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October 2018 | Vol. 5 Iss. 10




isenhower Jr. High School faculty members are changing the culture of middle school by addressing the social, emotional and physical needs of their students. “There is something different this year—this is my 21st year here, so I’ve got a whole lot of years to compare it to,” said English teacher Amy Burgon-Hill. The change began with an assembly to kick off of kindness. Since then, there have been teachers wearing Be Kind shirts, and there have been positive posters in the hallways, activities in the lunch room and fun videos during announcements—all drawing a focus on kindness. “It’s just in your face,” said Burgon-Hill. “It’s just such a nice reminder—if that’s what you see, that’s what you live.” In response to the Be Kind theme for the year, teachers are actively engaging in Eisenhower’s positive rewards program. “Everyone is just full-force noticing and reinforcing kind behaviors,” said Deborah Andrews, head of the incentive program. Behaviors such as turning in homework on time, helping others, assisting the teacher or participating in class earn students stamps on their STARS Card. They can exchange fully stamped cards for candy, chips and small trinkets. Faculty and students have noticed an improvement in behaviors in the hallways, classrooms and the overall atmosphere of the school. “The climate in the school is so much more positive,” said Andrews. Principal Mark Ellermeier also provided a copy of the inspiring book “Wonder,” by R.J. Palacio, for every student to read this year, as a pattern for kindness. But not every day goes well—this is junior high after all. For students dealing with emotional distress, frustration or other impediments to learning, there is the STARS Room. Also called the Calm Room, it is a quiet place with comfy couches and scented air where students can decompress and prepare their minds to learn. Students can go any time they need to. “It is really self-run to give the kids 10 minutes to gather themselves and calm down and then return to class,” said school social worker Sarah Spencer. Students self-reflect and calm down with mindfulness techniques, breathing exercises, stuffed animals, stress balls and coloring books. Ultimately, students learn to adapt techniques they can use

Star Ambassador Stephanie Lopez-Jimenez runs the STARS store where students earn treats for positive behavior. (Jet Burnham/City Journals)

in the classroom, without having to leave class, said Spencer. She said Eisenhower staff members have recognized the positive effects of prevention and proactive responses to negative behavior. She said kids may act out because they had a traumatic experience at home or they are hungry. Instead of disciplining, staff members are determined to meet students’ basic needs to allow learning to take place. “This is just what we do in schools—we take care of kids,” said Spencer. “We’re just trying to give them what they need so they can learn.” Ellermeier is optimistic that a positive approach results in fewer negative behaviors and outcomes. Administrators have adopted a positive way to address dress code violations. Instead of disciplining students, they provide a change of clothes. The Clothing Closet has racks of donated clothes, such as leggings to put on underneath ripped jeans. Donations have been so generous that the closet has been moved to a bigger room twice already this year. Latinos in Action students are working to acquire new, name-brand clothing donations from

popular clothing stores to add to the collection. Ellermeier wants the closet to be available to anyone who needs or wants clothes, for any reason. “No kid should feel not accepted or not part of the group because of what they wear,” he said. “We want to try to eliminate kids having to worry about what they wear. It’s just one less thing they have to worry about.” Ellermeier said the Be Kind theme, the Clothing Closet and the STARS Room are all solutions that came from faculty members noticing there was a need. “Sometimes it’s right in your face, but you don’t see the solution until someone brings it up,” he said. He said this has been the best start to a school year he has ever experienced. “If people are considerate and think of other people, a lot of problems go away,” he said. “That’s what we’re trying to get here at Eisenhower. We want every kid to feel comfortable and feel safe here. This is their second home.” l

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Oct. 29 groundbreaking planned for $39-million Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center The TCJ is a monthly publication distributed directly to residents via the USPS as well as locations throughout Taylorsville. 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.

The Taylorsville Team CREATIVE DIRECTOR: Bryan Scott bryan@mycityjournals.com EDITOR: Travis Barton travis@mycityjounals.com ADVERTISING: 801-254-5974 DIRECTOR OF ADVERTISING: Ryan Casper ryan.casper@mycityjournals.com 801-671-2034 SALES ASSOCIATES: Melissa Worthen melissa@mycityjournals.com 801-897-5231 Tracy Langer Tracy.l@mycityjournals.com 385-557-1021 CIRCULATION COORDINATOR Brad Casper circulation@mycityjournals.com EDITORIAL & AD DESIGN: Ty Gorton Sierra Daggett Amanda Luker

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emember when you were a kid and Christmas was approaching … but way too slowly? Then, some wiseacre would say “Dec. 21 is the shortest day of the year” … when you knew full well those five days before Christmas run about 43 hours each! Adults tend to outgrow such things, unless they are waiting for a $39-million gift that they were told about nearly two years ago and still won’t be able to play in for two more years. Welcome to the Taylorsville Arts Council’s dilemma. “It’s been a long wait [since the arts center was first announced in December 2016] but well worth it,” said Taylorsville Arts Council Treasurer Gordon Wolf. “It is going to be absolutely fantastic. The Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center will be the jewel of the west side. I can’t express how excited the arts council is.” Nearly two years of planning meetings have led to the official arts center groundbreaking, scheduled for Oct. 29. That’s a lot of time for the local art community, or Taylorsville City Council, to start to feel like they are being steamrolled by the county leaders, in the organization and execution of the construction plan. But Taylorsville people gush about how that did not happen at any point in the planning process. “Everyone with the county has been so good to work with on this project,” said Taylorsville Councilman Ernest Burgess, who has been the council’s most active participant in the arts center organizing meetings. “They have listened to our suggestions, used them when they could, or explained when something wouldn’t work. I have enjoyed being involved in the process and think (the performing arts center) will be terrific.” Arts council Treasurer Wolf agrees. “I have been on the design team since the get-go,” he said. “We began with rough drawings. One of our early concerns was how to block the afternoon sun, since the building will face west. But architects incorporated screens

Thank You

Groundbreaking on this Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center is scheduled for the end of the month, southeast of Taylorsville City Hall. (Carl Fauver)

into the plans and worked with our (arts council) suggestions. The county people, the board of trustees—everyone has been so good to work with, and I think people will love the finished building.” Of course, that will be another two-year wait, with the Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center scheduled to host its first performances in late 2020. But after the Oct. 29 groundbreaking, the public will at least be able to see daily construction progress, while commuting on 5400 South, past 2600 West. In leading up to this point, center design team members flew to Phoenix, Arizona, a few months ago to tour a pair of similar arts centers there. More recently, several of them also visited the still-under-construction Noorda Center for the Performing Arts, scheduled to open soon on the campus of Utah Valley University. That facility will be roughly double the size of the Taylorsville arts center but does have enough similarities to have prompted that trip around Point of the Mountain. “Touring the Noorda Center was really valuable,” said Taylorsville Mayor Kristie Overson. “Even though it is much larger, it really helped us to get a visual of what we have been talking about for two years. In some ways, the outside of [the UVU center] is quite similar [to how the Mid-Valley Center will appear].”

Salt Lake County is funding the local arts center while Taylorsville City donated the land and a smaller portion of the money. The 67,500-square-foot facility will feature a 440seat main (or “proscenium”) theater, along with a so-called “black box” theater with seating configurations ranging from 50 to 225. The main theater will include a 38-footby-85-foot stage, along with an orchestra pit, technical support booths and balcony seating. Rehearsal and dressing rooms also promise to be spacious—possibly the nicest amenities Taylorsville Arts Council performers will ever have used. “I am so excited and so ready for this to happen,” Overson said. “We (city representatives) have been involved in every decision. So many hands have been on this project. With everyone working together and communicating well, I don’t think we have missed any important details. I can’t wait to see the first performance.” But she’ll have to—two more years to be exact—as the world’s slowest march toward this particular Christmas present continues. Interested members of the public are invited to attend the Oct. 29 groundbreaking ceremony. As of our press deadline, officials were still finalizing a starting time and other details of the event. l

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Page 4 | October 2018

Taylorsville City Journal

AARP grant bringing new gardening boxes to Taylorsville Senior Center By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


aylorsville Senior Center (4743 South 1625 West) officials say the number of immigrant and refugee seniors making use of their many programs has been steadily growing in recent years. And that trend prompted the Salt Lake County operators of the center to apply for a grant from the American Association of Retired Persons . This summer, AARP officials announced the local senior center was one of only two Utah applicants to receive funding, through the organization’s “2018 Community Challenge” grant program. “A total of $1.3 million will be distributed nationwide to fund 129 ‘quick-action’ programs across the country, helping communities make immediate improvements to support residents,” AARP leaders said in a news release. “Nearly 1,600 applications were received from nonprofits and government entities for the program, now in its second year.” Utah’s only other AARP grant recipient this year is Habitat for Humanity, which will use their funds to organize painting and yard cleanup at 100 Ogden homes. At the Taylorsville Senior Center, the modest $2,255 grant is funding planter boxes outside the facility. “When I first heard we won the grant, I was ecstatic because this will really help our refugees feel even more welcome,” said Salt Lake County Aging and Adult Services Community Care Transitions Program Manager Charise Jensen, who drafted the grant proposal. “This will help make the Taylorsville Senior Center more welcoming to refugees—a place for them to heal and feel welcome.” Jensen reports 15 to 20 senior refugees visit the Taylorsville facility regularly, giving that site the second highest population of immigrant “regulars” among all the senior centers the county operates.

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In her AARP grant proposal, Jensen said, “Although the garden will be open to all senior center participants, refugee seniors will be specially recruited to participate in the project. Refugees face unique and complex challenges when they come to the United States. Gardening offers a place for healing and gathering.” Jensen noted in the application, the Taylorsville Senior Center “caters to elderly refugees from (the African countries of) Sudan, South Sudan and Burundi (among others).” The grant funding is being used to construct raised garden beds and to purchase gardening supplies. “We are very excited (with the grant funding) because it will provide a wonderful opportunity for our refugee program to reach more seniors,” said Taylorsville Senior Center Manager Pauline McBride. “We are reaching out to different refugee groups to try to make them aware of our many different activities. Our ELS classes are also growing. We want to reach out to all people over age 60.” The AARP was founded in 1958. The nonprofit, nonpartisan association now has more than 40 million members. Jensen adds this grant is one of two her county career transitions program has recently earned. “The other grant was awarded by the federal Health and Human Services Department, through its Office of Refugee Resettlement,” she said. “That grant allowed us to hire a case worker, to better assist refugees with Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security benefits.” Jensen said those federal dollars were routed through the Utah Department of Workforce Services last fall, with the new case worker hired in February. Taylorsville Mayor Kristie Overson is pleased to see many of her city’s facility administrators and departments taking the initiative

Refugees who spent much of their lives gardening are now getting an opportunity to continue that pastime, outside the Taylorsville Senior Center. (Google)

to seek grant funding to help accomplish their goals. “I knew the (Taylorsville) Senior Center (staff) wanted to build garden beds, and we thought it was a great idea,” Overson said. “When they said they would seek grant funding, we told them ‘go for it.’ I think it’s wonderful they are always looking for ways to enhance the center and looking for creative ways to pay

for it.” Taylorsville City Councilman Ernest Burgess agrees. “It’s huge when groups like this go out to seek grant funding,” he said. “I am very active with the YMCA (Community Family Center, 4223 South 1570 West), and they fund as much as they can through grant money. It helps a lot and [city officials] encourage it.” l

October 2018 | Page 5

Skyline, Taylorsville teachers compete for $1,000 in healthy heart challenge By Julie Slama | julie@mycityjournals.com


fter 13 years of going straight to her special education classroom in the morning to prepare for the day’s lesson, Skyline High teacher Julia O’Driscoll has changed her routine. She now arrives early, pulls out her sneakers from the newly acquired gym locker to walk two miles around the school’s track before setting a step into her classroom. “I go straight to the track every morning in an effort to get healthy,” she said. “I’m already making a huge difference in my life already. I saw a guy and two ladies doing the stairs in the stadium, so I’m going to add that tomorrow. I love to swim, so I want to figure out how to add that into my exercise regimen.” O’Driscoll also is counting the M&Ms she eats from her M&M dispenser on her desk. “I have 3- (inch)-by-5 (inch) cards on my desk, so I write down what I eat every time,” she said. “It’s annoying to do so, so I’m eating less of them. I still have some so I don’t feel deprived, but not a whole package which used to be normal.” O’Driscoll is changing to lead a healthy lifestyle after her father recently died of heart issues, and her brother also experienced them four years ago. However, what helped give her additional motivation was a chance to compete against 13 other high school teachers in the Salt Lake Valley in the 2018 My Heart Challenge, a contest to strengthen her heart health and reduce her risk of developing heart disease. The teachers were selected after they applied May 1 to participate in the 100-day challenge. During the contest, teachers receive individual coaching and counseling from the heart specialists at Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute, from exercise and diet to counseling and cardiologists. They meet for seven nutrition classes as well as a dietician at a grocery store; they log their exercise and fitness; and they are tested for blood pressure, weight, body fat and other health markers. Through the challenge, teachers will record their progress on social media and invite their school to participate alongside through special projects. The winning teacher will receive $1,000 earmarked for the school, said Jess Gomez, challenge organizer. “We did this program with elementary principals a few years ago, and their school activities ranged from a walking program during recess to a scavenger hunt involving all the grades,” he said. In addition to elementary school principals in 2013, the challenge, in its sixth year, has reached city mayors, firefighters, families and nonprofit organization employees. Physician Assistant Viet Le said that teachers were selected intentionally. “These teachers are like principals, role models for students and the community,” he

Page 6 | October 2018

Thirteen teachers will take part in the 100-day Heart Challenge. Not pictured is Hillcrest High’s Jordan Hulet. (Julie Slama/City Journals)

said. “We want them to be healthier and then share with other teachers and students and their families to enhance fitness and healthy lifestyles. Our goal is to reach the entire school and community.” Le said the heart challenge is more than just correcting lifestyles. “It’s about prevention,” he said. “We want to keep patients out of the hospital and to have an active part in their health care. We want them to lead a healthy life first and foremost.” O’Driscoll already has others supporting and joining her in her effort. “I realized if I started doing it, others naturally follow—my colleagues, my family,” she said. “I have my niece doing it at the same time. She’s not doing it physically next to me, but she’s there with me every step of the way. I’ve always wanted to run a 5k, so if I can do that (this fall), then maybe I can do a 10k later and work up to a marathon. I’ve already talked to our student body officers about organizing a 5k fun run, so I hope that will make a difference at

our school, and I’ll be advocate for being active. I feel empowered to make a change and help create that for my students and co-workers.” Similarly, Taylorsville High English teacher Kevin Harward realized he wanted to lead a healthier life and wanted that for his students as well. “It’s easier to binge watch Netflix than to go exercise, but I’ve started by increasing the intensity and walking my dog more,” he said. “I’ve also hit the treadmill more and picked it up a notch.” Every Tuesday, Harward and other teachers meet with a nutritionist, and he has realized he needs to rethink dining weekly at a Mexican restaurant and incorporate more fruits and vegetables into his diet. “I’ve recently developed poor habits and have become lazy,” said the 1994 St. George Marathon finisher. “With a better diet and increase of activity, I’m getting a boost and recharging.”

That is something he plans to share with his students and community. “When they sent out the notice, I was thinking about improving health and fitness and didn’t realize it was a competition,” said the 30year veteran teacher. “I think having our school community participate would be great. I have the kids read ‘The Jungle,’ and we’ll talk about prepared and processed foods into the book discussion. We can talk about farming and other options of healthy foods. It would be a fun tiein to the literary element. I’d like to open up lunchtime seminars about healthy lifestyles in our library so it will have a greater impact on all our students, parents and the community.” Intermountain Medical Center CEO Blair Kent appreciates the teachers’ enthusiasm in sharing their knowledge. “Our goal is for everyone to manage their own health and become passionate about it,” he said. l

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October 2018 | Page 7

Run, Hide Fight: multiple choice response for teachers


un-hide-fight is the new emergency protocol for Granite District employees. “We’re asking our staff to think outside the box in terms of what we’ve asked them to do in the past and think what is going to be in the best interest of their students,” said Ben Horsley, director of communications at Granite District. “We are entrusting them; we are empowering them to make the decision in the best interest of those students.” Staffs have been trained to evaluate an emergency situation and respond with the action that makes most sense—run, hide or fight. Run if the danger is on the opposite side of the building; hide if it is in a nearby hallway; and when the danger is close enough that running and hiding are no longer options, fight. “We want our teachers to aggressively attack,” said Horsley. “We want them to fight dirty; we want them to throw things; we want them to protect their students at all costs.” The new protocol empowers teachers to make the decision that best keeps their students safe in an emergency situation based on their specific circumstances. A middle school teacher may decide to break a window and evacuate students. In the same hallway, a teacher of special needs students wouldn’t be able to evacuate quickly so she locks the door. A kindergarten teacher, who knows her students’ abilities, can decide if they can safely navigate an escape or if they should go into lockdown. “The whole process is, instead of thinking

Page 8 | October 2018

By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@mycityjournals.com pens.

Run-hide-fight is the new emergency protocol for Granite District employees.

static, we want our staff thinking dynamic,” said Horsley. “Instead of checking off a list in an emergency, we want them thinking and analyzing the situation.” Administrators introduced their faculty to the changes as the school year began and detailed information was sent to families in the district’s Parent Link magazine mailed to homes in September. Cindy Dunn, principal at Calvin Smith Elementary, said her faculty appreciates the flexibility of the new policy which takes a proactive position on students’ safety. “They are happy to know they have the license to do what’s best to keep the kids safe,” she said.

She said this is the first time the district has been able to address the unique circumstances of each school. Previously, some district protocols didn’t work for every campus. “All of our campuses look very different; access in our schools looks very different, so I think they recognized that we need to make some site-based decisions on some of these things,” said Dunn. “Our school has limited exit points from our playground, so that was one of [teachers’] biggest concerns.” During monthly faculty meetings, Dunn’s staff discusses possible emergency scenarios. They brainstorm options for disabling an intruder with items in the classroom, such as throwing chairs or poking their face with sharp

“I think that puts people’s minds at ease a little bit if you can even just talk about it,” she said. “No matter how much you practice, you never know how you’re going to react until the moment. So, I think the best thing we can do is talk about it.” And administrators agree that the goal of safety drills is not to upset anyone, especially students. A safety team has been established at Calvin Smith Elementary to develop procedures for training that don’t scare the students. “We don’t want to invoke fear, but we want them to know that they will be prepared if something were to happen and they will know what to do,” said Dunn. Horsley said Granite District officials are working with the state Board of Education and the Utah State Legislature to modify safety drill requirements to reflect current possible dangers. Utah law requires seven fire drills each year in elementary schools and four in secondary. Horsley points out that there have been no school fire fatalities in the U.S. since 1950. An earthquake is more possible and yet only one is required each year. Currently, it is up to the discretion of administrators to determine the number of drills held for additional safety procedures such as lockdown, lockdown with cover, shelter in place, general evacuation and reunification. l

Taylorsville City Journal

Football teams see a decrease in participation By Greg James | gregj@mycityjournals.com








OPEN 24/7

Teams in the state of Utah have seen a four percent decrease in the number of participants. (Shelley Oliverson/WJ football)

igh school football teams around the Salt Lake Valley are encountering a similar problem. The number of athletes participating in the sport is on the decline. According to the National Federation of State High School Associations, Utah’s participation in tackle football has decreased by nearly 4 percent the past two seasons. Currently, 107 schools field teams; 8,944 boys and 16 girls are playing. “We are only down about 10–15 athletes, but nationally, the sport is experiencing a decrease in participation,” West Jordan head coach Mike Meifu said. “I think there are several things that are driving our numbers down.” Player safety has become a concern among parents and participants alike, but it is not the only contributing factor. “Our son got hurt,” West Jordan football booster Shelley Oliverson said. “He had a concussion, and his doctor told us to watch him and make sure he was ready to get back on the field before we let him. It made us wonder if it was worth it.” Teams track concussions by documenting the occurrence date, the players rehabilitation and their return to the game. Beyond that many teams have developed preventative programs. “We teach correct tackling and are diligent in protecting these kids,” Meifu said. “We have also worked on warm-up activities that are known to prevent injuries. We love our football family and do not want anything to happen to them.” Sport specialization has also become a contributing factor. Two years ago, Copper Hills High School coaches reported only one athlete that participated in more than two high school sports. Certainly, there are things to gain by focusing on one sport—an offseason or per-

TaylorsvilleJ ournal .com

haps a chance to play collegiately—but kids lose by specializing. Growing bodies can become overly stressed because of repetition, which can lead to injuries. Playing multiple sports leads to better muscle, motor and skill development. It also promotes general athleticism, balance, speed and agility, according to a 2017 ESPN report. Kids who spend too much time on one sport risk tiring of the sport all together. Football friends will naturally be different than swimming friends and karate friends. Participating in multiple sports allows them to share experiences with different people and learn from different coaches, said the same ESPN report. “At our school, we have kids that should be playing football,” Meifu said. “Some of it is the time and commitment. I have had kids tell me they are not playing because they cannot afford it. I try to help them and find ways to subsidize that.” Adults tend to point to student transfers as a possible decrease in participation. In the age of open enrollment an athlete can choose to at-

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tend a school that he feels has a program more suited to his needs as an athlete. This shifts participation from one school. “Society has changed, and there are a number of things a kid can do to give them satisfaction,” Hunter High head coach Tarell Richards said. “Football pushes kids to physical limits, with no guarantee of success. We have kids that we don’t even get a chance to coach. They have taken their talents somewhere else.” Successful programs are encouraging their teams to work year round on becoming better. While the coaching staffs strive to build relationships with their players the year round participation and conditioning has improved. “A positive of all of this is that our sophomores and freshman are getting coached by our varsity staff,” Richards said. “They are learning our way of the game early in their high school career.” The best programs have coaches that make the sport fun, encourage positive relationships and have high expectations to assist the players to reach their potential. l

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Page 10 | October 2018

Taylorsville City Journal

Ghosts, goblins and monsters…Oh my! The not-so-scary Halloween activities in the area By Christy Jepson | Christy@mycityjournals.com


hile most children look forward to Halloween, some are scared by the creepy masks that hang on hooks in the local stores or the zombies that are placed on front doorsteps. Younger children, in particular, may not like the scary aspect of Halloween but still want to participate in the activities. The good thing is the Salt Lake area has a lot of activities for families that are not-so-scary, so everyone can participate. Here is a list of some of those activities. WitchFest at Gardner Village: The notso-spooky witches have flown into Gardner Village and will be on display until Oct. 31. There is no cost to walk around the village and look at the witches and go on the witch scavenger hunt. The “Six Hags Witches Adventure” is $6 per person (ages 1 and older) and includes: a giant jumping pillow, an area where kids can climb through spider webs, and a place to test their skills at the Maze of Mayhem. This adventure begins Sept. 28 and is open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Halloween from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (weather permitting). This is located in the lot west of Archibald’s Restaurant. Gardner Village also offers select dates where visitors can eat breakfast with witches. Enjoy a warm breakfast buffet and have your picture taken with the Gardner Village witches and watch as they perform some fun witchy spells. Ticket prices are $16 for the breakfast. Check their website at www.gardnervillage.com for specific dates and information. Gardner Village is open Monday

through Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and is located at 1100 W. 7800 South in West Jordan. Herriman Howl: Herriman City hosts this fun free event for kids of all ages on Monday, Oct. 15 from 5:30-8:00 p.m. at the J. Lynn Crane Park. There will be prizes, activities and games. Trunk or Treat begins at 6 p.m. and prizes will be awarded for the best decorated trunk. There will also be a mad science show starting at 6:45 p.m. Other activities and areas include: a pumpkin patch (pumpkins for sale), food trucks, Restless Acres, Treasures of the Sea, Hocus Pocus, Wizarding World and Stella Live Fortunes. The food truck lineup for that night will be: Corndog Commander, Kona Ice, and South of the Border Tacos. The J. Lynn Crane Park is located at 5355 W. Herriman Main Street, just south of City Hall. Trick or Treat Street at The Utah Olympic Oval: On Friday Oct. 19, the Utah Olympic Oval will host Trick or Treat Street, a huge, free indoor trick-or-treating event. Treats and prizes will be distributed from sports clubs, local vendors and other community groups. In addition to trick-or-treating, children (12 and younger) can also ice skate for free that night (skate rental not included). Rates are $6 for adults (13 years and older) and $3 for skate rentals. The Utah Olympic Oval is located at 5662 Cougar Lane in Kearns. Haunted Hollow in Draper: Get your little ones in their costumes and bring them to the Galena Hills Park in Draper on Monday, Oct. 15

from 6 to 8 p.m. for some free Halloween family fun. There will be carnival games, prizes, a pumpkin patch, live entertainment, candy, and more. Galena Hills Park is located at 12452 S. Vista Station Blvd. in Draper. Halloween Bash in Riverton: For two nights, Oct. 29 and 30, Riverton City hosts an outdoor family friendly Halloween event. Activities include: scavenger hunts, the Troll Stroll where you can get candy and prizes around the park, a mini-spook alley, spooky stores and the annual search for The Great Pumpkin. The event begins each night at 6:30 p.m. and ends at 8:30 p.m. The Search for The Great Pumpkin begins at 8:30 p.m. each night. This free event is held at the Riverton City Park, 1452 W. 12600 South. Little Haunts at This is the Place Heritage Park: During Little Haunts, little boys and ghouls can visit This is the Place in their costumes and go trick-or-treating, hear stories from the Story Telling Witch, go on pony rides or train rides, and make crafts. Ticket prices are: $12.95 for adults, $8.95 for children 3-11 and children 2 and under are free. The Little Haunts event is held Oct. 13, 18-20 and 27 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. This is the Place Heritage Park is located at 2601 E. Sunnyside Ave. in Salt Lake City. Garden After Dark at Red Butte Garden: The theme for this year’s Garden After Dark event is Oaklore Academy of Magic. Come be a part of this magic academy where guests will learn about the magical properties of real-life plants from around the world, select a magic wand, learn all about magical creatures, and dig into herbology. After picking up an Oaklore student manual at the amphitheater, visitors will be given a school map, class schedule and

extra credit activities they can do between classes. Class subjects include: Wand Theory 101, Potions Lab 202, Charms 303, Magical Creatures Studies 404, Herbology 505, and even a final exam that has something to do with trying to ban the mischievous Myrtle Spurge who seeks to cause trouble all around the Academy. Ticket prices are $14 or $11 if you are a Red Butte Garden member. This event is Oct. 18-20 and Oct. 25-27 from 6 to 9 p.m. Red Butte Garden is located at 300 Wakara Way in Salt Lake City. Boo at the Zoo at Hogle Zoo: Boo at the Zoo is where children (12 and younger) come to the zoo and go trick-or-treating in their costumes at booths scattered throughout the zoo. They provide trick-or-treating bags or you can bring one from home. This popular event is included with regular zoo admission (or free with a zoo membership) and is on Oct. 27 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Regular zoo admission for adults (13 to 64 years old) is $16.95, seniors (65 and older) $14.95, children (3 to 12) $12.95, and 2 and younger are free. BooLights at Hogle Zoo is on Oct. 5-6, 11-13, 17-20, and 26 from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. BooLights includes a train ride at night, not-soscary light displays of a graveyard, pirates’ lair, the land of spiders, walk through Bat Cave, and a labyrinth-themed maze with puppets. Also included is the performance “Spiderella.” Prices are $12.95 for adults (13 and older), children ages 3-12 are $9.95 and toddlers 2 and under are free. Papa Murphy’s Pizza offers a discount coupon (while supplies last) when you buy any size pizza you will receive a coupon for a buy one regularly priced adult ticket to BooLights and receive one child ticket free. l

A witch from Gardner Village’s WitchFest. (Photo credit Gardner Village)

TaylorsvilleJ ournal .com

October 2018 | Page 11

Taylorsville parents, students to receive anti-pornography information at area schools By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


2005 Taylorsville High School graduate, who struggled for nearly 20 years to free himself from the harmful effects of pornography, is returning to his alma mater to help others deal with the struggle or avoid it altogether. “In our Fight the New Drug presentations to parents and students, we use scientific facts and personal accounts to explain the harmful effects of pornography,” said Garrett Jonsson. “Religion is not a part of our presentation, and we are not affiliated with any government organization. I also never mention the word sex. We are teaching how porn effects our brains, relationships and world.” Salt Lake County Council Chairwoman Aimee Winder Newton, the only Taylorsville resident to ever sit on the county council, is such a big supporter of Fight the New Drug messaging, she helped arrange presentations this week at Taylorsville High School along with Bennion and Eisenhower junior high schools. “I am not involved with (Fight the New Drug); I don’t serve on their board of directors,” Newton said. “But I have been familiar with their organization and message for years. I think they do a great job of teaching kids about the harm pornography does. I helped to arrange these presentations in Taylorsville schools three years ago and am happy to do it again.” A Fight the New Drug parents’ meeting will be held Tuesday, Oct. 2 at Taylorsville High School at 7 p.m. The student sessions, at the two junior highs and back at Taylorsville High, will be held the following two days. “I will be the only presenter at these meetings,” Jonsson said. “By then, I will have done more than 100 presentations in 15 states from Connecticut to Florida and in Canada.” Founded in 2009 in Salt Lake City, the anti-pornography organization has eight full-time employees and an annual budget of $1.6-million. Its mission statement reads: “Fight the New Drug is a non-religious and non-legislative organization that exists to provide individuals the opportunity to make an informed decision regarding pornography by raising awareness of its harmful effects using science, facts and personal accounts.” The nonprofit organization began making

presentations, like the ones Jonsson will share in Taylorsville, in 2011. In addition to the United States, Canada and Mexico, these discussions have also been held in Spain, Trinidad, Guatemala, Nepal and elsewhere. “Our goal is to change the conversation about porn, to be critical of it, so it is no longer considered normal,” said Fight the New Drug Executive Director Natale McAneney. “We are having a positive impact on young people. Much of our education is based in social media. Our Facebook page (created in 2009 when the organization was founded) now has nearly 2 million followers.” Next month, Fight the New Drug will unveil a three-part, online documentary series addressing the negative effects pornography has on the viewer’s brain and heart, as well as the world at large. “We offer about 200 presentations per year now at schools, corporations, professional conferences and other locations,” McAneney said. Three years ago, one of those presentations changed Garrett Jonsson’s life. “From age 9 to 28, I had a challenge with pornography,” Jonsson said. “Then, in 2015, I attended a Fight the New Drug presentation. It was the first time I had ever heard of the organization. Prior to that I had tried to ‘white knuckle’ myself away from porn. But the information I heard at that presentation made it easier to deal with. Right then I knew I needed to do something to help raise awareness about their message.” By then, Jonsson had already been married several years and had hidden his pornography challenges from his wife. With her support and encouragement, Garrett decided to test his athletic endurance to help make the public more aware of Fight the New Drug. “First, I ran a marathon distance (26.2 miles) for 30 consecutive days, with my hands handcuffed in front of me,” he said. “I ran the same route each day—from South Temple to 9000 South, and back—in the Salt Lake Valley. The handcuffs represented the hold pornography has on people.” Jonsson emailed Fight the New Drug to tell the organization what he was doing, before


Garrett Jonsson holds up the chains he dragged behind his bicycle while pedaling from Virginia to California. (Photo courtesy Garrett Jonsson)

he started. But he was nearly done with his 30 marathons before he heard back from them. After recovering from all the long-distance running for about a month, Garrett undertook another activity to raise anti-pornography awareness. He called this one “Coast-to-Coast in Chains.” “I flew with my bicycle to Virginia, and then spent 56 days riding it across the country to San Francisco,” he said. “The entire trip, I

dragged chains behind my bike, again to represent the drag pornography puts on lives.” Soon after the marathon running and cross-country bike riding, Jonsson accepted a part-time position as one of Fight the New Drug’s anti-pornography speakers. Now a father of three—and with his own parents still living in the same Taylorsville home he grew up in—Jonsson is excited to share his message with hometown audiences. l


in the $290’s


Lisa Willden Realtor Cell: (801) 913-3553

Colleen Henderson Realtor Cell: (801) 898-0342

3150 South 7200 West, West Valley Page 12 | October 2018

Taylorsville City Journal

City of Taylorsville Newsletter 2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400

Dear Friends and Neighbors, For almost a year now since becoming Mayor, I have started my monthly column with this warm salutation. With a bustling population of around 60,000 people and growing, it is impossible for each of us to know everyone in our city. But because we are all part of the same city – even if we haven’t yet had chance to make acquaintance – that is what we are: Friends and Neighbors. Mayor It means a lot to me that we can count on each other as such. Kristie S. Overson Community is defined as “a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common.” But in my mind, it goes so much further: It is neighbors looking out for one another and finding ways to serve and help. It is volunteering and making connections. It is valuing differences, forgiving when mistakes have been made and engaging in positive ways. When considering the qualities that make a community, I have to say, Taylorsville can’t be beat. Of course, as Mayor I may hold a little bias but I certainly am not the only one who feels this way. Our city, for example, recently was listed by Verizon as one of the top-50 small cities in the nation. Another example of community is how our city handled a very difficult situation that could have been much worse if it weren’t for the goodwill and hard work of neighbors, employees and partnering organizations. Everyone pitched in to help when it was discovered that a home in our city held more than 100 small dogs (see accompanying stories). Animal service workers, with the aid of police officers and firefighters, quickly removed the dogs and made sure they were cared for and safe. Neighbors reacted with understanding, kindly offering input and suggestions at our city’s recent Town Hall meeting and when I walked through the neighborhood to touch base immediately after the incident. Our code enforcement officers worked with the homeowner so city officials could gain access to the house and to ensure the dogs could immediately be moved toward rescue and adoption. City employees, too, continue to work on solutions for the house and property. It makes me so proud of our Taylorsville community. There is no place I’d rather be. –Mayor Kristie S. Overson

City of Taylorsville Newsletter WHAT’S INSIDE – October 2018 Frequently Called Numbers, Page 2 Council Corner, Page 3 Public Safety, Pages 4-5 Heritage Remembrances, Page 6

Taylorsville's Got Talent, Page 8

October 2018

Taylorsville Code Compliance Officers Lauded


Environment, Page 7


Taylorsville Code Compliance Officers Kathleen Richins and Kary Webb work every day to make the city so much better in so many ways. For their “compassion and caring, as well as their excellent job performance,” they were officially recognized this past month by Mayor Kristie Overson.

Code compliance officers Kathleen Richins (left) and Kary Webb are recognized by Mayor Kristie Overson. Mayor Overson, who presented them with Certificates of Recognition and Appreciation at the City Council’s Sept. 5 meeting, noted that the city recently “found ourselves in an overwhelming circumstance where we discovered a home with over 100 dogs inside. “The removal of these animals spread over multiple days and involved multiple agencies,” she said. Remarkably, Richins and Webb were able to connect with the homeowner, establishing a good relationship and building trust. As a result, they were able to obtain permission for teams to go in and retrieve the dogs. Their efforts were significant, said Taylorsville-West Valley City Animal Services Director Dave Moss. In addition to securing access to the house, the permission from the homeowner allowed the dogs to immediately be placed for adoption and rescue, when usually the shelter would have to wait five days.

Dogs Placed with Rescue Shelters

Almost all of the dogs recovered from a Taylorsville home have been adopted or placed with rescue groups. Getting them to that point took quite a bit of work. It all started at the end of August when Dave Moss, director of West Valley City-Taylorsville Animal Services, received a call from Taylorsville UPD who asked his workers to check on a home with multiple dogs. At the time, they had no idea how many dogs were there. Moss’s animal control officers, who are good at “listening to barks” to judge how many dogs may be inside, called Moss after responding to the home. “Yeah, we think there are about 20 dogs in there,” they told him. Of course, it turned out there were more than 100 small dogs, mostly Chihuahuas, at the house. The number surprised everyone, Moss Moss employees said, and had his agency scrambling for many days. Moss’s worked around the clock to remove the dogs, take them to the shelter, wash and feed them, and make sure they were in good health. “We worked until we were exhausted,” Moss said. Eight rescue groups from across the state ended up taking in most of the dogs — including Paws in St. George, Nuzzles and Co in Park City, UUAF Utah Animal Advocacy Foundation, Caws in Murray, Hearts 4 paws in West Valley, South Salt Lake Animal Shelter, the Human Society and Purrfect Pawprints in Grantsville.

This litte pup was among those rescued.

City of Taylorsville Newsletter


 2600 West Taylorsville Blvd 801 -963-5400 | www.taylorsvilleut.gov PAGE 2 ǁǁǁ͘ƚĂLJůŽƌƐǀŝůůĞƵƚ͘ŐŽǀ  Emergency 911        Unified Police Department Dispatch 801Ͳ743Ͳ7000 (Non-Emergencies)  801Ͳ743Ͳ7200 Fire Department 1Ͳ800Ͳ222Ͳ1222 Poison Control Center     ϴϬϭ ŶŝŵĂůŽŶƚƌŽů^ŚĞůƚĞƌ     Ͳϵϲϱ ͲϱϴϬϬ    ŶŝŵĂůŽŶƚƌŽůŌĞƌ,ŽƵƌƐŝƐƉĂƚĐŚ ϴϬϭ Ͳ ϴϰϬ Ͳ ϰϬϬϬ ƵŝůĚŝŶŐ/ŶƐƉĞĐƟŽŶ   ϴϬϭ Ͳ ϵϱϱ Ͳ ϮϬϯϬ   of Commerce) ϴϬϭ Ͳ ϵϳϳ Ͳ ϴϳϱϱ  ŚĂŵďĞƌ tĞƐƚ (Chamber  ϯϴϱ Ͳ ϰϲϴ Ͳ ϵϳϲϴ  'ĂŶŐdŝƉ>ŝŶĞ   'ĂƌďĂŐĞͬZĞĐLJĐůĞͬ'ƌĞĞŶtĂƐƚĞWŝĐŬ ͲƵƉ ϯϴϱ Ͳ ϰϲϴ Ͳ ϲϯϮϱ  (Wasatch Front Waste & Recycling)

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Saturday, October 13, 2018 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

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UPCOMING Taylorsville Events Oct. 3 & Oct. 17 – 6:30 p.m. City Council Meeting @ City Hall Oct. 9, 7 p.m. & Oct. 23 – 6 p.m. Planning Commission Meeting @ City Hall Oct. 12 – 7 p.m. Taylorsville’s Got Talent @ Taylorsville Senior Center (Sponsored by the Taylorsville Arts Council; see Page 8) Oct. 13 – 2 to 4 p.m. Fix-It Clinic @ City Hall (Sponsored by the Taylorsville Green Committee; see above) Oct. 31 – All day Halloween @ Taylorsville Library, @ Taylorsville Senior Center (Check with organizations for times) Nov. 6 – All day General Election Nov. 22 – All day Thanksgiving (City Offices Closed)

October 2018

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |


COUNCIL CORNER The biggest concern and No. 1 priority for any city is Public Safety. That certainly is the case for Taylorsville. We couldn’t be more pleased with our membership in Unified Police Department. We believe that we have the best precinct in all of UPD. We can attest that the UPD model is working. As you have most likely read, crime is down in Taylorsville (see Page 4). We recognize the hard work and sacrifice of our UPD officers, as well as the dedication they have to their jobs and to public safety. The Thin Blue Line is recognized and appreciated. We have serious challenges in Taylorsville but every step of the way, our officers have overcome difficulty, solved problems and exceeded expectations. Our Taylorsville Dayzz, for example, is not only one of the best-attended in the state but it has been held without serious incident – thanks in large part to our UPD precinct. Additionally, we have four of the top-10 busiest intersections in the entire State of Utah, which adds to our officers’ workloads. As a Council, we each receive briefings and daily reports of the bravery and sacrifice of our officers. They put their lives on the line more often than most of us realize. The City Council expresses our sincere thanks and gratitude to our men and women in blue of the Taylorsville Unified Police Department Precinct!

Left to right: Curt Cochran (District 2), Ernest Burgess (District 1), Dan Armstrong, Vice Chair (District 5), Meredith Harker (District 4), Brad Christopherson, Chair (District 3)

Scout Council Honored for 100th Year Taylorsville Boy Scouts and their leaders were honored by the City Council with a resolution declaring 2018 as the "Great Salt Lake Council 100th Scouting Anniversary Year." Specifically, Scout leaders were recognized for a "culmination of many hours of selfless volunteerism" and their generosity "to help shape the lives of many youth." About two dozen Boy Scouts from Taylorsville and their leaders attended the city’s Sept. 5 meeting where Council Member Dan Armstrong presented them with the resolution. “This organization depends on volunteers,” he said. “It never ceases to amaze me the number of men and women who will serve in a Scouting position, many times bearing much of the costs themselves.” The resolution “encourages all citizens to join in congratulating the many volunteer leaders, parents, church and community organizations who have generously allowed bringing this values-based program to our young people for the past 100 years, and many more to come.”


| www.taylorsvilleut.gov

City of Taylorsville Newsletter

Taylorsville Crime Stats See Downward Trend

By UPD Precinct Chief Tracy Wyant Great news: For the last two quarters, overall crime statistics in Taylorsville City have been on a noticeable downward trend. From January-March 2018, overall general offenses were down 10.3 percent, when compared to the same quarter the year prior. During the most recent quarterly report, covering April-June 2018, overall general offenses were down an even greater 12.4 percent. Specific decreases for the April-June UPD report indicate the following: • 41 percent decrease in graffiti • 33 percent decrease in auto thefts • 23 percent decrease in fraud • 10 percent decrease in general theft • 6 percent decrease in family offenses However, there’s still work to do. Although we have experienced significant decreases in many areas, including the overall statistics, we have also experienced a disappointing 5 percent increase in burglaries, as well as a 20 percent increase in drug-related offenses. There are likely correlations between these two increases, as narcotics use and distribution have a proven nexus to many property crimes. I want to thank the phenomenal work of the men and women in blue who serve Taylorsville City for their proactive approach in reducing crime. I would be remiss if I didn’t also acknowledge the tremendous assistance provided to UPD by the vigilant neighborhood watch groups, residents and visitors for their attentiveness and willingness to report crimes and suspicious activities. Crime reduction and overall public safety is a team effort. Also, of note, despite national police shortages, including in the State of Utah, the Taylorsville Precinct of the Unified Police Department is now fully staffed. This is a credit to the Unified Police Department’s aggressive recruitment process, focus as a full-service police organization and vast opportunities offered to employees for advancement and professional growth.

Taylorsville Youth Wash Cars for UPD

October 2018

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |

Taylorsville Firefighters Among Team Deployed to Hurricane Taylorsville firefighters Paul Van Harn and Jonathan VanHuss were among 16 Utah emergency workers mobilized to assist with Hurricane Florence bearing down on the Carolina coast. The massive Category 1 storm was expected to carry sustained winds of 105 miles per hour, push storm surges of up to 13 feet and dump as much as 40 inches of rain in some areas.

Paul Van Harn

Jonathan VanHuss Mandatory evacuations were ordered for most coastal counties of South Carolina and in parts of North Carolina, and more than 10 million residents in the Carolinas and Virginia were under storm watches or warnings, according to the National Weather Service. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) activated Utah firefighters in response. The UT-TF1 team specializes in water rescue and is made up of 12 firefighters from the Unified Fire Authority (UFA), two from Salt Lake City Fire Department and one from the Park City Fire Department. The team left for Bowling Green, Va., on Sept. 10, where they were staging in preparation of the hurricane. The team brought enough equipment to remain self-sufficient and to alleviate any burden to taxed municipalities in the area, according to UFA. UFA Taylorsville Bureau Chief Jay Ziolkowski said both Van Harn and VanHuss work out of the city’s Station 117. The firefighters are also Heavy Rescue Technicians specializing in five different disciplines, ranging from high angle to confined space rescue. Both have been working with UFA since 2009. As part of the 16-person team, they primarily focused on performing water rescue. “Similar to actions during Hurricane Harvey in 2017, the team will conduct searches over a wide area and perform evacuations and/or water rescues working from the two types of boats,” Ziolkowski said. The team took four boats with them, including Zodiacs and aluminum john boats. Deployment typically lasts 14 days. “These members are well-trained in rescue and have a unique focus and skillset as water rescue specialists with rescue boat certifications,” Ziolkowski said. “Their multiple talents allow UT-TF1 to place our best efforts on the ground (or water) in these very technical events. UT-TF1 is one of 28 federal disaster response teams around the nation. In most situations, FEMA deploys teams closer to the emergency. However, because Hurricane Florence represented a large threat, teams from farther away were called on to respond.


Create and Practice a Home Fire Escape Plan By UFA Bureau Chief Jay Ziolkowski The ability to get out of your house in a fire depends on advance warning from smoke alarms, as well as advance planning. Please consider the following: • Pull together everyone in your household and make a plan. Walk through your home and inspect all possible exits and escape routes. Households with children should consider drawing a floor plan of your home, marking two ways out of each room, including windows and doors. • Ensure smoke alarms are in every sleeping room, outside each sleeping area hallway, and on every level of the home. • Everyone in the household must understand the escape plan. When you walk through your plan, check to make sure the escape routes are clear and doors and windows can be opened easily. Chief Jay Ziolkowski • Choose an outside meeting place (i.e. neighbor's house, a light post, mailbox, or stop sign) that is a safe distance in front of your home where everyone can meet after they've escaped. • Call 911 from outside of the home by using a cell phone or going immediately to a neighbor’s house. Do not remain inside the burning building. • If windows or doors in your home have security bars, make sure the bars have emergency release devices inside so that they can be opened immediately in an emergency. Emergency release devices won't compromise your security — but they will increase your chances of safely escaping a home fire. • Once you're out, stay out! Under no circumstances should you ever go back into a burning building. If someone is missing, inform the fire department dispatcher when you call. By taking some time, you can mitigate any problem, prevent potential tragedy and ensure safety for you and your family. As always, take care and stay safe!


| www.taylorsvilleut.gov

Taylorsville Bennion Heritage Remembrances

  Most often, old places affect our identity and wellbeing. Taylorsville has an abundance of historic buildings, concentrated on historic 4800 South. Many more are located in the community of Bennion, as well.    Here is what we can learn from “OLD” places:  Local historians have deeply cared about the TaylorsvilleBennion Story. We have had a community of folks who have told our story through biographies, autobiographies, photos, oral and written histories, and plenty of urban legends. We have a whole cemetery of stories that we can draw from that tell the story of voices from the dust. We have had local artists, scholars and fellow travelers who have championed the dedication to keep our story alive.    Taylorsville traces its roots back to 1848 when several families began to settle west of the Jordan River. Visit the Taylorsville Bennion Heritage Center Museum to learn more.

City of Taylorsville Newsletter


Celebrate October at the Senior Center The Center has several events planned this month: • Tomando de su Salud: lunes1 de octubre al5 de noviembre a las 9:45 a.m. • Early Center Closure: Tuesday, Oct. 2 at 1 p.m. Mayor Kristie Overson enjoyed last month’s birthday lunch at the Senior Center with • Birthday Tuesday her aunt Cheri and mother, Mavis. Entertainment & Meal: Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 11 a.m. All October birthdays invited. • Exercise with U of U Students: Mondays & Wednesdays at 5:45 p.m. • Cancer Prevention Presentation with Huntsman Cancer Center: Monday, Oct. 15 at 11 a.m. • Halloween Party: Wednesday, Oct. 31 at 11 a.m. Fun. Games. Costume Contest. Drop by the center, 4743 Plymouth View Drive, or call 385-468-3371 for details.

Disfruta del Comité de Diversidad Cultural Si te gusta pasar un rato agradable y divertido. Participa e involúcrate en nuestras actividades culturales de la ciudad. El Comité de Diversidad Cultural, te invita a participar y asistir a nuestras reuniones los terceros miércoles de cada mes a las 7 p.m., en las oficinas de la Alcaldía de Taylorsville. Si tienes preguntas contáctanos a este correo: tvilleculdiverscommitt@gmail.com Te esperamos! If you would like to have fun and get involved in our city cultural activities, the Taylorsville Cultural Diversity Committee invites all those who are interested in promoting cultural activities to join its committee by contacting tvilleculdiverscommitt@gmail.com. You can also come and meet with the group every third Wednesday of each month at 7:15 p.m. at Taylorsville City Hall. See you there!

October 2018

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |


Dropbox, Computer or Phone: Paying Your Bill is Easy It’s never been simpler to pay your water and sewer bill to Taylorsville-Bennion Improvement District. Here are some ways: DROP BOX: NEW  Place your non-cash payment in the new conveniently located parking lot drop box. Drop off payments at 1800 W. 4700 South — just follow the sign. ONLINE: If you have an Internet connection and an email address, you can pay your bill online. To make a payment or sign up, go to the District’s website www.tbid.org, select Pay Bill Online and Sign Up.

WFWRD UPDATES FALL LEAF COLLECTION The annual Fall Leaf Collection Program will begin on Oct. 15 and last through Nov. 30.

BY MAIL: Mail check or money order to Taylorsville-Bennion Improvement District, P.O. Box 18579, 1800 W. 4700 South, Taylorsville, UT 84118-8579. A return envelope is provided with your bill. Just add the stamp, include your payment and drop it in the mail. BY PHONE: Call 801-968-9081 with your credit or debit card or bank information to speak with a Customer Service Representative.

During this time Taylorsville residents can pick up leaf bags at: • Kearns Library: 5350 S. 4220 West • Taylorsville City Hall: 2600 W. Taylorsville Blvd.

IN PERSON: Visit the District at 1800 W. 4700 South from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday to make your payment.

Leaf bags can be dropped off at: • South Ridge Park: 5210 S. 4051 West • Valley Ball Complex: 5100 S. 2700 West • Vista Park: 2055 W. 5000 South

If you have any questions, please contact the Taylorsville-Bennion Improvement District by calling 801-968-9081 or visiting www.tbid.org, Facebook and Twitter.

WFWRD leaf bags are limited to 10 bags per household, and available while supplies last. Residents can also use and drop off their own purchased leaf bags or lawn bags, as long as they only contain leaves. =====================================


Traffic Shift Through Mid-October

Here’s what you need to know about recycling vs. landfilling recyclable items. • There is still an increased cost to deliver recycling to the landfill. • WFWRD staff are not proposing to increase fees for services in 2019. • Taking recycling to the landfill will not prevent a need to increase fees for services in the future. • With unanticipated cost increases, the fee increase will be needed sooner to sustain services (with or without recycling). • Fee increases are not projected until the year 2022. • The projected increased cost is approximately 25 cents per home/month to continue recycling vs. landfilling. (Roughly $1 to recycle vs. 75 cents to landfill recycling.) =====================================

RECYCLING EDUCATION This fall, WFWRD will be visiting libraries and community centers throughout the District to provide education and materials on recycling. Please inquire at the Taylorsville Library or area community centers to find out when WFWRD will be there, or contact Sustainability Coordinator Jeffrey Summerhays at 385-468-6337 to request a visit.


City of Taylorsville Newsletter

| www.taylorsvilleut.gov

Friday, October 12, 2018

Adult Winner: $100 Junior Winner: $50

Young Adult Winner $75 Child Winner: $25

20 safety tips for trick-or-treaters


ou’re never too old to trick-or-treat (unless you are 35 and going by yourself, then yes, you are too old to trick-or-treat). But being safe knows no age limits, especially on a night when most people are wearing disguises. While it’s time to get your costume and candy bag ready, preparation of another kind is required for kid and adult alike. Here are some tips to stay safe this Halloween. 1. Avoid trick-or-treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult. 2. Costume accessories such as swords and knives should be short, soft and flexible. 3. Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them. And as difficult as it may be, limit the amount of treats you eat. 4. Beware the homemade treats made by strangers. Better to eat only factory-wrapped treats. 5. Walk from house to house, don’t run. Doing so with a flashlight will help you see and others to see you. 6. Test makeup in a small area before applying. Then remove it before sleeping to prevent possible skin or eye irritation. 7. Look both ways before crossing the street. Do we even need to say this one? 8. Only visit well-lit houses. 9. Do not enter a home without a trusted adult.

TaylorsvilleJ ournal .com

10. Never accept rides from strangers. Stranger danger is a real thing. 11. By not wearing decorative contact lenses, you lower the risk for serious eye injury. 12. Wear well-fitted costumes, masks and shoes to avoid blocked vision, trips, falls and relentless mockery from your peers. 13. Drive extra safely on Halloween. Popular trick-or-treating hours are 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. so be especially alert during those hours. Slow down in residential neighborhoods. We all know how excited kids can be. Enter and exit driveways slowly and carefully. 14. Remind children to watch for cars turning or backing up and to not dart into the street or between parked cars. 15. Put your electronic devices down as you walk around. 16. Keep costumes bright, or add reflective tape, to ensure kids are easier to spot. 17. Be careful next to candles or Jack-o’lanterns. 18. Keep an eye for allergies. If someone has serious allergies or food sensitivities, read any unfamiliar labels before handing over the candy. 19. Brush your teeth. Candy is sticky and cavities will scare you. 20. You can maximize your candy intake by planning your route. Stick to places you are familiar with so you can also circle back around

to Halloween headquarters. l

October 2018 | Page 21

Taylorsville contracts with a lobbyist to tout city among state lawmakers By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


veteran government affairs specialist has been contracted by Taylorsville to do the city’s bidding at the upcoming state legislative session, and elsewhere, as a lobbyist. Father of three and grandpa to five, John Hiskey, only thought he was retired, after Taylorsville City Attorney Tracy Cowdell and Mayor Kristie Overson got ahold of him. “I used to work for Sandy City when Tracy’s dad was on the city council there,” Hiskey said. “I knew [Cowdell] fairly well too. But I have to admit, his call surprised me.” That initial call led to Hiskey interviewing with Overson and signing a one-year, renewable contract to represent Taylorsville in a variety of ways. “(Hiskey) is our new lobbyist, hired primarily to help give us a voice on (Utah’s Capitol) Hill,” Overson said. “Taylorsville had this position well-funded several years ago. Then, the recession forced that budget to be cut. But I lobbied the city council to restore at least a portion of it going into the new legislative session, because other (Salt Lake Valley) cities do it, and we need to keep up with them.” The Taylorsville lobbyist budget in recent years has looked much like a roller coaster track. A decade ago, the budget was at the top of the first hill, at $220,000 per year. But the recession acted as the coaster’s first big drop, with the lobbying budget slashed to $80,000 in 2012. Later, it was cut even further to $35,000. “I was on the city council when those lobbying budget cuts had to be made,” Overson added. “I didn’t like it, because the cuts decreased the city’s presence at the state legislature. But that was the economy at the time. Now that it has improved, I made a pitch to the council a few months ago to increase the lobbyist budget.” Overson asked the Taylorsville City Council to raise that

second roller coaster hill to a $75,000 annual budget. But they sweetened the pot even more, settling on a $100,000 lobbying budget for the 2018–19 fiscal year, which runs through June 30. “The mayor made a good case for the importance of maintaining a presence at the state legislature through a lobbyist,” Councilman Ernest Burgess said. “As (the council) looked at the budget numbers, we decided we could put a little more money into that budget than she was requesting.” Overson believes it’s a wise move. “I think, for every dollar you invest in a lobbyist for our city, the return is 10-fold,” Overson said. “We need to make sure we are keeping up with other cities, as they seek funding for many different things. And we will be tracking the lobbying numbers. Next year, I will report to the council exactly what funding and other benefits the city received through our lobbying efforts. Then they will have to decide whether it is worth renewing the contract.” The value of John Hiskey’s lobbying contract is only a portion of the $100,000 budget the council approved. “We will have some leftover money in the budget to work with, as issues arise,” Overson said. One of the city’s primary concerns in gaining funding consideration is related to the bus rapid transit route, expected to impact 4700 South. Among other things, the line is intended to improve public transportation to the Salt Lake Community College Redwood Campus in Taylorsville. Hiskey officially began his contract lobbyist work for the city Aug. 1. The Highland High School and Westminster College graduate said it’s been a busy first couple of months. “They found me a spare desk at the city office, but I’m really not there much,” Hiskey said. “My initial marching orders were to get to know more about Unified Police and Fire, to learn

When there’s trouble a-“FOOT”


After being short on representation during the state legislative session for the past few years, Taylorsville City will once again have a lobbyist working Utah’s Capitol Hill next year. (Google)

about various governmental boards that impact the city and to begin to look for possible funding opportunities for various city projects.” Hiskey began his government affairs career more than 40 years ago, working economic development for Salt Lake City. He ended up with three different jobs in the city, before spending time with the county, even serving as an interim county commissioner. Before “supposedly” retiring, Hiskey worked in government relations and was deputy mayor for a time in Sandy. “Here in Taylorsville, I am finding a lot of good people who want to do what they can to improve their community,” Hiskey said. “There are many good recreational opportunities in the city. And certainly the new performing arts center (to be completed in 2020) will be remarkable. Taylorsville has a lot to offer, and I look forward to representing the city at the state legislature and other places.” l


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Page 22 | October 2018


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October 2018 | Page 23

VOTE for

Carrie Soderstrom Johnson, our proven leader on the Granite School Board. As a product of Granite schools, a parent of Granite students, the proud wife of a Granite educator, and a passionate business leader within our community – Carrie Soderstrom Johnson is making a difference as our Granite School Board of Education representative. Find me on Facebook at: Carrie Soderstrom Johnson for Granite School Board carriesoderstromjohnson@gmail.com

801-870-5989 PRIORITIES: • • • • •

Increase student learning Support our teachers Enhance community engagement Improve school safety Fiscal responsibility and transparency

2017-2018 ACCOMPLISHMENTS: • • • • •

Increased teacher pay Advocated for school safety upgrades Improved building & safe walking routes Championed a cost-savings Granite employee free medical clinic Gave our community a bold voice on the Granite School Board

ENDORSEMENTS: “Carrie Johnson has done an outstanding job representing our community on the Granite School District Board of Education! She exemplifies servant leadership and truly understands the needs of our students, our teachers, and our schools. Our community is stronger with her as our School Board Member. Carrie has my confidence, my endorsement, and my vote!” –Kristie Overson, Taylorsville Mayor “In my many, many years as an educator I have never seen a more dedicated board member who truly is involved and stays so connected to the schools they represent. My teachers and staff always comment on how good they feel to have such a qualified board member who listens, recognizes what happens at their school, and takes action. Carrie Johnson is exactly who we want to continue serving our students, teachers, and community!” Paid for by Carrie Soderstrom Johnson for Granite School Board

Page 24 | October 2018

–Debbie Koji, Principal & 2018 Huntsman Excellence in Education Award Recipient

Taylorsville City Journal


Rocky Mountain Care

Business Spotlights are a service offered to our advertisers to help them inform our readers about their businesses. For information on scheduling a Spotlight, please call us at 801-254-5974 or email us at ryan.casper@mycityjournals.com

Home Health Care: Assisting people with their health care needs while they remain in their own home is what home health care is all about. Home Health Care services are provided under the supervision of your physician and are available 24 hours a day. The type of services provided by home care vary but may include some of the following: Nursing assessment Medication management and teaching Wound care Diabetic instruction and care Dietary teaching Bowel and catheter care Drawing blood damples I.V. therapy Tube feeding Pain control/management Rehabilitation services Transfer and gait training Strengthening exercises Emotional support

If you can DREAM it... YOU CAN HAVE THE


Financial community resources counseling Someone may receive home health care in any place you call home. This may include your own home, your relative’s home, retirement centers and assisted living centers (some restrictions apply with home health aide services). Home health care has even been provided in hotel rooms when a patient is staying locally to recuperate before returning home. A patient may decide to stay locally after surgery and then return home to another city. Home health care may be provided in both places as long as patient continues to require skilled care and remains homebound. Home health care is paid by a variety of sources. Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance companies and social services organizations cover qualifying home care services. Home health care requires a physician’s order unless a person is paying privately for home health aide services. After getting an order from a physician, a nurse may assess the prospective patient’s eligibility for home health care. Home health care is for people

who can manage safely in their homes. If a patient lacks the proper facilities, the ability to get meals or does not have a regular support system, a different level of care may be needed. This may include assisted living centers or skilled nursing facilities. Hospice: Hospice assists individuals, their families and/ or caregivers, achieve the best quality of life through physical, emotional and spiritual care during a life-limiting illness. Hospice patients choose to focus on cares directed toward comfort, not a cure for the illness. Hospice is comprised of health care professionals and volunteers who together form a caring community helping individuals and their families facing a life-limiting illness. It differs from traditional medical interventions by providing support and care for persons in the last phases of illness so they can live as fully and comfortably as possible with life-affirming dignity. A patient on hospice does not have to be “home bound,” and is encouraged, if able, to get out and participate in activities and functions they enjoy. Hospice is for all age groups, including children, adults, and the elderly. The vision of hospice is to profoundly enhance the end of life for the dying person by ensuring access to exceptional quality care. The services provided by a hospice agency include the following:

Doctor and nursing services Skilled professional pain and symptom management Emotional, spiritual, financial and bereavement support services Medications related to the life limiting illness/comfort Home health aide Short-term inpatient care to manage symptoms Respite services 24-hour on-call doctor and nursing availability Dietary counseling Physical, occupational and speech therapy as needed to enhance quality of life Trained volunteer services Medication management and education Standard durable medical equipment Medical and incontinent care supplies Bereavement follow-up Assistance with accessing community resources, preparing medical directives, medical power of attorney, medical treatment plans and funeral planning Like home care, hospice services are paid for in a few different ways: Medicare (Part A), Medicaid, Health Insurance, and Private Pay. Additionally, Hospice services can be provided in patients’ homes, skilled nursing facilities, hospitals, assisted living centers, residential care facilities or wherever the patient calls home. l


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October 2018 | Page 25


Granite School District is hiring Kitchen Managers, Nutrition Service Workers, and Nutrition Worker Substitutes! Applicants must have: High school diploma or equivalent, background check, and be willing to obtain a food handler’s permit. • • • •

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October 2018 | Page 27

Departmental shift policy benefiting Taylorsville employees

“To Strengthen and Promote the Shared Interests of the Business Community” Representing the Business Voice in West Valley City, Taylorsville & Kearns Areas Contact Information: Barbara S. Riddle, CMP



801-977-8755 barbara@chamberwest.org

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By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com

aylorsville City Administrator John Taylor earned a laugh at a recent city council meeting, when he introduced the city’s new Justice Court Clerk. The exact quote was lost to the ages. But in essence, Taylor said, “We had no idea Jeff had the skills and smarts to this job; we were stunned.” A 1990 Taylorsville High School graduate, Jeff Gallegos said after the meeting he wasn’t surprised the people who interviewed him for the clerk’s position were a bit taken aback. “I have worked in government for a long time but never in a job that required a college degree,” he said. “While I have been working, I’ve also earned an associate’s degree at Salt Lake Community College and now need just three more classes to earn my bachelor’s degree. After that, I plan to move into a master’s program.” Perhaps the most interesting thing about Gallegos becoming Clerk of the Taylorsville Justice Court is that he is shifting from the city’s code enforcement division. Additionally, he is replacing in the clerk position, employee Kary Webb, who did just the opposite, moving from clerk into code enforcement. Administrator Taylor says this type of employee musical chairs is not particularly uncommon. “We don’t want working for Taylorsville City to be just a job; we want it to be a career,” he said. “We keep our staff count very low for a city our size, and those we do hire, we want to retain. We encourage employees working in one city department to consider job postings in other departments. If it serves our residents and furthers their careers at the same time, that’s great.” Taylorsville has 52 municipal employees, and Taylor said several have been with the city 20 years, about all the longer Taylorsville has existed as an incorporated city. “I feel good about our retention record,” he added. “And at least part of that success has come from employees being given a fair shot at moving from one department to another.” Taylor cited a number of examples. In addition to Gallegos moving from Code Enforce-

ment to the Justice Court—and Webb doing just the opposite—other employees have moved from working the justice court fine payment windows (on the first floor of City Hall) to both the building department and the business licensing division. “Working those (Justice Court) windows can be tough; a lot of people aren’t exactly happy when they come in to pay fines,” Taylor said. “[City officials are] more than happy to see those employees apply to other positions, rather than to see them burn out and leave.” Taylor began working for Taylorsville City as a contract employee, functioning as City Engineer. He remained in that post for five years until he too was able to shift departments, becoming the city’s community services director in 2012. Two years later, he was hired as city administrator. “Whenever there is a vacancy, we try to let our employees improve their situations by encouraging them to apply,” Taylorsville Mayor Kristie Overson said. “We are happy to give them those opportunities, and a lot of people have done it over the years.” Overson was involved in the final Gallegos interview for the justice court clerk position. “I was impressed with his interviewing skills and was glad he had a law enforcement background,” she concluded. “He presented very well, and we were pleased to give him this opportunity.” Gallegos had also worked as a court bailiff for more than 12 years. “I guess I have a knack for getting in and learning things when I am on the job,” Gallegos added. “If I commit to something, I try to learn new skills. I have always enjoyed working in the court system.” “If any of our employees apply for a position—and they meet the minimum qualifications for education and experience—we guarantee them an interview for any job they apply for,” Taylor said. “From there, it is up to them. But we know we have good employees, and they deserve to make their case, face-to-face, for any city position they want.” l

Taylorsville City Administrator John Taylor (L) and the city’s new Justice Court Clerk Jeff Gallegos have each benefited from the city’s long-standing policy to promote from within, whenever possible. (Taylorsville City)

Page 28 | October 2018

Taylorsville City Journal

Utah firefighters facing increase in wildfires across Western U.S. By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com

130 Years OF TRUST Taking Care of YOUR FAMILY’S NEEDS


Structures and acreage are going up in flames across the west in record numbers. (Outside Magazine)


he tragic Aug. 13 death of Draper City Fire Battalion Chief Matthew Burchett, 42, shook the firefighting community to its core, across Utah and the Western United States. An experienced wildlands firefighter, Burchett was known to his friends and loved ones as someone who was very thorough and meticulous in carrying out his professional duties. Those who make a living in the field, along with the people who love them, were reminded of how dangerous the work is through his tragic loss. And by every observable piece of scientific evidence available, there is no reason to believe the situation will improve anytime soon. Unified Fire Authority Assistant Chief Jay Ziolkowski is the UFA’s liaison to Taylorsville City. He said the impact of losing Burchett was significant. “Matt was one of the most experienced wildlands firefighters we had in Utah,” Ziolkowski said. “He had been with our (UFA) agency for 20 years before moving to the Draper Fire Department in May. A loss like this hurts every firefighter.” Burchett’s accidental death raises a number of questions for many Utahns unfamiliar with firefighting procedures. • Was he ordered by superiors to leave our state to fight the California fire, or did he volunteer? • What is the protocol by which firefighters cross state lines to battle blazes? • Are there enough firefighters and equipment to combat the growing number of western wildfires? If anyone would have those answers

TaylorsvilleJ ournal .com

it is Clint Mecham, a Unified Fire Authority division chief and Salt Lake County’s emergency manager. “When fires get too large for a state to battle with their own personnel, they make formal requests to other states to send them equipment and firefighters,” Mecham said. “There are various ways to do this. One of those is through something called the Emergency Management Assistance Compact. However, the EMAC had never been used to deploy Utah firefighters until last year.” The significance of that, Mecham added, is how much the recent growth in Western wildfires is taxing resources. In short, more “normal” channels for requesting firefighting assistance had already been depleted, forcing California authorities to pursue assistance in a more unusual way. “Firefighters are never assigned to go battle an out of state blaze,” Mecham said. “When a request is made, we put the word out to northern Utah firefighters, and they can volunteer for the duty.” Mecham said there normally is some overtime pay. But he believes the biggest thing motivating firefighters to cross state lines to lend a hand is their sense of duty and the understanding they can expect reciprocation when Utah wildland fires require reinforcements. Whether people believe it to be global warming, weather cycles or “blind luck,” there is no question the Western states are enduring more charred acreage these days than ever before. Salt Lake Valley residents were reminded of it all summer, by simply stepping outside and struggling to make out the silhouette of the Wasatch mountains, through the smoky haze.

Here in Utah, 370 structures had been claimed by wildfire this year (at press deadline), the greatest property loss in at least 15 years. The average number of Utah structures to go up in flames each year is 49. Also, at the end of August, the Utah Forestry Fire & State Lands Office reported some $75 million had been spent suppressing blazes on 186,000 acres across the state. Throughout the West and the rest of the nation, the wildfire trends are equally disturbing. North of Sacramento, California’s Mendocino Complex Fire, where Burchett lost his life, was the largest blaze in that state’s history. At press time, it had claimed more than 500 square miles and was 70 percent contained. Nationwide, from 1983 through 1999, there was no year in which 10,000 square miles went up in smoke. However, from 2000 through 2017, there were 10 such years. The burn total (at press time) for 2018 was about 8,900 square miles. Despite these trends, however, Ziolkowski said recruits continue to apply to become firefighters. “Our recruit numbers have dropped slightly in recent years, but nothing like the decline in police recruit numbers,” he said. “We still have plenty of good candidates to fill positions.” But, of course, those are the current firefighting positions available and paid for with tax dollars. The obvious question becomes, if the West continues to burn at its current rate in the years ahead, how many more fire suppression jobs will taxpayers have to fund? l

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LarkinMortuary.com October 2018 | Page 29


Trick (free but timely) or Treat (expensive but quick)

t’s the most won-der-ful time of the year! It’s spooky time! Halloween is my favorite holiday. In my opinion, we don’t have nearly enough occasions to dress up in costume and eat candy. Almost every year, I start planning my costume early. I’m one of those people that need my costume exact to every last detail. I’ve even bleached my hair to make sure the long blonde hair I needed for my costume was accurate. Wigs are way too expensive. Unfortunately, not spending $50 to $200 on costumes at the pop-up Halloween stores can only be off-set by time. Spending the time to create your own unique costumes can save loads of cash. Head to your local Michaels craft store or JoAnn’s fabric store for all the knickknacks and fabric you will need for your costume. Coupons are always available for Michaels, make sure to visit their website and download that coupon before you head to the store. JoAnn’s usually has coupons available on their website as well. I wouldn’t say I have a talent for sewing, which is why I love visiting JoAnn’s. In the middle of the store, an entire table of pattern books and file cabinets full of patterns to choose from awaits. My suggested process is to spend some time looking through multiple books to find the perfect pattern, pick the pattern from the corresponding cabinet, and then go look for the appropriate fabric. For accessories, like bracelets, hats, shoes, facewear, etc., shop around early. I generally like to go online and screen-shop through sites like Amazon and eBay for the perfect iteration of the accessory I’m looking for. I have two different extensions on my Chrome browser that automatically compare prices throughout the internet. If I’m lucky, they will



pop up before I check-out with coupons or websites that offer the same product at a lower price. (The two I use are Best Price and Honey.) Not surprisingly, I adore hosting Halloween parties. Pinterest is my ultimate go-to for fun Halloween-themed treats, drinks, and decorations. One of my favorite treats to make is Ghost Pretzels. Pick up a bag of long pretzels from the grocery store, dip them in melted white chocolate, throw some small googly-eyes on there, and they’re done! Some other simple recipes include Halloween popcorn or trail mix, ghost bananas, pumpkin clementines, spider cookies, blood-splattered Oreos, Jell-O worms, mummy hotdogs, and Halloween spaghetti. Decorations require a balancing act between time and money as well. Buying decorations from a store (my favorites are Michaels and Spirit Halloween) is quick, but can be expensive. Homemade decorations are inexpensive, but they require a fair amount of time. One of the most inexpensive decorations is a front-yard spider web. All it requires is a long spool of thick thread. If you have trees and other plants in the front-yard, this can be pretty painless; just walk through your yard and hook the thread over some branches to create the outer perimeter of the web, then keep walking in circles, making the perimeter smaller and smaller each time. Tie a few perpendicular thread pieces throughout the circle, and that’s it! Don’t forget the spider made out of a black bag full of fallen leaves and some pipe cleaners. Witches brooms can also be simple to make, depending on how fancy the witch is. If you have an old dusty broom lying around, that’s perfect. Wrap the handle with some fabric, preferably black, orange, or

purple, splatter some green spray paint across the rest of the handle, and jostle up the brush on the end of the broom. Easy-peasy. There are many other decoration ideas easily googleable that I have yet to try, including floating candles, glowing eyes, wicked witch feet, packing tape ghosts, potion bottles, bats, stacked pumpkins and whimsical grave stones. Need more? Spoox Bootique (3453 S. State St.) is open all year and they have fantastic Halloween-themed decorations, collectables, apparel, homeware, accessories, furniture, and trick or treat buckets. l

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My husband is in need of a blood type O Kidney donor. Thomas is living with chronic pain due to polycystic kidney disease. His kidneys are no longer able to properly filter proteins and waste or provide his body with essential vitamins & minerals. Thomas has lived his life helping and providing for others. He has always put the needs of others before his own. Knowing he is in need of a kidney, especially from a living donor is hellish to him, he would never ask for anything...he is a provider & giver, never the receiver.

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Taylorsville City Journal

Life and Laughter—Dressed to Kill

Laughter AND




very autumn, as I reconstructed our home after three months of child infestation, my daughters settled into their school classes and thoughts turned to Halloween. More specifically, thoughts turned to Halloween costumes. I’d load my girls into the minivan and we’d attack the pattern books at Joann fabric, looking for the perfect costumes. (These pattern books weighed approximately 450 lbs. and had to be moved carefully or they would fall off the narrow perch and crush your hip bones.) Costumes ranged from Disney princesses to Death, and each outfit had to last for decades because they were worn all the time and handed down for generations. (For example, one daughter, dressed as Snow White, shredded the hem of her gown under the plastic tires of her Big Wheel. Her dress looked like Snow White had been attacked by a pack of very short raccoons. She still wore it every day.) After finding the right pattern, we’d roam the aisles, looking for fabric that didn’t cost the equivalent of an actual Disney movie. During my costume-making tenure, I created all of the Disney princesses, a

cheerleader, Super Girl, a lion, a pumpkin and several witches. (Sidenote: A witch costume in 1990 consisted of a long black dress, a long black cape, long black hair, a black hat and a broomstick. Now a witch costume is a black miniskirt, fishnet stockings and a push-up bra. I have no idea how to fly a broom in that outfit.) Speaking of slutty clothes, my daughters were often pushing the envelope when it came to modesty. According to my daughter, her belly dancer’s shirt was too long, so (when I wasn’t around) she rolled it up several times to display her 10-year-old abs, and the gypsy Esmeralda’s blouse kept “accidentally” falling off her shoulders. Daughter number three used her Cinderella costume as a method of seduction as she walked up and down our driveway in her slappy plastic high heels, flirting with the men building the garage. Did I mention she was four? During another Halloween, she wanted to be Darth Maul. I made her costume, painted her face, but refused to put horns on her head. She grew her own devil horns a few years later. By Oct. 20, all my intentions to create the perfect Halloween costume for each daughter devolved into madness





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as I frantically sewed to have everything done for the school’s Halloween parade (which is now the Fall Festival). My Singer sewing machine would be thrumming 24-hours a day as I slowly lost my mind. I’d throw boxes of cold cereal at them for dinner, while I shrieked, “I’m making these costumes because I love you. Now shut the hell up!” Once Halloween was over, costumes went into a big box and were worn by my daughters and their friends all year. At any given moment, a girl wearing Beauty’s voluminous yellow ball gown would be chasing Super Girl through the living room, with a toddler-sized Jack-o’-lantern nipping at


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their heels. My daughters have carried on the costume tradition. My grandchildren have been garden gnomes, Austin Powers, a unicorn, and even an 18-month-old Betty Boop. It makes my black Halloween heart smile. Now, my Singer gathers dust and I haven’t looked through pattern books for years, but every October my fingers twitch and I fight the urge to take my girls to browse fabric aisles. I wonder what my husband is doing this weekend. He’d make a beautiful Disney princess. l



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Profile for The City Journals

Taylorsville City Journal October 2018  

Taylorsville City Journal October 2018

Taylorsville City Journal October 2018  

Taylorsville City Journal October 2018

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