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May 2018 | Vol. 4 Iss. 05



erda Saunders, a decade-long resident of South Salt Lake, just won the South Salt Lake Senior of the Year Award for 2018 because of her work in the community. Saunders’ dementia diagnosis didn’t slow her down and she pressed on in order to make the city a better place. Years ago, when Saunders and her husband, Peter, moved into their South Salt Lake City home to downsize, two men they didn’t know carried heavy furniture inside and then introduced themselves as their new neighbors. “That family is so amazing and they sing beautifully,” Saunders said about the Browns, the neighbors across the way who always jump in to help. Saunders and her husband got to know the family well over the years and they noticed a need. The Brown’s oldest son has cerebral palsy, and needed help from his younger brother, father, or whoever to carry him up the stairs to get him into the house with his wheelchair, Saunders witnessed. She knew she had to do something, so she arranged a ramp to be built with community connections and support. At the time Saunders had just retired from the University of Utah as the associate director in Gender Studies and an adjunct professor in the English department. She had been diagnosed with dementia shortly before and assumed the stress of work was what was making her symptoms worse. “I’ll just do this little project,” Saunders thought that summer. “That was really my last sort of project like that I was able to do.” The project was much more than making the Brown’s home handicap accessible. Saunders had connections from the U that knew what to do. “We found an architect and he sort of specializes in retrofitting houses for disabilities,” she said. On top of that, Saunders learned that all five children had to sleep upstairs on mattresses every night due to lack of space, because of mold in the lower level. Saunders recalled they took out moldy floor boards and replaced everything that was tainted by mold. “They (the Browns) are incredible people, they are the people who help everybody in the

Gerda Saunders in her garden, on the swing, at her South Salt Lake home. (Courtesy of Gerda Saunders)

neighborhood,” Saunders said. Through the project Saunders met Mayor Cherie Wood who was also able to help contribute to completing the updates on the home. “It seemed very obvious to me that this was something that the neighborhood should help with,” Saunders said, and they did. Saunders, her husband, and two children moved to Utah from South Africa when their kids were young and first put roots in the Millcreek area. Saunders attended the University of Utah to receive her teaching certificate so she could teach in the state, though she was already a teacher, which lead to her being accepted in the master’s program and graduating with a Ph.D. “They allowed me to transfer from the

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master’s [program] to the doctorate program,” Saunders said, but it wasn’t her idea. While taking courses to earn her teaching certificate she took a writing class. “I had a very bad story published out of that writing class,” she said. But someone saw her talent and that professor encouraged her to attend graduate school. “Then another teacher told me I should really go into the doctoral program,” Saunders said, so she did. Her writing has opened up a new world for people who suffer with dementia and their family and friends who love them. Saunders’ memoir, “Memory’s Last Breath: Field Notes on my Dementia” caught the attention of KUER radio host Doug Fabrizio which evolved into being part of his show, “RadioWest” short film series.

Saunders met Fabrizio many years ago when he interviewed her about her first book, “Blessings on the Sheep Dog,” and originally the filming was supposed to be for a single short but there was so much more to her story. Saunders also has a blog, Dementia Field Notes, as well as a website at gerdasaunders.com The Mayor selected Saunders for this award for many reasons, she said. “Gerda Saunders has been a longstanding resident of South Salt Lake. Her tenacious spirit is heard in her writing, both in her book and on her blog. Sharing her experience in the first person is providing the world with a rare perspective on aging. She truly is a remarkable woman and I am honored to recognize Gerda as the 2018 Senior Citizen of the Year.” l

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Let go and move with Music and Movement class at the Columbus Center The South Salt Lake City Journal is a monthly publication distributed directly to residents via the USPS as well as locations throughout South Salt Lake. 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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By Holly Vasic | h.vasic@mycityjournals.com


n alliance with South Salt Lake Arts Council and Repertory Dance Theatre (RDT) brings movement and music classes to the Columbus Center at no cost. The class is designed for seniors, with no experience necessary, to move to the beat of their inner drum, let go, and get grooving with a focus on creative aging. The concept of creative aging is, “Rather than perceiving aging as a period of inevitable decline and loss, ‘positive-aging’ proponents celebrate growing older as a time ripe with the potential for personal growth, enhanced wellbeing, and civic engagement,” said the Creative Aging Toolkit for Libraries, CAT4PL, website. The National Center for Creative Aging (NCCA) states, “Those in creative fields are finding an extraordinary opportunity: to transform the experience of being old in America by giving meaning and purpose, not only to aging, but to the community at large.” The idea of getting older as an inescapable end-of-life scenario full of heartbreak is being tossed out the window for a brighter look at the golden years and the instructors of Music and Movement are a part of that outlook. Retired school teacher, singer and performer Barbara Lewis, along with former dancer and now Artistic Associate at RDT Nick Cendese, have partnered up to bring this unique class to South Salt Lake. Their age gap—Lewis being in her mid-80s and Cendese almost 50 years younger— has made for a pair with personality and experience students fall in love with. “We work well together,” Lewis said. Cendese agreed. “We do, we do,” he said. As for the class itself, “Two plus two always has to equal four but in here it can be purple,” Cendese laughed. The concept of the class was launched at Sage Wood Senior Living in South Jordan in their independent and assisted livings as well as the memory care unit, which Lewis said has benefited the most. “This has really been a new program Barbara and I are developing together,” Cendese explained. The class came to South Salt Lake in

Class instructors Nick Cendese and Barbara Lewis. (Courtesy of Stephanie Perkins/Repertory Dance Theatre)

February and will be continuing until May 19, after that Lewis and Cendese are hoping to put on another session. So far, they have witnessed beautiful moments from their students. One women was closing her eyes and moving during a class. “She imagined she was dancing with her husband,” Cendese discovered afterwards. “We deliberately avoid the word dance,” Lewis said because the goal is to help participants be present in their own bodies and move to music, the word dance is optional. Lewis selects a variety of tunes to get the class moving. “She picks such great classical music,” Cendese said. Another participant has shown up despite health problems but even then, the class has something to offer. “You’re bringing a new way for them to express themselves with their bodies,” Lewis said. “All these creative possibilities their bodies have they haven’t even dreamed of.” Even if bodies don’t function like they used to, attendees just have to follow Lewis’ two requirements for success—use your creativity and love, or even learn to love, movement. Lewis’ background as a music educator has

definitely prepared her for this role. Originally from California, and a graduate from Mill’s College in Oakland, Lewis found herself on the East Coast for about 50 years teaching children music literacy which she described as, “getting children familiar with the language of music.” She retired from that position in 1991 and a few years ago, in January of 2010 after her husband passed away, she decided to join her children out West. “It was time for me to come back,” she said. Cendese went from diapers to the dance floor, taking his first lesson at 3, and was a performer for RDT for 11 years before entering the administrative role he is in now. He has worked with people in every stage of life from kids to adults and said classes like Music and Movement are, “what leads to a valuable and wonderful life.” The Music and Movement class for seniors is every Tuesday from 11 a.m. to noon at the Columbus Center, 2531 S. 400 East, until May 19. For more information go to sslarts.org l


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South Salt Lake City Journal

Monitoring ecological change with smart phones and social media By: Salt Lake County’s Watershed Planning & Restoration Program As you explore the trails along the Jordan River this spring, keep an eye out for new signs at stream restoration projects completed by Salt Lake County’s Watershed Planning & Restoration Program. You’ll see informational signs about the projects, and signs that encourage people to take and share photos of the restoration areas. Both sign types were included to create awareness of stream restoration techniques used by the Watershed Program, why restoration was needed, and how it can improve the river ecosystem. For both wildlife and humans! When left to its own devices, a river is a dynamic thing. Banks move as erosive forces shape and reshape the channel and floodplain. But when development puts stress on natural stream systems, erosion can accelerate beyond the norm. Much of the Jordan River’s historic floodplain has been impacted in one way or another, and the Watershed Program is using natural channel design to repair damaged streambanks, restore natural function to the river, and improve habitat for wildlife. Post-project monitoring is an

important part of any restoration project. With the photo monitoring stations, we’re inviting Jordan River Trail users to become part of the monitoring process! It’s simple: Put up a sign asking people to set their phone or camera in an angle bracket, take a photo, and post it to Twitter with a site-specific hashtag. Then we use the photos to create slideshows that show change over time. This is truly a crowdsourcing effort. We don’t own the photos. Instead, Salt Lake County developed an online tool to harvest the hashtags and view the photos in a slideshow format that simulates timelapse photography. We’re relying on a network of citizen-monitors to provide the data that creates a permanent photographic record. Photos taken during the growing season will record how plants on the reconstructed streambanks are filling in. During high water we’ll see how the floodplains are handling high river flows. During winter, when foliage is off and water levels are typically lower, we’ll have a clearer view of how the reconstructed streambanks are holding up. Spring is a great time to head

out as plants in the restoration areas are starting to leaf out. Currently, there are seven photo monitoring stations (and eight project info signs) at several Watershed Program restoration projects on the Jordan River. Five photo stations along the stretch of river from Arrowhead Park at 4800 South to approximately 5100 South in Murray, are documenting ongoing restoration work begun in 2015. We have one photo station at Winchester Park at 6500 South in Murray for the channel repair and revegetated streambanks that we completed in 2015. In Draper, we have one station at the river realignment project at 12600 South, just down the trail from the Jordan River Rotary Park. To see the slideshows created from the crowdsourced photos, visit our Monitor Change page at http://slco. org/watershed/restoration/monitorchange/. Learn more in the Spring 2018 issue of Watershed Watch, the newsletter of the Salt Lake County Watershed Planning & Restoration Program, http://slco.org/watershed/ resource-center/watershed-watchnewsletter. l

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Double the laughter at Utah Children’s Theatre production of ‘The Parent Trap’ By Christy Jepson | christy@mycityjournals.com


udience members will be seeing double at the Utah Children’s Theatre production of “The Parent Trap” as identical twins, Mary and Naomi Cernyar take on the lead roles. In real life, the Cernyar twins have very similar interests, so they have enjoyed having completely different interests and personalities on stage. “It’s a lot more fun being different personalities,” says Naomi who plays the twin, Lottie. But the twins work great together and understand their characters. “It’s really cool having your best friend on stage. I already know her and I know twin things,” said Mary, who plays Lizzie. The girls were first introduced to the original 1961 Disney movie, “The Parent Trap,” by their grandfather who once took the star of that movie, Hayley Mills, on a date. Since then they have loved the movie and the message that families are important. “Despite struggles, like divorce, it all comes down to knowing that no matter what, each parent loves their children,” said Sean Sweeney, the actor who plays the twins’ father. Although audience members may see some similarities between this production and the 1961 and 1998 Disney movies, they will also notice a lot of differences. Both movies and this production are based upon the book “Lisa and Lottie” by Erich Kästner, which was published in 1949. The playwright and director, Joanne M. Parker, has included many of the same characters and situations like the book but has also added some new scenes and characters.

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The play is set in the summer of 1962 where Lizzie and Lottie attend Camp Chickamunga. The two girls, not knowing each other previously, quickly become camp enemies and start playing pranks and tricks on each other. Unfortunately, because of their bad behavior they end up having to stay in the same cabin until they can learn to get along. As they get to know each other they find out that they are identical twins who were separated after their parents divorced. Wanting to get to know the other parent that they have never met, the twins decide to trade places at the end of camp. Lizzie goes back east to meet her father and Lottie goes to California to get to know her mother. “I love the character I play, Jolene, the twins’ mother,” said Missy Stebbing. “She is a single mom raising her daughter, owns her own bakery and is very self-reliant. It is just a fun heartwarming story with great characters.” Some other cast members in the production are: Dilworth played by Steve Harmon; Aunt Louisa/Director Chatworth played by Brighton Sloan; Georgiana/Magee played by Meighan Smith; with Maggie Lee and Bryn Swain playing junior counselors. “The Parent Trap” will be performed now through May 26 at the Utah Children’s Theatre. Performances are Fridays at 7 p.m. and Saturdays at 1 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Tickets are $16 and group rates are available for 10 or more. Utah Children’s Theatre is located at 3605 S. State Street in South Salt Lake. To purchase tickets, go to www. uctheatre.org or call the box office at 801-532-6000. l

Cast members from the Utah Children’s Theatre production of “The Parent Trap.” Top row: Missy Stebbing (Mom), Sean Sweeney (Dad), bottom row left: Naomi Cernyar, Mary Cernyar. (Photo/Utah Children’s Theatre)

South Salt Lake City Journal

Annual spring conference empowers local women in business By Keyra Kristoffersen | Keyrak@mycityjournals.com

Creating environments where moments of Joy, Independence, and Wellness are the focus each and every day!

Women from West Valley, Kearns and Taylorsville gather together to learn new techniques to succeed in business. (Aimee Rice)


hamberWest held its annual Spring into Success Conference for women in business at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center on April 10 in West Valley City. “The reason why we have so much energy behind our Women in Business Conference is because of the passion in our Women in Business committee and their ability to put together a firstclass program that really provides professional development and networking opportunities for women in our community,” said Barbara Riddle, the president and CEO of ChamberWest for the last two years. ChamberWest serves West Valley City, Taylorsville and Kearns and the conference saw 135 attendees from businesses around the valley. A raffle was available to win handmade lap quilts with donations going toward the Granite Education Foundation—a 501c.3 non-profit comprised of community and business leaders that seek to support the Granite School District in providing school and physical necessities and academic support to students

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in need. The Granite Education Foundation addressed the group about the needs of children in the area. “It was a sobering presentation on what the needs are, and there are many in our community and how our businesses can get involved and engage,” said Riddle. Stacey Bess was the 2018 Keynote speaker for the conference and gave a presentation on her work with homeless children through the book “Nobody Don’t Love Nobody” about her teaching math, reading, and positive selfworth at the School With No Name, a school located within the Salt Lake Community Shelter and Resource Center. In addition to the main addresses and lunch held in the ballroom area, mini breakout sessions were held in smaller classrooms in a variety of topics. Tannen Ellis-Graham with human resources company, CareerKarma360, talked about business branding to attract millennials, the future of talent acquisition and employer branding. Cynthia Bee instructed on the use of social media for

content creation from a beginner’s standpoint. “Her position is with the Jordan Valley Conservancy District, she kind of learned social media through trial and error and is really able to provide insight into how to and what to engage in from more of a layman’s perspective,” said Riddle. Oz Hutton, owner of Melange Liquid Catering, a mobile bartending service, spoke on the effects of tastes and beverages on life and making memorable moments. Becky Ivory, co-owner of the 3 Great Rights Institute, spoke about changing beliefs in order to create a model of success and overcome what she calls the “Terror Barrier” by discovering the five steps for changing beliefs that hold one back, giving people the freedom to embrace the life they’ve always wanted, to stop buying into limited beliefs and start investing in liberating potential. “It was an amazing conference,” said Riddle. “I feel that there was a real positive response.” Many attendees did seem pleased with the networking

opportunities and information they received through the program designed by Women in Business board chair, Monica Gayden, and the rest of the committee. “It’s under her leadership that the program was put together,” Riddle said. “We just got such a great group of people that put this thing on.” Exhibitors from 22 companies including presenting sponsors such as the UCCC, America First Credit Union, Grifols Biomat Taylorsville were available to provide information and resources for business implementation. The Spring into Success conference began seven years ago and collaborated with other chambers, and after a hiatus in 2016, redid the format and is now in the second year doing it on their own. “We’ll expect it to continue on for many years to come,” said Riddle who was thrilled with the space and partnership with the cultural center. For information about upcoming events, visit: https:// chamberwest.com/women-inbusiness/. l

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Awards banquet commemorates famous civil rights activist and local Latino community advocates By Keyra Kristoffersen | keyrak@mycityjournals.com

Traditional folk dancers entertain the crowds at the Cesar Chavez Peace and Justice Awards Banquet. (UCLR)


n March 24, the Utah Coalition of La Raza held the 25th annual Cesar Chavez Peace and Justice Awards Banquet at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center (UCCC). The banquet was named for social activist Cesar Chavez and honoring the work that he did. “It became about honoring community leaders that were continuing the work, that advocacy, having that impact for Latinos in Utah,” said Richard Jaramillo, currently in his second year as president of the UCLR. The Utah Coalition of La Raza was formed in 1992 and when Chavez passed away in 1993, the banquet was created and named after him. It became an awards banquet to recognize individuals and organizations within the Latin community who exemplified the message of Chavez and bolstered the community within Utah. With the 25th anniversary of the awards banquet, the annual

lifetime achievement award is being renamed after Robert “Archie” Archuleta, a longtime community activist, and was presented to the 2018 awardee Andrew “Andy” L. Gallegos. Gallegos is being awarded for his years of leadership, service, and advocacy that include serving with U.S. Army Intelligence in Panama from 1963 to 1965, helping to form the first statewide Chicano Conference in 1972, and was one of the team that in 1979, brought Cesar Chavez to Utah among his many other contributions. Crescencio López-González, an assistant professor of Latinx Studies at Utah State University, Utah State Representative Angela Romero and Comunidades Unidas | Communities United were also awarded for services and contributions made for the betterment of Latin communities throughout Utah. The awards banquet also serves as a fundraiser and Jaramillo said it was the most successful one so far. During the two-hour event, dinner was served by a Lindon-based Latina caterer while live on-stage entertainment and folk dancers performed. This was the first year that the UCCC had been used for the event. “We mix it up and do things little bit differently every year,” said Jaramillo, pleased with the turnout. “We had run out of capacity at our previous venue last year.” Along with the awards banquet, UCLR also works with Granite and Salt Lake School Districts to hold a visual and language arts competition that’s built around Caesar Chavez and social justice so the kids learn a little bit about Chavez and other civil right activists, then they compete in the arts competition. The school districts have been involved for several years and while the teachers change the focus a little bit, it works largely to give some context and history to different social justice movements such as labor rights, environmental justice and social justice, causes that Caesar Chavez took up along with Dolores Huerta and others during the 1970s and ‘80s.

The middle and high school students also touch on the Civil Rights movement and LGBTQ issues. While putting each issue in context and showing the activism and advocacy from the past, the partnership hopes to keep those legacies going through visual mediums such as charcoal, watercolor, painting and mixed media and through poems, essays and prose on the literature mediums. The 2018 grand prize winner was a collage of different styles and pieces. “They give that teaching first and then they allow the kids to express themselves and their thoughts on what that means today through whatever kind of visual arts representation they choose, or through a language arts entry piece,” said Jaramillo, who said that a lot of great work is submitted every year. The school districts pick the winners from different grade levels and the UCLR invite the winners and their families to attend the awards banquet to receive the awards on stage. The UCLR is made up of volunteers who work in several different areas to help and advocate on issues such as education, immigration, courts and legislature, tracking bills and giving testimony. “We also do a lot of mediation work with police agencies or schools, we oftentimes get members of the community that don’t feel comfortable confronting institutions on their own and so we often try and act as a facilitator and try to bring community members into a forum where they feel more comfortable trying to voice their concerns and perhaps get change affected from those institutions,” said Jaramillo. The UCLR also holds other free events such as movie screenings, local fairs, panels, workshops and know-your-rights campaigns including a panel discussing myths surrounding immigration and DACA. For information about upcoming events, visit: https://www. uclr.org/ l

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Ron McBride’s impact plan for Wasatch Front schools By Jessica Ivins | j.ivins@mycityjournals.com

2018 EvEning SEriES

Season Tickets: $49 Adult, $45 Senior, $29 Child Murray Amphitheater Parking: 495 E 5300 S Ticket Info: 801-264-2614 or murrary.utah.gov June 2 ................................... Hairspray, Sing-A-Long June 9 ................................. One Voice Children Choir June 21-23, 25-27 .............Thoroughly Modern Millie June 30 .................................... Murray Concert Band July 7.................................... Murray Symphony Pops July 13-14 ............................... Ballet Under the Stars July 26-28, 30, 31, Aug 1....................Into the Woods August 10-11, 13, 16-18 ......................Secret Garden August 25...................................... SLC Jazz Orchestra September 3 ..............Murray Acoustic Music Festival David James, member of board of directors for Ron McBride Foundation, Dr. David M. Compton, Ron McBride, Koki Cline, and Andrea Miller at Granite Foundation Building. (Jessica Ivins/City Journals)


he Ron McBride Foundation is joining forces with the Granite Education Foundation for the benefit of Utah children. The Ron McBride Foundation will be working with Salt Lake, Ogden, Granite, and Jordan School Districts. “We want to be involved in your problems and take an active role,” said Ron McBride, co-founder of the non-profit organization and former Utes and Weber State football coach. “I have seen education problems in every place I have been. I have seen prejudice problems, bullying, and children that do not get equal opportunities. We need to reach the kids at a younger age.” Dr. David M. Compton, the Ron McBride Foundation’s executive director said, “Mac has a passion for being an agent for change and it is contagious.” McBride spoke on March 27 and 28, at the Granite Education Foundation Building where his foundation approached schools to partner and address issues facing education. The meeting had members of the Granite Education Foundation attending as well as other education advocates. Andrea Miller was one of those advocates. She is Granite School’s social work coordinator and oversees 55 social workers throughout Granite School District. She has seen what trauma can do to kids. Miller believes districts and communities that work together achieve better outcomes. Another advocate was Koki Cline, a school social worker who is on the front line when it comes to the fight for children’s wellbeing. Cline helps with suicide intervention and

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provides support to children that need to peel back the layers of trauma. He is dedicated to helping those children who have more than the average struggle. Cline described the Adverse Childhood Experiences or ACE score that tallies a child’s abuse, neglect, and other hallmarks of a rough childhood. “A score of 5 or 6 out of 10 is high,” said Cline. These scores indicate that the child may be at risk of behavioral, physical or mental health problems. Compton said barriers that children face in the schools include language, nutrition, sleep deprivations and physical capacities. Sleep deprivation leads to a decreased capacity to attend and less on-task behavior. A home with violence or trauma may affect a child’s mental and physical well-being. The McBride Foundation would like to help those children that have these barriers. The solution is funding from the McBride Foundation. McBride would like to see his foundation reach a goal of $300,000. Last year McBride Foundation raised $150,000. They funded Bryant Middle School’s library renovation, made ACT prep courses available and gave scholarships to those in need. “We want to change the paradigm, as well as the outcome,” Compton said. Part of that change is the “Healthy Learners Paradigm.” The McBride Foundation will contribute a goal of $50,000 with the support of the schools to the well-being of children and their families. Funds could be used to educate parents. A school may need behavior support for children’s needs. It all comes down to “Healthy

Learners” and this is the feedback McBride and Compton have received from practitioners who report that health is a major factor in academic achievement. The underlying problems are the hard to fix issues in the home. The bottom line is to give kids the support that they need. The McBride Foundation supports several campaigns such as the School Resource Fund, the Game Changer Scholarship and the Love you Man Campaign. The School Resource Fund is for library materials, fitness equipment, computer, musical equipment, copy machines, and laboratory supplies. The Game Changer Scholarships has been a McBride classic over the past two years. The foundation will provide scholarships to students in need with partnership with the Calvary Baptist Church. The MAFU (Mental toughness, positive Attitude, Fanatical effort, and Unity support) steps up when others have a problem or challenge. The Love You Man Campaign is McBride’s mantra. It is aimed at youth, teachers, parents and coaches to include all children to ward off bullying and alcohol and drug abuse. McBride’s frontline speaker series will raise money for speaking engagements to tackle issues that teachers, counselors, parents and youth serving agencies face each day. Those interested in supporting the Ron McBride Foundation can join the 3rd annual Love You Man Golf Tournament June 22 at Talons Cove Golf Course in Saratoga Springs. Contact utahlegendsgolf@gmail.com. l


Bring the Whole Family Young and Old! The 2nd Monday of every month at 7 p.m., FREE Murray Heritage Senior Center (#10 E 6150 S – 1/2 block west of State) June 11 – In Cahoots.......................Cowboy Music July 9 – Skyedance..............................Celtic Music Aug 13 – Company B....................................Oldies Sept 10 – Mixed Nuts .......................... Jazz, Swing


Every Tuesday at Noon in Murray Park Pavilion #5 FREE June 5 – Michael Robinson ............Cowboy Poetry June 12 – Eastern Arts ...................... Ethnic Dance June 19 –CHASKIS......Music & Dance of the Andes June 26 – Chris Proctor .. Guitar for the New World July 10 – Wasatch Jazz Titans .................Jazz Band July 17 – Red Desert Ramblers............... Bluegrass July 31 – Time Cruisers.................................Oldies


Every Thursday at 2 p.m. in Murray Park Pavilion #5 FREE June 7 – Stephanie Raff ......................Storytelling June 14 – Nino Reyos .........Native American Drum June 21 – Miss Margene ..............Children’s Dance June 28 – Coralie Leue .............The Puppet Players July 12 – Jonathan the Magician ....... Magic Show July 19 – Rebeca Wallin ........Shakespeare for Kids July 26 – Popcorn Media .....................Family Rock Aug 2 – Honey Buns........................... Song/Dance This program has received funding support from residents of Salt Lake County, SL County Zoo, Arts, and Parks (ZAP), Utah Division of Arts and Museums, and Museums & National Endowment for the Arts.

May 2018 | Page 7

Cottonwood High students learn what it takes to make it in the music world By Julie Slama | julie@mycityjournals.com


hrough a 90-minute Disney workshop with veteran saxophonist, Sal Lozano, Cottonwood High instrumentalists learned what level of musicians they would need to be to perform professionally. “He worked with the students and had them sight-read a piece of Disney music — and record it,” Cottonwood director Amber Tuckness said. “He’s a LA saxophonist and told them how he gets a call, sometimes he doesn’t even know who for, goes in to play and they’ll record him right then and there. It taught the students how good they would have to be in able to make it in the music world.” This was part of the 170-student Cottonwood High music tour, one that focused on improving their skills rather than competing, Tuckness said. “The students had a chance to play music that was dubbed into a movie and record in a real studio,” she said about their experience in backstage Disney in mid-March. “Only three students had experience in a recording session before this, so it was new to most of the group. It really opened their eyes as several now want to do this.” The instrumentalists performed pieces from “Tangled,” “Nightmare Before Christmas,” “The Incredibles,” the opening trailer from “Marvel” and the introduction of Disney movies. Amongst the songs the choir performed

were “The Muppet Show” theme song and “Circle of Life” from “The Lion King.” While in the Los Angeles area, the students also spent six hours with two professionals at Chapman University, who gave the students “great insight,” she said. “They were able to let the students see their music so they can perform it at a level they’re capable of,” Tuckness said. “This has been a perfect scenario as we weren’t ready to perform three full pieces for a competition before this and it helped us get ready and have insight to play at a higher level for our festivals this spring.” That became apparent as at the region jazz band, the students scored all 1s, or superior marks, and followed it up at state competition with an overall superior rating after their return to Utah. At the region band festival, the students also received all 1s and were preparing for state as of press deadline. The orchestra also was slated to compete in late April. The Madrigals received excellent ratings at their region competition and the concert choir competition was scheduled for April. In addition, 27 students were to compete in solos or ensembles at state April 28, she said. The California tour also included time for the students to enjoy Disneyland, eat at a medieval dinner theatre, attend the Hollywood Pantages Theatre for the Broadway show of “Aladdin” where they talked to musicians in

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Cottonwood High music students take in Harry Potter World after a Disney workshop. (Amber Tuckness/Cottonwood High)

the pit, and tour Universal Studios’ Harry Potter World, where they wore their Harry Potter shirts, with each area of the performing arts representing a different house. Prior to the trip, students completed a survey that had them answer questions from asking their favorite Disney character to questions about Harry Potter. “We put these together in a book along with

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some games so they got to know their classmates, chaperones, directors and everyone better and become better friends,” Tuckness said. “At first when we announced the tour, the kids were disappointed we weren’t going to go compete at a festival, but I didn’t hear one complaint after we returned home. They realized they had some once-in-a-lifetime experiences.” l


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Children teaching children to solve problems By Jessica Ivins | j.ivins@mycityjournals.com


hen Emily White, PTA art chairperson at Howard R. Driggs Elementary, received the grant from the Holladay Art Council she knew she wanted to give children multiple ways to express themselves. Art was the way to do just that as it crosses cultural and language barriers. Art also allowed the children to express their true concerns and worries. “We found similar problems across the board are bullying, anxiety, and depression…,” said White. There were also many other problems that begin in the home and extended to around the world. The “One Pen Can Change the World” project was combined with Literacy Week in March. White corralled partner schools to join her forces. Lincoln Elementary Art Specialist Sheryl Thorell helped 500 students create visual solutions to problems. Other partners were East High School, Canyon Rim Academy, and a school in Ghana called Adehye Preparatory. On April 13, at Mill Creek Library, the children from the local schools gathered with family to reveal the children’s thinking skills and artistic ability. Sixty-five pieces of art work hung and revealed their solutions to a problem. Luke Bulloch, a third grader, drew


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a picture of his mom holding the newest baby. Luke’s problem, “My mom just had a baby and she needs to take care of us,” he said. “I need to help her do things around the house.” Another problem in the home was that a child did not have a father. This problem brought some parents to tears, along with the child presenting. Some problems had to do with too much homework causing anxiety as well as problems of gun violence, pollution, car crashes, cancer, and homelessness. Imani Harnage, a third grader, had a problem that she felt could be solved by involving more citizens. “We use too much plastic,” Imani said. The solution: “Ask people to send letters to the law.” Ramon Ramirez, a sixth-grade Lincoln Elementary student, presented his problem and solution at the reception. He described his drawing: “It’s Mexico and the United States without the border,” Ramon said. “People want to come to the United States for a better life.” Ramon has experienced his friend’s dad’s deportation. The project incorporated children teaching children. The Future Problem Solvers at Howard R. Driggs taught 22 classes. They read “Malala’s Magic Pencil,” a book by Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala

Yousafzai. They discussed Malala, the problem solved, and how people worked together. This fostered a mentor relationship that White had not anticipated. She is currently working with the principal to continue a micro-Malala program to teach values, such as courage, kindness, and perseverance. These would be taught by children in leadership roles. This would be able to help the school target and solve the problems of bullying, anxiety and depression. The children received a letter from Malala Yousafzai. She thanked the children for their kind letters and reminded them that you do not have to be an adult to lead. “A child’s voice can be heard around the world,” she wrote. “We are fortunate in America that girls receive the same education opportunities as boys,” Malala wrote in her letter. “There are currently 130 million girls around the world not in school.” Some of the children were inspired by Malala’s book. Grace Shellum, a third grader, wrote, “Children should not have to work instead of going to school.” This is why Grace drew a picture of schools all over the world. l

Ramon Ramirez, a sixth grader, was a chosen participant in the “One Pen Can Change the World” Artist Reception at the Mill Creek Library. (Jessica Ivins /City Journals)

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SAFE DRIVING HABITS City Journal Staff Spring 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.

checking windshield washer fluid or the antifreeze level in your car’s reservoir can prevent serious issues happening on the road. Wash your car especially after storms or if you’ve parked under a pine tree where birds can drop their white business on the hood or sap could drip onto the roof. Left untreated, these outdoor stains can ruin the paint on your vehicle.

Blinkers and blind spots Driving 101. If you plan on changing lanes, let others in on your secret. Everyone will appreciate it. Others want to know what you are planning. Likewise, if you see a blinker come on indicating your lane is that car’s desired destination, let it in. This isn’t the Daytona 500. We are not racing for $19 million. It is common courtesy, if we want people to use their blinkers, then we should reward them for doing so. Remember the blinker doesn’t automatically assume safe passage to the next lane. And while your car’s sensors in the rearview mirrors are helpful, they are not omniscient. Check your blind spot with your own eyes. There’s a reason it’s called a “blind” spot.

Drive defensively This means keeping distance between you and the car in front of you.

Tire pressure This one is almost as simple as the first. Check your tire pressure on a regular basis to know if there is a small leak. Maybe you 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 does the pressure in your tires. Keep car maintained Since you’ll be regularly checking the tires, might as well keep regularly scheduled maintenance on your car. This can range from oil changes to transmission flushes. Simply

Page 10 | May 2018

Touching their bumper does nothing for you. And if you need to get that close to read their license plate or sticker, your eyesight is 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. l

South Salt Lake City Journal

May 2018 Cherie Wood, Mayor 801-464-6757 mayor@sslc.com

South Salt Lake City Council Members Ben B. Pender, District 1 801- 580-0339 bpender@sslc.com Corey Thomas, District 2 801-755-8015 cthomas@sslc.com Sharla Beverly, District 3 801-803-4127 sbeverly@sslc.com Portia Mila, District 4 801-792-0912 pmila@sslc.com L. Shane Siwik, District 5 801-548-7953 ssiwik@sslc.com Mark C. Kindred, At-Large 801-214-8415 mkindred@sslc.com Ray deWolfe, At-Large 801-347-6939 rdewolfe@sslc.com

City Offices Mon-Fri 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. 801-483-6000 220 East Morris Ave SSL, UT 84115 Animal Service 801-483-6024 Building Permits 801-483-6005 Business Licensing 801-483-6063 Code Enforcement 801-464-6712 Fire Administration 801-483-6043 Justice Court 801-483-6072 Police Administration 801-412-3606 Promise 801-483-6057 Public Works 801-483-6045 Recreation 801-412-3217 Utility Billing 801-483-6074 Emergencies 911 Police/Fire Dispatch 801-840-4000

CITY NEWSLETTER Investing In People

My philosophy for leading and governing has been centered on people. So often, a whole new world opens up when people simply discover that someone believes in them. The best part is, investing in people is often the easiest step one can take, and doesn’t cost a thing. With this outlook, our efforts are often multiplied beyond belief. Lives transform, leaders step up, partners join in, and communities come together. Investing in people became the founding principle of the Promise South Salt Lake initiative and has spread throughout every city department. Indeed, it is today the founding principle of my strategic plan. Here are a few ways I am focused on in investing in people in 2018: • We will support diversity and equity for our residents and our employees with the new SSL Equity Council. We know from tragic suicide rates nationally and locally that students are being bullied for their gender identity and their race, and do not feel safe. This council will help us to develop better ways to support EVERY individual and EVERY child in our schools and in community.

• We have convened the new SSL Interfaith Council comprised of local church leaders who have come together to address literacy in our community. These leaders serve as liaisons – to ensure that services the City and our partners provide get to those who need them most. • We will invest in our kids with the new Granite School District elementary school at Riverfront.

Mayor Cherie Wood

• We are inspiring our seniors and older adults through new free art classes. • Our partners are donating bikes, helmets and locks to 100 kids and training them through the “Ready to Ride” program so they can access all the opportunities in their city. I welcome your ideas for more ways to invest in “human capital” in South Salt Lake. I know it pays off.

City News SSL City Council Meetings 220 E. Morris Ave., 2nd Floor Wednesday, May 9, 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 23, 7 p.m.

SSL City Planning Commission Meetings 220 E. Morris Ave., 2nd Floor Thursday, May 3, 7 p.m. Thursday, May 17, 7 p.m.

South Salt Lake City Council Action Report Summary Full agendas, minutes, handouts and video recorded meetings available at: sslc.com/city-government/council-meeting Date 3/28/18

Agenda Item New Business

Subject Municipal Wastewater Planning Program Report


New Business

Park Master Plan Discussion


New Business

Resolution granting permission for the Police Department to donate unclaimed bicycles to the Salt Lake Bicycle Collective


Unfinished Business

Police hiring practices regarding criminal offences


Work meeting


RDA meeting

Presentation of the draft SSL Street Lighting Master Plan Discussion of the 2015 SSL Downtown Master Plan

Action Council Voted to approve R2018-04 Discussion to continue at a future meeting Council voted to approve R 2018-05

Next Step Complete

Moved to Unfinished Business for May 9 Regular Meeting None required

5/9 Meeting

None required

Further discussion Complete

Possible budget discussion None required

Craft Beer in South Salt Lake www.sslchamber.com

Coffee with a Cop is part of a national initiative to create a place for community members and police officers to come together. There are no agendas or speeches; just the opportunity to ask questions, voice concerns, and the chance to get to know the officers in their local neighborhoods. The South Salt Lake Chamber supports the program to help businesses increase their involvement in the community’s safety. The event takes place on the first Wednesday of each month from 9-10 a.m. This month’s session will be held at the Police Department – 2835 S Main on Wednesday, May 2

New Resident

April was declared Craft Beer Month by the Utah Brewers Guild, in recognition of the positive impact that brewing has had in the Utah economy and the growing number of people and places involved in brewing beer. Mayor Wood posted a proclamation recognizing the special month, and the way breweries are on the leading edge of change in the City. Relative newcomer to the scene, Shades of Pale, has become a known establishment in South Salt Lake on Utopia Avenue and will soon be joined by Saltfire Brewing, less than one block away on West Temple. Plans are also in the works for a micro-brewery in a building under the SSL water tower on West Temple. This is leading some to dub this corridor “brewery row” and is expected to lead to more lively nightlife in the City’s downtown neighborhood.

May is National Biking Month It is the time of year to hop back on your bike and see all your community from a whole new point of view. South Salt Lake is working to make your ride even better this year, with the following projects:


• Trail wayfinding has been installed on the Jordan River thanks to the Jordan River Commission and Salt Lake County

South Salt Lake Animal Shelter is located at 2274 S. 600 W. We are a “No Kill” animal shelter. On average we have 12-14 dogs, 15-20 cats, and 2-3 rabbits. Many of these pets that don’t get claimed by their owners go up for adoption. Those that don’t get adopted are transferred to non-profit rescue groups. Drop by and visit our wonderful pets and possible take home a new family member. See our current animals at: www.adoptapet.com

• Trail wayfinding for Parleys Trail will be installed this summer

Adopt a Pet

• A “bike loop” has been mapped and signs will be installed guiding riders on a 9 mile loop through the city – Vote on what it should be named at sslc.com • A “Ready to Ride” program will be offered to youth in the Promise SSL program and at the Cool Summer Nights events for the whole family

Rock Star – Brad Davis Brad is what you might call the ‘Rookie of the Year.’ He has worked for SSL for a year and a half and in this short time has made an impact on both residents and employees alike. Brad is the Community Connection Volunteer Event Coordinator. In 2017, he organized over 1,400 volunteers working for over 6,041 hours on various projects on homes and trails and in parks and neighborhoods throughout SSL. He has kicked off this year’s program with a bang, with Earth Day projects, tree plantings, and identifying projects in a new neighborhood. Residents and businesses routinely comment that he is kind and thoughtful and a true asset to the city. We appreciate all he does for Urban Livability and for keeping the city safe, clean and beautiful.

Public Safety Police Department Prepares for Expansion The South Salt Lake Police Department will be adding 12 new officers. With the recent passing of SB 235 Homeless Shelter Funding Amendments during the 2018 legislative session, we have new funding to add to our current police force. New officers will be assigned to police the area surrounding and issues specific to the incoming Homeless Resource Center, which is scheduled to open July of 2019. The Police Department has spent the past 12 months analyzing the current calls for service involving the homeless population to identify what our future challenges will be. To preserve the quality of business and life in South Salt Lake, a majority of the newly hired officers will be assigned directly to our Patrol Division. We will also be assigning officers to our Police Chief Jack Carruth Community Resource Unit as Homeless Resource Officers. Our city understands that the landscape as we know it will change in the area and around the new Homeless Resource Center. The Police Department is working proactively with the evolving challenges; addressing encampment, trespassing, loitering and other related issues that we now see in our city. Our Homeless Resource Officers will work directly with the incoming Homeless Resource Center staff to ensure a successful resource delivery model is established. We will coordinate partnerships with our Fire Department and other County resources to deliver the best services available. With 12 new officers, we are confident we will be staffed adequately to address new concerns. To best prepare our department and new trainees, the SSL Police Department is beginning to hire additional officers prior to the opening of the new center. We are currently accepting applications for experienced and entry level police officer positions. Visit the “Employment” tab at sslc.com to apply.

The following Neighborhood Watch Meetings will take place in May: Tuesday, May 8 Columbus Community Center, Room 101, 7 p.m., Community Policing Zones 3-4 Thursday, May 10 Columbus Community Center, Room 101, 7 p.m., Community Policing Zones 1-2 Thursday, May 17 River Run Condo Clubhouse located at 3807 South River Run Way (990 W), 7 p.m., Jordan River Parkway and Community Policing Zones 5-6 Tuesday, May 29 Waverly Townhomes Clubhouse, 7 p.m., Waverly, Plymouth and Huntly Manor Townhome communities, Community Policing Zones 5-6 A recording with updated information can he heard by calling 801-412-3668.

BBQ Grilling Safety • Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors • Grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches • Keep children and pets away from the grill area

There will be a Business Watch meeting on Monday, May 21 at 5:00 p.m. DUMAC Printing, located at 2837 S 600 W.

• Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup • Never leave your grill unattended The City of South Salt Lake IS HIRING View available positions at sslc.com and click on ‘Employment’ in the ‘My Quick Links’ box.

Business & Development Columbus Senior Center Highlights 2531 South 400 East South Salt Lake, Utah 84115 • 385-468-3340 ••••• Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays - 9:30 a.m. Enhanced Fitness Tuesdays - 10:00 a.m. Tai Chi Tuesdays & Thursdays 10:30 a.m. - Pickleball 1:00 p.m. - Yoga Daily Lunch - Noon $3 suggested donation Monday, May 1 Choir Festival - 11:00 a.m. Birthday Lunch - Noon Wednesday, May 2 Red Hat Club - 11:00 a.m. Monday, May 7 Entertainment by Kevin Christensen - 11:00 a.m. Friday, May 11 Writing Workshop with Kenna - 9:00 a.m.

South Salt Lake CONSTRUCTION UPDATE Reported by: Bill Knowles, Community Ombudsman, South Salt Lake Contact for questions/concerns: 801-580-2626; knowles.bill@att.net The Zeller (former Zellerbach Property (300-400 E.) Contractor: Jacobson Construction Project description: 292 units Estimated completion date: Mid-June 2018 Current status/activity: Building A, on the 300 East side is open for occupancy. The parking garage is complete and work on Building B and C is now confined mainly to the interior. Landscaping enhancements are now being completed for the west side of the building and extending to the east along the streetcar line.

Ritz Classic Apartment Homes (former Ritz Bowling) Project description: 300 units Estimated completion date: Spring 2019 Current status/activity: Construction in full swing. The parking garage structure is complete, and the elevator shaft serving the five story building is in place. Framing for the apartment units above the garage is now underway. The project remains on schedule. 2200 S, between State and Main Developer: Cowboy Partners Project description: 95 townhouse units Estimated completion date: Spring 2019 Current status/activity: Construction has begun with the site being cleared and currently being prepped for foundation pours. Former Hi-Grade Meat Plant, at Utopia & West Temple Project owner: LD Investments Project description: 100 Apartment units Est. completion date: Spring 2019 Current status/activity: Under construction Richard Street Project Project description: 28 Townhomes Est. completion date: Summer 2019 Current status/activity: The site has been prepped for construction and utility improvements are underway. Former Buehner Block Plant 2800 S. West Temple Project owner: Lake Union Partners Project description: 218 new townhomes and new cafe Est. completion date: First units to be open Spring 2019 Current status/activity: Ongoing demolition of existing businesses

Thursday, May 17 Free Pancake Breakfast 8:45 a.m. Monday, May 21 Entertainment by the Decibells - 11:00 a.m. Monday, May 28 CLOSED Wednesday, May 30 National Senior Health & Fitness Day Viridian Event Center 1:00 p.m. Come check out what the Senior Center has to offer!

This visioning project for a new future for State Street completed another stage with a workshop at SLCC on April 30. Attendees discussed the recommendations for improving the street as well as the properties around it. Proposals included streetscape, changes to parking, transit and sidewalks, as well as new crosswalks, biking access and other ways to bring more people onto the street. These before-after illustrations show some of the ways it could change. A questionnaire on the website lifeonstate. com is open now for your feedback. Review the plan and recommendation and tell the project team what you think!

Community Happenings 80th Anniversary – General Holm Major General George Phillip Holm would have turned 100 this year. He passed away 14 years ago, on April 21, 2004. He was honored last month on Saturday, April 21st at a park named in his honor, General Holm Park in South Salt Lake. There is a memorial and flagpole at the park honoring his service and all those served in World War II. The plaque shown here was re-installed at the park and a tree was planted in his honor and to celebrate Earth Day. Major General Holm started his service in the US Army in 1938 (the year South Salt Lake was founded) and served with great distinction until 1971. After retirement, General Holm was appreciated for his work on behalf of veterans. He was one of the driving forces in creating the Utah State Veterans Memorial Park and Cemetery, and the Utah State Veterans Nursing Home. Thank you to local veterans Marcos Aguilera, Melanie Sparr and Achmarjen who organized the ceremony and plaque mounting.

Volleyball Camp

June 11 – 14 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. 5th-12th Grades Columbus Center Gym $10.00 – Deadline June 1

Basketball Camp

July 16 – 20 Grades 2-4 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Grades 5-7 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Columbus Center Gym $10.00 – Deadline July 6

First Tee Golf

July 30 – August 10 Ages 7- 17 9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Central Valley Golf Course $25 – Deadline July 20

Adult Coed Softball Rec League 5x5x5 Wednesday Evenings June 11 – Aug 15 18 years and older 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Central Park Ball Field 5 players per team on field Max Roster Size: 7 $70 per team Deadline June 1

Register at the Recreation Office 2531 S. 400 E. SSL, UT 84115 Office hours: M-F 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. For more information: 801-412-3217

LUNCH on the Move Wednesday, May 23 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. SSL City Hall 220 East Morris Ave

Discover a new food truck each month and stop in to see what’s new at City Hall.

Promise Hser Ner Moo Center:

Afterschool Highlight:



The Hser Ner Moo Center was established 10 years ago in memory and honor of the life of Hser Ner Moo, a refugee student whose life was tragically taken. Annually, the center pauses to remember her life and staff renews their pledge to serve the members of this center and provide the support and resources needed for success. Spring is the season of renewal and it is fitting that the center is settling into their new space at the Columbus Center. Located at 2531 South 400 East, this is a place where children, teens and families flourish with the support and dedication of program staff and partners. The relocation will allow the Hser Ner Moo Center to continue serving families from the South Parc Community, while expanding their capacity to reach many more in the City. In her memory, the center reaffirms their dedication and continues assisting families striving towards fulfilling their highest hopes. The Hser Ner Moo Community Center is inspired by a quote from Lupita Nyongo, “No matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid”. Jarrell Watts, the Center Coordinator and his well diverse staff actively encourage this throughout the community. They provide well-structured educational and afterschool programs supported by partnerships. Groups such as United Way, The University of Utah Bennion Center, Learning For Life and Youthlinc, are just a piece of the partner contribution that aid in the success and sustainability of the center. Summer programing is in the works. The center looks to involve the parents and families in family cooking classes or reserving a plot in a community garden. If you are interested in learning more about summer programs, please contact Jarrell Watts 801-828-7245 or jwatts@sslc.com.

Partner Highlight:

Cottonwood’s Promise Afterschool Math, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA) Club went above and beyond with their projects for the MESA competition on March 14.The team was led by their math teacher, Mr. Yuri Perez, who also spends his time tutoring the students in the afterschool program. The two projects they have been working on include a mousetrap car and an egg-drop parachute. The first team consisted of Casandra, Karen, and afterschool students, William and Karrar. They took home third place with their egg-drop parachute. Another team, which consisted of Promise students, Jevahjire, Rinnaly, and Mahammad, placed first with their mousetrap car. Finally, afterschool students Aye, Yousuf, Azizullah, and Niamat, earned second place with both their mousetrap car and their parachute. These teams will compete in the state competition at Lagoon on May 18. We are so proud of the work that our Promise students have put into these MESA projects and are grateful for the leadership Yuri Perez provides for them.

Committee Highlight: COLLEGE ACCESS

The University of Utah Bennion Center has done an exceptional job developing and implementing their literacy based program at the Hser Ner Moo Center. Global health scholars are working day in and day out led by their co –directors Ivy Christofferson and Leilah Harouni. Using the Utah Reading Clinic, volunteers support the center as part of the “Mentor and Mentees “program. They provide effective, quality tutoring in literacy. Global scholars spend one-on-one time completing and logging a literacy assessment with students. Reading and listening comprehension, word recognition, alphabet knowledge and word conception are a few areas mentees will access during that time. As youth advance through the program, the center is seeing an improvement in literacy levels from students with consistent attendance, as well as general understanding. Hser Ner Moo students have formed a relationship with their mentees which can include motivational support, participation in family night events and resource sharing. On April 13 the Bennion Center and its volunteers invited both the youth and teen Hser Ner Moo programs to visit the University of Utah. This was an education inspired field trip that students learn from as we continue to work together as partners.

The College Access Committee within the Education Council consists of partners from Westminster, Salt Lake Community College, Cottonwood High, GEAR UP and United Way of Salt Lake (UWSL). The co-chairs are Meredith Muller, UWSL and Kayla Mayers, Promise SSL. Using the Results-Based Accountability framework to guide meetings to ensure all SSL youth attain a post-secondary degree or certification. In order to track progress on this goal, we measure school day and afterschool program attendance, core classes passed or failed, and college access competency. We also collect data from the current programs and interventions that are all working towards post-secondary attainment about attendance and their own program’s performance measures. In our next few meetings, we will look at what possible new programs, strategies, or interventions we need in order to see results in our three indicator areas. We are looking to expand the committee to include additional community members, reach out to Kayla kmayers@sslc.com or Meredith meredith@uw.org for more information. Meetings are held the 3rd Tuesday of the month at 9:00 a.m. on the 3rd Floor Promise Office at South Salt Lake City Hall.

‘Peter and the Starcatcher,’ ‘Xanadu’ spring productions at local high schools By Julie Slama | julie@mycityjournals.com


t’s been a season of devised theatre at Cottonwood High School and the spring show, “Peter and the Starcatcher,” doesn’t stray from the theme, director Adam Wilkins said. Likewise, Murray High has committed to a season of musicals and “Xanadu,” complete with roller skating, will give patrons a fun, upbeat spring show, director Will Saxton said. For theatre-goers, the spring shows are on different dates allowing patrons to attend both. Cottonwood’s “Peter and the Starcatcher” will be performed at 7 p.m., Wednesday, May 2 through Saturday, May 5 and again, on Monday, May 7, in the school’s Black Box Theatre, 5715 S. 1300 East, Murray. Tickets are $7 online at the school’s website, https://schools. graniteschools.org/cottonwoodhigh/, or $8 at the door. Murray High’s “Xanadu” will be performed at 7 p.m., Thursday, May 10 through May 12 in the school’s Little Theatre, 5440 S. State St. Tickets will be sold for $5 at the door. “‘Peter and the Starcatcher’ is the backstory of the characters of ‘Peter Pan’ where Peter is immersed in every sense of play,” Wilkins said. “His adult make-believe world is really cool as he is discovering in the moment.” Likewise, the set also become moments of discovery and devised theatre as rope could become windows, doors or ladders, Wilkins said. Cottonwood students used devised theatre in their recent production of “Animal Farm” and “Triangle,” a play that explored the shirtwaist factory fire of 1911, which they performed and placed second in their region competition. “We had students use their imagination. If they believe it, they’ll see it and they’ll realize it. This is giving them new experiences and gets them back to the roots of theatre,” he said.

The 25-member cast includes lead actors junior Andrew Sollis as Boy; junior Nathalia Alvarez as Molly; and senior Sophia Morrill as Back Stache. The assistant director is Maddey Howell. “It’s a great way to end the year and it’s a show that everyone will find something in it. I always choose plays with a message and the message with ‘Peter’ is that of friendship and trust. I want my students to become the heroes that they may not have expected and to be the change in the world they want to see. Theatre is the great of all art forms and they need to develop empathy as an actor. Once they do that, it will not only make them better actors, but better people.” Next year’s Cottonwood season will include “Curtains,” “See How They Run,” and “Into the Woods.” At Murray High, Saxton selected “Xanadu” as a fun musical the students could put on within their six-week time frame. “We’re doing it a little different this time and we’ll have the audience on the floor and staging three-fourth of the way around so the actors can roller skate around them,” he said, adding that there will not be an intermission. “It’s allowing us to be creative for other stage opportunities.” While not every one of the 24-member cast has expert skating abilities, Saxton revealed his secret as an accomplished long-time skater and as a child, went skating every Saturday. Together with experienced skaters in the cast, they’ve been bringing the others up to speed. Lead actors include senior Cassidy Lewis as Kira; senior Ben Sanford as Danny and sophomore James Longhurst as Sonny. Klarissa Woodmansee is the musical director. “The musical is a spoof of the movie that flopped. It makes

fun of it rather than taking it seriously. It shows how cheesy that 1980’s movie was and there are lots of jokes about it. It’s hilarious,” Saxton said, adding that some people who worked on the movie set actually helped with the stage play. The cast’s performance comes after their February region performance where 12 scenes received superior ratings and every student qualified and plan to compete at state Saturday, April 21. Murray High’s final season performances will be 18 different short plays lasting about 20 minutes or less with four or fewer characters, Saxton said. Six plays will be performed each night at 7 p.m., Thursday, May 24 through May 26 in the school’s Little Theatre. Tickets at the door will be $3. l

Sophia Morrill and Andrew Sollis will star in Cottonwood high’s production of “Peter and the Starcatcher” (Adam Wilkins/Cottonwood High)

Dates set for local high schools’ commencement exercises By Julie Slama | julie@mycityjournals.com

Local students will graduate from high school this spring. (Pixabay)


undreds of Murray high school seniors have their eyes set to graduate this spring. Below is a schedule of information available about area graduations. AISU About 120 seniors will graduate at 4 p.m., Friday, June 8, in the performing arts center on the AISU campus. Each senior will be given five to seven tickets for their family members. ADA assistance is available, but please contact Heather Richardson at heather.richardson@aisutah.org beforehand. Speaking at the commencement exercises will be head administrator Nate Justis, board chair Kent Burggraaf, the valedictorian, the international student valedictorian and the salutatorian. The high school staff and other board members will

S outh SaltLakeJournal .com

join them on stage. The school orchestra will play “Pomp and Circumstance” and the choir will sing “A Million Dreams” from “The Greatest Showman.” Students will wear honor cords for high grade-point average, high ACT and SAT standardized test scores, departmental honor cords, Sterling Scholar honor cords, and Mia Love Recognition honor cords. The valedictorians and salutatorian will wear stoles. Prior to graduation, there will be a senior breakfast at 8:30 a.m. in the school atrium. There also will be a senior dinner, catering by Texas Roadhouse, at 6 p.m., Thursday, May 17 in the AISU Atrium. Seniors are free but guests will need to buy a dinner ticket. At the dinner, valedictorians, salutatorian and all honor chords will be awarded. AMES Students will speak and perform as part of the school’s 90-minute graduation exercises at 2 p.m., Friday, May 25 at Kingsbury Hall on the University of Utah campus. There are no tickets, but free parking shuttles are available to and from the football stadium. About 105 students are expected to graduate. There will be an invitation-only awards night on May 1 where academic awards and the principal/Parent-TeacherStudent Organization scholarships will be announced. Cottonwood At 1 p.m., Friday, May 25, about 400 Colts will graduate in their high school auditorium. Tickets are required. There is a limit of seven tickets per senior and if additional tickets become available, they will be available once released on a first-come, first-served basis. ADA assistance is available, but those needing

help are asked to contact administration prior to commencement to make certain everything is set up for them. The commencement speakers will include the valedictorian, salutatorian, three students and Granite School District Superintendent Martin Bates. Also in attendance will be Granite Board of Education members Connie Anderson and Connie Burgess. The school’s band, orchestra and Madrigals will be performing. A reception will be held immediately following the graduation in the commons. There is a safe Grad Night Party sponsored by parents scheduled for 10 p.m. – 3 a.m. at the school. Tickets are $20. Murray At 1 p.m., Friday, June 1 about 450 seniors will take part in commencement exercises in the Lifetime Activities Center on Salt Lake Community College’s Redwood Campus. There is ADA assistance and parking. No tickets are required. The theme is SPAR On! The senior class officers decided this ties to the new S.P.A.R. (Serve, Participate, Achieve, Respect) expectations introduced this year, Principal Scott Wihongi said. “Like Spartans of old who used to practice (spar) with each other before going into battle, these are the positive attributes every Murray High Spartan should be practicing in their lives to prepare them for a productive life,” he said. A valedictorian and salutatorian will be selected and recognized and music numbers will be performed. The all-night post-graduation party, coordinated by Project Graduation (Parent-Teacher-Student Association), will start at 10 p.m., with doors closing at 11 p.m. They will remain closed until 5 a.m. Tickets are $30 in advance or $35 at the door. l

May 2018 | Page 17

Shot clock or no shot clock? That’s the ongoing question By Catherine Garrett | c.garrett@mycityjournals.com

Cottonwood High basketball coach Lance Gummersall walks the sideline underneath the scoreboard. Is it time for Utah to institute a shot clock in high school basketball? (Travis Barton/City Journals)


he high school basketball seasons may have ended, but the discussion about whether or not to have a shot clock (a timer designed to increase the game’s pace and scoring) continues. Eight states – California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota and Washington – have employed the use of a 30- or 35-second shot clock while other states are moving towards the idea, including Wisconsin, which is slated to have a shot clock for the 2019-2020 season. Many coaches around Utah seem to be in favor of the shot clock, according to Joe Ogelsby, Utah High School Activities Association assistant director and director of Basketball Operations. One of those coaches is Corner Canyon High girls basketball coach Jeramy Acker who said, “We not only need it, we as coaches are wanting it. Every level of basketball has a shot clock. We are really doing a serious disservice to the studentathlete and really inhibiting the game by not having a shot clock.” Acker points out that there are more 20-point scorers in the state than ever before, indicative to him of the “different style of basketball that they are wanting.” “The game is about playing with pace and tempo which typically has you scoring within 15 to 20 seconds,” he said. “It seems that the teams that struggle offensively employ the stall tactics and try to control possessions.” The coach of the 5A Chargers program in Draper said he was “bitten by stalling” earlier in his coaching career. “What I’ve found since is that wins and losses comes and go, but what is more important to me is, ‘Am I helping my player to develop to the next level?’ Stalling doesn’t help me do that,” he said. Bryce Valley boys basketball coach Gary Syrett said that speaking for his 1A program, “We would like it,” he said. “It’s a fun type of basketball. Even though stalling can be effective at

times – and we’ve taken some minutes off the clock at times – I still like basketball to be played up and down and most of the kids do too.” Syrett said his staff and school administrators have discussed the shot clock and recognize the cost, but are still in favor of moving that way. Bruce Bean, principal of 3A Carbon High in Price who was a basketball coach for 13 years, also said he would welcome a shot clock. “In my coaching style, we better get a good shot off before we turn the ball over. That lends itself to needing to move the ball quickly towards the basket,” he said. “If we are supposed to prepare our kids for the next level, they need to be familiar with what’s going on. I don’t think it’s going to bother the game.” “Change is inevitable,” Bean said. “I’m old enough to remember when the three-point line came in and we had to adjust to that. I remember when we went from two officials to three and at first everyone was asking, ‘Why do we need this?’ and now it seems like no one is arguing that point anymore.” Tom Sherwood, Brighton High’s principal, feels a shot clock would positively impact the game in the state. “We’ve discussed it several times and as basketball evolves, it’s worth revisiting the issue,” he said. When Brighton’s 5A boys basketball team played in the Under Armour Holiday Classic in California over the Christmas break this past season, they used a shot clock and defeated nationally-ranked teams from Torrey Pines (California) and Oak Christian (California). “The shot clock was good for us in the tournament and I think we thrived with it,” Sherwood said. “I think it encourages kids to be more aggressive offensively and be less hesitant to take open shots when you’re on a clock.” Former NBA coach Barry Hecker called the shot clock a “double-edged sword,” saying that it hurts struggling or average teams while it favors better teams. He said that while he was coaching at Westminster, his squad, who was picked to finish last in the conference, ran “four corners” to spread the ball around offensively and found themselves at the top of the division much of the season. “If we would have had a shot clock, we would have got our butts spanked,” he said. Hecker also noted that a shot clock would appeal to spectators and would get those on the court ready for the use of the shot clock in college. So, where does the UHSAA sit on the issue of bringing a shot clock to the state? Oglesby from UHSAA said the shot clock topic has been brought up over the years and their organization has given – and continues to give – the subject extensive time, research, thought and discussion.


“Our organization is completely membership-driven which drives a rules process and feasibility of things while being risk adverse,” Oglesby said. “We have to do not just what is in the best interest of segments of student-athletes; we have to safeguard to ensure that decisions made are done with the best interest for everyone. We have to be concerned with equity.” Oglesby said that the UHSAA is “not negligent with knowing” about how coaches and administrators feel about the shot clock issue, but that there are “fundamental issues that we need to answer,” that have received the support of many coaches around the state, while not being able to “get a lot of support from athletic directors and principals,” according to Oglesby. The two main points, he said, are financing the acquisition and maintenance of shot clocks and staffing the running of the shot clocks during games. Estimations on shot clocks vary depending on the type of scoreboards schools already can range in the thousands of dollars. A shot clock operator is simply “one more position to pay for,” said Oglesby. “Several larger classifications want to just do it,” he said. “Things are always moving and we are not wanting to make any quick changes. It’s going to take a long time to get through the process.” The National Federation of State High School Associations does not allow for the use of a shot clock, so the states that do have them are not allowed representation on the Rules Committee within the organization. In an article, “Shot Clock in High School Basketball – the Debate Continues” by Mike Dyer from Feb. 5, 2015, the NFHS Director of Sports and Officials Education Theresia Wynns said that the NFHS stance on the shot clock is that the high school game does not need the shot clock. It is in good shape as it is. Their summary: 1) A shot clock takes away strategy from some coaches to slow the ball down to match up to the opponent. 2) Some committee members are opposed to “state adoption” because everyone should be playing the same game. 3) Education-based basketball does not warrant that student-athletes and coaches play to entertain the public. Carbon High’s Bean said that there are valid points of financing that he would have to consider being a school from a rural area and he understands the equity part of the shot clock discussion. Brighton High’s Sherwood also said he can see both sides of the shot clock issue and the costs associated with a change, but he suggested a pilot program within the 5A or 6A ranks to see the results. “The girls may not be ready for the shot clock, but the boys might be,” he said. “Who knows who’s ready if we don’t try it?” And so, the discussion continues… l


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Cottonwood boys soccer opens region play with two straight wins By Brian Shaw | brian.shaw@mycityjournals.com For the Cottonwood Colts boys soccer team, apparently one year makes all the difference. The Colts, who last year struggled in region play to the point that head coach Dominic Militello thought it appropriate to either bench or ask half of his starters to leave the team at the midway point and opt for a much younger, more spirited lineup, is beginning to watch the fruits of that painful labor pay off. “We have been fortunate so far,” said Militello of his team, a group that, according to him, took six games this preseason to get back to the point at which they played at the closing of last year. Cottonwood may have gone winless in its first few games of 2018, but region play has been a different story entirely. The Colts opened their region against Corner Canyon at home on April 10, winning 1-0 on a late goal from senior captain Dejen Abreha. In the Colts next region game on April 13, they traveled south to take on Timpview. Cottonwood stormed out to a 2-0 lead before the visitors scored two goals to take the game into overtime. In the extra period, a goal from William Makoma—his second on the game—lifted the Colts to their second region win on the year. “We have a good group this year as we knew we would,” said Militello. “They were pretty impressive last year as well.” Before the breakthrough victory over Timpview on April 13, Cottonwood had had a winless preseason going into the start of region play. In its first three preseason games, the Colts scored just one goal, allowing five. In its next three preseason matches, Cottonwood did score five goals, including three against Olympus—one of the best teams in the state, historically speaking. The Colts still were dealing with issues defensively, having allowed a whopping 12 goals in its final three games before region play kicked off. Whatever issues Cottonwood seemed to have in the preseason in its back line are improving according to Militello. With games coming up against Brighton and Alta and Jordan though, the Colts know their work is hardly done to get back to the state tournament for the first time in many years. But, winning games is a good start for any team—especially one that has struggled in years past to win matches consistently. l

Captain Noah Boardman speaks with head coach Dominic Militello at halftime of a region game. (Travis Barton/City Journals)

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he phrase “If you build it, they will come,” from the movie “Field of Dreams” is familiar to many baseballs fans and Cottonwood Heights resident Denise Johnson Swope has found that concept to be true since she opened her doors last year to the Elite Level Sports Academy, located at 2100 W. Alexander St. Ste. A in West Valley City. The facility boasts 13,000 square feet of turf, eight batting cages, six mounds, workout facilities and meeting rooms. “The response has been tremendous,” Swope said. “Parents and players really love our year-round skills and drills program and we provide quality instruction from top-notch instructors.” The facility has been a dream of Swope’s for a few years so she worked on the “right business model,” to ensure that everyone can walk away from each time “feeling like they got real value from their time in our place.” “I have always wanted to give back to kids, hoping they would experience the game and all it has to offer,” Swope said. “It is important to me that players get the skill development that is so badly needed in this area. I also wanted it to be a place where you can come regardless of your ability.” A weekly hitting camp in May and a summer baseball camp are the upcoming events at the facility, which also offers private baseball and softball lessons and space for team practices. They currently have an Elite 13u team – which has GPA and community service requirements – and are planning to add more teams in the fall. Swope said she recently brought on a strength and conditioning and speed and agility coach to help expand Elite Level’s services to other athletes including football players. Several football camps are also planned for this summer. The hitting camp for players ages 10 to 14 is scheduled for May 2, 9, 16 and 23 or May 3, 10, 17 and 31 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. each night.



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Instructors will teach the fundamentals of hitting and work through drills with individualized instruction. The cost is $100. For the summer baseball camp, professional instruction will focus on skills, proper mechanics, speed and agility, personal growth and fun. Two different weeks will be offered from June 4 through 8 and June 11 through 15 with a morning session from 8 a.m. to noon for players ages 7 to 10 and afternoon session from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. for ages 11 to 14. “Our focus at camp is to advance each individual’s skill and knowledge of baseball,” Swope said. “Each camper will receive specific instruction on how to play the game and how to improve on and off the field. We will cover all aspects of baseball.” Swope got her start on the field as one of the original Bonnett Ball girls and started playing softball when she was young. She later played for Olympus High and accelerated teams and then watched a son and daughter play for a few years. She has been a softball and baseball coach, but has been part of the baseball community for more than 20 years—as a coach, Crown Colony Baseball board member and president and District Commissioner for Cal Ripken Baseball. “I was very fortunate, being able to travel all over the country, meeting people and experiencing so many things,” she said. The life lessons Swope has learned from sports—working hard, discipline, competing, teamwork, failure and success—are also part of what her goals are in the services she offers the sports community at Elite Level Sports Academy. “I have seen sports give a lot of kids the structure and discipline they need to be successful in life,” she said. “To me, baseball and sports are really about a bunch of great life lessons. I love to see a young player find success when they have been struggling and having their hard work pay off.” l

Cottonwood baseball nearly rips through its preseason unscathed By Brian Shaw | brian.shaw@mycityjournals.com


or almost a month, the Cottonwood Colts baseball team didn’t lose a single game. Over their first three games of the preseason, the Colts scored 32 runs, forcing two opponents to succumb to the 10-run rule before seven innings were even completed. Despite losing two-thirds of their ace pitching staff—including Washington State-bound Hayden Rosenkrantz, last year’s Class 5A MVP—the Colts also picked up their rotation right where they left off having won a state championship. Three different Cottonwood pitchers won their first three games on the 2018 season, allowing in order one, six and two hits, respectively in wins over Syracuse, West Jordan and Wasatch. As the Colts continued playing through March, tougher opponents awaited them in Dixie and Copper Hills and defending Class 6A state champion Timpanogos. If Cottonwood were to have fallen at all it would probably have come against these three teams. But, the defending Class 5A champion Colts showed that mettle that they displayed at last year’s state playoffs. Against Dixie on March 23, the Colts needed a game-winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning and so they got it, eking out a 3-2 win. Against Copper Hills, the homestanding Colts watched as the visitors smacked four runs in the first two innings—then they answered with five runs of their own en route to a 6-4 victory on March 27. And then to close out the month of March,

the Colts traveled to Timpanogos March 30 to take on the team that many experts consider to be Cottonwood’s toughest competition in Class 5A this year. The Colts fell behind 1-0 in the first inning before they responded with three runs in the top of the second. The game then seesawed before Cottonwood put the game away with a double from Dalton Hodge in the top of the seventh inning to secure a tough 7-6 victory. The Colts then traveled to Las Vegas for the Desert Classic tournament, taking on teams from the U.S. and Canada. Cottonwood won three out of four games in Vegas, losing their first game of the season to nationally ranked Liberty High out of Nevada. In that loss against Liberty on April 6, the Colts held the Las Vegas-based school to three hits—all of which were home runs that Cottonwood pitchers gave up en route to a 7-2 loss. Cottonwood then opened region play back at home the following week against Jordan, winning two of three games. The Colts have been led thus far on the mound by two juniors, Porter Hodge and Dylan Reiser. Hodge carries a 5-1 record on the season, while Reiser is 4-0. The Colts bats are heating up as well, as Porter’s twin brother Dalton leads the team with eight doubles. Junior Jason Luke and sophomore Ross Dunn have four doubles on the year. l

South Salt Lake City Journal

Colts softball gallops through preseason, region play By Brian Shaw | brian.shaw@mycityjournals.com


hatever mojo the defending state champion Cottonwood Colts baseball team has had en route to their storybook season has begun rubbing off on other teams in the program, namely softball. After a disappointing season last year, the Colts softball squad opened this year with a narrow loss to West Jordan. After that, however, Cottonwood has gone on a tear. The Colts are riding high, carrying a 71 record in region play. What’s just as impressive, however, is that Cottonwood is 13-5 overall—starting its season in grand style down south. The Colts traveled to sunny St. George for the March WarmUp Classic and not only turned things around, they won four straight games before losing in the finale to Richfield. The Colts then opened a rather early region slate by pummeling Jordan 16-1 on March 20. In the game, Cottonwood dispatched of the visitors in just four innings. The next day, the Colts took mighty Alta to seven full innings before losing, 14-9. Cottonwood led the game after one inning and trailed by just two runs, 8-6, after two innings. The homestanding Hawks then scored five runs over the next three innings to secure the victory—the Colts’ first region loss of the season. Following the loss to Alta though, Cottonwood has won four straight region contests, putting the Colts into a tie for first place after five region games with Corner Canyon—a team they knocked off 3-2 in early April. As indicated earlier, the Colts softball squad now sit in a great spot at 7-1 in region play and have clearly taken a page from the state champion Colts baseball team’s playbook in this, their season of redemption. After getting shelled for the majority of last season, junior Carlie Roberts has a 6-3 record so far as the Colts ace pitcher. But that’s only part of the story, because fellow juniors Kaysie Polad and Savanna Hoffman are doing damage with their bats as well, having smashed a home run apiece for Cottonwood. l

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Top: Freshman Jocelyn Lujan hits the ball down the left field line against Jordan High in region play. Middle: Senior Kendra Quent rounds third base for an inside-the-park home run Bottom: Junior Carlie Roberts pitches against Jordan High in region play.

S outh SaltLakeJournal .com

(Travis Barton/City Journals)

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Birthday Shopping May is a month of celebration for my family. There’s my birthday, my dad’s birthday, my friend’s birthday, my parent’s anniversary, and, of course, Mother’s day. I love celebrating other people’s birthdays and take time to find the best gift to surprise them. You know who doesn’t like celebrating birthdays? My wallet. During the past few years of extravagantly celebrating birthdays, I’ve picked up a few tricks to make my wallet happier. Let’s start with online shopping. I always shop online: it’s easier to find that perfect personalized gift in cyberspace than it is at the local shopping mart. I’ll usually start (I’ll admit it) with some social media stalking. I’ll go through the birthday person’s feed and see if there’s anything they have been really into recently, or there might even be a post explicitly telling friends what to get them for their birthday. Once I have a good idea of what to get the birthday person, or at least what theme to go with, I’ll start searching. If the birthday person made it easy on me and posted a wish list, I’ll start comparing prices online. Usually, the same item can be bought for cheaper on specific websites, or provide free shipping. I use Google Chrome as my browser so I use an extension that will compare prices for me. If I’m looking at an item on a website, the extension might automatically find the same item cheaper somewhere else. If it does, a small pop up will appear in the corner of my



screen telling me it found a better deal. There are all kinds of coupon and price comparison extensions to download on Chrome. They’re amazing. I never check-out online without a coupon. I subscribe to a handful of list serves that will send me sales and coupons. I’m always thinking ahead when I receive those emails. If I see a crazy discount on an item I think one of my friends will love, I purchase it then and wait until their birthday, or Christmas, whichever one comes first. Additionally, I always search for coupon codes. If you Google “store name” coupon codes, you’ll get hit with a bunch of websites providing coupon codes. I use Retail Me Not and Deals Cove, just to name a few. My last tip for online shopping is to leave items

sitting in the cart. If you have an email linked to the site you are shopping on, you’ll usually get an email reminding you that an item is in your cart (as if you had forgotten). The site will usually send a 10-20 percent coupon code to inspire you finish the transaction. This requires patience though, since these emails usually won’t show up in an inbox for a day or two. If you don’t want to go online shopping, personalized gifts are always great options. I love making personalized cakes for my birthday people. They’re fun, tasty, and generally inexpensive. You can buy baking supplies in large quantities and use them for many different occasions. I use the same tactic for party supplies as well. I love to surprise my birthday people by decorating their car or home or workplace. I have bags full of streamers and balloons that I buy in quantity. Lastly, if you’re not like me but like many of my friends, you can opt out of receiving gifts on your birthday altogether. Instead, request the money that would be spent on your gift to go towards a donation. Facebook has a specific invite for this: you can invite your friends to donate your birthday gift money to a charitable cause. I have been invited to donate to The Humane Society, the Alzheimer’s Association, Cancer Societies, the World Wildlife Fund, etc. There are hundreds of nonprofits to choose from which this social media platform has listed. l

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South Salt Lake City Journal

Hold on Tight

Laughter AND








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and 14-year-old girls get embroiled in death-to-the-enemy exchanges on a daily basis. Everything becomes a battle and exclamation points abound. Teenage Mutant Ninja Daughter: I was late for school again!!! Harried Mother: You slept in. TMND: Why didn’t you wake me up???!!!! HM: I tried to wake you up for 30 minutes. TMND: I was tired!!!!! HM: You should go to bed earlier. TMND: I’m not an old lady like you!!! At this point, the mom stops talking because she’s ready to punch a hole in the refrigerator. She’s endured slammed doors, rolled eyes, super-black eyeliner, sulkiness, unexpected anger, crop tops and shrill yelling. I speak from experience, both as a former teenager and the mother of four teenage daughters. As a teen, I wrote my mom a few letters explaining how much I hated her. She wrote me one right back. I lied, snuck out of the house, refused to attend church, yelled at my siblings and changed into sexy tops after I left the house for school. Somehow, my mom didn’t kill me, for which I am endlessly grateful. My own daughters had their share of teenage drama. I’d often go to bed at night wishing for a lightning both to hit me in the head. I’d have been



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perfectly fine with that. Sudden death often felt easier than years of teenage moodiness. Now, each of my daughters have a daughter of their own. I watch as they deal with the everyday calamities that must be dealt with when you have a daughter including mood swings, swearing and bathroom bawling, and the daughters have their issues, too. But occasionally, a daughter would snuggle up to me, tell me she loved me and ask how my day was. She’d hold my hand and look interested for about 10 seconds before asking, “Can I have $50?” Clickity-clack. Clickity-clack. l

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Toddlers are draining. They’re exhausting, demanding, messy and literally shaking with energy. When my kids were little, I was tired all the time. I’d fall asleep at stoplights and dream of the day I could sleep without someone’s little foot stuck in my ear. The next decade passed by in a blur of softball games, dance recitals, science fairs, birthday parties and happy family activities. It’s a montage of smiling faces and sunshine. Little did I know, our happy family time was waning. I didn’t realize I was stuck on a roller-coaster, slowly clicking my way to the first steep drop. A gentle “Clickity-clack, clickity-clack” starts to get louder as the coaster moves closer to the top of the hill until suddenly I’m up so high and afraid to look down. Once a daughter turns 13, the coaster’s brakes release and you freefall into a death spiral, an upsidedown loop, a backwards spin over the rails, and a straight-down drop that moves your stomach into your ribcage. You get whiplash from changing directions. There’s lots of screaming. There might be some brief, quiet moments but only because you’re steadily climbing back to that first steep drop. Clickity-clack, clickity-clack. You recognize the parent of a teenage daughter because their teeth are clenched and their fists so tightly clasped they’ve lost all blood flow to their fingers. They’re currently experiencing a 7 G-force thrill ride, Teenage Terror Tornado, and they can’t get off for at least six years. Other than being an alligator midwife or snake milker, there’s no job more dangerous or thankless than being the mother of a teenage daughter. Moms

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May 2018 | Page 23

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