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December 2018 | Vol. 18 Iss. 12


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t is M.A.D. Jags season for West Jordan High School, when students unite with the community to Make A Difference. This year, money earned from fundraising activities will be donated to Angel’s Hands Foundation. Last year, students raised $51,500 for their charity. But M.A.D. Jags isn’t just about the money. “Students who participate in the events gain a little different perspective on life and the importance of selflessly working for the benefit of others,” said SBO advisor Richard Hoonakker. “I know when the total is revealed there are a lot of tears.” Planning for M.A.D. Jags begins in early October. Hoonakker estimates SBOs work around 80 hours a week during the four weeks of the charity drive. “The members of student government work ridiculously hard during this time of year,” said Hoonakker. “They are exhausted but somehow keep a smile on their face as they make their way to completing the next task.” SBO President Lauryn Meyers said the effort is worth it. “We all obviously get really tired because there’s a lot that we are doing, but it just makes me feel a part of something that’s a lot bigger than I am,” she said. “It is nice to see that number at the end, but it’s not really about that. It’s about the relationships we make with our fellow officers—the kids we’re helping and our community.” M.A.D. Jags events begin the last week of November and continue until Dec. 20. Spirit nights Plan on eating out every Tuesday night in December. Various local restaurants are hosting spirit nights and will donate a percentage of their proceeds to the charity drive. Dec. 3: Hot Cocoa Night WJHS students will reach out to the wider community, passing out free hot chocolate near Temple Square while asking for donations to the cause.

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SBOs collected $683 during a 3-minute collection blitz for the charity drive kick-off assembly. (Jet Burnham/City Journals)

It is one of Hoonakker’s favorite M.A.D. Jags activities. “People outside of our community get to see and hear about the work the students at WJHS are doing,” he said. Dec. 10: Mr. M.A.D. Jags Pageant WJHS boys will pay for the privilege of competing for the title of Mr. M.A.D. Jags. Contestants demonstrate their talents (and courage) to earn the audience’s votes. Money paid for voting rights adds to the charity fund total. Dec. 13: Benefit Concert and Craft Market Dance Company and Madrigals are just two of the groups that will perform at the ben-

efit concert. Local crafters will also be selling their creations at an open market after the performances. Dec. 17: Charity Gala A formal dinner, catered by a local company, will have limited seating. Contact WJHS for ticket information. Dec. 19: A basketball game to remember One of the biggest money-makers of the season is the basketball game where the drill team and dance company team up to take on the cheerleaders. The game begins like any other game—until the audience gets involved. They flash cash at the officials to influence the game. They can pay to raise the score, bench half of a

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mrdrycleaners.com team or substitute a teacher into play. “Depending on how much they give us, we’ll do what they want,” said Meyers. “The scores were over 100 last year—not because they got that many points but because their parents were paying to raise the score.” Winter Concerts When attending the orchestra (Dec. 12), band (Dec. 18) and choir Continued on page 5...

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Quick Quack opens in West Jordan with special opening fund raiser By Bob Bedore | bob@mycityjournals.com The West Jordan City Journal is a monthly publication distributed directly to residents via the USPS as well as locations throughout West Jordan. 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 West Jordan Team CREATIVE DIRECTOR: Bryan Scott bryan@mycityjournals.com EDITOR: Travis Barton Travis@mycityjournals.com ADVERTISING: 801-254-5974

Jessica Cavar receives a check thanks to generous donations at the opening of the new Quick Quack Car Wash (Bob Bedore/City Journals)

DIRECTOR OF ADVERTISING: Ryan Casper ryan.casper@mycityjournals.com 801-671-2034 ADVERTISING ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES: 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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ew businesses open quite often in West Jordan. And most of them open with some sort of special to get attention, but when Quick Quack opened its latest location in town they wanted to do more. Sure, they did the usual free carwashes type promotion, though Quick Quack’s free washes went on for 10 days and handed out thousands of washes. But it was the “pre-opening” that really stands out. It’s the type of promotion that Quick Quack does at every opening. “This really is the best part of my job,” said Alex Miezzejewski, Utah Marketing Leader. “Opening a new location is always a great thing, but doing it the way we do it is really great. Being able to give someone a check is amazing. It’s truly my favorite part of my job.” The day before their official opening, Quick Quack opened up for three hours giving out free car washes while asking for donations for Jessica Cavar, a mother of two who is suffering from Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. Quick

Quack matched the donations and gave her a check as part of the ribbon cutting ceremony. “This has truly been a humbling experience, in many ways,” said Jessica as she waved to people as they drove by after exiting the car wash. “A little bit ago I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and told I had 3 months to live. And now here I am still battling.” Jessica is a true picture of bravery. Other than the surgical mask she wears you would think all is as it should be in her world. As she waves at the people who have donated you can see the smile in her eyes. And the next day with her two children she has to chase them around like any other mother. But the needs she has are great and the money raised at Quick Quack $4,400 – will help. Jessica is the wife of prominent local physical education teacher and Utah Soccer Alliance coach Daniel “Dado” Cavar. This is the type of promotion that Quick Quack does at all their openings. “We look for

someone in the community and do what we can to help,” said Alex. “Sometimes it’s a local high school or other group, but we really love it when it’s an individual that is really in need.” In Jessica’s case there was a true feeling of Kismet. Jessica’s Aunt works for the company that builds the Quick Quack washes and was able to present her name for a possible promotion. It was instantly accepted, and plans began for the pre-opening. This location, at 7800 South and 3800 West, marks the 14th location in Utah for Quick Quack. They have over 65 locations total throughout Utah, California, Texas Arizona, and California. To find out more about West Jordan’s newest car wash, you can visit dontdrivedirty.com. If you’d like to help out Jessica, donations can be given to her through Venmo (@cavarfamilycancerfoundation). l

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Page 4 | December 2018

West Jordan City Journal

...continued from front page (Dec. 20) winter concerts, look for SBOs collecting donations. Odd Jobs The community can make its biggest impact on the charity drive through Odd Jobs. Groups of students will be going door to door in the evenings and on Saturdays, offering to help with whatever odd jobs need doing. Although donations for services are not required, they are appreciated. Every year, the SBOs are overwhelmed by generous donations. However, besides earning donations, students earn priceless experiences while serving their neighbors. “You can have some really amazing experiences at Odd Jobs,” said Senior Class President Anne Szymanski. “I’ve been to so many houses where the person said it was really what they needed that day.” She believes the experience strengthens the entire community. “Not only are we helping a specific charity, but through odd jobs, we can help our entire community, and I think that’s the essence of charity season—helping as many people as you can,” said Szymanski. Lunchtime activities Students can support M.A.D. Jags by participating in lunchtime activities. They can buy a Crush soda for $2 to be sent to their “secret” crush. To remain anonymous, they can pay an extra $2. The recipient can also pay $2 to find out who sent it. “In a roundabout way, we make six bucks per soda,” said Meyers. For just $1, students can request a song to

be played over the sound system during lunchtime. Just $1 also buys a balloon with a guaranteed prize-winning raffle ticket inside. Prizes such as restaurants coupons, phone accessories and tickets to events have been donated by local businesses. Dec. 20: Buy-Out Day The final day of the M.A.D. Jags is BuyOut Day. “It’s basically a day where students can pay to get out of their classes,” said Szymanski. Once they’ve met the collection goal determined by their teacher, students are free to participate in video game competitions, karaoke and other social activities. Silent Auction Faculty members and students are also then free to bid on silent auction items, donated by local businesses, community members and teachers. “The teachers at WJHS have proven to be quite generous, often paying more for an item than it is worth,” said Hoonakker. Corporate sponsors For the first time this year, M.A.D. Jags has corporate sponsors. The Utah Grizzlies donated hockey tickets for the Dec. 15 game and Riverton Chevrolet, already a sponsor of Angel’s Hands Foundation, will donate $7,500 through the high school. For more information on how you can donate to M.A.D. Jags, visit West Jordan High School’s Facebook page or website at westjordanhigh.org. l

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December 2018 | Page 5

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or many, November is the month of pumpkin spice and giving thanks. It’s that time just before the snow starts to fall and the chance to get the holiday decorations up. But for aspiring writers, November means NaNoWriMo! For those left scratching their heads, that means National Novel Writing Month, and it’s a challenge handed out to write 50,000 words toward a novel in the month. The Viridian Library in West Jordan kicked off the month with “Local Writers & You” event. The “Writing Celebration” kicked off with a reception on Nov. 2 and then held a daylong conference featuring more than 70 published authors presenting workshops, book signings and panel discussions. But even if you missed this event, there is still no excuse not to try your hand at writing. You can find writing groups all over Utah where encouragement, feedback and idea sharing come in abundance. Once such group meets at High Point Coffee on 7800 South in West Jordan. Aspiring writers, like Tony, Bri, and Ian, cover the table with note, laptops and warm drinks as they look for the work to make their word count for NaNoWriMo. “It’s the one month where I really turn writing into a part-time job,” said Ian, whose real full-time job involves working in a warehouse while he plots out his stories. “It’s a month that really focuses me to write and not procrastinate.” NaNoWriMo began in 1999 and has grown every year. Last year, nearly half a million people cast off their normal personas and became “writers,” and this year should pass that mark easily. And it’s more than just a challenge, the site (nanowrimo.org) is a fountain of help for writers of all levels. “NaNoWriMo and writing groups really give us a lot,” said Tony, working on a supernatural thriller with a cultist/Lovecraft vibe. “It’s great to have a community getting together for the same goal. There is a lot that can come from that sort of mental collaboration.” Bri, who is typing away on a cyberpunk racing story, agrees. “Writing is something you really have to do yourself, but it doesn’t mean that you have to do it alone,” she said. “Having others who are going through the same thing you are is really empowering.” The writing group that the three belong to expands and contracts as people come and go, but on this night they are all huddled around a small table with barely enough real estate to hold their materials and certainly nowhere near enough to contain their imaginations. “I just enjoy telling stories in any medium I can,” Tony, who is a picture framer in his other life, said. “Writing is the easiest one to do because I don’t have to drag others into it, and

High Point Coffee in West Jordan provides a great place for writers to write, and sip. (Bob Bedore/City Journals)

I have an endless budget to let my imagination go crazy.” Tony is referring to movie scripts that often involve having to get a lot of people and money behind for anything to happen with them. But with writing, you are the only person you have to convince that the story is worth spending time on to finish. Ian, sees writing as very important. “Writing is the core of any collaborative project,” he said. “Pretty much every project started with someone writing it out a bit. It’s the framework for so much.” Ian describes his latest project as a revenge thriller. “At least half of it,” he said as the others give a laugh. Bri and Tony make remarks like, “and then hilarity ensues.” It is obvious that these three like to have fun while they work. And part of that “group fun” can be very important in writing. “Writer’s Block” can be a real problem for many writers, and getting a chance to stop and talk things out with others can be a great way to break out of a slump. And NaNoWriMo is another way to help with writing. “It pushes me,” Bri said. “It forces me to make it through the draft process, and I find that very helpful.” Tony quickly agrees with her. “I have a terrible habit of over re-writing chapters,” he said. “But with NaNoWriMo, I’m forced to continue the story. I can go back and do the re-writes when the month is over, but until then I keep moving forward. It’s amazing.” Ian joins in on the thought, showing the true nature of a collaborative fore that comes from a writing group.

“It gets the imagination into hyper-mode, and the sparks just start flying,” he said. “And it’s the small sparks that can start big fires.” Even though NaNoWriMo ends in November, the forums stay active year round and remain a great place to look for ways to start your journey as a writer. You can also check out the League of Utah Writers (leagueofutahwriters. com and on Facebook) to find a possible writing group near you. And speaking of writing groups, here’s a little advice: Keep your passion as a writer, but don’t let that infect how you interact with the group. And remember that writing is very personal, so don’t attack someone’s “personal” writing. And on the flip side, try not to take any advice personally. Remember why you’re there so you can be part of a strong community and not get ousted. “I heard a great bit about how to get rid of people you don’t want in your group,” Bri said with a smile. “You have to disband the group and then find a different night for the rest of the group to meet and you just don’t tell the other person.” The others laughed and agreed that they’ve seen it happen before. So, if you have ever had the bug to write and get one of your stories down for others to read, there are many places that can help you. You don’t have to wait until next year’s NaNoWriMo. You can start today. Pick a daily word count that works for you (even 100 words a day) and do what you can to stick with it. Check out the resources that are out there for you. And whatever you do, just start writing. l

West Jordan City Journal

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December 2018 | Page 7

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en Wallentine is the new police chief of West Jordan City, replacing Doug Diamond who retired in April 2018. Chief Wallentine has spent 35 years in law enforcement as a beat officer, a public attorney and a prosecutor. He holds a Juris Doctor and most recently was a special agent for the Utah Attorney General. Wallentine says, however, that his law degree is not the only experience that will dictate his leadership. The role of public attorney, prosecutor and law degree, “certainly gives me the skills and the tools to help not only evaluate legal issues in the department and to train our officers to police on a constitutional basis. But, some days I think my greatest strength is that I remember the days that I spent as a street cop.” “The experiences that I formed as a young officer and my perspective of what people really need in relationships and communication with police—those certainly have been interlaced over my entire career,” Wallentine said. A police chief sets the tone of the department. The goals and ideals of a chief will trickle down to all the officers. “I think those formative experiences of being a street cop and seeing police services delivered at the very core level, citizens in need and citizens in distress, those memories are forming more of what I do every day than my education,” Wallentine said. “I am first and foremost a street cop.” As a leader for law enforcement, Wallentine oversees not only day-to-day management but is responsible for the future efficacy of the officers. “My responsibility as chief now is to drive forward the leadership role in the police department,” Wallentine said. “That means helping grow, develop young leaders. We have among us the leaders of the future.” The potential for West Jordan’s growth is immense. There are 6,000 open acres, highways with the potential of becoming main thoroughfares and constant applications to city council for housing and commercial development. From the year 2010 to 2018 the population has grown nearly 10 percent. “Right now is the time we need to grow the leadership for public safety,” Wallentine said. Wallentine has spent many hours outside of Utah, training hundreds of officers on the use of force. He worked as bureau chief of POST Investigations Bureau and served on the administrative council for the Utah Department of Public Safety. He also worked for the Utah Attorney General as chief of law enforcement. Through this wide scope and contact with officers from around the country, he is confident in the officers in West Jordan. “The men and women of West Jordan are the finest,” he said. “We are not so big that we have lost the sense of community and investment. When I come to Utah, I see very good

Judge Kunz officiating the oath of office for Police Chief Ken Wallentine, city council in attendance. (Photo courtesy West Jordan)

cops. When I come to West Jordan I see the very best.” Police are often under scrutiny, and public opinion toward them can be critical and harsh. This is reflected in the number of potential applicants lining up to complete officer training. Wallentine will oversee the entire law enforcement department in West Jordan, including 122 officers. Seven of those positions are new since the property tax increase in August 2018. There is potential for the city council to approve more in years to come with that same tax money. “Recruiting good officers is a challenge,” Wallentine said. “When I started in law enforcement many years ago, I remember distinctly the day that I tested. [I] showed up at the department, and there were three vacancies, but there were over 400 people there to test. Those days are so long gone.” Wallentine takes pride in his work and service a police officer. “There’s a lot of joy; I use that word advisedly—going into a situation and helping folks get a little bit of order, a little bit of peace restored in their lives so they can get back to that,” Wallentine said. In 1869, John McCammon started his career in law enforcement in Kansas. His descendants, including Ken Wallentine, continued his precedent of law and order careers. Wallentine’s family is peppered with highway patrol, county sheriff, deputy sheriff and even includes a great-uncle that was killed by an armed robber. His own family continues this tradition with two children in uniform. l

West Jordan City Journal

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Wild West Jordan Playground is no more, new structure to be built By Erin Dixon | erin@mycityjournals.com


ourteen years ago, 6,000 community members joined together to build a tremendous playground. Named the Wild West Jordan Playground, thousands of children enjoyed it. The intense play, as well as fluctuating weather, caused extensive damage and wear to the structure. It was demolished in November this year. West Jordan released an official statement that the playground has “been ‘loved to death.’” Before demolition, West Jordan city leaders held a public meeting to inform the public of the need to remove the playground. There was extensive damage throughout the structure, which meant the playground was no longer safe for play. Melissa Johnson, a community member and former West Jordan councilmember and mayor, contributed extensively to the project. At the time of the playground’s construction, she functioned on the publicity and fundraising committee, then later as construction captain. “I got to use a hammer and nails and actually put it together,” she said. “Along with my five children, who at the time ranged in age from 3 to 11, we served together on this project, and it brought a lot of people in the community together. It was truly a labor of love.” “It’s time for us to replace it with something that’s more modern,” Johnson said. Future plans The new structure is still in the planning stages. City Manager David Brickey gave ideas of what the city intends to put in its place. “The city and the city council wants to design something that allows all children of all abilities to use all their senses to explore and play—something similar to what you currently see at the Sierra Newbold playground,” Brickey said. “We want the new park to be everything the old park was and a little bit more.” Construction is projected to take place between next February and April. “We’re shooting for May 31 for when we’ll be opening for the new playground,” Brickey said. The city’s official statement also included financial information about the demolition. “Knowing how beloved this iconic feature is within the community as well as its history as a community-funded and built project, city officials hired contractors to complete a playground assessment and a safety audit. They concluded that the most fiscally responsible and safest option for children would be to rebuild the playground with modern materials and an all-abilities-friendly design.” Renovations alone to the existing structure would have cost upwards of $500,000, which did not include consistent maintenance costs. The money for the structure will come from the existing budget from the Parks Improvement Fund. The estimated cost for the new structure is between $750,000 and $800,000.

Demolition occurred mid-November, leaving flat earth in its place. (Erin Dixon/City Journals)

Weather worn play equipment, comparing 2005 to 2018. (Courtesy/West Jordan city)

Beloved by many Many people used the park for many years. Johnson recalls her son, who at the time of the build, was 10 years old. “The first day of the build was my oldest son’s’ tenth birthday,” she said. “You had to be 10 to help. He got to help build it and he got so excited. He was that kind of kid he was, and now he’s that kind of adult.” “He remembers very, very clearly being able to help on a build,” Johnson said. The Wild West Jordan playground was the first of the community-built playgrounds that Johnson was involved with. There are four additional playgrounds that were constructed after the Wild West Jordan that involved residents, town hall idea meetings and community labor. “It set a model for additional community-built playgrounds,” Johnson said. “Most of

them went hand in hand with neighborhood cleanup projects.” Even residents from outside the city would drive just to come to this playground. William Kitchen would bring his 4-year-old son to the playground. He lives in West Valley and would make the 15-minute drive frequently. “We were really surprised that is was just cleared out,” he said. “I have him 50/50 custody, so every time I have him, I bring him down here. He refers to it as the castle park. It looked cool; it had a lot of hiding places. We always played hide and seek. I was really confused. I really hope it’s a new and improved version of the old one. I don’t know of another park like that.” You can find more information at: www. westjordan.utah.gov/playground. l

West Jordan City Journal


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December 2018 | Page 11

Winter driving safety: Snow falls and you slow down


he long line at the local auto body shop isn’t just for oil changes, it’s for winter tires too. With temperatures dropping and leaves soon to follow, it’s time for a refresher course on safe winter driving. 1) Know the conditions Technology affords us the privilege of knowing road conditions before ever leaving the house. Utah Department of Transportation has more than 2,200 traffic cameras or sensors which gives visuals and data on all major UDOT roads. Drivers can then adjust their routes or schedules according to the heaviness of traffic making for less congestion and less risk for accidents. The UDOT app means you can see all those cameras from your phone. Twitter feeds also provide alerts about traffic situations throughout the state, including roads up the canyon. Unified Police have a canyon alerts Twitter page for to update traffic in Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons as well as tire requirements and road closures. 2) Prepare the car Make sure the car is prepared for the road conditions, first with good tires. Snow tires give greater tread for better traction. If only two new tires are placed on the car, make sure to put them in the rear. With the falling snow, it’s necessary to have quality wiper blades that ensures clear views rather than leaving water streaks across windshield impairing your ability to drive. The wiper

fluid reservoir also needs to be replenished before the first snows hit. Snow and ice should be completely removed from the windows, headlights and taillights prior to driving to ensure visibility. If your car is parked outside overnight, place towels over the windows. This keeps the windows from icing over. A system should be in place to check everything in your car such as the battery power and your cooling system. Antifreeze helps the vehicle withstand the freezing temperatures. The vehicle should also be stocked with safety items in the case of an emergency. The Utah Department of Public Safety suggests on its website to have jumper cables, a tow rope and small shovel in case the car gets stuck, reflectors or flares to make sure your car is visible to others driving, flashlight and batteries, extra winter clothes, first-aid kit, battery or solar powered radio, sleeping bag, fresh water and non-perishable food, paper towels and hand warmers. 3) Control the vehicle Keeping the car under control requires some safe driving tips. The most obvious: drive slow. Despite our impatience or urgency to get to the desired location, slow driving is the safest driving. Staying under the speed limit, which is meant for ideal conditions, becomes even more important when traveling over snow, ice, standing water or slush. In drivers education courses, prospective

drivers learn about the rule for distance between your car and the one in front of you. Driving 60 mph? Stay six car lengths back. 70 mph? Seven car lengths back. This distance should be increased even more during wet conditions to allow the car time and space to stop without rear ending the vehicle in front. All movements should be gradual rather than sudden. This means avoiding sharp turns, accelerating slowly and braking softly. Though you may have four-wheel drive or even all-wheel drive, this does not give license to drive recklessly in winter conditions. This means staying off cruise control as well. The need for seat belts increases tenfold during the winter. With car seats, place coats or blankets around the children after strapping them in. Coats can limit the effectiveness of a car seat. Stay alert. Deer become more active after storms. Black ice causes many crashes and that ice typically looks like wet spots. If skidding does take place, steer in the direction the back of the car is going and ease off the gas. Remember to keep the gas tank at least halfway full, it will keep the gas tank from freezing and if you get stuck in a traffic jam, you may need as much gas as possible. 4) Time For those of you who struggle with punctuality, this becomes paramount. Giving yourself plenty of time to reach your destination means you won’t rush, decreasing the chances of a crash. l

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December 2018 | Page 13


Wasatch Medical Supply 1366 W 7800 S, West Jordan, UT 84088

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amily. Everyone has one and it’s what makes Wasatch Medical Supply in West Jordan a special place. That and their essential supportive health products. One of the only medical supply companies in the Salt Lake Valley (especially on the west side), Wasatch Medical Supply is local, family owned and seasoned in the medical equipment world. While the company has been around for over a decade, it was bought by the Sorenson family three years ago. With the experience of brothers Jeremy and Jeff in medical sales and father Neil no longer doing his previous work due to health issues, the family chose to roll the dice. “We decided to take a leap of faith and bought this,” said Jill West, co-owner and Neil’s daughter. For West, it’s been three years developing skills doing something she’s never done, but it’s exciting to learn the ins and outs of business as well as build new relationships with neighbors in the city. The Sorenson family has taken its close-knit, communicative approach to the business world with their customers. “Our communication is a big aspect for our customers,” West said. “It’s nice to know that our customers feel like they’re part of us and that they communicate with all of us that are helping them. Because they know we are together on it.” West and her father brief one another each night so they’re always aware of each customer’s need. It’s that personal focus with patrons that separates Wasatch

Medical Supply from large corporations. “Healthcare is so expensive and we know that it is,” West said. “We try to keep our prices as low as possible and help our customers find the best options for them.” Having forged strong relationships with the nation’s leading suppliers and manufacturers, Wasatch Medical Supply has plenty of products for customer needs including: wound care, first aid, wheelchairs, walkers, crutches, compression stockings, orthopedic soft goods, orthotics, and incontinent, diabetic and bariatric supplies. Its current promotion gives you a free starter kit with every purchase of compression stockings, which includes lotion, gloves and all the necessary items to put on and care for those stockings. You can find Wasatch Medical Supply at 1366 W. 7800 South in West Jordan, online at wasatchmedicalsupply.com and by phone at 801-566-5844. Or swing by the store Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. or Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. You may catch the entire Sorenson family there. l

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West Jordan City Journal




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Call for Volunteers

M AY O R ’ S M E S S A G E The holiday season is a time of giving, and we have so many great examples of giving within West Jordan. Volunteers who devote time and resources to serving others accomplish amazing things and make our City special. Here are just a few examples:

GET INVOLVED & HELP STRENGTHEN YOUR COMMUNITY Several West Jordan City Committees have openings. If you have a little time and a desire to make a difference – we need you! • Events Committee • Healthy West Jordan Committee • Parks & Open Lands

• Sustainability Committee • Western Stampede Committee • South Valley Regional Airport Board

For more information, contact Heather Everett at Heather.Everett@WestJordan. Utah.gov or visit the city website committee volunteer page at WestJordan.Utah. gov/committees.

Shop West Jordan and Positively Affect Your Community Did you know that every day you have the ability to positively affect your community? It is quite simple really. So simple that most of us don’t even know we are doing (or, not doing) it. Three words – SHOP WEST JORDAN. What happens when we, as consumers, purchase our goods and services locally? Well, first, we are contributing to the sales tax revenue of our city … those sales tax revenue dollars provide substantial funding for things we expect in our community. Like what, you ask? Sales tax revenue can positively affect our police force, our fire department, our local parks and public utilities. By buying local we are also keeping businesses here in our city, which means that those businesses will need employees and those employees will need housing and those employees will shop and reinvest in our community. Do you see where this is going? We, as residents of the City of West Jordan, hold the power to effect change. It’s that simple!

VETERANS DAY SURVIVAL BRACELETS – On Nov. 10 in honor of Veterans Day, volunteers of all ages gathered at City Hall. They made over 600 survival bracelets for troops serving overseas, wrote ‘Thank You’ cards and created greeting cards to donate to Operation Gratitude. Thank you to all who participated, especially parents who brought their children and exemplified to the next generation the respect and gratitude our service women and men certainly deserve. COMCAST CARES DAY – Comcast recently presented the City a check for $10,915 in matching funds for the 597 volunteers who pulled on their work gloves and came out to help with city beautification projects at last spring’s Comcast Cares/I Love West Jordan Day. Every year, the response among residents is fantastic. I love working alongside so many of you, planting trees and giving our City a good spring cleaning. Thank you! Please join us for the next Comcast Cares Day May 4, 2019. Check WestJordan.Utah.Gov for more details as we get closer to that date. CITY COMMITTEES – West Jordan has several permanent committees staffed by residents who regularly give of themselves to help create community programs and events or advise Council regarding important issues. Thank you for all you do! From the Western Stampede Rodeo to parks planning, our committee volunteers enrich the lives of everyone within our community. WILD WEST JORDAN PLAYGROUND – Back in 2005, I had the honor of working closely with the incredible volunteers who brought to life the Wild West Jordan Playground. This project is the ideal example of what can be accomplished when people of vision and a willingness to serve come together in common purpose. Over the course of just one year, these volunteers enlisted the support of residents and local businesses, raised over $400,000, oversaw the community-led design, and implemented the 10-day volunteer build of a playground that, at the time, was the largest in the state. The result was a beloved community feature that topped many state lists for places to visit and provided countless hours of unique play for our children for almost 14 years. As you probably know, the Wild West Jordan Playground was removed in mid-November and will be replaced with a new playground this spring. For more information on the playground’s history, the decision to remove it and the future playground, please see the Coming Spring 2019 article on the next page. I appreciate those who give back so generously to make West Jordan a great place to live! As we head into the holiday season, take a look around you and see if there is something you can do to brighten someone’s day. It doesn’t have to be monumental like the Wild West Jordan Playground. Often it’s the little things that make a difference – even if it’s as simple as sharing a smile.

Jim Riding, Mayor


Coming Spring 2019 ALL-ABILITIES WILD WEST JORDAN PLAYGROUND Almost 14 years ago, 6,000 volunteers embarked on a labor of love and built the Mountain America Credit Union Wild West Jordan Playground in Veterans Memorial Park, 1985 W. 8030 South. At the time, it was the largest playground in the state! Project coordinators Jennifer Scott and Cynthia Bee had a vision, and with the help of an amazing team, worked to raise over $400,000. They then came together over the course of 10 days and built the playground – similar to an old-fashioned barn raising. Over the years, the playground has been well-loved by thousands of children and it has been a favorite with young and old. SAFETY & ACCESSIBILITY Unfortunately, the wood-based playground materials have not survived the heavy use and Utah’s harsh winters. As a result, structural portions are failing, wood is splitting and rotting, and the playground has become unsafe. After evaluating different options, the city determined the most fiscally responsible option is to replace the playground with a state-of-the art playground that incorporates the Wild West theme and uses the latest materials and designs to create an all-abilities playground so children of diverse abilities can play side-byside with their friends.

The decision to build a new playground was not made lightly and was in part influenced by two independent evaluations that found major deficiencies and safety concerns. These audits found that even extensive repairs would not significantly extend the life of the playground and would cost over $500,000. Also, repairs will not fix the nooks and crannies where children tend to hide. These dark corners are especially popular for over-age users looking for privacy, and security cameras have not significantly deterred those intent on misusing the playground. PUBLIC INPUT After learning of the deteriorating condition and safety concerns, a public meeting was held Nov. 12 that was also streamed on Facebook Live on the West Jordan City Hall Facebook page to inform the public of the playground’s closing. As we move forward with the design of the new playground, we would like public input on the types of amenities to be included. Please share your thoughts by taking an online survey found at WestJordan.Utah.Gov/Playground. PICKETS & PAVERS The engraved pickets and pavers from those who helped fund the 2005 playground are available for those who

West Jordan Holiday Trash Collection Schedule Trash collection takes place on all holidays except for Christmas, New Year’s Day, Independence Day and Thanksgiving. If your collection date falls on one of these holidays, your pickup will be one day later. For example, Christmas is on a Tuesday this year. If your collection day is on Tuesday, it will be picked up Wednesday that week.

want them as keepsakes and can be picked up in the Parks Maintenance Office on the south end of Veterans Memorial Park, Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. (Note: Unfortunately, over the years, some of the bricks and pickets have been stolen or broken, so not all of the originals are still available.) OPENING SPRING 2019 We recognize and thank the many volunteers, sponsors and businesses whose contributions have brought countless hours of joy and laughter to thousands of children. The playground has been the site of many great memories, and we look forward to building a new playground where the sounds of laughter can be heard for many years to come. For more information, visit WestJordan.Utah.Gov/Playground


East Meets West at Schorr Gallery Exhibit Through December 21 A new art exhibit titled East Meets West is at the West Jordan City Hall Schorr Gallery through Dec. 21. This exhibit features photography from Nancy Strahinic, formerly from the windy city of Chicago and Steven Leitch, long time resident of West Jordan.









Viridian Event Center 8030 S 1825 West 6 p.m.

City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd. 6 p.m.

City Hall Council Chambers 8000 S. Redwood Rd. 6 p.m.







WJ Animal Shelter 5982 W. New Bingham Hwy 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

City Hall Council Chambers 8000 S. Redwood Rd. 6 p.m.



Midvale Performing Arts Center 695 W. Center St., 7:30 p.m.











Viridian Event Center 8030 S 1825 West 7 p.m.

City Hall Community Room 8000 S Redwood Rd, 6-8 p.m.












City Hall Council Chambers 8000 S. Redwood Rd. 6 p.m.

The City of West Jordan 8000 S. Redwood Rd., West Jordan, UT 84088 Join the conversation! Follow (801) 569-5100 www.wjordan.com West Jordan – City Hall.

West Jordan Police Dept. 8040 S. Redwood Rd. West Jordan, Utah 84088 801-256-2000 801-840-4000 Dispatch

Don’t let holiday activities break the bank! There’s lots of fun free events in the SLC area By Christy Jepson | christy@mycityjournals.com


he holidays are right around the corner and there are plenty of things to do in the Salt Lake Valley. Many of them are free. Here’s a list of activities that won’t put a dent in your budget and will provide fun for all. Herriman’s Night of Lights: Monday, Dec. 3 from 5-9 p.m. at City Hall and Crane Park (5355 W. Herriman Main St.). There will be a gingerbread contest, a visit with Santa, the tree lighting, a candy cane hunt, holiday crafts, food trucks, performances by Herriman Harmonyx and Herriman Orchestra, photo ops, and ice skating. There is a fee for ice skating (weather permitting), but everything else is free. Draper’s Candy Cane Hunt: Monday, Dec. 10 from 4-5 p.m. at the Draper Historic Park (12625 S. 900 East). This is a free family event sponsored by the Draper Parks and Recreation Department. Children ages 3-6 will hunt for thousands of candy canes that are scattered around the park and hidden in bushes and trees. Santa and Mrs. Claus will also arrive on a fire truck and will be available for photos under the gazebo. While you are in Draper, don’t forget to check out Draper’s Tree of Light (or sometimes called The Tree of Life), which is a big willow tree in the middle of Draper City Park (12500 S. 1300 East). This tree is decorated with more than 65,000 lights. Draper City first lit the tree for the Christmas season in 2008 and each year more lights have been added. The lights turn on at dusk and stay on until midnight everyday until New Years. This has become a popular holiday destination for people statewide. Gingerbread House Contest in South Jordan: Gingerbread houses will be on display in the Gale Center Auditorium (10300 S. Beckstead Lane) from Nov. 27-Dec. 6 for People’s Choice Award voting. The hours are Tuesday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Light the Night at the South Jordan

WestJordanJournal .com

City: On Friday, Dec. 7 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the South Jordan City Plaza at 1600 W. Towne Center Drive. There will be pictures with Santa, hot cocoa, gingerbread houses, the unveiling of the candy windows display featuring artists Jennifer Vesper and Krista Johansen. Visit Santa on Towne Center Drive in South Jordan: On Dec. 7 from 6:30-8 p.m., Dec. 8 from 3-5 p.m., Dec. 14 from 6-8 p.m., Dec. 15 from 3-5 p.m., Dec. 21 from 6-8 p.m., and Dec. 22 from 3-5 p.m. (1600 W. Towne Center Drive) Riverton’s Holly Days in the Park: On Nov. 26, 30 and Dec. 1 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Riverton City Park, large pavilion, 1452 W. 12600 South. This free family event includes: the arrival of Santa and Mrs. Claus on a fire engine, hot chocolate and warm buttery scones, and walking through the park reading from the giant-sized storybook pages of “T’was the Night Before Christmas.” There will also be vendor booths so visitors can get some holiday shopping done. Christmas Night of Music: This 3rd annual event will be on Dec. 15 from 6-8 p.m. at the Riverton High School auditorium and will be a night filled with a community choir of over 100 voices and a local orchestra. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Riverton High School is located at 12476 S. Silverwolf Way. This is a free event. Salt Lake City: If you are downtown celebrating the season be sure to drop by and look at Macy’s holiday candy window displays at City Creek Center. Also in Salt Lake City, on Dec. 17 is the 32nd Annual Christmas Carol Sing-Along at the Vivint Smart Home Arena. This free event will be filled with holiday music and fun. There will be musical numbers by the Bonner Family. This event starts at 7 p.m. Santa Is Coming to Town in West Jordan: On Thursday, Dec. 20 from 6-8 p.m. there will be a craft, a coloring station, story time with

Two boys sit on the laps of Santa and Mrs. Claus during Holly Days at the Riverton City Park. (Photo credit Angie Meine)

Mrs. Claus, hot cocoa and cookies, carolers, and a visit with Santa. Santa will be arriving at 6 p.m. sharp so don’t be late. This event will be located in the City Hall Community Room at 8000 S. Redwood Road. Saturday with Santa: Christmas Around the World: On Saturday, Dec. 8 from 2 to 4 p.m. families can come visit with Santa, enjoy food tasting from places around the world, crafts and games and entertainment. This event is free and is sponsored by Taylorsville Preservation Committee and will be held at the Taylorsville Bennion Heritage Center, 1488 W. 4800 South in Murray. Back for the second year at The Shops at South Town in Sandy is Chistmas in the Wizarding World. Step into the world of a wintry Hogsmeade village that features unique mer-

chandise from the “Fantastic Beasts” and “Harry Potter” films. It is free to walk through and will be opened from now until Jan. 21. Even though it is not free, there is another activity in Sandy that is inexpensive when it comes to ticket prices. The Dickens’ Christmas Festival at the Mountain America Exposition Center (9575 S. State Street) is produced and organized by Olde World Historical Council and claims to be a “unique and unusual entertainment and shopping experience.” From fortune tellers, to old English shops, the “real” Father Christmas, period costumes, street theater, puppet shows, a mini-production of “Scrooge” and visits from the Spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Future. Ticket prices are $3.50 for children and $5.50 for adults. l

December 2018 | Page 19

Major boundary changes affect entire district By Julie Slama and Jet Burnham


fter weeks of receiving feedback through survey responses, letters, emails, Facebook threads, texts and phone calls, the Jordan Board of Education presented and approved the final boundary changes for the 2019–20 school year. Details can be found at boundary.jordandistrict. org. Unlike previous options A, B and C that affected almost every school, the final decision, option D, announced Nov. 13, only adjusted the boundaries of 20 of the existing 36 elementary schools and most middle and high schools. “Our choices have not been easy,” Board President Janice Voorhies said. “But they are the result of thousands of hours of analysis and discussion by our staff and board members in conjunction with the preferences and hopes of our local communities. It’s obvious that students matter to everyone involved.” The last major upheaval related to boundaries was when the District split, forming Canyons School District in 2009. Change was inevitable with the opening of five new schools next fall — elementary schools in Bluffdale and Herriman; a middle school in South Jordan and the rebuilding of West Jordan Middle School; a new Herriman high school; and a Bluffdale middle school for 2020–2021 — to ease overcrowding in many rapidly growing communities with the approval of the $245 million bond approved by voters in 2016. “The board is realigning almost all school boundaries to balance student numbers more equally and give our students opportunities for the best education possible,” Voorhies said. The changes include Majestic Elementary closing its doors in the 2020–21 school year. The school building will be repurposed for other programs yet to be determined, said district spokeswoman Sandy Riesgraf. “It was a surprise,” Majestic teacher Heather Reisch said. “There had been rumors that they were going to close Majestic because our enrollment is small. But they made improvements to our school two years ago, so I thought with that huge investment that they would not be closing us.” Every school in the district was evaluated during the 18-month process. Concerns about

safety, fiscal responsibility, aligning elementary through high school feeder systems, allowing for expected growth in school population and the desire to create longer-lasting boundaries were taken into account, board member Darrell Robinson said. Every step of the process was open to the public, who were invited to a series of open houses to express their concerns and opinions. Riesgraf said the board was aware the changes were likely to be met with resistance. “We know boundary alignment is difficult on parents, but before we ask for another bond, we need to be responsible and know if we are using every inch of school space we can — and we know that there is some space on the west side,” she said. Boundary changes, initially drawn by Jordan District Planning Services and administration, were adjusted based on parent feedback and finalized by board members. “Everyone wants change to happen—to someone else’s kid,” Robinson said. “Most people don’t want to move.” In the end, more students stayed where they are than were moved, Robinson said. But many parents reacted to earlier options A and B by uniting together to express concerns about school proximity, safety and alignment of feeder schools. Many parents were concerned about overcrowded schools. The board addressed this issue by approving new rules governing permits, (details can be found at boundary.jordandistrict.org). Robinson said permits have been a problematic issue for many areas. Beginning Dec. 1, students can request a permit to a school outside their boundary only if it is at less than 90 percent capacity. Permits will be limited at schools such as Jordan Ridge Elementary, which currently has a high number of permitted students. However, it is transitioning to a traditional calendar next year that should reduce its capacity by 25 percent. Foothills Elementary in Riverton also will transition to traditional schedule, while Blackridge Elementary in Herriman, Fox Hollow Elementary in West Jordan and South Jordan Elementary will remain on a year-round schedule.

4th Annual

Night in Bethlehem

Live Nativity

• Live Actors • Mountain West Chorale • Memory Ornaments • Camel & Other Live Animals • Hot Chocolate • Waffle Love Truck

Page 20 | December 2018

South Jordan parents were concerned about overcrowding at Eastlake Elementary, where a kiva and a computer lab were turned into classrooms last year. This year, 36 students in the sixth-grade Chinese dual immersion class were combined into the former computer lab with both the English and Chinese teacher, as there were not enough classrooms. The school has four portables, which is the limit for schools in the Daybreak community. Board member Tracy Miller said those and other concerns were reviewed in the 879 single-spaced pages of survey results as well as the public comments collected during the eight-hour open house on Oct. 23 to create option C, which pleased more Monte Vista parents. “We looked at the long-term (enrollment) of Monte Vista and realized those options were just shifting students to another school that would result in overcrowding there, so we decided that we’d need to look at other options — add on to a school, move existing programs, build a new school or do what we need to help where the growth is,” she said, adding that Monte Vista already has 11 portable classrooms. Growing communities on the west side were upset when overcrowding concerns led to initial options that rezoned children out of schools nearest their homes. Deborah Ivie said with Option A, B and C, she would have had to drive past one middle school to get to the proposed boundary middle

school. “It would literally double the time to get to school for both junior high and high school,” she said. She, like many parents, wasn’t anxious to have her kids attend a school that would be too far for them to be able to walk home from after-school activities. Projected growth was a consideration that caused the board to implement a two-step boundary transition for three middle schools— Fort Herriman, Oquirrh Hills and South Hills. Boundaries were drawn for the 2019–20 school year and will be altered again for 2020–21. In contrast, Oquirrh Elementary PTA president and school crossing guard Beth LeFevre was happy her West Jordan neighborhood was rezoned because her kids will move to a less-crowded school. Ultimately, the board tried, whenever possible, to limit the number of students who had to change schools, Robinson said. Voorhies said the feedback from residents through each step of the process illustrated the support and care families have for their schools. “I love that most communities love their current schools and care enough about their children’s education to become involved in the process,” she said. “It is very satisfying to see that citizens take their responsibilities seriously by seeing that their voices are heard.” l

JORDAN SCHOOL DISTRICT – Public Notices Special education child Find

Everyone Welcome!

Saturday, December 8, 2018 • 5-7 pm 1007 W. South Jordan Parkway South Jordan, Utah

Majestic Elementary in West Jordan is scheduled to close its doors in the 2020-21 school year with the approval of Jordan School District’s Board of Education’s boundary changes. (Julie Slama/City Journals)

Every child is entitled to a public education regardless of disability. Children with disabilities may go without services because families are not fully aware of their options. If you know of a child, birth to age 22, who is not receiving any education services or feel that your child may be in need of special education services, please contact your local school or call the Special Education Department in Jordan School District at (801)-567-8176.

Special education RecoRdS deStRuction

On January 31, 2019, Jordan School District will destroy special education records of students born prior to September, 1991. Former special education students who are 27 years old may request their records from the school last attended; otherwise, the records will be destroyed.

caRSon Smith ScholaRShip

Public school students with an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) may be eligible for a scholarship to attend a private school through the Carson Smith Scholarship program. Further information is available at http://www.schools.utah.gov/sars/Scholarships.aspx

West Jordan City Journal

Neighbors rally for changes By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@mycityjournals.com

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


Parents campaign to influence boundary decisions. (Jet Burnham/City Journals)


hen boundary changes were initially announced in September, many West Jordan residents resisted when the board decided to move them from their schools to leave room for future students in undeveloped areas west of Mountain View Corridor. “We told them that we should have priority over people who aren’t even there,” said Amy Hernandez, who lives in the Oquirrh Shadows neighborhood in the northwest quadrant of West Jordan, 7000 South between Airport No. 2 and Mountain View Corridor. Initial options would have required them to leave Sunset Ridge Middle, drive past West Hills Middle to get to Joel P Jensen. The neighborhood presented a united front at several open houses held throughout the process. Deborah Ivie became a spokesperson for the area. She collected extensive research to provide the board with statistics showing options A and B clumped low-income families into just a few schools. Ivie said the initial information and survey was not available in Spanish, causing many in her neighborhood to be upset with the whole process. “A lot of the residents in our neighborhood did not take the survey or had no clue about the changes,” said Hernandez. A group of dedicated parents volunteered to canvas the neighborhood to spread information. Ultimately, they collected 1,300 signatures on a petition to protest the proposed option C boundary choice. They persisted in keeping board members aware of their issues.

WestJordanJournal .com

“We bombarded the school board with phone calls, letters and emails,” said Hernandez. “The president of the school board stated that our neighborhood was a force to be reckoned with, that we care about our kids and the kids in this neighborhood.” Ivie said the turning point came when she met personally with Janice Voorhies, board president. “She took the time to understand our unique circumstances,” said Ivie. When the final boundaries were announced, their hard work had paid off. “The look on my son’s face when I told him that he gets to go to West Hills with all of his friends—it was amazing,” said Hernandez. “I can’t even describe it. He is so happy.” The board tried to limit the number of students required to change schools, cross busy roads and be bused to schools farther away. Many parents balked at changes that would require their kids to be bused to a new school when they already attended a school within walking distance. This was one of the issues for the neighborhood known as the Welby Triangle, between Old Bingham Highway and the South Jordan boundary between 4000 South and 4800 West. These families were unhappy with options A and B that would bus their kids to Joel P Jensen when they could walk to Elk Ridge as they were already doing. Neighbors united to propose an alternative option. “We met beforehand so we were on the same page,” said Robin Huling. “I sent out what concerns we had to the

neighbors so they also could have input.” Their feedback, presented to the board at the Oct. 23 open house, became option C, and ultimately what the board decided. Unifying the neighborhood was their goal. New limits on permits will also reduce the number of kids attending other schools. Huling, whose four children attend Welby Elementary on permit while the majority of their neighbors attend Terra Linda Elementary, believes permits are “very disruptive as a whole” to neighborhoods, as they don’t support “neighborhood comradery.” Families in the Welby Triangle have used permits as the answer to boundary schools that don’t align with a feeder system. Huling said this makes it difficult for kids to form lasting friendships with their peers when they have to start over with a new group every few years. “Those friends become more important as they attend middle school and high school, and it’s important they stay together,” said Huling. Along with the frustration they felt at times, parents ultimately felt good about their role in this historic decision. “I’m so happy that as a community we came together so well to fight for our kids and others’ kids,” said Rachel Miller, who lives with her five children in the Oquirrh Shadows area. “I loved being a part of a great change and making new friends in the process.” Her advice to other communities: “If you don’t like something, make that effort to rally your neighbors and make a difference.” l

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f somewhere between your post-Thanksgiving and pre-Christmas cleanup you realized that you needed some extra room, Overland Self Storage in West Jordan has you covered. With a friendly office staff, convenient Mountain View Corridor location and competitive prices, they can find the right fit for your needs. “We’re a little different from the rest. We know that storage is a competitive business, so we want people to know that we’re worth checking out,” said office manager Ann Helsel. The storage business has been around in the Salt Lake Valley for decades, and Helsel believes that their new location combines the best of what’s around. One of the newest innovations for storage parks? Temperature control. “We have outdoor units and indoor units. Our indoor units are temperature controlled, so they’re perfect for items that are too sensitive to store in your garage for the winter. In winter, our units will never get colder than 60 degrees. In the summer, they’ll never get warmer than 80 degrees,” Helsel said. The location at 9372 S. Prosperity Rd. (6200 South) in West Jordan is a first for Overland, though they already have plans for expansion. Overland is currently building another

storage facility in Woods Cross and an RV park in Spanish Fork. Another great reason to give Overland a call is their customer-based business model. “We do a lot of things that other places don’t do. We’re open on Sundays. Our new location means a clean facility. The aisles are wider than other places, so you can drive your big moving truck through and not worry about hitting things,” Helsel said. Overland knows that access is important, so they have long access hours. “Customers can access their storage seven days a week, 365 days a year with their own personal gate code, which they choose. Gate hours are 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.,” said Helsel. They have a range of units, starting at 5 feet by 5 feet, which would fit the contents of an average closet, to 12 feet by 30 feet, which would fit the contents of a five- or six-bedroom home. Once your things are stored, feel peace of mind knowing that the premises are filmed 24 hours a days by 27 security cameras. For Helsel, Overland’s strengths can be summed up in three words: location, management and prices.

“As far as location goes, we’re right off the Mountain View Corridor. It’s really convenient for people who are moving out this way, since the West Jordan area is growing so fast. There are also a lot of people who take that road to work, so we’re right there and you can stop on your way home,” said Helsel. “Management here is really hands-on. We know most of our customers by sight. Our weekday hours are Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturdays we’re here from 8 a.m.

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to 4 p.m., and Sundays we’re here 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.,” Helsel said. Overland’s prices are competitive, with no long-term contracts – just month-to-month leases and a one-time $5 administration fee to get customers set up. In addition, there are military and construction discounts. For more information, call Ann at (801) 569-9999, or email info@overlandselfstorage. com. l

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Page 22 | December 2018

West Jordan City Journal

Families strengthened by school activities By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@mycityjournals.com


eartland Elementary School administration and staff strengthens their students by strengthening their families. Several times a year, families are invited to participate in family-centered activities hosted by the school. “There is research that absolutely supports when you have parents involved in the educational process and working as a partner with the teachers, you can see the increase of learning for the kids,” said Principal Shelly Davis. At Math Night, held in September, parents learned games and creative activities to help their child practice grade-level math skills at home. Game ideas included UNO, multiplication bingo and dice games adaptable to any skill level. Teachers of younger students introduced crafts, such as making a bracelet beaded in colored patterns to help them practice basic counting skills. Families went home with supplies for many of the games and crafts. “We want to try to make activities that will reinforce the concepts they’re learning in the classroom and help them carry it home,” said Orla Davis, an instructional coach. “It makes it more real for them—a real-life application.” Orla believes when parents are aware and involved in what their child is learning, it translates into student success at school. Janiece Atwood, whose children are in

first, third and fifth grades, enjoys playing the math games with her children. She said it helps them have a positive attitude about learning because it is fun. “My kids will ask to do it,” she said. “I don’t have to force them because it’s homework that they don’t realize is homework.” Heartland regularly hosts school activities that support student learning and that strengthen the feeling of community at the school. The principal’s goal is to help parents feel a part of the school and to realize it is an open environment—they are welcome to come in at any time. Right from the first week of the school year, families were invited into the classrooms to observe their children’s new teachers and to get familiar with their classrooms. “They have an opportunity to see their child in the environment and get a feel for what environment their child is in all day long,” said Orla. “That’s good information to have because it gives parents confidence in the school and in the teachers.” When parents are comfortable with the teacher and the way the classroom is run, they are more willing to volunteer to help in the classroom. Shelly said parents often don’t know what they have to offer until they are in the classroom. They see the teacher is busy and that they

do have the ability to help by simply helping individual students with classwork or listening to them read. And working alongside the teachers, parents form a trusting relationship with them. “It’s nice that they get this time to get to know who the teachers really are,” said Shelly. Orla said some parents didn’t have good school experiences themselves, which could negatively influence their student’s performance. However, when parents see their child actually having a better experience than they did, it can change their perspective. “They have a more positive attitude about school, which trickles down to their child and gives the kid a better attitude,” she said. In addition to Math Night, Heartland instructional coaches and teachers host regular activity nights that focus on Literacy, Science and Culture. There are also social activities, such as Dads and Donuts, and Moms and Muffins, held during morning hours to accommodate the varying schedules of Heartland families. Atwood believes it is a good sign when a school values the idea of strengthening families. She believes in supporting such school events. She said when there is a school event, it takes precedence over her children’s Scouts and sports activities. “It shows my kids that school is a priority,” she said.

Shelly appreciates families’ support of the school’s activities. She knows they overcome many conflicts with work, transportation and time to be able to attend. Events at Heartland include Science Night in October and Literacy Night in November. l

Joaquin and Dena Garcia adapt a multiplication bingo game for their second-grade daughter Viviana. (Jet Burnham/City Journals)

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rincipal Karen Gorringe has neighbors she can count on. She has worked to develop beneficial relationships with the businesses neighboring Terra Linda Elementary. “We work hard to build strong relationships with people—that’s so important to be good community members,” said Gorringe. “Community support is vital. You can’t run a good school without having a good community supporting it—you just can’t.” Gorringe depends on nearby business owners for their buildings to be a safe haven for students if immediate cover is necessary in an emergency situation. 7 Elite Academy, a club in the Utah Youth Soccer Association, has offered its nearby indoor soccer facility as an evacuation site for the 600 students and faculty members. “If for any reason they need to evacuate their school, our facility will serve as their meeting place and shelter,” said Julia Howard, community liaison for the indoor soccer league. While the building is busy with practices and games in late afternoon and evening, the indoor fields are unused during school hours. Terra Linda students recently practiced an evacuation, walking the short distance to the academy where they spread out in the 20,000-square-footspace. Howard said the facility is an ideal location to house students since it is heated and has bathrooms and water fountains. “We built it for soccer purposes, but we felt like it could be bigger and better than just soccer,” said Howard. “This is about helping the community and giving back.” In addition to providing a safe space, 7 Elite Academy also visits Terra Linda regularly to teach a soccer training curriculum. Its workshops, which usually replace PE classes, teach basic soccer skills to students in grades kindergarten–6. Matt Brown, schools program manager and coach for the club, said its goal is to introduce soccer to all kids, especially those who have not had exposure to organized sports because of limited finances or opportunities. Through the outreach program, students learn about the international sport and gain proficiency in the basic skills of the game. “We’ll just tailor what we’re delivering to the kids as to their level,” said Brown. Kindergarteners begin with exercises to get used to having a ball at their feet and expand their skill set each year until they are playing competitive games in sixth grade. Brown said sports training teaches life skills—working as a team, sportsmanship, having drive, problem-solving and dealing with defeat. “All things come along with sports that are important life skills all young individuals need to learn,” said Brown. “Soccer just provides a fun way to teach them.”

Matt Brown and Ahmed Bakrim welcome neighboring elementary students into their soccer facility during an evacuation drill. (Jet Burnham/City Journals)

7 Elite Academy currently provides nine local schools with the in-school soccer skills program. Brown hopes to form lasting relationships with many schools like they have at Terra Linda, now in its second year of the curriculum. “Terra Linda is just right there, so that bond, that relationship, just formed and strengthened and evolved into this,” said Howard. Howard said 7 Elite Academy’s partnership with Terra Linda is an example to the rest of the community of how businesses can make a difference in local schools. “There’s no money involved; it’s just a partnership to benefit the children of West Jordan,” said Howard. With its international connections, the academy arranged for English Premier League player James Milner, vice captain of Liverpool FC, to speak to Terra Linda students at a surprise assembly. The school’s theme for the week was grit and determination. Milner shared with students what he has done to get through hard times in his life and career. Terra Linda partners with other local resources to provide inspiring assemblies. “We want our student to have good community role models,” said Gorringe. She invites teenagers from the Peer Leadership Team at West Jordan High School to present positive assemblies to her students. Salt Lake Community College’s Know Greater Heroes program provides students with successful role models as student-athletes share positive messages about education, active lifestyle and healthy eating in a fun and engaging assembly. Additionally, Gorringe arranges for local businesses to partner with the school to provide school activities such as the annual Math Night, which was held Nov. 15. l

West Jordan City Journal

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West Jordan City Journal

Famous Dave’s


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t’s no coincidence that Famous Dave’s has the word “famous” in its name. Established by Dave Andersen, it started as a quest for great smoked barbecue. Dave turned his garbage can into a smoker, perfected his recipes, won over 700 awards and started sharing it in his restaurants nationwide. Famous Dave’s in West Jordan is located at the south end of Jordan Landing, 7273 S. Plaza Center Drive. Frank Wood is the general manager there, and he knows that when you come in you’re not going to be disappointed. “We try to carry on Dave’s legacy with his original recipes. We still use his open pit barbecue style. And we bring it all to you in a comfortable space where you can enjoy your dining experience,” Wood said of his West Jordan restaurant. With holiday parties just around the corner, Famous Dave’s wants you to know that they are famous for their catering as well as their recipes. “We have a big on-site banquet room for parties of 50 or more, so if that’s something you’d like to do, call us and we’ll accommodate your group,” said Wood. For information on catering, call (801) 280-8844 ext. 1. Off-site catering is just as popular. “Really, we can cater any gathering of people who want good food. We do weddings, funeral meals and, of course, holiday parties. We can accommodate from 20 people to 10,000 people,” said Wood. Their catering menu is year-round and includes sandwiches, ribs, pork – any meat that’s on their menu. And then there are those sides: corn, mac & cheese, baked beans, potatoes in vari-

ous forms and other vegetables. “Our signature classic is The Ultimate Feast. We have it all the time, and it feeds four to six people. You get ribs, chicken, sides, six pieces of sweet corn and four cornbread muffins,” Wood said. There are also special holiday meals. “Our Christmas special runs through December. Customers can choose smoked ham or smoked turkey. All the food is already cooked so all you need to do is reheat it when you’re ready for your holiday meal,” said Wood. A full feast will feed six people. The price for just a ham is $54.99. The ham feast is $119.00 and the turkey feast is $109.00. Catering at Famous Dave’s can be as inclusive as you want it, depending on your budget. Customers can choose from simple pick-up, delivery and set up, or full service. In addition to the catering menus, Wood encourages people to stop by whenever the barbecue mood hits and check out their new menu. “We’ve kept the traditional favorites, and we still have our daily lunch specials from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., but we’ve added new things. For example, ask us about our burned butts,” Wood said. Ok. Tell us about your burned butts. Turns out the burned butts are a cut of pork with some special attention. “Burnt ends as they’re also called come from select portions of slow-smoked brisket. The juices mix with sugars as we caramelize the pork in a blackberry barbecue sauce. It’s served with candied sweet peppers, and it’s delicious,” Wood


Full catering and menu information can be found at www. famousdaves.com, then search for the West Jordan location. l

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Grizzlies seize third place at state By Greg James | gregj@mycityjournals.com

Asiah Sopoaga defends a tipped ball during the state tournament. (Justin Adams/City Journals)


opper Hills has turned its volleyball team into a contender. Its top finish this season may single it out in years to come. “This season has been more satisfying than last year was,” Grizzlies head coach Silver Fonua said. “We had a much more difficult preseason, and our team got nothing but better. We also had a more difficult region than in the past years.” The Grizzlies finished undefeated in Region 3. They defeated Herriman twice to defend their title. In the final match of the regular season, senior Payton Birch and sophomore Asiah Sopoaga combined for 34 kills in the five set victory. Copper Hills advanced to the semifinals of the state tournament with a four-set victory over American Fork and a three-set sweep of Fremont. After losing to the eventual state champion, Lone Peak, the Grizzlies faced Bingham. A well-rounded game against the Miners resulted in a third-place finish. “Our core players are mainly sophomores,” Fonua said. “They grew up here, played in our junior high program, and so they have played lots of matches. Truth is that if they are not playing club then they are not competing. I would say that 95 percent of our girls play club now; five years ago maybe 5 percent did. Our parents have really bought into the importance of the offseason.” Twins Asiah and Aliyah Sopoaga anchor a team with future potential. The sophomores combined for 444 kills and 49 services aces. Teniyah Leuluia led the team with 42 aces. Addison Downs led the team in blocks.

Page 28 | December 2018

“The twins are young,” Fonua said. “They play so well and have high expectations of everyone on the court. They also work harder than anyone else out there. Their effort is a lot of the reasons that they are leaders of this team.” The Grizzlies boast a well-rounded team. They had five players in triple digits offensive kills, three players with more than 20 aces and five with double digit blocks. “Our ball control is the strength of the team,” Fonua said. “Our serving really puts the other team in positions so we can capitalize, but our serving gets us to that point. Then we are really good defensively. Our team reacts well to what the opponent is doing.” The Grizzlies faced the state’s top teams in preparation for their season. They played Lone Peak, American Fork twice and Skyridge (the 5A state champion). Fonua attributes his team’s tough schedule as a precursor to a successful season. By playing tougher competition, the Grizzlies have been able to find the places they could improve to help them overcome their opponents. “We have been down that road where we have lost the momentum,” Fonua said. “Volleyball is all about momentum. That was not new to us. We have played in some tough tournaments. We have been down before. We have a short-term memory and hit a reset button. I think that is why we are one of the favorites at the state tournament. We are learning to trust our training. These girls are great students. Their habits off the court carry onto the court. We expect our parents to help us do what we need to do.” l

West Jordan City Journal

WestJordanJournal .com

December 2018 | Page 29




Tempting The Grinch

he animated film by Illumination “The Grinch” starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Cameron Seely recently premiered on Nov. 9. During opening weekend, it made $66 million dollars. The popularly known version of “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” by Dr. Seuss was published on Oct. 12, 1957. It began as a 32-line illustrated poem titled “The Hoobub and The Grinch” and was originally published in May of 1955 in Redbook magazine. The book version was released in December of 1957 by Random House. Since then, the book has held the attention of young readers for decades. If you’re unfamiliar with the story, here’s a quick rundown. In the little town of Who¬ville, all of the Whos who live there love Christmas. The Grinch lives north of Whoville and, not being a Who, hates Christmas. As the holiday approaches, the Whos get antsier, creating all sorts of smells and noises, including a song they all sing together on Christmas Eve. As The Grinch radiates of hatred on that night, he comes up with an idea. He will steal Christmas. He disguises himself as Santy Claus and sleds into Whoville where he steals all the Christmas things. As he is stealing Christmas in the middle of the night, a Who child, Little Cindy-Lou Who questions him about

stealing the family’s Christmas tree. He feeds her a lie and moves on with his night. On Christmas morning, well…I won’t spoil it for you. In the story, The Grinch steals everything relating to Christmas, even though Dr. Seuss mentions a few very specific things on The Grinch’s list: pop guns, bicycles, roller skates, drums, checkerboards, tricycles, popcorn, plums, pudding, roast beef, ribbons, packages, boxes, bags, and even the tree. If you don’t want to tempt The Grinch this holiday season, maybe it’s worth not having all of the above-mentioned items easily accessible. We’re in good shape with the first item on this list. Pop guns will probably be unavailable for purchase in many stores. Instead of buying an entirely new bicycle, tricycle, or roller skates, maybe it would be worthwhile to provide a gift card for the app related to the dockless electric rental scooters littering the streets of downtown Salt Lake. I haven’t used one myself, but from what I understand, you pay through an app on your phone and the scooter will run for as long as you pay for. Instead of buying a drum kit, which can run anywhere from $200 to upwards of $600 or more, maybe gift some drumsticks and lessons; or the Rock Band video game provided a gaming console has

been previously purchased. Checkers isn’t the popular game it used to be. Instead of spending $15 to $300 (I’m surprised too) on checkerboards, pick up a few packs of cards for less than $10. Not only are cards less expensive, there are unlimited variations of games that can be played. I’m not so sure checkers can say the same. For popcorn, just don’t. Who wants kernels in their teeth? Or to string popped popcorn? Unless that’s crucial to family tradition, please don’t partake. Also, plums and pudding. I’ve never incorporated those into festivities myself, so I don’t personally understand the appeal. However, I do know that my home is flooded with cookies and other homemade treats gifted from neighbors and family members. If you’re like me and have a swarm of goodies anyway, don’t buy plums and puddings either. Along the same thread (no, not the popcorn one), is roast beef. Does anyone still do roast beef for Christmas? It must be a Who thing. For ribbons, packages, boxes, and bags: keep it simple. Let’s start with boxes and bags. I’m sure a good portion of us will be doing online shopping this year. Keep the boxes from those orders. Personally, I keep boxes from online orders all year long so I can re-purpose them for gift giving. If I need to use

bags, I’ll buy a wholesale pack, because spending $2 to $10 per bag is madness. For ribbons and packages, I recommend buying wholesale as well. Hit up your local craft or party store and buy a few spools of ribbon which you can use multiple times. Balloon ribbon makes for surprisingly fancy present wrapping ribbon. Finally, the tree. I’m exceptionally biased. There’s nothing better than the smell of fresh pine from a live tree throughout the season. I would have saved a few hundred dollars by now if I had invested in a fake tree, but some things are just worth it. l

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never remember having visions of sugarplums dancing in my head, mostly because I didn’t know what a sugarplum was (but it sounds like something I’d eat). What I do remember is having visions of Christmas cookies piled on every possible surface in our kitchen as mom baked herself into a holiday frenzy. Around the middle of December, mom would cart home bags and bags of ingredients for her annual Christmas cookie bake-a-rama, preparing to make the treats she only made once a year. My siblings and I would “help” her unload bags of chocolate, sugar, cream and spices until she yelled at us to go watch TV. When mom donned her apron, adopted a determined expression and started grabbing bowls, that’s when I knew Christmas was really coming. We also knew to stay out of her way, which meant we had to be creative when it came to sneaking bits of cookie dough, scoops of frosting and pieces of pecans. During the ‘70s, sugar consumption wasn’t regulated, it was even encouraged! We ate so much sugar on a daily basis, our teeth were in a constant state of vibration. But at Christmas?! Our sugar levels reached critical mass to the point we peed sugar cubes. I’d eat cookies for

dinner, have a stomachache all night, and only be able to eat four bowls of Cap’n Crunch for breakfast. Each of us had our sugary Christmas cookie favorites, and mom made every single one. Mine were the cherry cookies; buttery sugar cookie dough baked around a maraschino cherry. My sisters loved the pineapple tarts cooked to a golden brown, and gingerbread men, decorated with frosting and Red Hot candies. We all loved the delicate spritz cookies, made with mom’s electric press, and the chocolate mousse balls (which we never got tired of saying). Once the baking was done, and the powdered sugar settled underfoot, mom would pile the cookies on sturdy paper plates and send us out in the snow to deliver the goodies to our neighbors. We roamed the neighborhood, passing other children delivering treats to nearby homes, and wave to each other because this was one chore we didn’t mind. More holiday treats came in the form of grandma’s raisin pudding with rum sauce that she’d warm up in an aluminum can on the stove, and pies she kept hidden in the back bedroom under dishtowels because she couldn’t trust us not to stick our finger in them. We’d decorate sugar cookies at



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#1 Selling Walk-in Tub in North America. BBB Accredited. Arthritis Foundation Commendation. Therapeutic Jets. MicroSoothe Air Therapy System Less than 4 Inch Step-In. Wide Door. Anti-Slip Floors. American Made. Call 844-476-9737 for up to $1500 Off.


Don’t Crash Your Drone! Individual & Small Group Instruction by a professional FAA-certified Pilot & Instructor Drone Photography, Videography & Instruction Call Bryan today for 10% off Drone Instruction

801-601-1627 / www.NevilleAerial.com

WestJordanJournal .com


801-254-5974 OMAHA STEAKS

ENJOY 100% guaranteed, delivered to-the-door Omaha Steaks! SAVE 75% PLUS get 4 more Burgers & 4 more Kielbasa FREE! Order The Family Gourmet Buffet - ONLY $49.99. Call 1-855752-2308 mention code 51689JCF or visit www.omahasteaks.com/love40


Gumby’s Auto Parts We’ll buy your non-running, wrecked or broken car, truck or van.

(801) 506-6098

DENTAL INSURANCE DENTAL INSURANCE. Call Physicians Mutual Insurance Company for details. NOT just a discount plan, REAL coverage for 350 procedures. 855-385-6690

or http://www.dental50plus.com/225 Ad# 6118



Service Available 24/7 Certified Experts 100% Warrantied


PEST CONTROL MANTIS PEST CONTROL Your Utah Pest Solution Expert 7 yrs Residential and Commercial Experience Eco Friendly - Kid & Pet Safe

“It’s worth your time to call!”

Garret Nunnelley 801-244-3542

PAINTING Custom Interior/Exterior Painting Decks & Cabinets Basic Home Repair


Handy Home Service Mark Landers 801-641-9644


All types of roofs

$650 OFF any reroof over 2,000 sq. ft.

school, suck on candy canes during church, snack on boxes of Whitman’s chocolates (which I never really liked, but ate anyway), decorate (and eat) graham cracker houses, and visit our friends’ houses to sample their sweet delicacies. I don’t know how any of us got through the season without losing all our teeth and developing diabetes. Then, on Christmas Eve, we’d sort through all the desserts to find the perfect cookies to leave for Santa Claus. We’d select the ones with the most frosting and


AJ Fencing

20+ Years Experience Licensed and Insured All types of Fencing Installs and Repairs Free Estimates


AIR DUCT CLEANING 10 Vents * 1 Return * 1 Main

Only $49

sprinkles, the best shape and the least burnt in the hope our cookie selection would earn us amazing presents from the big man himself. Christmas morning meant chocolate-covered peanuts, pancakes with syrup and stockings full of orange sticks, nuts and ribbon candy. That night, we’d nestle, all snug in our beds, gently twitching as sugar ran through our veins, not dreaming of sugarplums, but already counting the days until next Christmas in all its sugary glory. l


CHRISTMAS LIGHTS INSTALL & REMOVAL Your lights or ours Licensed and Insured

801-244-3542 FREE ESTIMATES

Pet Grooming

GRANNIES GROOMERY Chris Anderson Owner/Groomer

Additional vents priced separately

2755 W. 8450 S. in West Jordan

TheApexCleanAir.com 801-618-4649

801-981-8404 / 801-243-1762



Removals . Trimming . Pruning Licensed and Insured / 15 Yrs Experience

801-244-3542 FREE ESTIMATES

Bounce Houses Bounce Crazy Party Rentals

20 Styles to Choose from Non-Water, Water & Bubble Bouncers Complete Set Up and Take Down Other Rentals: Tables, Chairs, Canopies

Call Amanda: 385-299-3383





CONCRETE SERVICE Concrete Pouring & Flatwork, Epoxy, Acid Stain, Repair, Curbing

Free Estimates. Easy Scheduling. Call/Text

(385)309-2872 www.utahsurfacesolutions.com

December 2018 | Page 31

How can I save lives? Have you been told you have an antibody?

NEW DONORS Bring this coupon in for a

$20 BONUS on your second donation Coupon good for the GRIFOLS Biomat in Taylorsville.

Expires 12/31/2018

Did you know it takes 1,200 plasma donations to supply a Hemophiliac with a year’s supply of medication? There are approximately 400 families here in Utah with one or more family members suffering from a rare blood disorder. Your plasma donations help to save lives right here in Utah.

GRIFOLS Biomat in Taylorsville 2520 W. 4700 So., Space 1 Bldg. A Taylorsville, UT 84129 (801) 965-9160

Hours of operation for Monday – Thursday : 6:30am-7:00pm | Friday: 6:30am – 6:30pm | Saturday: 7:00am – 3:00pm



Profile for The City Journals

West Jordan Journal December 2018  

West Jordan Journal December 2018

West Jordan Journal December 2018  

West Jordan Journal December 2018