy as navigating shame culture to as vanilla as financial-planning strategies for women. “It was truly a day of learning, engagement, and idea sharing,” shared Jessica Lynne Ashcraft, co-chair for the event and associate director for student leadership and involvement at the U. Ashcraft indicated 200-plus women attended the event, “due to the wonderful range of topics presented and the excitement to engage on topics that are so salient for women right now.” Women in international business as a theme… World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah) leveraged one of its trademark strengths —

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A University of Utah student created this mosaic of the beauty in women’s diversity. International Women’s Day was celebrated around the world and across Salt Lake Valley on March 8. The University of Utah turned it into a week-long celebration. (Photo Tina Dirmyer/University of Utah)

partnering — to commemorate International Women’s Day, and, like the U of U, made the celebration into a full week of activities, versus just a day. On March 8, WTC Utah co-hosted a sold-out luncheon, in collaboration with the Women’s Business Center of Utah and the Salt Lake Chamber. “WTC Utah would like to be a part of the solutions that address the challenges facing women as they pursue global economic opportunities,” said Suzette Alles, chief operating officer of WTC Utah. “Increasing international trade, and supporting women in their efforts to do so, helps companies grow, create wealth and become more resilient. This, in turn, bolsters economies on a local, national and global level.” … And as an honor and an inspiring thought of global contribution March 7, the day before the official day of commemoration, WTC participated in the 10th-annual Women in International Business Conference. This power-packed day included perspectives from 30 business, government, and education leaders representing various facets of Utah’s diverse economy. At the half-day conference, Dr. Mary Beckerle, CEO of the Huntsman Cancer Institute, was named International Woman of the Year. In her role at Huntsman, Beckerle over-

sees a cancer research laboratory focused on fundamental cell biology and Ewing sarcoma, a type of bone cancer that typically affects children and young adults. All that, an incredibly important role, and yet, Beckerle shared with City Journals deeper insight into the awesome responsibility and opportunity she and other women and men like her bear. “I believe that cancer researchers have a role in advancing global partnerships and understanding,” she observed. “In a sense, we serve as volunteer diplomats as we travel the world to share our results and work together to advance human health.” More than a day, or even a week… a month? Women Techmakers Salt Lake and Miss Nations of the World both identified March 23 as the day for their respective International Women’s Day Celebration event. The Women of the World held its ninth annual fashion show just a few days before the official date. Snowy weather on March 8 scrubbed or severely limited celebratory efforts from Sandy’s Miller Center to downtown Salt Lake’s Capitol demonstration. Regardless of the stormy weather, the message at all events was clear. Women — and girls — are to be encouraged, mentored, and celebrated all day, all week, all month, all year, whether officially or unofficially.

Murray City Journal


Murray legislators discuss taxes, education from latest session By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com

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axes were on the minds of Murray residents as they met with their representatives at the Murray Legislative Update. The Murray Area Chamber of Commerce hosted the event on March 2 at the Intermountain Medical Center, at which Sen. Gene Davis and Reps. Carol Spackman Moss, Karen Kwan, Mark Wheatley and Marie Poulson took questions regarding the latest legislative session. Of great concern was local tax reform and what impact it would have on residents’ taxes. Specifically, HB 441, sponsored by Republican Tim Quinn of Heber, was the target of many attendees’ questions. The bill would have added a sales tax to almost all service transactions, including haircuts, landscaping, some repair services, piano lessons, and a myriad of other services that have historically been tax exempt. Sponsors of the bill proposed a reduction in sales taxes on goods, cutting them to 3.1 percent, down from 4.7 percent, as well as reducing income tax to 4.75 percent, down from 4.95 percent. The bill also proposed a 1 percent tax on health care premiums and a 0.075 percent real estate transaction tax. “Don’t tax my haircut,” said Davis. Wheatley chimed in that the bill was being fast-tracked without much input, and he felt there was a greater need for policy dis-

MurrayJournal .com

cussions regarding tax reform. The bill received opposition from everyone, from the conservative Utah Eagle Forum to Salt Lake City Democratic mayoral candidate Jim Dabakis, and all the Murray legislators expressed concern over the speed at which the bill was being pushed through the legislature—less than two weeks, with very little input from citizens or small businesses. Davis said he believes that the sponsors were hoping that the dust would just settle and be forgotten once the bill passed. “This is a misery tax,” said Spackman Moss. “I am feeling a lot of gloom today.” Kwan pointed out that HB 441 would highly impact Murray City, since directly taxing health care premiums would impact medical services, which make up a huge component of the city’s businesses. Moderator and Murray City Councilman Jim Brass indicated that Murray’s budget is contingent on the amount of sales tax collected within the city. A sharp cut in sales tax would force Murray and municipalities around the state to raise property taxes to make up for the shortfall. Spackman Moss also pointed out that income tax directly funds transportation and roads, and reducing that income would send county and city governments scrambling to find funds for those services elsewhere.

Several days after the chamber of commerce meeting, lawmakers postponed moving HB 441 forward, even though there were enough votes to send it on to the Senate to allow for more input. Governor Gary Herbert has promised that a special session will be called to address the bill in the future. Education was also on the minds of Murray residents at the Legislative Update meeting, many of them demanding adequate funding for students. Murray resident and Viewmont Elementary teacher Mary Jo Ballou told the legislators about having to dip deeply into her own pockets to buy supplies for her class. “The amount of money we are given is not sufficient for operating our classrooms,” said Ballou. “We are given $200 in discretionary funds and use them up before the middle of the year.” According to the Utah Taxpayer’s Association, as of 2017, Granite School District spends $7,800 per student, while Murray School District spends $7,981 per student. These districts are below the state average of $8,331 per student and well below the national average of $11,762. Utah sits at the very bottom of the list when it comes to education funding: 51st of all the states and the District of Columbia. The legislators were also asked about

the rise in the number of Utah children facing food insecurity. Spackman Moss stated that Utah does not fund the Weighted Pupil Unit (the factor used to determine the “costs of a program on a uniform basis” and to distribute program funding to the local education agencies) enough to help fund agencies who address childhood hunger.

Murray Legislators (sitting left to right) Carol Spackman Moss, Marie Poulson, Mark Wheatley, Karen Kwan and Gene Davis (standing right) pose with members of Murray’s Junior Chamber of Commerce. (Shaun Delliskave/City Journals)

April 2019 | Page 13


Murray’s Adopt-A-Roadway is born By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com

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Vine Street is now up for adoption in Murray City’s Adopt-A-Roadway program. (Photo James Delliskave)

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ver wonder what it would be like to own your own street? Think no longer, as Murray City is giving you the opportunity to adopt a road. All you need to do in return is help keep it clean. While you won’t officially own Vine Street, Fashion Boulevard, or even Spacerama Drive, Mayor Blair Camp is asking Murray residents and businesses to join his Adopt-a-Roadway program to help pick up litter and do other cleanup activities. Murray City Communications Director Jennifer Heaps explained, “While he was knocking on doors during the election campaign in 2017, the Mayor was asked multiple times by city residents to implement this program. It became clear that keeping Murray roadways litter free and nicely maintained is important to many of our residents, and the mayor supports this initiative as well.” The Adopt-a-Roadway program is administered by the city’s Public Works Department. Participants must be at least 12 years of age, and those between 12 and 15 must be under the direct supervision of an adult. The city will provide each group with safety vests, garbage bags and safety instructions for each activity and will also place warning signs in the area. City staff will pick up the filled garbage bags following the clean-up event. In Camp’s first State of the City address last year, he listed the program as one of his main initiatives. Applicants can elect to do a single cleaning or sign on for a threeyear commitment with at least two scheduled clean-up activities. And while you can request Lucky Clover Lane, the city might try to persuade you to consider busier streets, like 5300 South or 900 East. “The Mayor is often approached by businesses and residents looking for service opportunities in Murray. We’re fortunate to have such a strong community willing to donate their time to a good cause,” said Heaps. “Having a formal program in place allows volunteers to choose their level of commit-

ment and schedule the clean up when it’s convenient for them. Another reason is that litter on the roadways is unsightly. We take great pride in our community, and keeping our roadways clean demonstrates that we care about our community.” Groups will be able to schedule clean-up events through a written request on the city’s website, www.murray.utah.gov, under the Public Works Department’s webpage. After the interested parties contact the department to discuss available roads and obtain necessary approvals, they will be able to select from a compiled list of roadways that are eligible, or a group may suggest an alternate road within Murray to adopt. “Since we announced the program in February, there has (already) been one application requested. There has not been a street adopted yet, but we’re hoping that warming temperatures and the desire to be outside will spark additional interest. Once a few street adoption signs are installed, I think the community will notice them and realize that the program is available in Murray City,” remarked Heaps. Such adopt-a-highway promotional campaigns have been around since the 1980s. In exchange for regular litter removal, the organization is generally recognized on a sign in the section that they maintain. The sign-naming convention has at times caused controversy, as groups of a scurrilous nature and history have adopted highways for the purpose of name recognition. Both the State of Utah and Salt Lake County sponsor adopta-highway programs. Heaps noted, “I’ve seen a lot of Adopta-Roadway signs in Utah and other states, so the program has been tried in numerous communities. I don’t know what the outcome has been for other cities, but we anticipate that the program will make a difference in Murray by providing service opportunities and beautifying the roadways that traverse our city.”

Murray City Journal


April 2019

FREQUENTLY REQUESTED NUMBERS Attorney .................................. 801-264-2640 Business Licensing .................. 801-270-2432 Cemetery ................................ 801-264-2637 City Council ............................. 801-264-2603 Finance Department ............... 801-264-2513 FIRE DEPARTMENT Administrative Office .......... 801-264-2781 Non-Emergency Calls ......... 801-840-4000 General Information................ 801-264-2525 Heritage Center (Sr. Center)..... 801-264-2635 Human Resources.................... 801-264-2656 Library .................................... 801-264-2580 Mayor’s Office.......................... 801-264-2600 Municipal Court....................... 801-284-4280 Museum .................................. 801-264-2589 Murray Park Outdoor Pool ....... 801-266-9321 Murray Parkway Golf Course.... 801-262-4653 PARKS AND RECREATION Administrative Office .......... 801-264-2614 Rain-out Information ......... 801-264-2525 Park Center (indoor pool) ........ 801-284-4200 Passports................................. 801-264-2660 POLICE DEPARTMENT Administrative Office .......... 801-264-2673 Animal Control ................... 801-264-2671 Code Enforcement .............. 801-264-2673 Non-Emergency Calls ......... 801-840-4000 POWER DEPARTMENT Administrative Office .......... 801-264-2730 After Hours Emergency....... 801-264-9669 PUBLIC SERVICES Administrative Office .......... 801-270-2440 Building Inspection ............ 801-270-2431 Green Waste Trailers ........... 801-270-2440 Planning and Zoning .......... 801-270-2420 Solid Waste......................... 801-270-2440 Water, Sewer, Streets.......... 801-270-2440 Zoning Enforcement ........... 801-270-2426 UTILITIES After Hours Emergency....... 801-264-9669 Billing Questions ................ 801-264-2626

murray.utah.gov

Mayor’s Message

MAYOR’S OFFICE

Curbside Recycling

mayor@murray.utah.gov 801-264-2600

There seems to be a lot of trash talk these days, especially in the world of sports and in politics. But let’s talk a different kind of trash, the kind that we leave out on the curb every week to be picked up and hauled away. According to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates, the average American will produce nearly six pounds of trash per day. The introduction of curbside recycling in recent years has helped reduce the amount of household trash going to the landfill by an estimated 1.5 pounds per person per day. The argument for recycling is a compelling one for many reasons. Recycling helps protect the environment, saves energy, and extends the life of landfills. However, there are some hard facts about curbside recycling that everyone should be aware of. First, the cost of recycling has increased substantially. A few short years ago there was no cost to residents to recycle; in fact, the city made money

D. Blair Camp -Mayor

as most of our recycling materials were sold to China. Economic and political 5025 S. State Street changes in China have closed the doors Murray, Utah 84107 to their purchase of recycling materials, and the remaining few, small overseas markets cannot absorb the number of materials being produced. A contributing factor to the Chinese market closing was the improper preparation by consumers, or in other words, contaminated recycling. In the budget year 2019, Murray City’s cost to handle recycling materials increased from $15 per ton to $60 per ton, a whopping 300% increase! Our overall waste collection fees for the upcoming budget year are projected to increase by over 38%. The Wasatch Front Waste & Recycling District recently conducted a survey of their customers and found that 70.5% of them would support a fee increase to maintain recycling services. It’s important to note that for recycling to be effective in protecting the environment and extending the life of the landfills, it must be done properly. Contaminated recycling ends up at the landfill and costs more because it must be hauled twice. The Trans-Jordan Landfill estimates that about 19% of recycling in Salt Lake County last year was rejected and sent to the landfill. At this point, you may be asking “What can we do to improve recycling?” The answer is to become better educated and take the time to recycle properly. Do NOT recycle plastic bags, foam, or glass in the curbside containers. All plastic items such as bottles and containers must be free of food and liquids. Paper and cardboard must be clean and free of greasy residue. According to Trans-Jordan, the Top 10 Contaminants of Recycling are: 1. Plastic Bags 2. Needles/Biohazardous Waste 3. Wire, hose, cords, rope, & chains 4. Propane Tanks 5. Yard Waste/Wood 6. Motor Oil Containers 7. Electronics 8. Food Waste 9. Clothing/Shoes 10. Mercury-Containing Objects The cost of recycling is an investment in the future. If not done properly, we are wasting our money and our resources. To have a successful recycling program, every resident and business must follow the recommended guidelines. You don’t want to meticulously prepare your recycling only to have your neighbor contaminate the load! For more information on recycling, see https://transjordan.org/recycle or https://wasatchfrontwaste.org/recycling


Message from the Council This month we would like to highlight NeighborWorks in Murray. Murray made the decision to partner with NeighborWorks of Salt Lake to open an office in Murray. The funding comes from one of our Redevelopment project areas low income housing requirement. In a project area, 20% of the tax increment generated must go to low income housing. We felt we could best use that money by setting up a fund to help the elderly maintain their homes, or the young to get into their first home. To manage that fund, we contracted with NeighborWorks. NeighborWorks has a long history of “Revitalizing Neighborhoods House by House, block by block, and neighbor by neighbor”. They do this in three ways. First, they can provide assistance in purchasing a home. NeighborWorks can provide down payment assistance loans. A new home owner can get LIFT down payment assistance loan of up to $15,000.00. They also have Down Payment / Closing cost Assistance Loans of up to $5000.00. To qualify for the LIFT loan your income can be 120% of Median Income and below. To qualify for the Down Payment / Closing Cost loan, you need to be 80% of the median income or below. Both loans are forgivable. Second, if you are in your home, and are on a fixed income, or your income is 80% or less than the median income, you can get a Home Improvement Loan. Typical uses for these loans are for energy efficiency improvements, like new doors, wall or attic insulation, replacing heating or cooling units for a more efficient model, or helping to cut water use. They also loan for critical repairs such as Furnace, roof leaks, foundation problems, windows, or plumbing and electrical. Terms are flexible and based on your ability to repay the loan.

Murray Library Hello friends of the Murray Library! We are excited for spring and summer and are getting a head start on all the great summer activities. Here is a look at what is going on at the library this month.

Finally, NeighborWorks also provides opportunities for volunteer organizations to get involved. Every August they hold their Paint Your Heart Out event. Since 1985 they have painted over 823 homes for the elderly, disabled, veterans, or those on limited income. It is amazing to see the reaction of homeowners when they see their Jim Brass home newly painted. It makes them feel District 3 like a valued part of their community. If you would like to be involved in an event, they take applications from individuals or teams. Just send an email to jasminew@nwsaltlake.org. Right now NeighborWorks is gearing up for the 34th Annual Paint Your Heart out event on Saturday, August 10, 2019. Their goal is to paint 15 homes in the valley. Go to their website at www.nwsaltlake. org, and fill out the form if you would like to recommend someone. If you are a homeowner that is a veteran, have a disability, or have a limited income, you can apply too. Along with the financial assistance, NeighborWorks also provides Homebuyer Education Classes, and also expert guidance for home improvements. In Murray, NeighborWorks is located at 4843 Poplar Street. They would love to have you drop by and talk to them. They also purchase home to rehabilitate and then sell at favorable rates, so if you are in the market please stop by. This has been a wonderful partnership for Murray City, and our citizens, so if you need there help, do not hesitate to pay them a visit. –Jim Brass, District 3

CITY COUNCIL Council District 1 Dave Nicponski 801-913-3283 dnicponski@murray.utah.gov Council District 2 Dale M. Cox 801-971-5568 dale.cox@murray.utah.gov Council District 3 Jim Brass 801-598-7290 jim.brass@murray.utah.gov Council District 4 Diane Turner 801-635-6382 diane.turner@murray.utah.gov Council District 5 Brett A. Hales 801-882-7171 brett.hales@murray.utah.gov Council Administrator Jan Lopez 801-264-2622 jlopez@murray.utah.gov

166 East 5300 South • Murray, UT 84107 Monday April 1st is Family Movie Night. We will be watching “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.” Enjoy this family friendly feature and free popcorn from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. in the auditorium at the library. On Saturday, April 13, a special guest will be making his first appearance at the Murray library. He has magic sunglasses, four groovy buttons, cool shoes, and he wants to meet you! That’s right, Pete the Cat will be visiting the Murray Library. Join us for a Pete the Cat story or two, a craft, and a photo opportunity with this feline celebrity! Oh! Don’t forget about our all-day scavenger hunt! This is a family friendly activity from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. in the auditorium. We know you love books, and we’re betting you love art. This month’s Adult Art Class will be making folded book art! Join us as our very own library director Kim Fong shares her book folding skills. Class will take place Monday, April 15th from 6-8 p.m. Space is limited so be sure to come early. Summer reading will kick off in June, but we’ll go over that in the summer issue. Until then, finish up that schooling strong and keep reading! As always, if you have any questions about these events, please feel free to call us at 801-264-2580 or visit our events calendar on our website at murraylibrary.org Unless otherwise listed, all of these events are free and open to the public and do not require tickets or registration.

Monday - Thursday 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. Friday & Saturday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

murraylibrary.org 801-264-2580

Murray Library Murray Library Home Calendar


APRIL 2019 For additional information, please contact Lori Edmunds at 801-264-2620

Murray Arts Beat MURRAY FUN DAYS Fourth of July Murray Fun Days was established in 1958 under the administration of Mayor Ray P. Greenwood and is now Murray’s longstanding Fourth of July tradition. It has become a family day with a host of events in and around Murray Park.

Resident on Display Original artwork by Murray resident artists are displayed in the central display case at City Hall and Murray Library. Dave Koch (photography) is our featured April artist at city Hall and Glenna Peterson’s work will be on display at the Murray Library until the end of March.

Fun Days Parade: Entry Forms are due by June 3, 2019. Parade forms can be found at the Murray Parks & Rec Office or online at www.murray.utah.gov/412/ Parade-Information Chalk Art Contest: Join our 2nd Annual Chalk Art Contest during Murray Fun Days. Registration is open and will close June 28th by 5:00 pm. Forms and more details can be found at the Murray Parks & Recreation office or online at www.murray.utah. gov/1635/Chalk-Art-Contest

AUDITIONS: Disney’s Beauty and the Beast will be directed by Kjersti Parkes and presented by special arrangement with MTI. Auditions will be held May 1 & 2, 6:00 – 9:00 pm at Viewmont Elementary School (745 W. 5720 S.). Callbacks (by invitation only) will be held May 4, 9:00 am – Noon. Performance dates: July 25-31st at the Murray Park Amphitheater. Little Women will be directed by Jim Smith and presented by special arrangement with MTI. Auditions will be held May 28th and 30th, 7:30 – 9:30 pm at Viewmont Elementary School. Callbacks (by invitation only) will be held June 1st, 1:00 – 3:00 pm. Performance dates: August 9-17th at the Murray Park Amphitheater. Updates will be posted on our Murray City Cultural Arts Facebook Page and more details can be found at our City Webpage: www.murray.utah.gov/1642/Auditions


Murray Public Works Department

Murray Senior Recreation Center 3rd AnnuAl SympoSium: Senior & CAregiver proteCtion

Spring 2019 Construction Notice

Please mark Tuesday, April 9 on your calendars. The Center is presenting a full day symposium centered on SENIOR AND CAREGIVER PROTECTION. Murray Senior Recreation Center participants have voiced concerns about elder abuse by family, caretakers, or others. Our third annual symposium will address this important issue and help you protect yourself as well as the caregivers you associate with.

Murray City and its contractors completed the replacement of the bridge at 6400 South and 1350 East at the end of March. We appreciate your patience during the road and trail closure. As the spring season begins, the city will commence work on the following storm drain and roadway projects: • 5735 South, from 590 West to 665 West, will be reconstructed with new curb and gutter and road surface. • Vine Street Phase 1, from 900 East to 1300 East, will begin late spring/ early summer and will entail storm drain work and full road reconstruction. Vine Street Phase 2, from 1300 East to the Van Winkle Expressway, has not yet been designed and will be completed likely in 2021 or 2022. • To address storm drain issues on Utahna Drive, Murray City will be installing a new storm drain system under the Trax at 5750 South. This project will impact traffic on Utahna Drive and 300 West. Please consider alternate routes once work begins in late spring. • Beginning in June, the signal at 4800 South and Commerce will be updated to include new signals and pedestrian enhancements.

No other programs or services will take place at the Murray Senior Recreation Center on that day. Registered participants will hear two keynote addresses and choose four presentations to attend. The cost will be $8 per person which includes a continental breakfast and lunch. Registration begins Wednesday, March 6. Bring your friends and family and spend the day with us.

golf generAl meeting The Murray Senior Recreation Center’s GOLF LEAGUE will begin this year with the general meeting of all interested players on Monday, April 8 at 10:30 a.m. at which time the schedule will be reviewed and local rules for the season outlined. Golf tournaments are for those 55+ who have attained a basic level of golf skill that will allow them to compete in 18 holes of play at a pace comparable to the 100+ players who will participate in each tournament. We have put together a great list of tournaments this year so come out and support our golf program.

2019 SeASon SChedule

April 22 May 6 May 20 June 3 June 10 June 24

8:00 9:00 8:00 8:00 8:00 8:00

Mountain View Eaglewood* The Ridge Murray Talons Cove Wasatch

tripS

July 15 July 29 August 12 August 26 September 23 October 7

7:30 8:00 7:30 7:30 8:30 11:00

Glenmoor Mountain Dell Old Mill Bountiful Ridge* Meadowbrook Year End Banquet *Scramble

tuacahn

It’s never too early to be thinking about summer plans and our annual TUACAHN trip is set to depart Monday, June 3. Plan to travel to southern Utah and Mesquite and spend a few evenings at the Tuacahn Amphitheater. This year’s plays will be Disney’s “When You Wish” and “The Little Mermaid.” Call 801-264-2635 for details and pricing.

Butterfly Biosphere

The Butterfly Biosphere at Thanksgiving Point’s Water Tower Plaza is an experience unlike anything in the state of Utah! This 40,000 square foot venue is home to over a thousand butterflies from around the globe. In addition to dozens of species of butterflies, it also has 20 species of tarantulas, beetles as big as your fist, and many more creepy crawly friends. The Center bus will leave at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, April 18 for Thanksgiving Point. Return to the Center about 3:30. Cost for the trip is $20 and includes transportation and ticket to the Butterfly Biosphere. Registration begins Wednesday, April 3.

tulip festival at thanksgiving point

The Center bus will leave at 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 25 for Thanksgiving Point and their annual TULIP FESTIVAL. Return to the Center about 3:30 p.m. Cost for the trip is $20 and includes transportation and ticket to the Tulip Festival. Registration begins Wednesday, April 10. This trip involves a considerable amount of walking; there are carts you can rent for an additional charge at Thanksgiving Point (we have not arranged for carts).

#10 East 6150 South (one block west of State Street) For information on these and other great programs call 801-264-2635

For more information and general updates, Murray City Public Works can be found on Instagram at murraycitypublicworks and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MurrayCityPublicWorks. The Murray City website will also have periodic updates for Vine Street at www.murray.utah.gov.

For additional information, contact Murray Public Works Department at 801-270-2440

MURRAY CITY PARKS & RECREATION master plan Murray City is conducing a survey regarding the Parks and Recreation master plan within the community. Community members, park and recreation users, and arts patrons are encouraged to take the survey and participate in the planning process. Their input and priorities will help Murray City identify ways to improve and invest in the City’s parks and recreation facilities, trails, programs, events, arts and culture. Community members are encouraged to take the online survey and learn more about the Master Plan update at: https://murray.utah.gov/223/Parks-Recreation


Murray Park Café gone

Murray Power to help make Navajo Nation bright

By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com

By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com

Would you like fries with your backhoe? The Murray Park Café was demolished in February.

S

ome may have gotten heartburn from it if it stayed, others may feel heartache now that it is gone. The Murray Park Café, a fixture of the park since the 1960s, was torn down in February. The building, which would operate in the summers, was the location of many a Murray teenagers’ first job.

According to Murray Parks and Recreation Director Kim Sorenson, “The building needed many improvements, and with food trucks now coming to the park, it wasn’t feasible to operate.” Murray Park is again planning a weekly food truck festival in the summer.

FOSTER PARENTING Looking for parents for foster children of all ages!

• 6 to 12 Months • • Babies to Adults • To learn more please visit riseservicesinc.org 801-676-8926 MurrayJournal .com

Murray Power will send a truck and crew to help with the Light Up Navajo initiative. (Photo courtesy Navajo Tribal Utility Authority)

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magine, in 2019, that your home still does not have electricity. For over 60,000 people living in the Navajo Nation, being off the grid is very much a reality. Enter Murray Power, who will send a crew, as part of the “Light Up Navajo” initiative, to help connect residents there to the electrical grid. Murray City Council unanimously approved Murray Power’s participation on Feb. 19. The city will send one crew of four members and a truck for the week of May 11-18. “The American Public Power Association (APPA) approached Murray City Power. They explained what was needed and we wanted to be involved. When our line workers heard about this opportunity they were very willing and excited,” said Barbara Ishino, spokesperson for Murray Power. Murray Power General Manager Blaine Haacke explained, “This project has been taken on nationally by the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority (NTUA). This is a six-week project that will have five to six crews working on it each week. The city would like to send one crew of four members for the last week of the project. The crew would be working 12-hour days replacing poles and stringing conductors.” There are groups participating from Illinois, Ohio, Arizona, Oklahoma, New Mexico, California, Delaware, Texas, Arkansas, Massachusetts and Utah. The cities in Utah that are participating are Murray, Santa Clara, Washington City, Lehi, St. George and Heber City. Murray is the only city in Utah that is sending a group of four with equipment. The high cost of connecting isolated rural households to the grid, the sensitivity of families to utility costs, and the limited availability of government loans has made progress toward greater electrification slow. To expedite electrification projects in the Na-

vajo Nation, the APPA, in partnership with the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority (NTUA), launched the Light Up Navajo initiative. The Navajo Nation is the largest Native American territory in the United States, with an estimated population of 300,000. The Nation occupies portions of northeastern Arizona, southeastern Utah and northwestern New Mexico. Among the 55,000 homes located on the 27,000-square-mile reservation, about 15,000 households do not have electricity. They make up 75 percent of all unelectrified households in the United States. Not having access to electricity has many repercussions for Navajo families as it has deprived families of reliable lighting and appliances, such as refrigerators, toasters and microwaves. To keep food from spoiling, families often use portable coolers filled with ice to preserve their food for a few days. Bruce Turner, operations manager of Murray Power, stated, “The mutual aid agreement is similar to the one the city already has with Intermountain Power Superintendents Association (IPSA), except the city won’t be getting paid back for anything. The city will just be supplying time and equipment, and NTUA will supply all the materials and the hotels.” Electrifying just one household on the reservation is an expensive endeavor. Each household, on average, requires one transformer, 0.6 miles of wire, nine poles, 16 insulators, and two arrestors to connect to the electric grid; which is an average material cost of around $5,500. Murray Power will be sending Crew Foreman Justin Larsen, Journeyman Lineman Eric Bracewell, and helpers/apprentices Victor Meza and Tyler Kirkham. The physical area they will be focused on is near Tuba City, Arizona.

April 2019 | Page 19


No matter the language—parents, educators say ‘happy birthday’ to dual immersion By Julie Slama | Julie@mycityjournals.com

At Draper Elementary in 2017, second-graders performed the traditional fan dance as part of school’s annual Chinese New Year celebration. (Julie Slama/City Journals)

日快 — bon anniversaire, feliz cumpleaños — happy 10th birthday to the dual-immersion program at many Utah elementary schools. Eleven years ago this legislative session, former Gov. John Huntsman signed Utah’s International Education Initiative into law, funding dual-immersion programs in Chinese (Mandarin), French and Spanish beginning in the 2008–09 academic year at 15 elementary schools, including some within the Salt Lake Valley communities. Since then, German, Portuguese and Russian have been added as the number of Dual Language Immersion (DLI) schools soared to 224 programs from St. George to Logan, reaching 43,000 students, said Jordan School District Elementary Dual Language Immersion Content Administrator Michele Daly, who oversees her district’s nine elementary programs. Principal Scott Jameson, who recently was moved to a DLI Spanish elementary in Sandy — Alta View — said he immediately could see a benefit for students. “It gives kids a chance to be challenged,” said the principal in Canyons School District, which houses eight elementary DLI and 11 secondary programs. “They put in a great effort in school, especially with the opportunity to learn Spanish while studying math and science. They are learning to persevere, even if it’s difficult, and develop that skill and a language they can use their entire lives.” The start Elementary DLI programs in the area are 50/50 immersion programs where students spend half their school day learning in the English language and half the day learning math, science or social studies in the target language. There are two teachers, one who teaches in English, and one who only speaks the language to students after the ini-

Page 20 | April 2019

They’re able to put those together in simple sentence structure so it’s easier for them to speak. By the time these students are in third and fourth grades, most surpass their peers academically in both languages and are able to converse in Chinese,” she said. Colleague Christina Ma said she’s been impressed at the level of her fifth-grade students. “They’re at the intermediate level where they can talk about places they want to travel or food they want to eat and even debate and express their opinions,” she said. While she may use easier vocabulary for students to understand science concepts — “science has harder vocabulary” — Ma said they are able to pick up math easily and understand their equations of multiplication, division and fractions. “Research has shown that these kids aren’t losing their math or English skills, but just learning another language alongside them,” she said. The State DLI website supports that claim, stating that “immersion students perform as well or better than non-immersion students on standardized tests of English and math administered in English.” It continues to say DLI students develop greater cognitive flexibility, are more attentive, and have better memory and problem-solving skills. Ma said her students are proactive learners. “The students practice talking, even if it is to a parent who doesn’t understand or a stuffed animal. If they have siblings who speak the language, they’re even going further,” she said. Mike Ward has his children in Chinese dual immersion at Ridgecrest Elementary in Cottonwood Heights. “Dual immersion is remarkable,” he

said. “By the time they’re in third, fourth and fifth grade, they understand and are speaking quite fluently. I can’t understand Chinese, but my third-grade daughter is understanding what her older brother is saying.” Monte Vista parent Carrie Newbold agrees to the benefits of siblings conversing in the language. “I love the opportunity my kids have to share with each other and talk outside of class,” she said. “It’s made the school schedule easier to have everyone on the same track and same schedule.” Newbold also said students have created a bond with their classmates. “These kids are together from first grade all the way through. They form a family because they’re in it together. We have friendships with parents, who band together to help welcome the Chinese teachers. Many parents can only help in the English classrooms since they don’t know the language, but we do what we can to help them settle in. It’s just a powerful experience for these kids to learn and have a better understanding of the culture,” she said. To every advantage, there can be a disadvantage. At Lone Peak Elementary, Kristy Bastian has her younger children in the program, but her seventh-grader was not admitted because of not enough space, she said. “They take siblings first and since there is limited room, he didn’t get in,” she said. “He wanted to learn and needed the challenge. It’s an incredible program, but frustrating when there isn’t a benchmark test or anything to help students get in.” With many elementaries, parents need to apply in February before first grade for the program. Applying doesn’t mean guaranteed entrance as many schools have a wait list. While there is no test to enter, preference is

tial months when first-graders are enrolled in the program. First-grade English teacher Michael Vierra at South Jordan’s Monte Vista Elementary said the popularity of the DLI program has grown and he is teaching 25 to 28 students per class. “I reinforce what students may not understand initially in Mandarin, but they quickly learn and have an awesome experience learning a language, usually from a native speaker and teacher,” he said. “They become independent very quickly and realize if they don’t know how to do something, they have to be able to learn and express it in the language.” Many of the DLI language teachers are on a visa to teach in Utah, meaning that there is a turnover; so English teachers help them learn the ins-and-outs of the program, Vierra said. “There always is some adjustment from how they teach in China or Taiwan, and they have to learn to American style of living, but the benefits of having a native teacher outweigh any challenges,” he said. Eastlake Elementary, in South Jordan, like many schools, have host families help DLI teachers from China and Hong Kong set up their housing, transportation, banking, and get their social security cards and driver’s licenses when they arrive a couple weeks before school begins to attend state dual-immersion training. “They’re usually on a three-year contract so there is a constant learning curve,” second-grade teacher Teresa Wang said. “They learn to teach more interactive, bring in their culture, not just give lectures.” In her own classroom of second-graders, Wang focuses on childhood activities. Last year, Midvale Elementary fifth-graders perform “Chinelos de Morelos” during the school’s third annual “Kids are getting a broad vocabulary Cinco de Mayo celebration. (Julie Slama/City Journals) of daily words that help with conversation.

Murray City Journal


given to siblings who have someone already enrolled in the language program. Entrance generally is limited to first grade, although if a student transfers from another DLI school or shows proficiency, Daly said there have been exceptions in Jordan District. Eastlake’s Wang agrees the fast-paced program isn’t for all students. “Some kids can’t pick it up and struggle tremendously. They need a strong base in their first language. It can be common for those with learning disabilities to not do as well, but it’s up to the parents to decide to apply to enroll them,” she said. Megan Morrison, who has a son at Lone Peak and feels lucky her third-grader has “an amazing opportunity,” said she may not enroll a younger sibling because she doesn’t see it as a good match for him. “He isn’t at the level of other kids and I can see with speech problems, he could be frustrated learning Chinese. I don’t want to take an opportunity away from another student,” she said. Secondary DLI As the first DLI students progress through school, dual immersion is added to that grade, meaning many of those first-graders in 2008–09 are now juniors in high school and have fast-tracked to take the AP Spanish exam to earn college credit. Murray School District Assistant Superintendent Scott Bushnell said that upon successful competition of the AP Spanish exam, students can begin the Bridge Program, a partnership with public and higher education, which was supported by SB152, that awarded $300,000 to the University of Utah to launch the program. At Murray High, sophomores, juniors and seniors enroll in a team-taught course, with both a University of Utah professor and a Murray High teacher instructing the coursework. “Students are able to complete upper-division language coursework and can finish their senior year of high school two courses shy of a minor in the language,” he said. Jordan’s Daly said their comprehensive abilities are “amazing.” “Their proficiency levels are so high, they are truly immersed and have that high level, they’re so lucky and don’t realize the gift we’re providing,” she said. Morrison has a student who has been in the program since first grade and currently is a sophomore at Alta High in Sandy. “It’s a unique opportunity for him to be learning from a University of Utah professor in his high school class. He’s had incredible experiences as the program has developed and I’m just amazed at what he’s accomplished in the 10 years,” she said. However, Midvale Middle School Chinese teacher Karma Lambert said students can still learn languages if they don’t enroll in DLI. “You don’t have to start in first grade,” she said. “Students who begin learning in sixth, seventh and eighth grades are still

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quick enough to learn languages and be able to carry on basic conversations in the language by the time they finish middle school. In general, they won’t be as far as long as their dual-immersion peers, but they can still learn the language and have those positive cultural benefits.” DLI benefits When Sarah Erwin’s family was looking to move into the Sandy area from St. George, she looked for a DLI Chinese school. They selected the Lone Peak neighborhood so her kids could learn Mandarin. “I speak Mandarin and at the time, St. George didn’t have dual immersion,” she said. “My kids needed more challenge and there are tremendous benefits of learning a second language.” Ridgecrest Elementary parent Brooke Moench said she has seen great progress academically for her children. “They tend to learn at a higher pace, and so, they have kept on task,” she said. “The teachers are ensuring students are learning by reteaching and reinforcing in English what they learn in Chinese so the languages are supporting one another.” Many parents, teachers and principals point to cultural benefits as school programs may include celebrating Chinese New Year or Cinco de Mayo or even having a word of the day for the entire student body to learn, or rooms, such as the library or cafeteria, labeled in the target language. Canyons District’s Butler Elementary students who are studying French immersion not only sample macaroons and learn about impressionism and Claude Monet and other parts of French culture, but they also get a taste of other countries’ culture, art and music during its annual World Night. Last year, for example, students wrote their names in Arabic, made Native American replica pots, learned about typical life in the Fiji Islands and more. “It’s important that the community opens our eyes and celebrates our diversity,” Principal Jeff Nalwalker said. At nearby Midvale Elementary, students celbrate Mexican Independence Day, Dia de los Muertos, Cinco de Mayo, and Mother’s Day with cultural activities, food, dances and song for the entire student body. “As a whole school, it’s important that we are learning other cultures, and are inclusive,” Principal Chip Watts said. Murray District spokeswoman D Wright said she also has seen culture be introduced in the district’s Spanish DLI classrooms. “I have visited in the Horizon DLI classes many times and see ongoing examples of music, dance and art integration through fun and captivating activities,” she said. “I also see exposure to a variety of related ethnic foods and culturally related holidays incorporated into the awareness and curriculum in the grades.” Several Chinese schools celebrated the Year of the Pig during Chinese New Year festivities that included programs, activities,

food, singing, dancing, acting and learning the history of the celebration. Some schools also celebrate the Moon Festival in the fall. Erwin said that through her school’s Chinese New Year program, it offers all students an opportunity to learn about culture. “It’s a fun time to explore another culture and for the whole school to come together,” she said. Monte Vista parent Corby Robins said the opportunities her second- and third-grader have had in DLI have been impressive. “The teachers are top notch,” she said. “They teach about the culture and pique students’ interest in China through food, games, stories and telling how they celebrate holiday with the family.” At Midvale Middle School, eighth-grader Eric Snauffer said, “it’s the best day of the year” as he learned to make Chinese dumplings with classmates afterschool. K-12 Chinese outreach coordinator Shin Chi Fame Kao, of the Confucius Institute at the University of Utah, said they support many cultural Chinese events at schools, and have even given grants to the first schools who had Chinese programs, including Canyons’ Lone Peak and Draper elementaries. “It’s important that children learn these customs of China as they learn the language,” she said. “It’s a time to understand families and communities celebrating together.” Lone Peak Principal Tracy Stacy said there is value in understanding other countries’ culture. “When children understand and value each other’s differences, it allows them to not only see differences and accept them, but also appreciate the way we are all similar,” she said. Eastlake Principal Suzie Williams agrees. “I love the culture piece dual immersion brings to our school,” she said. “It draws families together who are interested in their children becoming bilingual. Even if the parents aren’t versed in the language, they’re learning words and customs from their children. It isn’t a classroom where they sit and listen to the language. They’re learning the vocabulary and language while involved in enriching, engaging cultural activities.” The future of DLI Many programs continue to add a grade as DLI students progress, like in Murray District. However, there are no plans to expand to another language at another school at this

time, Bushnell said. “In a district our size, a cohort of 60 students allows us to run two elementary classrooms of 30 DLI students in each class,” he said. However, at nearby Midvale Elementary, there are plans to expand the classes, Watts said. Currently, about one-third of the school is enrolled in the Spanish DLI program and he said there are plans to increase that to twothirds. “Our data shows that students are achieving better in reading and math, and at the same time learning Spanish for those who are not already Spanish-speakers,” he said. “The language development as they learn a second language is helpful as they practice their native language. It’s a very engaging program for our students.” Alta View’s Jameson appreciates the DLI program in its entirety. “The DLI was created as a comprehensive pathway so students in elementary can continue in middle school and high school. It doesn’t just stop, but it prepares students for their future, for global careers,” he said. Jordan District’s Daly agrees. “We’re preparing them for the global market and job opportunities in the 20th century,” she said. “They’re learning language skills, as well as an awareness and appreciation of different cultures.”

During Butler Elementary’s World Night in 2018, students were read books to them at Monet’s Story Garden. (Julie Slama/City Journals)

Award winning program Canyons School District recently received the Melba D Woodruff Award for Exemplary Elementary Foreign Language Program from the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. The district was chosen to receive the national award to honor the program that aligns with the World-Readiness Standards for Language Learning curriculum, has proficiency targets set for each grade level, and has teachers that are highly qualified, lifelong learners.

April 2019 | Page 21


Grant students encouraged to find fun in reading, awesomeness in peers By Julie Slama | julie@myctiyjournals.com “Find awesomeness in other people and in yourself.” That’s what Grant Elementary’s PTA arts and literacy coordinator Mikey Brooks said was the message from the school’s literacy night keynote speaker and author, Shelly Brown. Brown, best known for her book “Mustaches for Maddie,” said that she wanted the students and families who were packed into the school that snowy Feb. 15 evening to reach out to the people around them. “We live in a time when people are far too isolated, when we’d rather look at an electronic device than another person,” she said. “But we are paying a price with our happiness. I’m hoping to encourage people to check on their neighbors, make friends with the kid in class who is different, and actually talk to the people in their own families. These connections will bring happiness in ways we may never see coming.” PTA President Brooke Stephenson said the literacy night idea was to promote the importance of reading and the fun it brings. “It was a really fun event where Shelly made everyone feel super important and excited about reading,” she said. “She was able to relate and empower everyone.”

In Brown’s most recent book, “Squint,” Brooks said that Brown tells the tale of 13-year-old main character who is losing his eyesight, can’t see his friends well and withdraws. However, with the help of a genuine friend, the boy is able to see that different is still awesome. “She tells how he can overcome feeling different and can look for the best, the awesomeness, which is what she empowered our students to do. Her message really left everyone pumped up,” Brooks said. Perhaps some of that positivity came from what Brown finds as the hardest part of writing – having confidence in her own work. “It is a subjective business and rejection is just part of it,” she said. “It is good to be humble enough to adjust your art to make it better and better, but it is also important to have some faith that what you are creating is worth your time and the time of others — the faith to believe that you are making the world a better place with your efforts. And then, the bravery it takes to show people what you made.” After the keynote, Brown answered students who competed in the school’s Battle of the Books competition and even discussed some books they had read for the contest,

since she, herself, had read the same novels, Brooks said. Students also could wander through several workshops, including Miss Murray Savannah Angle, who along with her mom, sister, mentor, Lisa Smith, and second attendant, Julia Cheshire, were making crowns to tie into Shannon Hale’s book, “Princess in Black.” “She’s like a ninja with a daisy,” Angle said. “The kids all know the story and got really creative and used their imaginations when making the crowns. Who knew pipe cleaners and beads could be so magical?” Angle volunteered to help at the elementary school however they may need it and was happy it tied into her platform to promote arts into the core curriculum. “Arts is something that is valuable and important. It allows creativity, higher ability thinking, skills with problem-solving, skills students can use all through their life,” she said. “It makes a huge difference and allows us to connect with each other and the world around us.” In other rotations, students could make cat ears to tie into Eric Litwin’s “Pete the Cat,” create wands to tie into the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling, and make their own books so they could be their own authors. The University of Utah literacy program also

held a story time and craft activity. “If you can make reading more fun for kids, they’re more apt to pick up a book and read it for life. We wanted to make it an opportunity for kids to dive into reading,” said Brooks, who also is an author. There were opportunities for parents to talk to teachers to discuss literacy and understand the standardized DIBELS test as well as enroll their families in the summer reading program with Murray Library. Before families left, every student could select a free book to take home. “It was a big win for literacy when students could pick their own book out of hundreds,” Brooks said. Brown, who said Jan and Stan Bernstein were her favorite childhood authors, said she reads all sorts of genres — children’s and young adult books, historical fiction, comedy, biographies, humor, romance, self-help, book club literature and more. “Literacy nights are great opportunities to relight the love of reading and remember the power that reading has in the lives of the young and the old,” she said. “I hope that everyone who left that night went home and picked up a book, fiction, non-fiction, about space travel or sea creatures. I don’t really care. Just that they read something and expanded their minds and imaginations.”

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Miss Murray Savannah Angle was joined by Grant Elementary students in making crowns to tie into the book, “Princess in Black” as part of the school’s literacy night. (Photo courtesy of Savannah Angle)

Page 22 | April 2019

Murray City Journal


Murray School District’s six employees and a volunteer receive honors By Julie Slama | julie@myctiyjournals.com

M

urray High skilled and technology education teacher Quinn Drury was teaching his first period advanced woods class, going over their planning sheets — a cost breakdown of their projects — when in walked the administration, followed by school board and foundation members, and his family. “I didn’t know if I was in trouble or if I was good,” he said. “They all just kept coming in, and coming in, and coming in.” Drury’s advanced students, many who were planning night stands, dining tables and dressers, were included in the announcement that he was one of five teachers, a classified employee and a volunteer, who Murray Education Foundation will honor at its 16th annual Pinnacle Awards. “It’s way kind, nice, humbling,” Drury said. “There are a lot of good teachers at Murray. This really sets me back.” The seven Pinnacle award-winners were slated to receive a statuette, $500 and a gift basket of items from area community and business leaders at the invited-guest dinner, created by Murray High ProStart students, at a gala on March 14 at the high school. Murray Chickfil-A franchise owner Andrew Allman will be the emcee. The Pinnacle award-winning teachers, in addition to Drury, include Riverview Jr. High English teacher Jen Duehlmeier, who

has taught in the district for 13 years; Hillcrest Jr. High math teacher Crystal Fish, who has taught in the district for 18 years; Parkside Elementary kindergarten teacher Rachelle Peterson, who has taught in the district for 31 years and McMillan Elementary third-grade teacher Christy Vuyk, who has taught in the district for 21 years. The Pinnacle classified employee winner is Fidel Garcia, who is the head custodian at Grant Elementary and worked in the district for 25 years and the outstanding volunteer is Jamie Hunter who helps at Liberty Elementary. Drury, who has taught for 23 years and has received teaching awards for teaching concurrent enrollment and carpentry, said that he was inspired by his former Bingham teachers Lynn Demill and Clay Butterfield, to become an educator. Now, he finds his passion in his students. “I like empowering kids to find success and teach technical and life skills to do just that,” he said. Last year, Drury’s student, Jeb Price, was a state Skills USA winner, who competed nationally. Drury has taught five state winners, who have placed in the top 10 nationally – two which finished just off the podium in fourth place. Drury also has overseen nine completed project houses, where students gain real-world

experience from scheduling, estimating and subcontracting to learning how to build the home each step of the way – framing, cement work, roofing, drywall, painting, putting in hardwood floors and cabinetry. Drury is just one example of many of the dedicated educators selected this year, said Superintendent Jen Covington. “We are so proud of each of our Pinnacle Award recipients,” she said. “In their own individual ways, they have each challenged our students, encouraged our students and supported our Murray schools. We thank them for seeing the faces of our students in all that they do and giving them positive opportunities to learn and grow. They are a vital part of our ‘We Are Murray’ spirit.” Jeanne Habel, Foundation executive director, said each Pinnacle award winner is nominated by a Murray community, family or school district member. A committee of community members selected the winners based on the nomination. “Recognition through Pinnacle Award nominations is a great opportunity for the community to be actively involved in showing appreciation to highly deserving individuals,” she said. “Pinnacle Award winners are incredible professionals and volunteers who make a huge a difference for so many in the Murray City School District.”

Murray School District Superintendent Jen Covington surprises McMillan Elementary third-grade teacher Christy Vuyk by announcing she is one of Murray School District’s six employees and a volunteer who will receive the Pinnacle Award this month. (D Wright/Murray School District)

Unsung Heroes In Our Community Our Path in Life

“You never know what your path in life is going to be,” said Lynn Long. She is the Community Liaison/ Case Manager at Danville Support Services, which offers in-home services to fit every individual’s need. She began working in real estate, but that changed to caregiving when she began simultaneously caring for her father-in-law who had Alzheimer’s and her 90-year-old mother. Soon, she began working at Danville as a caregiver. “It was a really good fit, because I got to help people and it made me feel good and I really enjoyed it,” Lynn says, now 10 years later. Danville administrator, Stephanie Strohl, said, “One thing we all say about Lynn is that she is happy and compassionateshe brightens up our day. She truly cares about the clients and the staff and she is great at looking at hard situations and figuring out how to make it work.” For more information about Danville, call 801-363-1521. Sponsored by:

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April 2019 | Page 23


Girl Scouts work on global problem within the community By Julie Slama | julie@myctiyjournals.com

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f Girl Scouts in troop 766 had their way, there wouldn’t be any plastic bags that escape out of hands on a windy day or end up flying around the landfill. As part of their Agent of Change Junior Girl Scout Journey, these 22 fourth- and fifthgrade Murray girls identified a global problem, then come up with a local solution to help with that problem. “We asked the girls to answer the question, ‘what can we do as a troop to make a difference?’” said Dee Heath, who is the troop co-leader along with Kathy Atkinson. After brainstorming several ideas, they identified plastic pollution as the global issue they wanted to tackle and began a campaign to collect plastic grocery bags to aid in recycling or re-using them responsibly to keep them out of landfills. “The girls learned that the plastic takes a long time to decompose and most grocery store bags are used for about 15 minutes before becoming trash. People don’t just use plastic bags at grocery stores, but to line their trash in their homes. They all end up at the landfill, not decomposing, and often blowing into other areas, which animals can be harmed from ingesting them or possibly get entangled in them,” Heath said.

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The girls, who attend several Murray area schools, reached out to Murray School District Superintendent Jen Covington, who supported the project, and granted permission to have collection bins in the foyers of McMillan, Longview, Liberty and Viewmont elementary schools. They also have placed a collection bin at Murray library to allow patrons to recycle plastic bags as well as Christ Lutheran Church. “The girls are committed to collecting the bags weekly and either taking them to recycle responsibility or put to re-use,” she said. Troop 766 didn’t stop there. Through their research, they discovered that many grocery bags and dry-cleaning bags are made of low-density polyethylene, which many community recycle programs won’t accept. So, they also wrote Rep. Marie Poulson to encourage these plastic bags be banned in Utah. In their letter, the girls wrote, “It is true that plastic waste can be recycled, but the percentage of plastic that is appropriately recycled is negligible. In the United States less than 10 percent of all plastic is recycled. This figure matched against the 40 percent of all plastic that is used only once and then tossed results in a huge deficit.” Heath said that Poulson replied to the troop and even invited them to a capitol visit. “These Girl Scouts are asking that if everyone can make one small change, together, we’d make a difference. It starts with recycling these plastic bags, but think of the impact we would have if we eliminated use of them,” Heath said, adding that because of the troop’s research and commitment, she switched to personally using re-usable biodegradable kitchen trash liners. “I’m really proud of these girls for being conscious of the environment. It’s really powerful how these Girl Scouts are being responsible and taking a stand for an issue that impacts our community and our world.”

Murray City Journal


MISSION STATEMENT The Murray Chamber creates synergy among professionals. We facilitate the creation of long lasting business relationships between members that are based on trust, value, and cooperation. We provide tools to connect education, service opportunities and interaction between members.

The Murray Area Chamber of Commerce wishes you success and prosperity in your business for 2019. Call the Chamber today to schedule a complimentary business consultation with the Chamber President & CEO.

THANK YOU! We wish to thank the following members for supporting the Murray Area Chamber. Be certain to shop/utilize these great businesses in keeping it local! Tell them the Murray Chamber referred you to receive your discount or promotion specials. Have Party Will Travel – Mindy Myers SelectHealth – Greg Reid Statewide Insurance – Ben & Kari Clark Hammers Recycling – Steve Hammer Jenkins Soffe Mortuary - Simone Soffe- Black

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www.murraychamber.org April 2019 | Page 25


Viewmont Elementary students are powering up to be digitally responsibly with White Ribbon Week grant By Julie Slama | julie@myctiyjournals.com

V

iewmont PTA volunteer Kelly Taeoalii saw a White Ribbon Week $500 grant posted on Facebook. After thinking that it looked easy enough to apply and knowing it would benefit the school, she filled out the information for the digital citizenship grant in late January. “I learned within that week that we were awarded the grant and two weeks later, I got all the materials – facilitator guide, simple stories, everything we need,” she said. “It’s a powerful, but simple program.” Viewmont will use the “I’ve Got the Power” program during its White Ribbon Week April 1-5. The program helps kids take charge of what they view and share online, Taeoalii said. “There are five-minute lessons based on five principles and a statement to begin each day. It’s not a program that says ‘don’t do this,’ but rather ‘I’ve got the power to be smart and be responsible,’” she said. The student-empowerment program begins each day with a power boost or a positive principle of online behavior, such as “I have the power to not view embarrassing pictures or share hurtful words” and “I have the power to tell a trusted adult if something doesn’t feel right.” Then, each day, there is a short program

Viewmont Elementary students are excited to “power up” April 1-5 and will use the $500 White Ribbon Week grant’s program to learn digital citizenship. (Jamie Cheney/Viewmont Elementary)

that centers around that theme. There are opportunities to have discussions on the topic and related lunchtime activities. Students and families are given tips how to be digitally safe, which Taeoalii plans to share through the ParentSquare notification system. “Being digitally responsible is such an important thing. Next year, our school, K-6 (kindergarten through sixth grade), will be one to one (ratio) with devices. We use tablets and

computers so much in school and at home, but we also need to give our students the tools they need to be digitally responsible citizens,” she said. In years past, Taeoalii said the school would combine Ribbon weeks, so one day, it would be dedicated to drug and alcohol prevention and education and another day might be dedicated to pedestrian and bike safety, but with the help of this grant, this year, the effort

can be concentrated on internet safety for the entire week. “Our students have access to the whole word, but what are we doing to train and prepare them?” she asked. “This program will help make parents more aware and give our kids the opportunities to learn good choices with technology.”

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Murray City Journal


Safe Driving Habits

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pring is upon us, summer is on the way; and with warmer temperatures and (hopefully) blue skies on the horizon, drivers can’t blame slick roads or blinding flurries for their faulty driving anymore. Driving safely requires good driving habits. Habits. Not occasionally safe maneuvers. The following are some prudent practices to implement in your daily travels.

drove over a nail and didn’t realize it. We often don’t look at the tires on the passenger side since we don’t approach the car from that direction, checking regularly allows you to examine those opposite side wheels. It will keep your car’s handling in its best condition. Each vehicle can have different appropriate PSI (measurement for tire pressure), but when temperatures drop, so Blinkers and blind spots Driving 101. If you plan on changing does the pressure in your tires. lanes, let others in on your secret. Everyone Keep car maintained will appreciate it. Others want to know what Since you’ll be regularly checking the you are planning. tires, might as well keep regularly schedLikewise, if you see a blinker come uled maintenance on your car. This can range on indicating your lane is that car’s desired from oil changes to transmission flushes. destination, let it in. This isn’t the Daytona Simply checking windshield washer fluid or 500. We are not racing for $19 million. It is the antifreeze level in your car’s reservoir can common courtesy, if we want people to use prevent serious issues happening on the road. their blinkers, then we should reward them Wash your car especially after storms for doing so. or if you’ve parked under a pine tree where Remember the blinker doesn’t automat- birds can drop their white business on the ically assume safe passage to the next lane. hood or sap could drip onto the roof. Left And while your car’s sensors in the rearview untreated, these outdoor stains can ruin the mirrors are helpful, they are not omniscient. paint on your vehicle. Check your blind spot with your own eyes. Drive defensively There’s a reason it’s called a “blind” spot. This means keeping distance between

troubling and you probably shouldn’t be behind a steering wheel. Also you can’t always see what’s in front of the car before you. They may have to slam on their brakes due to an unexpected obstruction. If you rear end them, insurance rarely works out in your favor. This can also mean slowing down on wet roads or not weaving in and out of traffic. Distractions This is the No. 1 reason for accidents. This is not limited to using the cell phone, though texting, checking news alerts or making a phone call are all terrible decisions to make while driving.

It also extends to dozing off or checking the price at the gas station you just passed. Be alert, stay vigilant. Other drivers may suddenly stop, they may not see you as you yield or turn. By staying engaged and sharp, your reactions can be sharper and you may even anticipate what other drivers are looking to do. One way to stay engaged is to vary your daily commute. Changing your routine alerts your brain, breaking you from the monotonous snooze you may find yourself after traveling certain routes hundreds of times. These habits are important and it is not overdramatic to say that they could save a life.

Tire pressure you and the car in front of you. This one is almost as simple as the first. Touching their bumper does nothing for Check your tire pressure on a regular basis you. And if you need to get that close to read to know if there is a small leak. Maybe you their license plate or sticker, your eyesight is

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Asian-American high school students encouraged to tap ‘superhero’ potential Story and Photos By Jennifer J. Johnson | J.Johnson@mycityjournals.com “Motivated” was a common word Asian-American high school students across the state felt, after attending the 20th-annual Asian-American High School Conference Feb. 28 at the University of Utah. This year’s theme — “Shaping Superheroes; Creating Positive Change” — was a powerful one, providing context to the keynote and breakout sessions. The conference seeks to help Asian-Americans high school students be prepared for collegiate success, and, even more importantly, be prepared to embrace their everyday, figurative “superhero” potential as community leaders. “When a student is passionate about something, their drive is extraordinary,” informs the conference brochure. “As such, students will learn about issues facing the Asian and Asian American communities and how they can use their passions and educations to create critical, sustainable, and positive changes in their own communities.” Students treated to ‘Who’s Who’ of Asian, Asian-American scholars Students attending the conference received academic resources, including scholarship guidance, admissions counseling, and opportunities to meet and connect with university faculty, staff, and students. Graduate students, professors, and university administrators from not just the University of Utah, but also from Salt Lake Community College and Westminster College participated in the event. Distinguished academicians, including a Rhodes Scholar and a Guggenheim Fellowship winner, politicians, and successful entrepreneurs also participated in the event. Academic disciplines represented

Students attending the conference and their university hosts were encouraged to dress in either semi-formal or cultural attire.

ranged from electrical engineering to ethnic studies; from history to humanities; from medicine to music education; and from art history to Asian studies. Asians as Superheroes, through world history and mythology … “Our Asian identity is not something to be ashamed of,” advised Matt Wong, a self-described “Cantonese American” who attended Salt Lake Community College and now works at the university. In a breakout session, Wong recounted stories of historical and mythical Asian superheroes and challenged students to liberal-

With a playful, larger-than-life-size blowup bottle of the popular Thai sriracha sauce in the background, members of the University of Utah’s Asian-American Student Association greet conference attendees.

Page 28 | April 2019

ly share their own family history and stories, particularly “if your family is recent immigrants.” He cited Ishikawa Goemon, “A Japanese Robin Hood” from the 1800s and another figure from that century, the Hindu queen Lakshmibai who led troops to battle for independence against British colonization. He also shared his family’s reverence for the contributions of Chinese revolutionary Sun Yat-sen, the founding father of the Republic of China and the forerunner of democratic revolution in the People’s Republic of China, which overthrew the last Chinese imperial dynasty. In more recent history, Wong cited what he considered heroism of the “No-No Boys” of World War II who protested America’s unconstitutional treatment of 110,000 Japanese Americans who were placed in internment camps, yet were, themselves, asked to serve in the military. … And, today, as comic book characters – and creators Following up on a subtheme of the conference — that Asians can be stereotyped and must move beyond those stereotypes — Dr. Paul Fisk shared with students a vibrant future outside of what people consider or even uniquely recommend as careers for Asians (e.g. careers limited to science or engineering). Marvel Studio’s upcoming “Shang-Chi” will be its first superhero movie featuring an Asian protagonist. The film has signed a Chinese-American writer and is considering a variety of Asian and Asian-American directors, with the goal being to “introduce a new hero who blends Asian and Asian American themes, crafted by Asian and Asian American filmmakers.” Those are jobs that students could look forward to in the future, Fisk indicated. Inspiration and challenges

Students attending the conference looked forward to applying what they learned. A student from Taylorsville wants to take the inspiration and tools to help coach her younger sister through school. Other students shared challenges in negotiating their Asian history with being raised in “white communities” and, for biracial students, the everyday anguish of and not having “white relatives” honor or appreciate their Asian roots. One young woman indicated feeling like a literal alien. On the difficulty of being Asian in predominately white schools, a student from, arguably, the state’s most diverse high school, West High School in Salt Lake City, observed, “When your parent has an accent, they look down on you.” West’s studentbody represents students from homes where more than 120 different languages are spoken. Students attending the conference appreciated being able to bond with so many in similar circumstances. “I am really glad I came,” shared a student from Granger High School in West Valley City. “It feels like I need to do more,” said a West High School student, who felt inspired to study Asian and Asian-American history and seek to serve as a role model. The Asian and Asian-American population at the U of U and in context with Salt Lake City metro Asian students comprise 5.82 percent of the university’s student population. Biracial students account for another 5.13 percent of the studentbody. According to the 2018 U.S. Census Bureau statistics, this is about twice as significant a population as within the Salt Lake City Metropolitan area, where Asians comprise 2.6 percent and those of two or more races are 2.5 percent of the overall population.

High-school students from throughout Salt Lake Valley (and the entire state) received valuable information about scholarship opportunities and other tools for success after high school.

Murray City Journal


Murray HS graduate Sidnee Lavatai becoming a star for the USU women’s tennis team By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com

A

Murray High School graduate is quickly making a name for herself up in Logan, as a freshman standout on the Utah State University (USU) Women’s Tennis team. Less than a year removed from high school, 2018 MHS graduate Sidnee Lavatai was recently named Mountain West Conference Women’s Tennis Player of the Week. Here entire Aggie team did not fair particularly well that week, suffering losses to Idaho (4-3) and the University of Texas at San Antonio (5-2), while winning at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP, 4-3). But Lavatai enjoyed a near-perfect 5-1 personal record during the week, competing as the Aggies’ No. 6 singles player, and on the No. 2 USU doubles team, partnered with sophomore Alexandra Pisareva. “We recruited Sidnee for her potential more than her actual playing skill; but she has really gotten it together quickly,” said fifthyear Utah State women’s tennis head coach Sean McInerney. “She’s a good girl and has been unbelievably solid for us.” For her part, Lavatai says her first half year in Logan has been a dream come true. “Back when I was first looking at college tennis programs, I shared my highlight clips with USU,” she said. “I was so excited to accept a full-ride scholarship from them. Neither of my parents, or my older sister, attended college. So, I am the first one in the family to go. It is very exciting and I think I’m helping the team.” Lavatai’s tennis odyssey began back in sixth grade, when she and her dad were visiting a Salt Lake Valley park. “I was about 11, and had never played tennis before, when someone let me give it a try for a few minutes,” Lavatai said. “Purely by coincidence, Kirk Plank was at the park and was shocked – after watching me – when I told him I had never played before. He offered to begin coaching me right there on the spot and was my coach for about three years.” During that time, Lavatai continued to grow toward the nearly 6-feet she stands today. “A little extra height can be a huge advantage for tennis players, provided they understand court positioning – where they should be at all times,” USU coach McInerney added. “But to get her there, we have worked hard on making Sidnee’s first step quicker. Her wider wing span helps. We have a tall team. She does not stand out all that much compared to several of her teammates.” Within two years of touching a racket for the first time, Lavatai began seeing much of the United States, as she travelled to various tennis tournaments. Along the way she also began to be coached by the tennis pros at the Sports Mall in Murray.

MurrayJournal .com

Murray High School graduate Sidnee Lavatai was recently named the Mountain West Conference Women’s Tennis Player of the Week. (Rick Parker/USU)

“I don’t even know how many tennis tournaments I have been in,” Lavatai said. “I started at about age 12 and have played all throughout the west – Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming – along with further away states, Texas, Georgia and Alabama.” A near lifelong Murray resident, Lavatai was also transitioning during those years from Parkside Elementary to Hillcrest Junior to Murray High School. Unfortunately, her

intensive practice and tournament schedule made it impossible for her to offer much assistance to her Murray High School girls’ tennis team. “I played first singles as a freshman for Murray High in 2015,” she said. “I advanced to the state semifinals, where I lost to Hannah Jones, who is now my teammate (a junior on the USU team). That was the only season I was able to play for Murray. And, after my sophomore year, I attended online high school for a year and a half, to fit my tennis schedule. Then I returned to Murray High for my final semester, so I could walk (graduate) with my class.” By then Lavatai knew she was Utah State bound, where she now lives in a dorm with a fellow freshman tennis player Annaliese County – a Lone Peak High School graduate Lavatai has competed against for many years. “She and I share a room, along with a common area that has six other girls,” Lavatai added. “None of the other six play tennis and it has been pretty fun getting to know everyone.” “We recruit from all over the world and were excited to get Sidnee, right in our own backyard,” coach McInerney concluded. “The first time I spoke with her I told her, ‘You are known as the nice girl. I don’t know if you are mean enough to play for us.’ But she’s proven she can be very competitive.” In just her first USU season, Lavatai has also proven those abilities to the people who select the Mountain West Conference Women’s Tennis Players of the Week.

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Recent Mountain West Conference Women’s Tennis Player of the Week Sidnee Lavatai is a 2018 Murray High School graduate. (Rick Parker/USU)

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Maximize that government paycheck

T

by

CASSIE GOFF

he due date for taxes is quickly approaching. The Internal Revenue Service wants all taxes filed by April 15. As many are still trying to file their taxes, either with a consultant or at home with online services, the question bouncing around in frontal lobes is: how can I maximize my tax return? Hopefully, you should have already prepared for this. Sometime last year, you should have ensured your W-4 was correct, checking that it was set to withhold the right amount. A common mistake professionals in the tax industry see is not withholding enough during the year; making it so you’re paying money back to the IRS in spring, instead of receiving money in return. So, if you haven’t checked up on the withholding amount prescribed in your W-4 for a while, now would be a good time to do so. One of the most effective ways to maximize your tax return is to claim dependents. In other words, have some minis. For tax purposes, the more children the better. However, if you’re not the paternal type, you might be able to claim your spouse, parent, or friend as dependent, depending on the situation, and the necessary evidence. Those dependents will probably need some shelter. Another way to maximize your return is to buy a house. Mortgage insurance is deductible! In fact, there are many items that are deductible including: charitable donations, med-

ical costs, prepaid interest, and education expenses. Remember when that clerk asked you if you wanted to round up your total to the next whole dollar, so the change could be donated to charity? Find that receipt. Even those small donations can be deducted. (I’ll be dumping out my shoebox of receipts all over my house, anyone else?) Go back to school! Refundable education credits can deduct up to $4,000 from tax liability. Additionally, families can deduct up to $2,500 on student loan interest. (That may not make up for rising tuition prices, but right now we’re only focused on maximizing that return!) That “credit” word. Pay attention to those. Tax credits subtract directly from your tax bill, while tax deductions reduce your tax bill in proportion to your tax rate: they lower the amount of income the IRS can tax. In other words, tax credits are independent. While you (and your recommended tax professional or software) are weighing out the credits and deductions, you might weigh standard tax deduction and itemized tax deductions as well. It may be the case that itemizing your deductions can help you get a bigger refund. Keep banking on that retirement. If you’re contributing to an employer-sponsored 401(k) or/and an IRA, that can help reduce your taxable income, maximizing your refund in return.

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Life and Laughter—Hang me out to dry

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fter happily drying our clothes for a decade, our dryer hit its tweenage years and started giving us the silent treatment. It would only work when we said magic words or used pliers to wrangle it into submission. I wasn’t ready to plop down several hundred bucks for a new dryer, so I suggested we string a clothesline in the backyard for fresh, sunny, natural drying. But with all the snow and the rain and the wind and the snow and the snow, I finally gave in. One weekend, the hubbie and I got in the car, girded our loins (I think that means we buckled our seat belts) and drove to the gargantuan furniture/appliance store where we were immediately attacked by suit-coated salespeople. They swarmed from everywhere. I thought, at first, they were zombies and impaled a couple of them with the leg of a kitchen chair before I realized my (understandable) mistake. One of them valiantly latched onto us, and the rest of them staggered back into the bowels of the store. Our salesperson/creature had mainlined 17 Dr. Peppers and hopped around us like a crazy ding-dong until we reached the appliance center. There were washers and dryers as far as the eye could see, which isn’t far because I’m pretty nearsighted. But trust me, there was a huge dryer selection. Mr. SalesCreature launched into his spiel. “I want you to have the dryer that your future washer will adore. Not the washer you have now, but the one you’ll want in two years.”

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MURRAY HS ATHLETIC ADMINISTRATORS WANT THE MULTI-SPORT ATHLETE TO RETURN

s

By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com

port athletes themselves, Murray High School Co-Athletic Directors Lisa White and Keeko Georgelas are frustrated with the growing trend of young athletes devoting year-round training to a single sport, while missing out on other opportunities to play for additional teams. “I don’t agree with it and have never agreed with it,” White said. “In my coaching experience, by best athletes were always involved in two or three sports.” “These kids are missing out on so many opportunities to meet other athletes – on various teams – and to benefit from cross training among different disciplines,” Georgelas added. “I think the kids – and their parents – are being sold a lie, by coaches who can earn more money if they recruit more kids into their sports, to practice and play 11 months out of the year.” Way back when the film “Rocky” was making Sylvester Stallone a household name, Georgelas was wrapping up a South High School athletic career that included football, basketball and track. White was involved in even more sports: volleyball, soccer, basketball, track and softball. That was the trend all the way up through the 1980s, for star athletes to routinely split their attention among different sports. Back then, high school basketball coaches often quietly hoped their school’s football team did not make a lengthy state tournament run. The sooner they were done on the gridiron, after all, the sooner their attention could shift to the hardwoods. Then the athletic landscape began to change. And Georgelas says, not for the better. “These kids – and their parents – are being sold a line that is simply not true,” he said. “Some coaches – particularly AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) coaches – have a financial interest in getting young athletes to commit to their sport, year-round. So, promises get made, or things are insinuated, that entice kids to specialize. Then they miss out on a more well-rounded high school experience.” There’s plenty of evidence to back up the Murray athletic directors’ claims – coming from the very top of the coaching profession. Fifteen years ago, the University of Utah football team became the first so-called “BCS Buster,” when Urban Meyer guided the Utes to their first undefeated season since 1930, and a dominating 35-7 Fiesta Bowl victory. The win launched quarterback Alex Smith into a lengthy NFL career, while carrying Meyer to the University of Florida.

Local Postal Customer ECRWSS Scan Here: Interactive online edition with more photos.

Murray High School Co-Athletic Directors Keeko Georgelas and Lisa White believe some of their athletes are missing out on a more enriching school experience, because they are accepting claims that they need to focus only on a single sport to earn college scholarships. (Carl Fauver/ City Journals)

Long a supporter and recruiter of multi-sport athletes, Meyer said in a “New York Times” article that the debate even divided his own family, when his wife insisted one of their daughters be allowed to specialize only in volleyball in order to strengthen her chances of earning a college scholarship in the sport. Meyer disagreed with the strategy then and still does now in retirement. “I got upset,” Meyer told the “Times,” about his wife’s insistence their middle daughter concentrate only on volleyball. “I said, ‘She’s going to play basketball,’ but I lost that argument.” Meyer said his wife told him he didn’t “understand,” which prompted him to retort, “I don’t understand? I’ve been coaching and in athletics my whole life and I don’t understand?” Quoted in the same December 2016 “Times” article, defending national football champion Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney sings from the same hymnal.

“I want the multisport guy; I just love that,” Swinney told the New York newspaper. “I just think the cross-training, the different types of coaching, the different types of locker rooms, the different environments that you practice in, the different challenges – I think it develops a much more competitive, well-rounded person.” Georgelas and White say, ‘here, here!’ “There are at least two other big problems when young athletes specialize in a single sport,” Georgelas continued. “First, burnout can be a real problem. I have talked with a lot of kids who have focused on just one sport – and by the time they are seniors in high school they are sick of playing it. “The second problem is the increased risk of injury. Obviously, if kids don’t have a little more down time – and a little more practice time, as opposed to playing that many more games – their chances of injury increase.” Studies have shown, burnout and injury rates are much higher for athletes who devote all their energy and time to one sport, while they are still growing and developing. “I particularly have a hard time when kids are specializing at young ages – sometimes at the elementary school level,” White added. “Kids can’t know what their favorite sport is at that age. I just think parents need to give their kids more time to really learn which sports they like best, and which sports they most excel at.” While Murray High School – like so many others, across the state and nation – are losing many top athletes to single-sport specialization, they are not losing all of them. MHS juniors Kasen Nielsen and Adelai Moore each hope their athletic skills will earn them scholarships in particular sports – Kasen in football and Adelai in track. But that’s not stopping them from lending their skills to several different Spartan teams. “Football is definitely what I want to play in college,” Nielsen said. “But I also enjoy track and field events like shot putt, javelin and discus. And this last winter I tried wrestling for the first time, and qualified for state. I did it after coach (Theros) Johnson gave me a list of all the NFL players who also wrestled in high school. It included (2017 NFL Hall of Fame inductee) Ray Lewis.” At 6-foot-3 and 270 pounds, Nielsen has the size to attract college and even NFL attention. Not long ago, he was briefly pulled out of an MHS class – along with two football teammates – to speak with a Utah State recruiter. His mother, Becky Smith, says the multi-sport approach by Kasen – and his younger brother, Kyler – follows a Continue on page 4...

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