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October 2018 | Vol. 18 Iss. 10

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ationally, football players are facing difficult domestic violence issues and learning lessons about how to treat women. In a unique way the Jaguars are teaching their players how to handle these tough life lessons. As the only female high school assistant football coach in the state of Utah, Stephanie Davis is forging trails in new places. “My situation is unique,” she said. “I was originally hired as the head track coach and then later asked to be the strength and conditioning coach. I had experience with many of these boys. They were very respectful to me. They listened to me.” She admits that there are times she was unsure of what was going on. She had never played football and at times was unfamiliar with some of the terminology. “Anybody can learn the game if they put in the effort,” she said. “I tried to stick to the fundamentals. I sat in meetings and wrote down words I did not understand. Then I’d go home and google them to help me learn. I’d say, ‘What in the world are they talking about?’ It was like they were speaking Russian, but I would remember the terms and phrases and come back the next day able to build each day on what I had learned.” She is the varsity defensive backs coach and the sophomore team’s defensive coordinator. She calls the defense. “Our team is a family,” Davis said. “The coaches have been very professional. I sit down and help draw up plays and organize our defense. I am still learning. I feel very blessed.” At times, referees have not understood that she is a coach and their opponents did not shake hands with her because they thought she was a trainer. Generally she has been accepted, especially with her own team. She is not the only female on the Jaguar team. On the sophomore team is Laura Goetz. She has been part of the Utah Girls Tackle Football League and is now part of the Jaguar program. “I told Laura she can do this. In the weight

Stephanie Davis is the sophomore defensive coordinator and coaches the defensive backs on the Jaguars varsity football team. (Shelley Oliverson/WJ football)

room, I told her she can play this game, but she would need to focus on technique more than anyone else. It’s just like what I have done,” Davis said. She has a bond with most of the players that other coaches don’t achieve. “I am not sure if it is a motherly side, but I think I have a softer side that some of the boys come and tell me things that can’t tell their coach,” Davis said. “I pick up on some vibes too that others do not see. Then I pass those things on to the rest of the staff and help us all improve.” Jaguar head coach Mike Meifu said he believes she is the only female high school football coach in the state of Utah. She was his track coach when he was in high school. “Having her with us for three years is great,” Meifu said. “She is a great coach. She knows what she is talking about. She is also like a mother to some of these kids. She has a personal level that I do not always understand. She has had disrespect from others. but our team has learned that it does not matter if the coach is tall or short, black or white, male or female. It is

about respect.” The NFL has had troubles with domestic violence cases in the past few years. The Jaguars have placed an emphasis on finding ways to learn together about these types of situations. “I think our entire staff talks about teaching the kids about real-life situations,” Davis said. “There have been times that Coach Meifu has said we have a woman on staff and that is not an acceptable behavior—not just with her around, but ever. It does not just come from me; it comes from everyone. I’d tell someone else trying to get to where I am to celebrate the successes and do what you do best then learn the rest.” She credits Meifu for giving her the opportunity. “I give credit to Mike (Meifu) for hiring a very diverse, talented and competitive staff,” she said. “Every coach has their own individual strengths that we bring to the game and the program. We all respect and rely on each other to build this team. I am here coaching football because Meifu, our staff and the athletes believed in me.” l

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Audience captivated by the art of the story

Football teams see a decrease in participation

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History teacher of the year provides escape from boredom By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@msn.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.

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egan Osborn, recently named Utah’s 2018 Gilder Lerhman History Teacher of the Year, provides an escape from boredom for her students. “I try and get them out of their seats and doing something—for the movement but also just to break up the day—there’s a lot of sitting in school so anything to get them up and moving and interacting is good,” said Osborn. Osborn teaches Utah History at Sunset Ridge Middle School where she created an Escape Room activity based on a train robbery. Students became Butch Cassidy and his Wild Bunch, working together to solve a series of clues that would help them escape with their loot. Students deciphered messages written in Morse code, Navajo Code and the Deseret Alphabet—all topics they’d discussed in Utah history. Osborn’s lessons and assignments are an escape from the norm. There are few worksheets and lectures but plenty of creativity, coloring and movement. Osborn also uses untraditional approaches to assess students’ knowledge. For example, pop quizzes get physical when she asks students to show their answer by striking a pose that represents their answer choice. Osborn often escapes the classroom and heads to the auditorium where stations are spread out, providing games and activities for students to demonstrate what they have learned. Other activities allow students to escape to a time period where they become Settlers and Native Americans bargaining for fair trades. Now in her fifth year of teaching, Osborn first discovered her love of history from the engaging instructors she had at Utah State University. Even a teacher can get bored if the class is just lectures and testing, she believes, so she strives to make learning interesting for herself as well as for her students. “She likes to do projects instead of just do worksheets and just sit there,” said seventh-grader Jessalee Sterzer. Through creative projects, students demonstrate their knowledge of Utah history. They create a comic strip about the Cold War, a

Megan Osborn gets students moving by asking them to answer questions with physical poses. (Jet Burnham\City Journals)

brochure of Utah industry, a map of settlements, a set of famous mountain men action figures and a superhero with superpowers associated with the materials, geography and industries found in Utah. Students enjoy the unique assignments. “I think it’s better because you’re having fun while you’re actually learning, instead of doing a boring essay,” said Mia Robles. Students say Osborn explains topics in a way that makes sense to them. “My favorite thing about teaching is when I can relate it to kids, when they can have those ‘ah-ha’ moments of ‘this make sense to me’ or ‘this applies to me,’” said Osborn. Last year, Osborne’s students explored the topic of homelessness in Utah, currently still a hot topic. They researched the issue, determined a solution and sent a policy proposal to the government officials they thought could carry it out. West Jordan Mayor Jim Riding received so many letters from Sunset Ridge students, he arranged to meet with them and bring experts to speak with them. Abbie Price, who wrote a proposal to ex-

pand public transportation, was impressed that the mayor would take the time to talk with students about their proposals. “He said he read all of them,” she said. “And he brought some people to help us understand more what the homeless people are going through.” Osborn loves to see her students realize the impact history has on their lives. “That’s what I love about teaching state history,” she said. “They can see history happened here—things that were important happened in Utah. I like when they can make those connections.” Osborn serves on the Utah Council for the Social Studies with district curriculum specialist Pam Su’a, who nominated her for the award. “She uses methods that are hands-on, student-centered and fun,” said Su’a. “She does things out of the norm that help kids find their niche in life.” She believes Osborn deserves the title of History Teacher of the Year because she is the kind of teacher whose students come out of her class with a love for history. l

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Many children go to school hungry, Krista Gibbons is trying to do something about that By Bob Bedore | bob@mycityjournals.com


ccording to a well-known candy bar commercial, “You’re not yourself when you’re hungry.” It’s played for laughs. But for many children going to school each day in Utah schools (and across the country), it’s no laughing matter. They’re not themselves, and learning can be very difficult when you’re more concerned with hunger than school work. For Krista Gibbons, this simple fact hit her square in the face in her first year of teaching at West Jordan Middle School. “One of my students came in, very grumpy,” Gibbons said, recalling the first encounter with student hunger. “I asked him what was up, and after some prodding, he said that when he woke up he didn’t have time for breakfast. Later, I found out that he was homeless and had woken up from a tent and didn’t make it shelter in time for food. He had been having a very bad day.” Gibbons went to her closet where she kept some granola bars and handed them to the boy. Then, when she went to the store she started to buy a few extra items and placing them in her closet. Word started to spread to the kids that needed it, and Krista said she was there for them. Soon the “closet” became a “pantry,” and more and more students came to rely on the Gibbon’s Pantry for food. Six years of this, and soon the pantry was helping around 300 kids at a personal expense of about $2,000 a year. “I just told myself, I don’t need to go to that movie, or I don’t need to buy this or that,” Gibbons said. “I can use that money for something better and really help these kids.” Things changed when one day she was talking to her friends Jolysa Sedgwick and Merri Golightly about her frustrations, and they jumped in immediately. Merri went and purchased a bunch of food to help her friend and fill the pantry for a few months, but Jolysa had a bigger vision, and Gibs Kids was born. “We were doing backyard concerts for fun,” Jolysa said. “So, I started thinking that we could use them to let people know what was happening and try to get some more support.” “Yeah,” chimed in Merri. “A lot of people

really want to help, but they don’t know who needs the help or even how to help. With these concerts, we’re able to put some light to this cause, and it’s helped.” Last year, they stepped it up and rented the outdoor events area at the Viridian Library and told everyone they could about it. “We wanted to have a no waste operation,” said Jolysa. “All the food for sale would be the kind that could go into the pantry if it wasn’t sold. It was pretty successful, so we’re trying to make it bigger and better every year.” Groups have started to add on. LuLaRoe set up a little clothing store with 17 percent of every sale went to the cause. “I heard about this and just wanted to help,” said Safhama Horton, a representative of the company. “I called them up and asked if we could help donate and immediate agreed. I just was so grateful. I just kept thinking, what if these were my kids going to school hungry?” “It started to spread through my school, and soon other teachers started to have their own pantries,” Gibbons said. “We also host after school programs for kids that find it’s better to stay at school for a while instead of going home right away.” This type of attention has paid off for West Jordan Middle School. The children trust their teachers more and open up about things that might have gone unnoticed. “There is a lot of gang activity around our school,” Gibbons said. “And they’re reaching out to these kids to recruit them. I’ve asked my students, ‘What are they offering you?’ and they answer, ‘the security, the food,’ and I let them know that I can offer that right here. I’ve been able to steer some kids away from those negative influences through my pantry.” Gibbons has other similar experiences. “I’ve had kids opened up to me, some very heart-wrenching stories of different types of abuses and other hardships, all because they trusted me and knew that I was doing everything I could to help them and show them love,” Gibbons said. “The impact of this goes such a long way. You don’t even know. Sometimes kids come from such harsh worlds, just know-


What started as one teacher striving to help a starving student has grown into a movement to help many. (Bob Bedore/City Journals)

ing that someone they don’t even know cares about them. It really makes a difference.” Gibbons is not the only teacher helping kids in this manner. Many schools offer similar programs. And each of them is helping to provide hope. School district officials are also addressing these needs, but the need is often more than the districts can provide. That is why these programs are so important. “We do have the Principal’s Pantry that the district helps with,” Gibbons said. “That has helped with food and some other products that the kids needed. But it wasn’t doing enough, so we started getting more items and even some backpacks filled with supplies for some of our homeless kids.” The evening featured performances from bands such as Hoover Jam and Moose, as well as Jolysa’s own group, The Sedgwick Family, and a dance number from some of the “Gibs Kids.” Little Caesar’s donated some food, and there was a raffle with great prizes including entertainment packages from Off Broadway Theater and even a 30-minute ride in KSL’s

Chopper 5. All in all the evening was a great success. Official numbers were not available, but the event was closing in on $2,000 about midway through the evening. Those who would like to help can do so in many ways. You can donate directly through Venmo (@GibsKids) or by going to the Jordan Education Foundation website (jourdaneducationfoundation.org), though it’s hard to make sure that your donation goes directly into the Lion Pantry (the one set up for West Jordan Middle School). You can also drop off non-perishable food donations at the school. Just tell them that it is for Gib’s Kids. Helping out displays the message that Krista is trying to leave with “her babies.” “These kids come from such hard worlds that they don’t believe that anyone will ever treat them kindly or give them a fair shake,” Gibbons said. “This shows them that people care. The world is a good place. And it makes them want to be better. I’ve seen them become more civic minded. I’ve seen them trying to make a difference, and that gives me hope.” l


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Bingham Creek Library Manager Retires with Honors (and banana pudding) By Sarah Payne | s.payne@mycityjournals.com


ingham Creek Library (4800 West and 9000 South) gave a warm farewell on Aug. 31 to its manager, Ruby Cheesman, age 70, who retired after a distinguished career of 31 years of service to the Salt Lake County Library System.
 Cheesman also completed a fun, delicious, personal goal on that day to make her 1,000th banana pudding, a delicious dessert that has been in her family for a long time. The family tradition that is banana pudding for Cheesman began in her native Georgia, with her grandmother, Ruby Nolan, who she called “Mumsie.” Mumsie began making the banana pudding from the recipe found on the Nabisco Nilla Wafers box. Cheesman said she was allowed to watch, but it was not until age 12 that she was allowed to make the special treat herself. She began to count the puddings she made from that time.
 At the age of 24, Cheesman married and moved to Provo. In 1987, she began her career as a librarian at the Magna Library, where she remained for a short time.
 Cheesman received a Master’s in Library and information Science in 1993. She began to manage the Bingham Creek Library, where she remained for the last 20 years of her career, serving the community from the library.
 “She’s there for her employees,” said Rachel Goodman, a librarian. “She’s done a lot. She’s very much into advocating for her staff, making sure the library looked nice, getting books into people’s hands.”
 Cheesman enjoyed working for the library very much. “I love to help people find the good books to read, or find information that they’re looking for,” she said. “What’s nice about the library is that there’s something for everyone, and most everybody has good things to say.”
 The banana pudding goal was a challenge that Cheesman received from a coworker at Bingham Creek, who suggested she

try to finish 1,000 puddings by her retirement day, which was also her 70th birthday. She took the challenge and has worked hard to accomplish it. The Library System’s employees have been the recipients of many dishes of banana pudding. Cheesman set up a spreadsheet and allowed library managers to request that she bring a banana pudding to their library.
 “Needless to say, I was kept pretty busy for a few years,” Cheesman said. Cheesman’s career has been distinguished by a lasting legacy of service and love. Holly Whistler, another librarian, said, “When I started here (at Salt Lake County Library Services), I met Ruby, working on different things with her, and she was one of the nicest, most welcoming librarians I had ever met.”
 Robyn Bave, longtime customer service specialist at the library, has worked with Ruby for many years. “She worked really well at keeping us as a team,” she said. “The first manager we had kind of set us up that way, and we’ve been fortunate to have managers that have continued keeping the team strong. Ruby was really good at doing that, not just in work ways, but in friend ways, being friendly to each other, laughing and having a good time.” A good working environment was very important to Cheesman, and she devoted much time and energy making the library a positive place to work, bringing in games and other tactics to help her employees have a good experience, a place where each employee matters.
 “Ruby’s always been there to put up our point of view and support us,” Bave said. “I think that’s very important in a manager. Overall, that might be more important than just having the fun and games, but I think the fun and games show that she’s as concerned about all levels of employees.” Carolyn Cammack, assistant circulation supervisor, has some-

Ruby Cheesman retired after 31 years with the Salt Lake County Library System, cooking up her 1,000th banana pudding in the process. (Sarah Payne/ City Journals)

thing to say about the valuable example Cheesman sets for her employees. “She likes to see displays filled,” Cammack said. “She doesn’t like to see empty spaces. She just likes to serve the public, make sure people can find what they need when they come, always laughs, always has a story to tell.” Cheesman is leaving her mark behind as she leaves her beloved library. Among her many achievements are a wider book selection, a year as president of the Utah Library Association from 2009–2010, and the Reader’s Choice program at the library, which chooses books and encourages people to read and vote on the best of several books. Other library accomplishments, such as a recent remodel, show just how much she cares for the Bingham Creek Library, its personnel and those who frequent it. But the moment of goodbye is not yet, as Ruby will continue to volunteer in the library for some time yet. She plans to continue reading and has plans to take a trip to Orlando and a cruise with her family in the year to come. Bingham Creek Library’s employees and clientele alike bid Cheesman a bittersweet goodbye. l

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Page 6 | October 2018

West Jordan City Journal

Audience captivated by the art of the story By Whitney Cox | w.cox@mycityjournals.com


n the words of Becky Harwood, first-time attendee of the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival, “Captivating! They had you right there.” This year is the 29th annual Timpanogos Storytelling Festival and Conference held at Thanksgiving Point. It all started when founder Karen Ashton went to the National Storytelling Festival and was so struck by the art of storytelling that she wanted to bring it back to Utah. It began in her backyard and has grown to a world-renowned storytelling festival. “We just bring, really, the best storytellers in the world to the heart of Utah,” said Marilee Clark, Program Director of Timpanogos Storytelling. “It’s a great place to come and listen to stories. There’s a great sense of connection that’s involved in storytelling. It’s a great family activity. It’s a great time for friends to come and laugh and cry and feel together. It’s really a fun and meaningful experience.” As part of the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival, each year kicks off with a free concert at the Viridian Event Center, featuring a few major storytellers. It really is the best-kept secret, as it is the only free concert in the festival. It isn’t the “opening act” material you would expect either. This year, two nationally renowned storytellers took the stage: Donald Davis and Sheila Arnold. “Donald is an icon in the storytelling world,” Clark said. “He’s been at this storytelling festival since the second festival in 1990. He’s really been instrumental in building this festival to what it is today.” Donald Davis did not disappoint. His story of his Uncle Frank, who “is in charge of bad decisions” had the audience laughing out loud. It’s obvious he has a natural gift, even if he doesn’t know how he first started telling stories.

“I don’t know. I really don’t know,” Davis said. “I grew up in a big family where everybody just talked all the time. I didn’t even know it was stories. I would hear interesting things, and then I would go tell somebody else about it. And then people would say, tell that again, tell that again. Then they would actually have me come tell stories for programs, like for the Lions Club and stuff like that.” Davis has been telling stories professionally for 38 years and will be presenting in Vermont, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Tennessee in the next month alone. Shelia Arnold tells a similar experience when asked how she became a storyteller. “I was raised around storytellers, so I’ve had storytelling in my life all my life,” she said. “Then I had a son, so I started creating stories and songs. That’s what I thought all parents did. Then I learned it wasn’t. So, I started doing it for his daycare, and his daycare took me to one person, who sent me to another to another, and eventually—I always visited all the schools—and eventually, I got to Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia. And there, they actually paid me to be a storyteller. It was lovely.” Arnold is newer to the storytelling world; she began her career around 2004. She tells stories from history, folk tales, children’s tales and even does character roles and presentations, which are “a whole other kind of historical storytelling,” said Arnold. “I go to 398.2 in the library over in the kids’ section, Arnold said. “I take the books off the shelf, the ones that haven’t been touched since they were ever put on the shelf, and I read some of those stories.” The Timpanogos Storytelling Festival also has a second part: the conference, where aspiring storytellers can receive

Donald Davis, a celebrated national storyteller from North Carolina, appeared at the Viridian Event Center for a free evening concert as part of the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival. (Whitney Cox/City Journals)

helpful tools for their craft from professional experts in the storytelling world. “It’s great as a performing art, but every one of us has the opportunity to sharpen the way we tell our own stories, and that has benefits for ourselves as individuals and for our families and our communities,” said Clark. “The process of telling a story, and listening is really a process of connection and building relationships. It has long-reaching benefits.” It seems only fitting to end with the reaction of Halene Draper, who attended the event at the Viridian for a girl’s night out. “This was my first time at a storytelling event,” Draper said. “When they were done, you couldn’t even believe how long it had been.” For more information about the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival, see timpfest.org. l

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October 2018 | Page 7

Demolition derby steers autumn season in, towing busted metal out By Amy Green | a.green@mycityjournals.com


n Sept. 8, the Western Stampede hosted the West Jordan Demolition Derby. Drivers and their mechanic support teams were ready to entertain and destroy at the West Jordan Arena Competitors spanned the map—from Utah cities and towns Ogden, Ephraim, Glendale, West Haven, Heber and Benson. Some even came as far as California, Pennsylvania and British Columbia to enter. The motorists lined up their rattletraps on wheels to square off. The arena was packed with excited guests. This year’s derby had the flying dirt and fearless spinouts one can depend on. The final note of “The Star-Spangled Banner” set off an electrified audience ovation. Cars rumbled and revved into the ring—every salvaged frame with its own personality. They each growled out smoke and exhaust trash talk. If spectators didn’t get an occasional glimpse of an adept driver inside, it could seem like the vehicles were alive, or in a remote control crash test. It made for some good dirt-kickin’ fun. Event fan Daniel Stoddard is a supporter of

town happenings like this. “Come out to these kinds of events,” he said. “They’re good for the cities, and they are a blast!” Stoddard was stoked for the loud engines and the crashing. The audience took a liking to driver Brad Bowman and his green car, numbered 33. Families cheered and dubbed it just that—“the green car.” It was lime-colored, lean and mean, in the same knockabout condition as all the others. But it had a magnetism all its own. The car’s style and attitude instantly rallied spectators to its side. This green hunk car from Heber ignited some massive rounds of applause, winning the second heat. The derby did not disappoint, with a class C shuttle storming in to help bump and shove. The animated bus with a giant missile lodged in its roof, helped to knock more dents in the piles of metal and really lit up kids’ faces. Jeff Dunlop was a driver who impressed, with one of the best show-stopper moves. He drove a pickup. It was the only truck to flip an-

Car from Pittsburgh car gets towed out and fixed up for the next heat in Western Stampede Demolition Derby in West Jordan (Amy Green/City Journals)

other truck 90 degrees over completely on its door. The tipped driver was quickly righted by safety officiators. With all cars re-centered over tires, the smashing continued. Dunlop shared a few reasons he gets behind the wheel. “It’s a stress reliever to show what you can do and to have fun bending some metal,” Dunlop said. He went on to explain how in some cases, after cars have been beaten up and patched over with parts, the junkers get stronger moving on to the next demolition competition. Jeff Tenney of South Jordan showed up to have a great time, and he did. It was also his birthday. “We thought it would be a good way (to celebrate) and to see them smash all up,” he said.” He liked the idea of a demolition derby to cap off his special day and showed up with a lighthearted smile. Tenney made a good point about the amusing destruction. “All the future work the body and fender guys have … who’ll get to repair them,” he added. Although it may seem easy to kick up soil

and spin the heavy tread, there is strategy and skill at the heart of it. The drivers take many safety precautions. They have mindful skill and follow strict rules set in steel for a derby meet. It can be interesting to learn about the regulations of competing in a demolition contest. Nine cars limped back into the final heat, including two crusading “Trump” cars from California. By the end of the night, one had a hot glowing gear box, shooting out sparks. Finally, there were a few last engines hanging on, pounding and sputtering until the end. One of the “Trumps,” and the red car “21,” split the cash prize. They were urged by the announcer to “flip” a coin for the trophy. Those lucky to have a ticket this year were able to see a shared victory. It was another successful West Jordan event, bringing autumn fever in with a total axle-twisting adrenaline rush. For next year’s Western Stampede demolition derby information, keep steady hands on 10 and 2, and eyes on westernstampede.com. l

A bus storms in to help bump and shove cars around at the Western Stampede Demolition Derby in West Jordan (Amy Green/City Journals)


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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. 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

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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 am-

phitheater, 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

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

October 2018 | Page 11

West Jordan Cultural Arts Center construction delayed


ast November, ground was broken for a new Cultural Arts Center that would house the West Jordan Theater Arts, Symphony, Youth Theater, Mountain West Chorale and more. The building would have room for rehearsing, performances, 300 audience seats and concessions. The site was in a very visible and accessible location on 1955 West 7800 South in West Jordan City. Construction was to begin in March 2018 and completed in spring 2019. Seven months have passed since the projected start date and the site is still empty. In July, an official letter from West Jordan City Manager David Brickey states: “We have learned at that the site where the groundbreaking occurred for the proposed Cultural Arts Center [h] as a UDOT easement that conflicts with the site plans. Because of this, the site is not useable for a structure and the city is abandoning the site.” Councilmember Alan Anderson is the city liaison on the Arts Council. His thoughts do not reflect an official position of the city council. But he stated on Facebook on a page called “West Jordan Cultural Arts Center - Building a Strong Arts Foundation” that, “[D]uring the process of developing the fundraising plan, it was made known to the city about an easement on the property by UDOT. Not knowing about it before hand is on the city. I am sorry about that.” The money set aside originally for the project is still available, though $2 million that was previously granted by Salt Lake County is pending

By Erin Dixon | erin@mycityjournals.com because of agreements that were not fully recognized at the time of the groundbreaking. The land on 7800 South was given to the city and came with conditions. Marketing Specialist Travis Green for Sugar Factory Playhouse wrote that, “The easement [or land] was a donation of land made to the city from UDOT about 15 years ago. One of the stipulations of the donation was that nothing could be built on the land because UDOT didn’t want the city turning around and selling the land for profit.” “The city official [I spoke to] thinks we might be able to talk to UDOT and convince them to change the terms of the donation to allow the construction of a public building (the performing arts center),” Green said. As time goes on, it seems that not only is the placement changing, but city officials will need to reconsider the building plan as well. Because of the rising costs in the Salt Lake Valley for building materials and labor, the previously adopted building plan is increasingly more expensive than the initial estimation. (The original plan can be viewed here: https://docs.wixstatic.com/ugd/ There has been some discussion of simplifying this plan, but if some features are removed to cut costs then it may make the building less versatile. Anderson described some other indications that costs of construction in the valley are rising rapidly. “There are 1,800 contractors working on

the new SLC International Airport,” Anderson said. “We have landscape companies driving by our parks employees offering $2/hour more than they are making. The city had a park bathroom bid come in at $250,000. This is just for bathrooms in a park.” Brickey also discussed this problem in the public statement.“...[T]he financial position has weakened,” Brickey said. “The building design has changed, and the current estimate is now $11.3 million versus an initial $8.1 million. [T] he county funding of $2 million has been returned because the grant had conditions that … negatively impact[ed] the Arts Council. The funds raised so far, which total about $6.5 million, continue to be set aside for an arts center.” Though the logistics are now in a jumble, the city council has remained faithful to the project and will continue to find a way to build something for the Arts Council to use. “The West Jordan City Council has not changed its position in support of the Arts in West Jordan,” Brickey said. “However, the city does not currently have the full resources to move forward with the project as designed.” Those alternative ideas include using West Jordan Middle School for performances or to purchase a pre-fabricated structure. For an alternate location, it has been suggested to use the land that held the sugar factory. The city already owns the land, but this location would have much less visibility to the public because of

its location (8201 South. 2200 West). One of the organizations that would use the Arts Center regularly is the West Jordan Theater Arts Board (formerly the West Jordan Performing Arts Board). It had a turbulent history in finding a place to perform. In 1995, it performed in a picnic pavilion and did so for eight years. From 2004 to 2010, it performed in the old sugar factory until the building was condemned. Since 2010, performances have been at various schools and event arenas in the area. Other groups that would use the facility are the West Jordan Youth Theatre, West Jordan Symphony and the West Jordan City Band. Celeste Stone has been chair of the West Jordan Youth Theatre for the past six years. Performances are generally at Joel. P. Jensen Middle School, though sometimes it is difficult to coordinate schedules. “I feel like a lot of our needs as a youth theatre are not addressed. We have been promised for years and years they would get us a home…. It’s concerning how quickly things move for sports compounds and parks etc. but not for our arts.” “I feel at this point it’s never going to happen,” Stone said. “I think we all feel a little defeated and tend to not trust city council when they make promises. We should be able to come up with an amazing venue that fits all o[f] the arts needs, not a pop up theater” Progress is unsure, and there is no completion date until more details are solidified. l

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ebekah Wightman is an Estate Planning, Probate, and Guardianship attorney at Corbett & Gwilliam, PLLC in South Jordan. Though an Oregon native, Rebekah has made her home in Utah for the last 11 years and currently resides in Herriman with her husband and two sons. When Rebekah was 14 years old, her maternal grandfather died leaving a complex estate to sort out; the next several years were spent collecting, inventorying, managing, selling, and distributing his estate. She witnessed firsthand the toll that a poorly organized estate takes on the family left sorting things out. This experience stuck with Rebekah and led her to practice in the areas of estate planning, guardianship, and probate. Of all that Rebekah’s job entails, she most enjoys educating the community through lunch ‘n learns, seminars, and answering one-on-one questions. As a mother of young children, she is especially passionate about helping young families understand that estate planning is not just for the elderly or the wealthy, and that it provides solutions to many of our most persistent worries. A recent client related, “No one likes to think about the “what will happen when I pass on” scenarios. It’s not a pleasant thought process, but everyone needs to have a plan. Rebekah helped me weigh

Page 14 | October 2018

all the pros and cons of setting up a trust and explained everything very well and so that it made sense to me. She even makes sure that you have all the extras for your children to make sure they are taken care of if you can’t be there. She made it easy, quick and painless.”. Rebekah holds a J.D. from the University of Utah, S.J. Quinney School of Law, and a B.A. in International Relations from Brigham Young University. During her schooling, she interned for Representative Becky Lockhart and researched for the WomanStats Project. Rebekah sits on the board for the Southwest Valley Chamber of Commerce, co-chairs the Serving our Seniors Initiative through the Young Lawyers Division of the Utah State Bar, and has volunteered with several Utah-based organizations including Family Promise, Project Read, and the Boys and Girls Club. Most recently, she has worked with the Herriman High School Future Business Leaders of America Club. She was even named Utah FBLA Business Person of the Year for 2017. Marin Murdock, the president of the Herriman High School FBLA commented, “Rebekah’s selfless determination to help everyone she meets has made a lasting impact, and the Herriman FBLA Chapter is grateful for all of her hard work to strengthen our chapter and commu-

nity. I personally have learned numerous lifelong lessons from Rebekah as she has been a personal mentor to me. She is a great example of who I want to be as a future business woman and I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to be able to work with her over the last two years.” When Rebekah isn’t lawyering, she en-

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West Jordan City Journal

Have a ball at Lyrical Opera’s Masquerade Party fundraiser By Bob Bedore | bob@mycityjournals.com


ctober is often looked at as a month where it’s common to go to a party wearing a mask or some other elaborate costume, but for those who really want to party, a masquerade ball is the only way to do it. On Oct. 20, the Cottonwood Country Club will transport you back in time for what promises to be an evening of intrigue and fantasy like few others you can experience. The night will feature people in great, period costumes, food, singing, waltzing, polkas, magic and games. No word yet on an appearance by the Red Death. The event is a fundraiser for Lyrical Opera’s spring 2019 production of Verdi’s great opera “La Traviata,” one of the most beloved operas in the world. By attending the event, patrons are helping keep a great local production company providing operatic entertainment at an affordable cost. Last year’s Masquerade Party sold out, so get your tickets early. Masquerade Balls have been around for centuries and gained a prominent footing in Italy during the 16th century Renaissance. The upper class would hold elaborate dances that featured the added game of guests being masked. Party-goers would spend the evening trying to guess each other’s identities. The parties spread to the attention of the world and have been featured in every level of culture, including the “Gilmore Girls.” This Masquerade Party will begin with a

buffet hors d’oeurves during which the guests will be invited to play a witty, 19th century game of “Who am I?” From there song and dance will rule the night. The singing will be provided by some of Lyrical Opera’s performers and a ballroom dance instructor will be on hand to teach some simple steps, ensuring no one is left out of the fun. There will also be a silent auction table with great items to be won and a magician that will stroll through the crowd, entertaining them with up-close magic. Tickets for the event will be $35 each and can be obtained by visiting LyricalOperaTheater.com. As the event did sell out early last year, you should get them quickly. If you are unable to attend this function but still want to help out, you can join the Lyrical Opera Theater Opera Guild. The company is a 501(c)(3) arts education charity and is always looking for volunteers and business sponsors. The talent comes from all over Utah and their singers can be found performing at private parties, funerals, weddings or anywhere else they’re asked to sing. The fundraiser will help bring “La Traviata” to the stage. It is currently scheduled for the spring of 2019 and will be performed at the Midvale Performing Arts Center. The opera is based on a novel by Alexandre Dumas and the title translates to “the woman who strayed,” or “the fallen woman.” It tells the story of Violetta,

Friends, Food, Fun, and even a magical creature or two are all guaranteed to be in abundance. (Lyrical Opera)

a high-class courtesan who is brought into the fashionable society of Paris by a man who loves her. It is actually featured in the film “Pretty Woman,” which has some similarities in plot. The opera has a great party scene in Act One, likely close to the one those attending the Masquerade Party will find. It also features

some of Verdi’s best music. The Aria sung by Violetta in Act Three is impressive. There is also a scene in Act Two where Violetta is pressured to break up with her fiancé Alfredo by his father because of her past. The duet that is shared in this scene is wonderful. l

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West Jordan Parks, Recreation, and Trail Master Plan Survey

Take a 10-minute online survey found at WestJordan.Utah.Gov and help shape the future of your parks! Take this 10-minute survey and let us know how important parks, trails, open space, athletic fields, and other park amenities are to you. Survey results will be used to update our Parks, Recreation, and Trails Master Plan. As one of the fastest growing cities in the region, an up-to-date and comprehensive Parks, Recreation, and Trails Master Plan is an essential tool for ensuring facilities keep pace with demand in our city. The new plan will reflect the current vision and needs of the community while providing policy guidance for allocating resources during the next 10 years and beyond. Please share your input! Visit WestJordan.Utah.Gov

November Elections Without a West Jordan mayor or city council race this year, it may be tempting to ignore the 2018 election season. However, there are still several items on the ballot this year that will affect West Jordan residents. You can take part in voting for the next Utah U.S. Senator and U.S. House Representative. There are several other elected officials on the ballot. We encourage you to visit Vote.Utah.Gov and read up on the candidate information to help you make an informed decision. Other ballot items include legalizing medical marijuana (Proposition 2) and expanding Medicaid health coverage (Proposition 3). You’ll also see a “nonbinding opinion question” about a potential gas increase for public education and local roads. Mail ballots are mailed to registered voters between Oct. 8 and Oct. 16. Ballots must be returned and postmarked on or before Nov. 5 in order for the vote to count. In-person voting will take place Nov. 6 from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

M AY O R ’ S M E S S A G E

New Public Works Complex Open to Serve the Community On Sept. 19, city officials cut the ribbon and officially opened the new Public Works complex. Since the former facility was built in 1986, our city has grown from around 35,000 to over 114,000 residents, and the need for services has grown accordingly. The former building was woefully inadequate to meet those needs. It was too small, could not accommodate the size and number of many weather-sensitive pieces of equipment, and had sanitation and safety hazards. One of my favorite memories of working in this building is the pigeon population nesting in the rafters, especially the bird droppings (including eggs) we had to dodge. Notwithstanding these and many other challenges, our Public Works personnel have done an amazing job at serving our community from this facility for many years. They are the unsung heroes of the city. Without the core services they provide, our city simply could not function. Our Public Works Department delivers our water and oversees the removal of our garbage. They build and maintain our roads and keep them clear in the winter. They design, build and maintain the systems that prevent flooding when it rains, remove our sewage, and light our streets. They even maintain the vehicles used by police and fire. We are so excited to finally have a facility that will allow them to serve the city with greater efficiency and safety. The City Council unanimously supported the construction of this project, as have several previous councils. In 2009 Mayor David Newton commissioned a study for the construction of a new building. Mayor Melissa Johnson then continued the search for a construction site. Mayor Kim Rolfe oversaw most of the project’s heavy lifting from funding and site selection to design and initial construction. I was lucky enough to have been the project manager on this since the initial stages and am honored to be Mayor during its completion. By using land the city already owned and projecting for the future as carefully as possible, we have built a facility that will meet the needs of our community in the most cost-effective and efficient way possible and will continue to do so for the next 50-plus years, eventually supporting our city at build-out. West Jordan is no longer a small town. We are currently the fourth-largest city in the state, and within the next decade, will probably become the third largest. It’s difficult to comprehend the sheer breadth of the services that are provided by Public Works and the extensive specialized equipment and technology required to do it. To that end, an open house is planned for Saturday, May 25, 2019, during national Public Works Week. I’d love for every resident to come tour the building and learn more about Public Works. Come and see for yourselves why this building is so vital.

Jim Riding, Mayor


Fall is a great time to trim trees Fall foliage provides a “color show” in Utah’s mountains and in our own backyards. When the show ends and the leaves fall, make use of the city’s green waste program, which runs through Nov. 28. Remember to place the leaves directly in the green waste cans (plastic bags are not accepted). Low hanging tree limbs can create a hazard for vehicular and pedestrian traffic. They can also result in problems for all involved and delay maintenance activity. When a vehicle strikes a low hanging limb, it can result in property damage to the vehicle and significant damage to the tree. Common city tree code violations occur in four areas: 1. Sign visibility – Trees must be trimmed so their canopies don’t interfere with the visibility of stop signs, yield sign, street address signs and other regulatory signs. 2. Clear vision – trees or bushes must be trimmed so motorists or pedestrians can see oncoming traffic at intersections. 3. Sidewalk clearance – Trees or bushes must not obstruct pedestrian travel. Trees adjacent to pedestrian walkways need to have a minimum canopy clearance of 8 feet above the sidewalk. 4. Street side clearance – Tree canopies that extend over streets need to provide canopy clearance of at least 15 feet above the pavement. Low-hanging trees interfere with motorists and cause issues for snowplow operations, paving operations, garbage collection, street sweeping operations and more.

It is the property owner’s responsibility to maintain their trees and planting material. If there is a complaint or an operation that is being altered due to your trees or planting material, you may receive a visit from a Code Enforcement Officer to correct the issue. Details about the city’s tree code are online at WestJordan.Utah.Gov. For more tree trimming tips, contact the city’s urban forester, Ty Nielsen at tyn@wjordan.com.

Demolition Derby Recap

CERT Training Nov. 2-3

Last month, West Jordan held its yearly Demolition Derby in front of a sold out crowd of over 4,600 fans! The city partnered with Stirrin’ Dirt Racing to bring this action-packed event to the West Jordan Arena. The event was also filmed as part of a reality show and some heats can be seen on Mayhem Racing’s Facebook page.

When a natural disaster strikes, it could take several days for public safety personnel to respond to individual homes, making it important to learn emergency basics so you can be as self-sufficient as possible. West Jordan Fire Department is teaching a two-day Community Emergency Response Team training Nov. 2-3. The course requires completion of an online course prior to taking the hands-on class. The hands-on portion is taught by West Jordan firefighters and other local professionals. You will learn about Disaster Preparedness, Disaster Medical, Fire Suppression, and Search and Rescue. The online self-study portion usually takes about 6 hours to complete. The 12-hour classroom practical session will be held Friday, Nov. 2 from 6 p.m.10 p.m., and Saturday, Nov. 3 from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. You must complete both portions and the required online training hours in order to receive certification. CERT training is open to all West Jordan residents, age 18 and over, and anyone who works within West Jordan City limits. The cost of the class is $35, to cover some of the costs of materials. Email certwjfd@wjordan.com or find out more at www.westjordan.utah.gov/cert


“At Home” and “Lucky’s Supermarket” coming to West Jordan By Kent Andersen, Economic Development Director West Jordan has some exciting retail announcements. The “when, not if” announcement of the Sears Grand closure at Jordan Landing was announced on Aug. 23. On the same day, At Home, a home décor retailer, announced it would be taking Sears place. In September, Lucky Supermarkets was issued a building permit to begin refitting the old Albertsons on Redwood Road and 7000 South. At Home and Lucky expect to open early 2019.

Both announcements are a testament to the demand for retail services and options in West Jordan. As a community, continue to shop local businesses and use your purchasing power to support additional businesses in making West Jordan home. In the age of information and the increase in web-based research, it is critical to have West Jordan economic information easily found and readily available. To this end, West Jordan Economic Development staff prepared an Economic Profile. This profile includes community information, demographics, taxable sales data, labor force, building permits, traffic counts, etc. for West Jordan. When businesses look to locate in West Jordan, often most research is conducted without ever contacting a staff member. With the Economic Profile, the information gathering process is easier and provides potential businesses the data needed to assist decision making. This profile also assists existing businesses to understand the market and make data driven decisions. To view the West Jordan Economic Profile, go to: www.westjordan.utah.gov/economic-development

LOCAL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT Paul Hitzelberger, owner of the Del Taco on Redwood Road, and a total of 32 Del Tacos across Utah and Nevada, is the recipient of the Utah Restaurant Association’s 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award. Hitzelberger has donated over $1.1 million to various state and local organizations since 2008. West Jordan is proud to have Hitzelberger and Del Taco as a part of our business community.

Healthy West Jordan Events For the month of October, the Healthy West Jordan Committee will be holding two events: Addiction Awareness Dinner, Oct. 4 @ 6:30-8:30 p.m. West Jordan City Hall – Sponsored by the Cambia Foundation, University of Utah and Healthy West Jordan join us for dinner and a panel discussion about addiction in our communities. Come ready to learn and engage with local community leaders and experts in the field of addiction. Holidays of Good Cheer, Oct. 11 @ 6:30-7 p.m. West Jordan City Hall – Come join us to learn more about managing stress, nutrition and activity habits during the holiday season when it is easiest to allow goals to leave out the window. Make your health a priority this winter season! For more information and to sign up, visit Facebook.com/HealthyWestJordan.

Citizen Service Request Tool Citizen Service Request web and mobile tool gives residents an easy way to report non-emergency maintenance requests like code violations, graffiti, potholes, broken streetlights and stray animals using their smartphones, desktop computers or tablets. The request is then routed to the appropriate department and staff. Sending a request is easy. Snap a photo of the problem (optional), select the location, add a little detail and press submit. The CSR also gives employees an easy way to manage requests and communicate back to citizens when their issues have been fixed. The Citizen Service Request is located at WestJordan.Utah.gov/Service-Request.

Green Waste Collection ends on the last full week of November Green waste pick up is coming to an end for the 2018 season so plan now to complete your fall yard projects. The last collection will be on your regular collection day the week of Nov. 26th. Green waste collection will resume Monday, April 1, 2019. Remember to keep the green clean and place only loose yard clippings in the container. Green waste containers are collected once a week on a seasonal basis on your normal collection day.

KEEP IT CLEAN • DO NOT bag any items. • Please DO NOT put dirt, sod, cardboard, garbage, debris, concrete, rocks or plastic bags in the container. • All materials should fall freely from the container when dumped. • Please do not overload. The lid of the container must close completely and branches should not stick out of the container. • Place container curbside by 6:30 a.m. on your scheduled collection day during the green waste season. The program is run in partnership with Trans-Jordan Landfill. The green waste is turned into compost that is then sold to the public. The compost is made from yard clippings like grass, leaves, ground wood and organic material. (There is no dirt, manure or biosolids in the compost.) The mixture is then composted for several months until it is matured and ready for sale. The Landfill also sells a variety of screened wood chips perfect for landscaping and curb appeal. Link to www.westjordan.utah.gov/garbageandrecycling









City Hall Schorr Gallery 8000 S. Redwood Rd, 6:30 p.m.

Pioneer Hall 1137 W. 7800 S., 7:30 p.m.








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


Joel P. Jensen Middle School 8105 South 3200 West, 7 p.m. Saturday Matinees at 2 p.m.




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


City Hall Council Chambers 8000 S Redwood Rd, 6:30 p.m.






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

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

SCHORR GALLERY EXHIBIT OPENING RECEPTION City Hall Schorr Gallery 8000 S Redwood Rd, 7 p.m.







City Hall West Parking Lot 8000 S 1825 West 10 a.m.-noon

City Hall 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.


Apply for a West Jordan Planning Commission Appointment Two seats on the Planning Commission will be vacant beginning Jan. 1, 2019. Residents over the age of 18 with an interest in land-use issues are encouraged to apply. Please submit a letter of interest and resume to heather.everett@westjordan.utah.gov by Nov. 5. Appointment/Responsibilities: The Planning Commission is a seven-member board appointed by City Council after an interview process. Terms are for three years. The Commission’s responsibilities include review, approval and recommendations to City Council in matters of land use planning, zoning, and subdivision. Meetings: The Planning Commission meets regularly on the first and third Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. with a pre-meeting sometimes at 5:30 p.m.

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

Lynette Owens proves opera is quite the operation By Bob Bedore | bob@mycityjournals.com

Every theater is an insane asylum but an opera theatre is a ward for the incurables.” The words of famed Austrian conductor Franz Schalk may seem to fly over the heads of most, but for those who have lived a life in the world of opera, very few words will ring truer. While people may get “bit by the acting bug,” opera can take over your life and make you feel as if you’ve been swallowed by the bug. West Jordan resident Lynette Owens knows that feeling all too well. Owens knew that she was a singer since birth and performed her first solo at the age of 4. And there has been very little slowing her down since then. The musically gifted Owens (she also plays several instruments and orchestrates her operas) has sung all over the world, including as a soloist at New York City’s Carnegie Hall in Mozart’s “Requiem” and “Vesperae solennes de contessore” with a 300-voice choir. She received a 10-minute standing ovation And while there has been a lot of music in her life, opera is her passion. “My junior high choir teacher started singing with the Utah Opera and handed me tickets,” Owens said, remembering her introduction to the operatic world. “It was the company’s first production, ‘Tosca.’ I vividly remember watching it with awe, wonder and amazement, and felt my soul was experiencing its personal heaven. I loved the virtuosic, rich voices, the drama and even the dying.” Owens would later play the title role of Tosca in the same musical in Lyrical Opera’s 2015 production. After the introduction to opera there was no stopping this firecracker of a performer. She continued her thirst for musical knowledge through high school, performing leading roles in musicals and playing in orchestras throughout, and then went on to college with both music and academic scholarships. Upon graduating, she competed nationwide for opera apprenticeships and received and completed one with Sarasota Opera, then came home to sing with Utah Opera Co., for two years under the mentorship of Glade Peterson. She covered leading roles and performed comprimario roles, sang in educational outreach programs and soloed in concerts. She moved to New York City where she lived for four years training with Metropolitan Opera coach Joan Dornaman during which time she received apprenticeships with Des Moines Metro Opera and was a NYC winner of the prestigious MacAllister voice competition. Owens then moved to Switzerland, coaching with opera

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singing conductors and was a recorded soloist with the Da Camera Choir. Lynnette moved back to Utah and re-auditioned for Utah Opera Co., which frequently engaged her as a soloist with the Utah Symphony. She was one of their first Studio Artists singing the leading role of Fiordiligi in Mozart’s “Cosi fan tutte,” covering leading roles, singing comprimario roles and touring with their Educational Outreach program. There have been many standout moments in her history, performing live can lead to many unplanned moments. Lynette remembers a time she was living out a dream of being a soloist with the Utah Symphony singing alongside the great tenor George Dyer. She was dressed in a shoulder-less dress with plastic boning to hold everything in place. “As the hot lights poured down on me, the boning became more and more pliable and began bending lower and lower,” she remembers, shaking her head. “I knew it. The audience knew it. Everyone, including me, was holding their breath thinking they might get an unintended show.” Luckily, things held up and Lynette has learned to use metal boning in her dresses, including for her performance at Carnegie Hall. In 2013, she founded Lyrical Opera and has worked tirelessly to not only bring outstanding opera to Utah but also a chance for performers to live their art. “Being an opera singer often means making a choice,” Lynette said, talking about the fact that opera companies often import their talent and if you want to make a living in opera you have to be on the road a lot, and that means not having a family. “The hardest part about singing opera is having to choose between family and a career. It shouldn’t have to be a choice.” Not only does Lyrical Opera provide a chance for performers to sing some of the great operas while still allowing them to remain home, but it also has provided many innovations that have separated it from other community-based companies around the globe. First, Lyrical Opera uses a fully orchestrated backing track, created note by note, instrument by instrument, by Owens. Accompaniment like this didn’t exist in the operatic world until Lyrical Opera brought it to light. It was one of the things that Lynette was told “couldn’t be done.” People soon started learning that she takes that kind of talk as a challenge, not a warning. Lyrical Opera then combines those tracks with projected scenery that contains the “supertitle” translations. The effects of the rear-projected scenery is stunning and provides a visual look

Lynette Owens in the titular role in Lyrical Opera’s production of Puccini’s “Tosca” seems unimpressed with Scarpia (played by Tyler Oliphant) (Lyrical Opera)

that goes far beyond what most think of when they see “community” productions. And the supertitles gives everyone a chance to follow the story. Opera is mostly sung and, more often than not, in a non-English language. Having the translation appear for all to read makes a Lyrical Opera experience a great one for many. But it’s not just the technical achievements that make Lynette’s company shine; the talent that she has been able to collect locally really stands out. Lyrical Opera Theater gives great exposure to local artists allowing them not only a chance to perform but also to increase their skills. They also have a goal to lay the ground work for future generations of both opera singers and opera lovers. Lyrical Opera performs what could be called the “greatest hits” of opera. The shows are those that many will have heard of at some point. The spring opera for 2019 will be “La Taviata,” an opera that is beloved around the world and preformed often. To help raise money for this, Lyrical Opera is hosting a Masquerade Party on Oct. 20 at the Cottonwood Country Club. More information on both of these events can be found at LyricalOperaTheater.com. Opera is a truly unique experience, and thanks to Owens, many people in Utah can experience it. Her love of performing and sharing her gift is something that will never go away. She is the very definition of Franz Schalk’s “incurable.” l

October 2018 | Page 21

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

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 perhaps a chance to play collegiately—but kids lose by specializing. Growing bodies can become overly stressed because of repetition, which can lead

Page 22 | October 2018

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 attend 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

West Jordan City Journal



11464 Parkway Plaza Dr, South Jordan, UT 84095

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


evivology houses the latest innovations in medical cosmetology in their comfortable, elegant facility. Their mission is to make you feel like a princess in your jeans and flip-flops. The office has an unexpected combination of modern luxury and warmth. They are dedicated to providing their clients with the highest level experience in a comfortable, professional and non-threatening way. Entering a medical spa may feel intimidating. To ease these tentative nerves, the facility itself is comfortable and inviting. The estheticians and spa director are often in the lobby chatting and interacting with clients, old and new. Revivology is unique in the cosmetic surgery world. Before you take any action, they offer free, no-commitment, consultations with either the resident Dr. Christopher P. Kelly, M.D., or with their master Estheticians. You have a chance to get to know the person would would be caring for you, as well as know exactly what treatment you would be receiving. In your first 45-minute consultation with Dr. Kelly, you can ask any questions and explore all the options for treatment. Dr. Kelly has performed over 10,000 cosmetic surgeries, from facelifts to tummy tucks and everywhere in between. He has

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shared his knowledge with 400 surgeons across the country. His goal is not to reconstruct, but to simply return your face and body to a younger, more vibrant self. The staff at Revivology are perfect examples of his work. Their top procedures are face lifts, eyelids, breast augmentation, tummy tucks and vaginal rejuvination. If you are looking for something non-surgical, they offer a free, no obligation, 30-minute consultation with master Estheticians. When the world of skincare can seem overwhelming, especially for someone new to it, they simplify the process. After taking a look at your current skin care regiment, they will draft a customized treatment plan to fit your own desires. The newest injector, Melissa Radcliffe, may be new to Revivology but has been injecting for over nine years. She’s talented at her work but also personal and funny. As one of the leading medical spas in Utah, they offer the latest technology. Hair removal with Cynosure laser; tattoo removal with the PicoWay laser which can be done painlessly; MiraDry for treatment of underarm sweat and odor; or CoolSculpting and body sculpting with the newest red light therapy.

Customized services are also available for brown spots, acne, acne scarring, fine lines and wrinkles and skin rejuvenation. They also offer Micro-needling with PRP, (aka Vampire facial), Photo Facials, and Chemical Peels.

The month of October is their Fourth Anniversary in their District location (11464 S Pkwy Plaza Dr.). During this month they offer specials that can’t be found anywhere else! l

October 2018 | Page 23


Bell For Utah Legislature

West Jordan / South Jordan / Midvale

Freedom to thrive... together! What’s important to your family is what’s important to my family.

Ring the BELL for change! Facebook: Scott Bell for Utah HD47 (385) 429-2681 ScottBell4UtahHD47@gmail.com Paid for by Scott Bell

Page 24 | October 2018

West Jordan City Journal


Sunrise Family Practice

8785 S Jordan Valley Way, Suite 100, West Jordan, UT 84088

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


atients are greeted with rays of sunshine as they walk into Sunrise Family Practice. A painting hangs at eye level, full of vibrant colors as it encompasses the ambience of the business. Everyday can be a new beginning, a fresh start, and a brighter day. Owner and founder Jololene Allan has spent decades in the medical field: working 35 years as a nurse and the past 18 years as a nurse practitioner. Specifically, Allan is an Advance Practice Registered Nurse licensed by the State of Utah. She specializes in family practice, as she is certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. “I see the whole family, all the way from birth to death,” said Allan. To become a nurse practitioner, Allan obtained a bachelor’s of science in nursing from Westminster College, a master’s of science in nursing administration from Brigham Young University, and a family nurse practitioner designation from Westminster College. Her education focused on providing health promotion and maintenance through diagnosis and treatment of acute illness and chronic conditions. After being exposed to the medical field for an extended amount of time, Allan was frustrated with what she refers to as “industrial medicine,” where professionals spend only an allotted amount of time with their patients, discussing a single topic. If the patient wants to discuss anything further, they have to schedule a separate appointment. In industrial medicine, patients are stereotyped and generalized. Sunrise Family Practice is devoted to being different. Allan is

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dedicated to listening to her patients so she can understand them as completely as possible. She understands how all aspects of life are interrelated and ultimately combine to make a whole individual. “We are rebelling against industrial medicine,” Allan said with a laugh. Many of Allan’s patients have followed her to Sunrise Family Practice because of her personalized approach to healthcare. Allan listens to her patients, educates them on how to appropriately approach their healthcare, guides them through any processes, and aims to help everyone achieve their best health. “I am your cheerleader,” said Allan. Since Allan looks at everything from birth to death, she can address a multitude of issues. Some of the healthcare she provides include: primary care; urgent care; acute care such as minor injuries, lacerations and sprains; routine health care such as yearly physicals, child exams, sports exams, missionary exams, and school exams; chronic disease care for diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, hypothyroid; and medication management. Additionally, Allan has a special interest in mental health. In the future, she plans on expanding Sunrise Family Practice so she can bring mental health therapists onto her team. Sunrise Family Practice is open from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Allan understands that most people work during the day and may not want to take time off or pull their children out of school just to visit the doctor. She has offered these extended hours to accommodate those families who can’t schedule within the restrictions of industrial medicine. Located at 8785 S. Jordan Valley Way, Suite 100 in West Jor-

dan, Sunrise Family Practice accepts most insurance, including Medicare and Medicaid. They also have cash discounts for self-pay for the uninsured. “We are more than happy to see anyone,” said Allan. Even if you can’t make it into Sunrise Family Practice, check out their Facebook page (sunrisefp), where health tips are posted every Tuesday. Last week, followers learned how to walk their way to better health. For more information, visit their website at: www.sunrisefamilyrpactice.com, or call their office at 385-645-7474. l

October 2018 | Page 25

Fall break is the perfect time to discover new places By Christy Jepson | Christy@mycityjournals.com

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Page 26 | October 2018


all is officially here and with fall break coming up, it is a perfect time to get out and explore new places while the weather is still good. If you’re in town for the two-day break, explore some places that are not in your backyard, but are close enough to make a fun family outing. Here are a few places all about an hour’s drive or less from the Salt Lake area. Ogden’s George S. Eccles Dinosaur Park: Step back into time at a prehistoric dinosaur park where more than 100 dinosaur sculptures inhabit the grounds of this eightacre outdoor dinosaur park. Hours at the park are Monday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Ticket prices are $7 for adults (18 years and older), $6 for seniors (ages 62 and older), students (ages 13-17) are $6, and children (2-12 years old) are $5. Dinosaur Park is located at 1544 E. Park Blvd. in Ogden. Visit www.dinosaurpark.org for more information. Treehouse Children’s Museum: Fun and learning go hand in hand at this great children’s museum in Ogden. The center of the museum is a giant 30-foot-high treehouse kids can climb and explore. Some of the other exhibits and play areas include: the big red barn workshop, a large map of Utah, adventure tower, king and queen thrones, an American map, and the Oval Office. The museum is open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday night they stay open until 8 p.m. They close at 5 p.m. on Saturday. Admission prices are $8 for children ages 1 to 12; $5 for children 13 to 17; and 18 and older are $5. The Treehouse Children’s Museum is located at 347 22nd Street in Ogden. Visit their website at www.treehousemuseum. org for more information. Heber Valley Railroad: About an hour’s drive from Salt Lake County, families can be in the clear, mountain air in Heber. Not only is Heber a great small town to explore, the Heber Valley Railroad is a perfect outdoor activity for fall break. The Pumpkin Train runs from October 4-29. Ticket prices include a 40-minute train ride on the Heber Valley Railroad. While enjoying the scenery, guests will be entertained by costumed characters who ride along on the train. In addition to the train ride, guests can select a pumpkin from the pumpkin patch, get a Halloween sticker, a pumpkin cookie and a trip through the not-so-scary haunted train car. Ticket prices are $15 for children 3 and up (including a pumpkin), and $3 for those 2 and under (including a pumpkin) or free for toddlers who do not want a pumpkin. To reserve your ticket for a train ride, visit www.hebervalleyrr. org. Cornbelly’s: Located in north Utah County is the “The Greatest Maze on Earth.” Known as Utah’s first corn maze, Cornbelly’s is filled with activities for all ages. New this year are two additional corn mazes. The main maze will take guests about 30 to 45 minutes to navigate through the circus themed eight-acres of

pathways. New this year is a ride on the grain train which takes guests through Candy Corn Acres maze. And for those children who want to try a corn maze but aren’t brave enough to try the main maze, the Kiddie Maze is a perfect five-minute adventure where kids try to find the gummy bear interactive game inside. Other activities at Cornbelly’s include: the corn cob beach, princess playland, hayride, rat rollers, gemstone mining, giant jumping pillow, giant slide, animal band and a rat maze. Cornbelly’s also has other haunted attractions for an additional cost. Cornbelly’s is located at Thanksgiving Point and opens on Sept. 28 and runs through Nov. 3. Hours are Monday through Thursday from 4 to 10 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to midnight. Ticket prices (not including tax) are $12.95 per person for weekdays and $16.95 for weekend. They are located at 3003 N. Thanksgiving Way in Lehi. Visit mwww.cornbelly’s.co for more information. Halloween Cruise: Where can you take a cruise not too far from home during fall break? Only about 45 minutes from Salt Lake is CLAS Ropes Course in Provo where families can take a Halloween cruise down the Provo River and see over 100 carved pumpkins along the river banks along with spooky holiday decorations. Each 25-minute round-trip cruise ride is hosted by a pirate who tells spooky stories. Watch out because guests might even encounter a pirate attack on their boat. Ticket prices are $8 per person ages 3 and older. CLAS Ropes Course is located at 3606 W. Center in Provo by Utah Lake. The first boat leaves each night starting at 6:30 p.m. and then about every 30 minutes. The last boat ride leaves at 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. They are closed on Sunday. Visit www.clasropes.com for more information. l

Guests enjoying the Halloween Cruise down the Provo River. (Photo courtesy CLAS Ropes Course)

West Jordan City Journal

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October 2018 | Page 27

Page 28 | October 2018

West Jordan City Journal

WestJordanJournal .com

October 2018 | Page 29

Outbreak of kindness in Utah schools By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@mycityjournals.com


avigating the lunch room can be intimidating for teenagers, especially those who feel like they don’t have friends. Several Utah schools are initiating prosocial programs this year, encouraging students to notice those sitting alone and invite them to join table. “Teenagers tend to just focus on what’s in front of them,” said Jolynne Ward, Bingham High School hall monitor, who founded the prosocial Golden Gate Club. “But once they remove that and they look to see who else they can elevate, all of a sudden they become happy.” Programs such as the Golden Gate Club/ Initiative and similar Be Kind/Be the Change campaigns promote spreading kindness and finding happiness through connecting with peers. Student leaders, chosen for their natural gregariousness, invite others to sit at their designated lunch table so no one eats alone. But it doesn’t stop there. The whole faculty is engaged in the Be Kind campaign at Fort Herriman Middle School. Teachers teach mini lessons on social skills, such as how to introduce yourself, how to start and maintain a conversation and how to give sincere compliments. “Each month, the whole student body will have a challenge to connect with one another along the lines of social relationship building,” said school counselor Becky Hunsaker. Challenges will invite students to meet

five new people they’ve never talked to before, have three actual conversations with someone they don’t usually talk to and take a break from social media. During the month of October, Fort Herriman students will create a “mile of kindness” paper chain, each link documenting a kind act performed. Principal Cody Curtis said Copper Mountain Middle student leaders plan to keep their Golden Gate Initiative going all year long with activities such as Fist Bump Friday, kindness challenges, meet and greets, positive sticky notes campaigns and promoting kindness on social media. “We really wanted to bring a positive vibe to the school culture this year,” said Curtis. “We want it to define us.” Students who have joined the Golden Gate Initiative look to their pledge as a reminder to incorporate prosocial skills into their daily actions. Students who sign the pledge are encouraged to display it in their locker or at home where they will be reminded to smile at everyone, be inclusive and strive to make someone’s day, every day. “The pledge changes the vibe of the school one person at a time,” said Golden Gate co-founder Mike Hughes, assistant principal at West Hills Middle. He has seen introverts become extroverts

Copper Mountain Middle student leaders are spreading kindness in their school. (CMMS)

and bullies become buddies. He said Golden Gate provides students with ideas of how to reach out past their comfort zones and meet new people. “Kids are looking for a reason to be nice to each other but they don’t really know how at this stage,” said Hughes. Schools choosing proactive approaches such as kindness and inclusion are hoping to prevent negative factors that contribute to high suicide and depression rates in teens. Ward stresses that Golden Gate focuses on accepting and including others, not deterring or preventing behaviors like bullying or suicide. However, Hughes has found the net result of the club’s influence does affect those outcomes. “We are prosocial, but the effect of prosocial means less bullying and less suicides,” he said. He has seen improved behaviors at West

Hills Middle where students used to ignore or even laugh at someone who had dropped their binder in the hallways. Since implementing the Golden Gate Initiative, students now stop and help each other. He cited that WHMS had 87 suspensions in 2017. In 2018, when they introduced the Golden Gate initiative, there were only 15. As a counselor at Fort Herriman, Hunsaker sees a lot of students struggling socially and emotionally. She and her colleagues decided to move past prevention of negative behaviors and be proactive with a positive message. “Really, it starts with choosing kind for yourself—being kind to yourself, being kind to others and having that mentality in your life to live a healthy lifestyle and to spread goodness and cheer throughout the community,” said Hunsaker. l

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West Jordan City Journal

Emergency drills don’t have to be scary

Carpe Di End

By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@mycityjournals.com


chools hold regular drills for responding to emergency situations such as fire, severe weather and active shooters. The shrieking alarms and flashing strobe lights are meant to get the attention of students during an emergency, but even the eerily silent lockdown drills can be frightening for students. Administrators and teachers conduct the drills in ways they feel will best benefit their students. “We’re thinking about how to train students and give them some information without freaking them out or causing panic,” said Caleb Olson, assistant principal at Sunset Ridge Middle School in West Jordan. Carolyn Bona, principal at Midas Creek Elementary in Riverton, believes the purpose of drills is to practice what to do, not to instill fear in the kids. For lockdown drills, instead of telling the students they are practicing for an intruder in the building, Bona uses a less frightening scenario—a dog accidentally came into the building, is scared and confused and may bite someone. Teachers tell the students that everyone needs to stay quiet and safely out of the way until authorities catch the animal. “We’re still practicing and doing the things we need to do, but we’re not taking away a child’s innocence for a drill,” Bona said. When the school is notified of a possible hazard in the neighborhood, only Bona’s teachers know the specifics. “I don’t necessarily tell my kids what’s going on,” Bona said. “We do a shelter in place, and we continue what we’re doing. I don’t think they need to be worried about something that probably will never even affect them.” At many schools, special arrangements are provided for students who are easily upset by the drills. “We try to be sensitive to those needs,” said Buddy Alger, assistant principal at Bluffdale Elementary. “But at the same time, we want students to be prepared in an emergency situation.” Teachers are aware of specific students in their classrooms who may need a more in-depth debriefing or a warning before the drill begins. Midas Creek has several students who are called out of class before a fire drill begins. Some are on the autism spectrum, and some have severe anxiety and can’t cope with the piercing sound of the alarm. Bona takes these students outside where they can experience the alarm at a less jarring volume. Administrators say parents play a role in preparing their children for understanding the reason for safety drills.

WestJordanJournal .com

Students know what to do in an earthquake drill. (Jet Burnham/City Journals)

“I think it’s important for us to be very careful of what we say, especially with those little ones that don’t really understand, ” said Abe Yospe, principal at Columbia Elementary. He encourages parents to have conversations with their kids about the drills. “They know their kids a little better than we do and what is going to scare them and what’s going to help them understand,” Yospe said. Natalie Bradford is a parent of students ranging from age 7 to 15. “I don’t think my kids are scared [during drills] because we talk about it with them at home, and they already know what to do,” she said. Michelle Kilcrease, assistant principal at West Hills Middle, believes frequent drills take the fear out of real emergency situations. While teaching in Seattle several years ago, she experienced an earthquake. Unprepared by practice drills, her students panicked. Kilcrease, who had had frequent earthquake drills in Utah, quickly and calmly instructed the students on what to do. “It was just automatic reaction,” she said. “Oh, earthquake? This is what we do. Intruder in the building? This is what we do. That training takes over the panic because you do have a plan, and you know what to do in that situation.” Lance Everill, emergency operations manager for Jordan School District, believes the training they receive in school helps kids know how to react to emergencies that can occur anywhere.

“These are life skills they can take with them out into the world,” he said. While most people think of active shooter scenarios, there are a variety of reasons for a lock-down at schools. Everill said schools have dealt with mountain lions, snakes and plane crashes on their property. There have also been gas leaks, intruders, fires and bomb threats. “It’s important that we not just focus on one emergency but that we work on lots of different ones so if any of those possible scenarios occur, we are better prepared to respond,” said Everill. Utah law requires elementary schools to hold one drill each month, alternating fire drills with another type of drill. Secondary schools are required to hold a minimum of six emergency drills each year. Many schools also participate in the Great Utah Shakeout earthquake drill each spring. l

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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

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West Jordan 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

West Jordan City Journal October 2018  

West Jordan City Journal October 2018

West Jordan City Journal October 2018  

West Jordan City Journal October 2018