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May 2016 | Vol. 16 Iss. 05


Cheers and Smiles Abound at the Miracle League in West Jordan By Greg James

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Smiles donned the faces of the players as they hit the ball and ran the bases at Gene Fulmer Recreation Center’s Miracle League. Photo courtesy of Kolbie James

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Page 2 | May 2016

West Jordan Journal

Firefighters Honored, Bangerter Plans Discussed at City Council By Tori La Rue |

Patrice Johnson, superintendent of the Jordan School District, presents an “Applause” award certificate to Reed Sharman, deputy fire chief, on behalf of the district. – Tori La Rue

Ben Lynch wears his official firefighter badge after his wife pinned it on at the West Jordan City Council meeting on March 23. – Tori La Rue


The West Jordan City Council discussed Utah Department of Transportation’s preliminary plans to make the intersections at Bangerter and 7000 South and 9000 South like this interchange at Bangerter and Redwood Road. – Tori La Rue

wo West Jordan City fire fighters, the newest and one of the oldest, were honored at the West Jordan City Council Meeting on March 23. After finishing a year probationary period, Ben Lynch was welcomed into the West Jordan Fire Department at the meeting. He took the oath of office, swearing into the department, and then his wife pinned an official badge on his shirt. Lynch, from Davis County, grew up around public safety officials, as his mother and father were in the police force. Lynch said he attributes his desire to be a firefighter to his parents, and he is excited to be the newest sworn-in member of the West Jordan Fire Department. Right after Lynch’s appointment, Patrice Johnson, superintendent of the Jordan School District, presented an “Applause” award certificate to Reed Sharman, deputy fire chief, on behalf of the district. “These awards are usually only given to employees, but you are an honorary one,” Johnson said to Sharman. The Jordan School District wanted to honor Sharman for going above what was expected or required of him to ensure the safety of the children at Jordan School District Schools, Johnson said. Sharman has helped, not only the 17 schools within West Jordan’s boundaries, but all the schools in the district. After these presentations, several public hearings were held and business items were discussed. The proposed bridges that will be constructed at the 7000 South and 9000 South Bangerter intersections were discussed in-depth. Utah Department of Transportation officials plan to create freewaystyle interchanges at the intersections of Bangerter and 5400 South, 7000 South, 9000 South and 14000 South to aid traffic flow as the southwest part of the valley continues to flourish. As they sit now, plans show Bangerter going over the West Jordan intersections at 7000 South and 9000 South. This would likely be more cost effective than having 9000 South and 70000 South going over Bangerter, according to Beau Hunter, project manager, but the department is still in the environmental study phase, so that could change. The Bangerter team has been inviting residents with homes near the proposed project sites to neighborhood meetings to gather their input. A detailed interactive map of the preliminary plans can be found on http:// and bangerter9000south/. Residents can give feedback by clicking on a spot

on the map and typing in their comments. One tricky part about the 7000 South intersection is trying to figure out where to put the crosswalk, Hunter said. The current crosswalk would not be high enough to go over the interchange, but moving the crosswalk further south would put it in Jordan Landing. “We’ve talked to the school and the school district, and they don’t feel like that is a safe place for the kids,” Hunter said. “They’d be by a parking lot, and parking lots are one of the most dangerous places for pedestrians.” Hunter said the community residents think the best place for the crosswalk would be north of 7000 South, but Mayor Kim Rolfe said he didn’t think students would use the crosswalk if it was more north than 7000 South because they’d have to go out of their way to use it. This is one issue that will continue to be discussed at the upcoming meetings. Other items discussed at the March 23 meeting: • The council unanimously approved a rezone of about 4.2 acres at 7953 South 2700 West from rural residential half-acre lots and singlefamily residential 10,000-square-foot lots “C” home size to singlefamily residential 10,000-square-foot lots “E” home size. • After a public hearing on adding an exception to the Annual Cap and grade on multi-family development, which would allow developers of master communities of more than 75 acres to have more leeway, the council voted for staff to re-evaluate the request and consider if pre-existing buildings and amenities could count as part of the 75acre limit. • The council approved the appointments of the CDBG/HOME Committee. Councilmember Sophie Rice will continue serving on that committee this year. • In the last three years, a couple businesses opened in West Jordan, claiming to be convenience stores, but soon their name and display showed that they were aimed at selling tobacco, according to city records. Because of this, the council voted to amend the current definition of a tobacco specialty business. The new definition of a tobacco specialty business is a store that meets at least one of these qualifications—tobacco products make up 35 percent or more of the gross quarterly receipts, the name of the business evidences itself as a tobacco business or 40 percent or more of display and storage space is taken up by tobacco products. l

May 2016 | Page 3

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West Jordan Journal

City Considers Trap, Neuter and Return Program for Feral Cats By Tori La Rue

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A West Jordan resident pets a cat on a bench outside the senior housing on Sugar Factory Road. –Caren Lopez


est Jordan City is considering implementing a trap, neuter and return (TNR) program for feral cats as an alternative to the trap-and-kill method of controlling its cat population. The program would cost about $8,000 annually from the general fund and would be run by Best Friends Animal Society, an animal welfare nonprofit headquartered in Kanab, Utah. West Jordan Animal Shelter takes in approximately 670 cats annually, and 51 percent of those cats are euthanized, according to data released by Best Friends. Although many cats are killed, the population of cats remains stagnant over a long period of time, according to Arlyn Bradshaw, executive director of Best Friends Animal Society—Utah. “Using a trap-and-kill program causes a phenomenon wherein if a cat’s population is reduced, remaining cats will produce kittens at a higher rate to compensate,” Bradshaw said. “Even if all of the cats are removed, the habitat attracts new cats, drawing the community into a costly and endless cycle of trapping and killing.” In Best Friends’ TNR program, healthy feral cats are trapped, brought to a clinic for sterilization and vaccination, ear tipped for identification and released back into the area where they were found. “If these cats can’t reproduce, sense would say that the TNR program would reduce the size of the colony slowly and naturally,” Bradshaw said. West Jordan’s Animal Shelter partners with all unincorporated areas of Salt Lake County. In addition, all of Davis County except Roy have TNR programs. The TNR program has become a more popular method of overseeing feral cat populations than trapping and euthanizing but is still controversial, according to Dan Eatchel, West Jordan Animal Shelter manager. Even if the cats are vaccinated, many people don’t want cats on their property and view them as nuisances, Chief Doug Diamond of the West Jordan Police Department said at a city council meeting. For these reasons and others, West Jordan declined implementing a similar program a few years ago when projected costs neared $12,000, according to Diamond. “Murray’s seen little to no reductions in the amount of cats they have roaming since they implemented the program,” Diamond said. “I’m skeptical about what they are saying it will do, but I am willing to try it.” It takes time for the cat population to

decrease using TNR, Eatchel said. That’s the biggest concern of residents who prefer euthanasia, he said. The euthanasia process is fairly inexpensive, but the city pays for the staff time of the workers who euthanize the cats, and the cost of fuel for them to go out and trap the cat. A cost analysis between the euthanasia and TNR methods has not been conducted yet, Eatchel said, stating the city is only in the preliminary phase, and that the issue will likely be voted on in an upcoming city council meeting. The city began looking into the TNR program when Councilmember Chris McConnehey added the program as a business item on the March 9 city council meeting agenda. “During my time on the council, a number of residents have shared their concerns about making our animal shelter as humane as possible,” McConnehey said. “I ran into a neighbor, Geana Randall, who introduced me to an option that helps the animal population without a direct cost to the city by working with Best Friends. They’ve helped identify a few simple steps we can take to help resolve some of the animal concerns.” Laura Wright and Caren Lopez are two of the residents who want to see West Jordan adopt a TNR program. On many evenings, Wright and Lopez can be found feeding the feral cat communities near their neighborhoods, one by the senior center on Sugar Factory Road between 2200 West and Redwood Road. Lopez took it upon herself to perform the TNR program on the cats they feed, which she’s named and deemed her own. She trapped them, took them to a clinic for neutering and released them back into the community. In all, Lopez said she’s trapped, neutered and returned 65 cats in West Jordan and Murray combined. “What’s nice about Murray is that I have the city to back me. It’s not like that [in West Jordan],” she said. “I think what I do is technically illegal.” Even if West Jordan doesn’t create a partnership program with Best Friends, Lopez said she’d like to see the city ordinances change to allow volunteer caretakers to trap, neuter and release the cats on their own time. She said her West Jordan colony hasn’t grown since she had them neutered and they’ve been less wild and loud. “The program works,” she said. “It would change this city.” l


W estJordanJournal.Com

May 2016 | Page 5

City to Rename Justice Center After First Fallen Officer By Tori La Rue |


Photo of Thomas Rees, first fallen officer in West Jordan City. –West Jordan Police Department

est Jordan City is changing the name of the West Jordan Justice Center to the Thomas M. Rees Justice Center to honor the city’s first police officer who was killed on duty. “Since I began discussing the name change I’ve heard almost unanimous hurrahs, yippies, and go-for-its,” Councilmember Zach Jacob said. “Anyone who has given the ultimate sacrifice to put their life on the line to protect us, ought to be remembered. They deserve all the recognition and honor that we could possibly dole out.” Jacob’s resolution to name the center after Rees passed in a unanimous vote by the city council in the March 9 meeting. The center will be renamed and dedicated on Feb. 23, 2017 — the anniversary of Rees’ death and 50-year anniversary of the West Jordan Police Department. Rees was shot in a training accident in 1986 as he and another officer were trying to demonstrate how suspects might attempt to take a gun away from an officer. The other officer’s pinky finger caught on the trigger of Rees’ revolver, sending a .38-caliber bullet through his chest. Rees was airlifted to the hospital, but died two hours later, according to his Officer Down Memorial Page. “He was a very good cop — one that I wanted to be like,” Bob Shober, lieutenant for West Jordan Police Department and friend of

Rees, said. “It’s a great idea to have something named after him, because some people might have forgotten.” West Jordan Police Department has had two fallen officers on duty since its institution. The other officer, Ron Wood, was killed trying to apprehend a robbery suspect on Nov. 18, 2002. Wood loved to play baseball, so it was fitting that the baseball park at 5900 New Bingham Highway was named after him, Shober said. Rees deserves the same kind of recognition, Jacob said. He was a model officer but didn’t take much credit for what he did, according to Shober. “Still, with what we are doing here, I bet he is rolling over in grave,” Shober said. “Rees was reserved and never liked the limelight.” Rees trained Shober, and the two formed a friendship, eventually each being the best man at the other’s wedding. When Rees passed, Shober’s first child was six months old. “She would have later called him ‘Uncle Tom,’” Shober said. “Our philosophy was to raise our kids like Tom’s because they are so awesome.” When he passed away, Rees left a wife, two children and a step-child, whom he treated as his own. He had been a single father before he met his wife and brought his children up with excellent values and respect, according to Shober.

Shober broke the news of Rees’ death to his wife, Cindy. He said it was one of the hardest moments of his career. Rees’ son Travis was like a “second son” to Shober because both families were close. Even after Rees’ death, Shober continued to take Travis under his wing. Travis Rees grew up to follow in his father’s footsteps. He’s now a lieutenant in the West Jordan Police Department. “He took after his dad’s example, and maybe, hopefully, mine too,” Shober said. Although Jacob said Travis was appreciative of the renaming, he was not willing to comment on the name change for the justice center publicly. Like his dad, he doesn’t like recognition and attention, Shober said. “The two are two peas in a pod,” Shober said. “The way he talks and holds himself — my wife always says, ‘When I look at Travis, I see Tom.’” Shober sometimes gets emotional about the loss of his friend, even now, but he tries to focus on the blessing that it was to know him. He said he remembers the funny experiences they had together, like the time when Rees pushed him down while they were running away from a surveillance detail after the suspect caught them in the area. “He just kept running,” Shober said while laughing. “We sure had fun in our day. I miss the hell out of him.” l






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Page 6 | May 2016


West Jordan Journal

Event Celebrate and Empowers Local Women By Mylinda LeGrande |

A documentary started the evening.


alt Lake County Library Services hosted a free event on March 16 to celebrate Women’s History Month. It was called “Creating Conversations: A Celebration of Women’s History Month.” Sponsors of the event were Salt Lake County Library, Utah Education Network, Utah Women and Education Initiative, Utah Women and Leadership Project, Utah American Graduate and other partners. This event gave women a chance to listen to stories as well as to tell their own through a sound booth provided by KUER radio station. Provided prompts to start the conversation included “What is holding you back from finishing your education, getting that promotion, starting a family or a career?” and “Who has influenced you as a leader?” Women could take a prompt into a sound booth specially set up for this event and could record their personal story. The night started out with a film screening of “Raising Ms. President,” a documentary film about raising the next generation of female political leaders. Filmmaker Kiley Lane Parker explored the reasons why women don’t run for office, where political ambition begins and why we should encourage more women to lead. Carrie Rogers-Whitehead, senior librarian with Salt Lake County Library Services said, “This (event) started as a conversation. I think everyone has a story; everyone has something to tell, so that is the theme for this event. This is a facilitative conversation because everyone has expertise in their own way. We are trying to encourage women to tell their stories.” Four different focuses on leadership, personal development, education and business included discussions, panels or classes. Following the movie screening a panel discussion, “The Conversation in Utah Around Women & Politics,” was presented by Representative Carol Spackman-Moss, Joanne Milner, Nena Walker Slighting and Sasha Luks-Morgan. The rest of the evening was spent visiting workshops from 7–9 p.m. One breakout session for a discussion on political leadership was lead by Ann Mackin. She is the vice President of Davis Applied Technology College. She was one of the founding members of Real Women Run, a non-partisan organization dedicated

to advocating and training women to run for elected office. Danielle B. Christensen, the coordinator for the Utah Women Education Initiative and co-planner for the event, said, “We wanted to bring something to the west side [of the Salt Lake Valley]; not a lot happens out here. We are having discussion groups, not presentations. We want the women to talk together, not be talked at.” One of these discussions, led by Carly Cahoon, human resources and volunteer recruitment manager at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Salt Lake, was titled, “A Conversation on Overcoming Body Shame by Finding Your Roots.” Here, women talked about changing the conversation of women being seen as ornaments. Women left armed with ideas, tips and tools to see themselves as an instrument to make changes. The program room at the Viridian Event Center highlighted the topic, “The Forgotten benefits of a College Education.” This discussion focused on how women can help their peers realize and benefit from education. Danielle Christensen, the coordinator of the Utah Women Education Initiative led this discussion. The Library Room highlighted “Being a Woman Entrepreneur: Secrets to Success.” Ann Marie Wallace, executive director of the Salt Lake Chamber Women’s Business Center, showed a presentation that revealed opportunities and showed paths to success for women entrepreneurs. Later in the evening, women could choose from interactive classes such as “How Motherhood Prepared Me to Lead” taught by Bonnie Mortenson, project coordinator for the Utah Women & Leadership Project, Celina Milne, director of School Engagement at Project Lead the Way and Nineveh Dinha, an award-winning Assyrian-American news anchor. They discussed time management, negotiation, budgeting and multitasking. Other classes included “Education, Family & Career: Secrets of Dynamic Balance,” taught by Jenn Gibbs, an information definer at Utah Education Network, and “Finding Your Path & Marketable Skills,” presented by Pam Okumura, senior program manager at People Helping People. l

local Life

W estJordanJournal.Com

May 2016 | Page 7

What is More Funny than a Play about a Play? By Mylinda LeGrande |


ugar Factory Playhouse presented “Play On!” a hilarious comedy written by Rick Abbot preformed March 17–19, 21, 24–26, and 28 at 7:30 p.m. When a small community theater decides to put on a mystery written by a first-time local playwright, they have no idea what they’re getting themselves into. As they struggle through rehearsal, dress rehearsal and their first performance, hilarity ensues as personalities collide, the script is repeatedly rewritten and everyone just tries to make it through the whole ordeal in one piece. Don’t miss this peek behind the curtain of a play within a play! “Play On” was a quick-paced comedy. Its style was one of witty banter in which it appeared that the actors knew their lines and was well-rehearsed. Character Saul Watson was played by Gordon Jones, in the community’s play “Murder Most Foul” Other characters were Jennifer Bedore as Violet Imbry; Jen Crabb as Gerry Dunbar, the play’s director; Bryson Dumas as Billy Carewe; Steve Hedman as Henry Benish; Celeste Porter as Phyllis Montague; Anna Sanford as Marla Smith; Meighan Smith as Aggie Manville, the stage manager; Melanie Turner as Lady Margaret; and Nathan Unck as Lou Peary, the show’s sound and lighting tech. Some of the best lines from “Play On” included, “You sound like an electrocuted teacher in ‘Singing in the Rain,’” “It was a very dark night…” “Why are you wearing a bustle?” and the response “I’m not wearing a bustle!” “Why did you change the name?” and its response, “It looked silly next to liverwurst.” The audience chuckled at regular intervals over the jokes. The cast portraying the show in which they were acting purposely clashed with each other

adding to the humor. Some moments of the play were when a gun appeared on the stage during a marriage proposal, and the playwright standing at the wings of the stage recited the play word for word as the actors performed. The director, Rosalie Richards, has loved theatrics ever since she performed shows on the stone bench in her back yard. She loves the challenge of a new show. She said that “Play On” has been like doing and redoing many of the shows Desert Star has done before and laughing most of the time. She said, “This is a fun show. All the characters in this play are like actors we have had in our show. We’ve laughed so much we are just sick. Half of the cast are from West Jordan. It’s an adult-oriented show, but kids that come just giggle, and the rest of the audience laughs so hard during the whole thing.” Valerie Springer attended the show with her daughters Holland and Avery. She said, “This is definitely hilarious. I love all the details and personalities of all the characters. It’s fun and different.” Being a more of an adult play the show included some mild profanity and suggestive material. The March 24 performance attracted an older crowd. The theater was only half-filled, probably due to the location, as the director Richards suggested. “Play On” was held at the Midvale Performing Arts Center . Although the Sugar Factory Playhouse group is a West Jordan City Arts group, it is currently homeless, so members perform wherever they can secure a place. “It’s frustrating that we have to come here to Midvale to perform,” Richards said. “We want a place to call our home. I’ve been doing this 22 years, and I’ve directed here, there,


Rosalie Richards poses with audience members Valerie, Holland and Avery Springer.

everywhere. That is the reason why we don’t get a consistent audience. We are always at different places. When we had our cute little Sugar Factory Theater, people knew where it was. They knew the seasons and times we’d have plays. They saw our posters, and it was full every time. The city supposedly gave us the [old] library, but the fire marshal and a couple of city councilman came while we were preparing for our Christmas show and said, ‘You can’t be thinking you will be performing here. We aren’t going to let you do that. You can rehearse here only but cannot do performances.’ It is because we don’t have a sprinkling system, but neither does [the Midvale Performing Arts Center]. We have been promised eight or nine times to get our own [performing hall], but it just [fizzles] out. We just want a small place we can perform shows on a regular basis.” l



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Page 8 | May 2016

West Jordan Journal

West Jordan’s Own President By Tori La Rue |

130 Years

OF TRUST Taking Care of



Above Left: The West Jordan High School student body officers lounge by the fireplace they created to represent the theme they picked for West Jordan for the 2015–16 school year: “Our Home.” –Lindsey Walker; Above Right: Lindsey Walker, West Jordan High School’s student body president, poses for a picture with her 94-year-old grandma, who is a veteran, after the school’s Veterans Day assembly. –Lindsey Walker; Bottom Right: Lindsey Walker, student body president (left), and Brenna Booth, junior class president (right), walk a dog and do other chores for community members to raise money for the Tyler Robinson Foundation. –Lindsey Walker


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n the midst of West Jordan there’s a president who’s been reelected for more terms than Franklin D. Roosevelt, and her name is Lindsey Walker. Lindsey, 18, has been class president every year since seventh grade and now serves as West Jordan High School’s student body president. “That’s pretty rare for a student to go through all of their middle school and high school like that,” Richard Minor, student body officer advisor, said. “Most of the people in student government don’t get started that early, or they get burned out from the rigors of school and the effort it takes. Somehow, she juggles it.” Many student body presidents quit their other clubs and activities once they are elected because it’s such a time constraint, but Lindsey continued playing on the volleyball and golf teams and editing the sports section of the school newspaper. “I’ve learned how to manage my time,” Lindsey said. “It’s been hard because sometimes I feel, even though I am trying, I wish I could give more, but I know that leadership has made me a better player, and I feel like I really have given 100 percent.” With all her extra-curricular activities, she practically lives at West Jordan High, according to Minor. The school’s 2015– 16 theme, “Our Home,” was heavily influenced by Lindsey’s connection to the school, he said. “We don’t win the most games or have the highest test scores, but with the camaraderie and connections we have at this school, there’s no place I’d rather be,” Lindsey said. Since the start of her student government roles, Lindsey said she’s always put a focus on bringing people together. She referred to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs when she said that she feels like most students at West Jordan have their physiological and safety needs met, but she said most of them are still searching for love and belonging. “Our Home” was meant to help students fulfill those needs. “She got opposition from the boss,” Minor said, referring to Principal Mike Kochevar. “He said the theme she’d chosen was so wimpy. He asked why it couldn’t be ‘Our House,’ which had more of a competitive edge.” Kochevar eventually agreed to the theme, and later admitted to Minor that it was the best theme for the school.

After the football team lost their senior night game, the student body was nothing but proud and supportive, Lindsey said. “Everyone was posting on Twitter ‘#WJisHome’ and saying that they loved our school win or lose,” she said. “That was a really big moment and a huge success.” Lindsey said that is an example of a time that she cherishes from her service in student government, but she said being student body president can be stressful at times. The more a person is in the limelight, the more people see all their flaws, she said. “Most people see becoming student body president as a huge ego boost, but for me it’s actually been really humbling,” she said. “My respect for the president of the United States has gone up so much because of this experience. A lot of people criticize Obama, but he’s over there working his guts out for our country.” Jinsey Jager, 17, has been in Lindsey’s class throughout Lindsey’s six years on student government. While some people are “just rude,” she said that Lindsey is one of the most loved people at the school. “She’s committed and fun and just makes everyone feel comfortable,” Jinsey said. “It would really be a challenge to hate her. I always voted for her.” Lindsey said she wants to get involved in college leadership as soon as possible. Right now, she’s waiting to hear back from Stanford, Harvard, Duke, Princeton and Brown before making a decision of where to attend school. Lindsey already received an acceptance letter to BYU. Post-college, she plans learn more about political science and become a diplomat, United Nations worker or open up her own nonprofit, she said. But while she prepares for the end of an era, she said she’s also preparing future West Jordan High School leaders to take over after she is gone. Minor said it was hard for her to take a step back and delegate instead of doing everything herself. “She’s grown exponentially this year after she learned how to get past that hurdle of having to do everything,” he said. Lindsey said she’s overwhelmed by the experiences she’s had in student government. “It sounds cliché, but it’s true. I am the person I am today because of student government,” she said. “It’ll be weird to leave, but I’ll always remember these experiences.” l


W estJordanJournal.Com

May 2016 | Page 9

Veterans of Foreign Wars Surprise History Teacher By Tori La Rue |


hile Lorna Murray was teaching a history class at Copper Hills High School, five Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) surprised her with a congratulatory visit. “What is going on? I know you,” Murray said as Michael Stiebing, John Delliskave, Stanley Martinez, David Earle and Nick Flake walked into the room. Her classroom instruction paused. The veterans and Murray exchanged hugs before Martinez presented Murray with VFW’s Teacher of the Year award for the state of Utah. She won the award for teaching students that freedom is not free but made possible by the sacrifices made by veterans. Murray’s guests then presented her with an honorary coin. “I happen to know what this means — what this coin means,” Murray said to her class. “You become an honorary member of that group by being coined, and I do appreciate this very, very much. This is a very great honor.” The class erupted in applause. “Kids,” Murray said, interrupting their clapping. “Yeah okay, you applaud me, but I want you to take a look at these guys right here. I do not deserve your applause, they do. They do. They are the ones that have preserved your freedom.” Murray walked over to 92-year-old Delliskave, and explained to the class that

he was a World War II veteran who fought in Iwo Jima. She highlighted several of the other veterans’ stories, sharing that one of them had been forced to join Hitler’s youth at age 11, before immigrating to the U.S. where he was drafted into the Korean War. Others were involved in the Vietnam War and Desert Storm. “This is the face of courage,” Murray said to her students. Murray knew most of her surprise visitors because as part of the University of Utah Veterans Day Committee she has the opportunity to interview Utah veterans. Murray said her conviction to sharing veterans’ stories came from her father’s experiences as a combat veteran and former POW during World War II. “That’s where it started, was coming to an understanding of what [my father] had done and by relation, by extrapolation, realizing what all veterans go through,” Murray said. “Sometimes we don’t tap into what they gave us — what they gave us genetically, but what they also gave us politically. We don’t always understand that, and it is my job to teach these students so they don’t leave my class without knowing that.” The chances of students seeing World War II Veterans in person are quickly fizzling out as they get older, assistant principal Dennis Edmonds said. He encouraged the students in the class to get the most they could out of the

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Lorna Murray, history teacher, stands with the five Veterans of Foreign Wars who surprised her with an award during class on April 4. –Tori La Rue

unexpected visit. Although World War II veterans won’t be around for too much longer, Stiebing urged students to be aware of those in the military who are fighting for freedom even now. “In my eyes, ISIS is just like the Germans in World War II killing the Jews. They don’t care who they kill,” Stiebing said to Murray’s class. “We still have to get it through to you to make you understand that you get to do what you do every day because of all of us. Mrs. Murray does a marvelous job at teaching that.”

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Murray will have to opportunity to go to Washington, D.C. to compete at the national level for Teacher of the Year. If she wins, she’ll win a trip to the VFW conference in North Carolina in July. Murray said she was surprised and couldn’t believe she’d been selected for the award. “I’m very humbled and very honored by this,” Murray said. “Some things you’re just going to treasure your whole life. You just are.” l

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Page 10 | May 2016

West Jordan Journal

Anti-Bullying Play to be Featured on National TV By Tori La Rue |


unset Ridge Middle School’s website and banners declare that it’s one of the U.S. Department of Education’s “National Schools to Watch.” The school is fulfilling that title quite literally as its anti-bullying play “Not Afraid” will be aired on national TV later this year. “I’ve always believed that theater is an educational tool that teaches us about life, and evokes passionate thinking,” Lanny Sorenson, theater teacher and director of the play, said. “It’s therapeutic by nature and, if used right, can inspire us to achieve.” Sorenson has been writing and directing an anti-bullying play at Sunset Ridge since he transferred there in 2007. Each year, he asks for anonymous student descriptions of experiences with bullying as a bully, someone who was bullied or a bystander to bullying. Then, he compiles the personal stories into a script that theater students present to the school. “Students out in the audience see what’s going on on stage, and they say, ‘That’s my story. They are acting out my story,’” Sorenson said. “It’s kids teaching kids using their own stories, and it’s powerful.” Independent film maker Frank Feldman was looking to make a documentary for PBS about anti-bullying art programs when he found a news story about a Disney Channel program that featured Sunset Ridge Middle School’s focus on anti-bullying. The page had a sidebar about the anti-bullying play, so he contacted the school about featuring them, Sorenson said. When Feldman and his crew filmed the play on March 8, Kat McAllister, actress, said she was so excited. “I wasn’t nervous because I want more adults and kids to see this and realize what’s going on with bullying so they can stop it and recover,” she said. “I know it will help them to feel a lot of

emotions and know how to change.” Kat, 14, said she used to be bullied in elementary school and identified with the characters in the show who had recovered from bullying. She said in some way or another every audience member should be able to relate to the show. This was the first year a group of student writers helped Sorenson write the script. Sorenson got feedback from students that the play wasn’t hopeful enough in previous years, Sorenson said. Students also didn’t want the play to be as symbolic, Savanah Larsen, student writer, said. A group of about five student writers and Sorenson weaved a story together about Yumiko, a teenage girl who self-harmed her way into a coma. The play occasionally shows flashbacks to Yumiko’s childhood, where she began to be bullied by one of her friends. Kristy Mo, student audience member, said the flashbacks were the best part of the play. “There was so much empathy going on at that part,” she said. “People don’t realize how bullying can affect you for a lifetime.” Savanah, 14, said the school hallways were different after the performance. “Our school’s always hit bullying really hard, but that’s why bullying has become somewhat of a joke here. A kid will tease his friend and another member of the group will say in a joking way, ‘I’m going to tell the counseling center on you because that’s bullying,’” Savanah said. “Now, it seems like they have come to understand it more from the play and it’s less of a joke. They’ve realized that if they’ve been a part of bullying — they need to change.” Madilyn Page, local singer and songwriter from “The

Sunset Ridge Middle School students’ anti-bullying play will be featured in a PBS documentary. –Jordan School District

Voice,” sang one of her songs during the March 9 performance, and kids went “gaga” for her, Sorenson said. It helped them to know that Page could relate to bullying. After the success of Sunset Ridge’s play, schools have asked Sorenson to borrow his scripts. “I tell them ‘I could let you, but if you want it to be effective, your student body needs to write it. It needs to be their stories,’” he said. “That’s the only way that it will really sink into them when they watch it.” Any school’s social issue can be addressed through the arts and through theater, whether it be gang violence, discrimination or anything else, Sorenson said. “You just have to take a look around your school and see what the need is there,” he said. “Then let the kids take over. It’s not adults telling kids what to do. It’s kids telling kids, and that makes a world of difference.” l


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W estJordanJournal.Com

May 2016 | Page 11

High Schools Duel in Spirit Competition By Tori La Rue |

Your Career Begins

with Us!

Member Care Representative Software Sales Specialist Copper Hills High School students gather to show support for their school and try to beat West Jordan High School in a competition spirit night at Chick-fil-A. – Chick-fil-A


est Jordan and Copper Hills High Schools dueled it out to find out who would be deemed the school with the most school spirit by one of their most frequented fast-food joints. The Chick-fil-A in Jordan Landing at 7676 Campus View Drive held two competition spirit nights in April — one for Copper Hills on April 6 and one for West Jordan on April 7. Chickfil-A employees decked the restaurant with school jerseys and school-colored balloons and streamers. Both nights, more than a hundred high school students packed into the building, playing games led by Chick-fil-A workers, including a chicken nugget throwing contest, where contestants tried to toss pieces of chicken into their teammate’s mouth, a chickensandwich eating contest and a shake drinking contest, among other games and drawings. It was the first time the restaurant had this type of spirit night competition. Kathleen Whiting, marketing director for Chick-fil-A, came up with the idea to have a friendly competition between West Jordan’s high schools and reward the school with the most school spirit and sales with $500, and give the other participating school $250. Both schools jumped on board with the idea, Whiting said. “It’s a chance to bring our community together, show some school spirit, raise some money for Chick-fil-A and get some money for our school and have a lot of fun,” Brianne Jensen, West Jordan High’s senior class president, said. West Jordan High School brought their band, cheerleaders, teams and mascot to Chick-fil-A, which set them apart from Copper Hills, Whiting said, but overall, Copper Hills had a greater percentage of sales, so Chickfil-A presented them with a $500 check and West Jordan with a $250 check.

Sophia Larrossa of West Jordan High said she didn’t care if they won or not because the event ended up being so much fun. “It’s about the spirit and about the community, not about the funds,” Sophia said. “We love our school. I’d support it in any way.” Sophia participated in several of the Chick-fil-A games, and won the large shake drinking contest for the school, gulping down her shake faster than any other participant. “The brain freeze got a little much at times, but I was able to pace myself and win,” she said. Kaden Kennard, sophomore at West Jordan, said he didn’t participate in any of the special activities, but wanted to support his school by trying to get as many people into Chick-fil-A as he could. Kennard brought four of his friends, who went to other high schools and middle schools, to the restaurant on April 7 in an effort to help West Jordan win the competition. Copper Hill high students also had fun at their spirit night, Aubrey Birrell, Copper Hills student, said. “It was cool to see all of our students come to Chick-fil-A to support our school, and show our grizzly pride,” Aubrey said. “Copper Hills is a very competitive school and this was perfect for us. I’m glad that I got to come support my school and eat some awesome food at Chick-fil-A.” Tyson Eyre, of Copper Hills, said parents and students came out to support Copper Hills in their competition spirit night. “It was fun to see such a big turnout to support Copper Hills,” he said. “I’m grateful for a supportive student body. I just want to thank Chick-fil-A for hosting the event.” Because of the great turnout, Chick-fil-A will continue to offer events like this into the future, Whiting said. l

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April 2016

May 2016

Paid for by the City of West Jordan M AY O R ’ S M E S S A G E

Great things are happening in West Jordan! In a city that covers over 32 square miles, housing over 110,000 residents and 3,000+ businesses, you can bet that “busy” is an understatement with respect to the happenings at City Hall. As mayor, it’s my privilege to help set policy and direction so that the day-to-day operations of the city align with City Council goals. These policies impact everything from roads and recreation to public safety and parks. I’d like to give you an update into a handful of the many projects that are unfolding: LED Streetlight Replacement Our LED streetlight replacement project is under way. We are switching about 5,000 traditional streetlights and replacing them with LEDs. The LED lights are expected to improve lighting quality, reliability and safety, while lowering maintenance costs and reducing the

Traditional lights (pictured at left) are being replaced by LED lights (pictured at right).

city’s carbon footprint. There is an initial investment for the cost of the fixtures and installation of about $3.7 million, but some of the costs will be offset by rebates from Rocky Mountain Power and the reduced energy costs should save the city about $150,000 per year. It’s all part of our efforts to become more sustainable and reduce our environmental impact. New Rec Center Plans for the new rec center that will be built in the Ron Wood Park, 5900 West New Bingham Highway, are moving forward. The Council recently approved an agreement with Okland Construction to provide construction management and general contractor services for the construction of the West Jordan Aquatic & Recreation Center. Many residents have been asking for a rec center to help serve our growing community. This one will be patterned after the Provo Rec Center and will be a great asset to our community. It will be city-owned rather than county-owned like the Gene Fullmer Rec Center. Road Projects With the warmer weather, comes road projects. There are plenty that are under way in our city but not all are city projects. UDOT has been soliciting public comment on the changes to the intersections of Bangerter and 7000 South, and Bangerter and 9000 South. I know that many of you are concerned about these projects, and I encourage you to share your concerns with UDOT by emailing bangerter@utah. gov or calling 866-766-7623. You can find more road project information on page 14. Summer Events and Activities We are also heading into our busy sum-

Online Bill Pay

mer event season. I’m excited to kick it off with my Mayor’s Mile on May 14. I invite everybody to come participate in this free family fun run. Registration begins at 9 a.m. at the Jordan River Parkway Gardner Village Trailhead, 1100 West 7800 South, with the race set for 10 a.m. There are also a variety of events planned this day along the Jordan River Trail as part of the annual Get Into the River Festival. City Hall Facebook I encourage you to follow West Jordan City Hall on Facebook. Here you can find out more about city issues and events. We encourage questions and civil conversation. This Facebook page also serves as the official page for the city and is a place where you can come for answers. Sometimes information circulates that is based on truth but may be incomplete or biased. Please check the official source for answers. You can also email info@ with any question and it will be forwarded to the appropriate department. And you can always email me at Thanks for doing your part to make our city a great place!

Did you know you can pay your city utility bill online? You can set up one-time payments from your checking account, credit or debit card. You can also set up auto pay to automatically notify you and deduct your payment each month. To enroll, have your utility bill handy and visit, click the e-services tab and follow the enrollment instructions.

Mosquito Abatement The South Salt Lake Valley Mosquito Abatement District works hard to control mosquitoes in their aquatic, larval stage, before they ever become a nuisance or health risk. They inspect and treat standing water in areas including cavities in trees, artificial containers, puddles, ponds, stormwater retention basins, and other marshy areas and swamps. Please visit to see a list of the services provided or to report a mosquito problem in your area.

Bangerter Highway Intersection Improvements UDOT is working to improve traffic and safety on Bangerter Highway. Visit to learn about proposed improvements and sign up for 7000 South and 9000 South email updates.



Summer Reading Kick Off Party June 4 On Your Mark, Get Set … Read! magicians, performers and many others to participate. There will be loads of activities at the Kick Off including face painting, bouncy houses and climbing walls. Attending the Kick Off counts as a Challenge activity and puts participants one step closer to finishing the Challenge. Everyone is invited to attend the Kick Off and to sign-up for the 2016 Summer Reading Challenge! WHERE: Salt Lake County Library’s Viridian Center and the Veterans Memorial Park in West Jordan, 8030 South 1825 West WHEN: Saturday, June 4, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. COST: Free MORE INFO:

Mayor’s Mile Hey kids! Can you outrun the mayor? Kids 14 and under are invited to race Mayor Kim V. Rolfe in the “Mayor’s Mile” event on May 14 as part of the “Get Into the River Festival.” Sign up for this free race from 9-10 a.m. at the Gardner Village trailhead, 1100 W. 7800 South. The run starts at 10 a.m. (Adults can race too but are ineligible for prize ribbons.) This second annual “Get Into the River Festival” includes many different events and activities that take place along the Jordan River Trail from 10 a.m-2 p.m. Details at

Work where you live! Employment Opportunities The City of West Jordan currently has employment opportunities including a combination inspector III, crossing guard, deputy city attorney, deputy finance director, lead seasonal parks workers, seasonal parks laborer and a utility locator. Job opportunities continually change so if you don’t see something that interests you now or need more information check our website


Register May 14, 10 a.m.–Noon at the Salt Lake County Library Summer Reading Kickoff, 8030 S. 1825 West, in Veterans Memorial Park. Limited entries $15 nonrefundable registration fee


Kids, teens, adults and families are encouraged to participate in Salt Lake County Library’s Summer Reading Challenge, taking place June 1 through Aug. 31. This year’s theme is “sports” and participants have a chance to win a free book, free admission to Library Days at the Natural History Museum of Utah and they get to put their name in a drawing for a prize. Challenge activities include reading, learning something new, visiting a library, helping a child learn and doing something outside. Marathon readers will earn extra drawing opportunities. Our Summer Reading Kick Off party is always a big hit, and this year we expect more than 6,000 library fans. We’ve invited mascots from professional sports teams,


2016 Western Stampede July 1, 2 & 4, 2016



Construction News City crews are busy patching, paving, repairing and more as they work to keep the city’s infrastructure in good repair. Here’s a snapshot of some of the projects on the list for this construction season (more detail is online at 7800 South Overlay from 4800 West to 5490 West – this project will add storm drain inlets to the north side of the street, remove the old asphalt surface, then overlay and re-stripe the lane markings. It will also remove and replace some ADA ramps that are not up to current code requirements. City Overlay Operations in 2016 – Targeted streets in the Oquirrh Shadows subdivision will be milled and overlaid with new asphalt this spring and summer. Manholes and valves will be lowered before the paving operation, and then raised after the new asphalt is placed. Limited lane striping will be placed as required. The loop road and entrances at Veterans Park will also receive a new asphalt surface. Pothole patching will take place city-wide as needed. 1300 West and 7800 South Intersection Improvements – A small Federal Aid project will improve the turning movements at this intersection and replace aging signal control equipment and signal heads. There is also a new Maverick Country Store going in on the northeast corner that will help improve the road near the intersection. This work will take up to 18 months. 4000 West and 9000 South Intersection Improvements – Another small Federal Aid project will improve the turning movements at this intersection and replace aging signal control equipment and signal heads. In addition, Questar Gas will need to come through the intersection with a new gas transmission line this summer. The overall intersection work will take up to 18 months. 7000 South Utility Project – Phase 1 (Jordan River to 1300 West) is on schedule for completion by this July, and designs for Phase 2 (1300 West to 1905 West) are at 60 percent complete. Work will continue as permits from UDOT allow for the Phase 2 segment. The project is on schedule to reach Constitution Park at 3200 West by late 2017. Sewer Slip Lining 2016 – A contractor will be here in June to work on lining the clay sewer pipes in the Adonakis Subdivision area (7800 to 7525 South around 1520 West to 1655 West). This work will take 30 days. Jordan River Trail Overlay – This project will likely take place in June to overlay and restore the Jordan River Parkway Trail from 7800 South to 7000 South. The work will mill the trail, fix potholes, and place new asphalt where required, and realign a portion of the trail that is being eroded by the Jordan River. This work will take up to 30 days.


The Western Stampede is celebrating its 62nd year, and we’re looking for volunteers willing to dig their feet in and make this event EXCEPTIONAL! Learn more about opportunities with the Western Stampede PRCA Rodeo by emailing

7000 SOUTH

CONSTRUCTION 7000 South continues to be reduced to one lane in each direction between 1300 West and the Jordan River as crews upgrade utilities. Work is scheduled to be completed by early June. Drivers should expect delays during morning and evening commutes and use alternate routes when possible. In addition, the Jordan River Trail near 7000 South continues to be closed as crews upgrade the path and replace a pedestrian bridge. It is scheduled to be open in early May. Updated information regarding this and other City projects is available through the Road Alerts page on West Jordan’s website, Drivers can also use the free UDOT Traffic app, available for smartphones and tablets, for statewide, real-time information.




A p r i l 2 0 1 6OF EVENTS - 2016 CALENDAR (Note: Activities are tentative and may change)

3 Planning Commission, City Hall May

8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.

6 Symphony Spring Concert



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

7 Document Shred and E-waste Recycling May

8000 South 1825 West, 10 a.m. - noon (parking lot behind City Hall)



City Council Meeting, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.



Western Stampede Royalty Contest, Viridian Event Center 8030 S. 1825 West, 8 a.m.





Get Into the River Festival, activities along the Jordan River 10 a.m.-2 p.m



Planning Commission, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.

19 Arts Council Literary Arts mtg. May

w/speaker Laura Rollins City Hall Community Room 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 7 p.m.


City Council Meeting, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.



City Band Concert, Viridian Event Center 8030 S. 1825 West, 7 p.m.



Planning Commission, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.



City Council Meeting, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.

1, 2,4


Western Stampede PRCA Rodeo Arena, 8035 S. 2200 West, 7 p.m.


National Anthem Auditions, Arena 8035 S. 2200 West, 10 a.m. - noon



Planning Commission, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.


• Independence Day – City Offices Closed • Independence Day Parade, 10:30 a.m. • City Band Concert, Viridian Event Center Amphitheater 8030 S. 1825 West, 1:30 p.m. • Movie in the Park, dusk, 10:30 p.m. • Fireworks, 10-10:30 p.m.





City Council Meeting, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.

30 Memorial Day – City Offices Closed

13 City Council Meeting, City Hall


May May


Memorial Day Tribute Military Services Monument 1985 W. 7800 South, 7-8 p.m.



WESti tiAtiKING Ltiti tiEtiIND CItiY tiALL 8000 StiUtiti 1825 WESti tititititititititititititititititititititititititi

tititititititititititititititititititititititititititititi tititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititititi


8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.





Pre-registrations are guaranteed an audition. Walk ups will be taken as time permits. Must be willing to encourage the audience to sing along. Soloists and groups welcome.

West Jordan Arena, 8035 South 2200 West Pre-register by emailing

Planning Commission, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.


City Council Meeting, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.


Summer Reading Kick Off, Veterans Memorial Park 8030 S. 1825 West, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

SAtiUtiDAY, MAY 7titi FtitiM 10 A.M.-NtitiN

Planning Commission, City Hall 8000 S. Redwood Rd., 6 p.m.

West Jordan Theatre Arts “Hairspray, ” Midvale Performing Arts Center, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Monday, 7:00 p.m., Saturday the 9th matinee, 695 Center St, Midvale, 2:00 p.m.



The City of West Jordan 8000 S. Redwood Rd., West Jordan, UT 84088 (801) 569-5100

Join the conversation! Follow West Jordan – City Hall.

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


Looking for singers each night of the rodeo July 1, 2 & 4


Page 16 | May 2016

West Jordan Journal

Cheers and Smiles Abound at the Miracle League in West Jordan By Greg James

West Jordan Chamber of Commerce announces new President and CEO Our current President/CEO Jevine Lane has decided to step down from her position and join her husband in the insurance business. It is with great pleasure that the Board of Directors announcAisza Wilde es that Aisza Wilde has accepted the position of President/CEO of the West Jordan Chamber. Aisza will be working closely with the Chamber Board to continue in the execution of the strategies identified in our strategic planning process. Aisza has many years of experience in working with chambers of commerce and is uniquely qualified to take our Chamber to the next level. Aisza has served on many boards and committees in the past, but the bulk of her efforts have been focused on two main ar-

eas, business and economic development and at-risk youth. Some examples of her past service are as Treasurer for the Murray Area Chamber of Commerce, Vice President of the Women In Business of the Murray Area Chamber of Commerce. Treasurer of the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce, Titan Awards Committee Vice Chair for the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development Committee for Sandy City, Co-Chair of the Women In Business of the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce. Aisza currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Valley, as the Treasurer of the Children’s Service Society of Utah, , A Safe Place for Boys & Girls and as the Division Chair of Travel, Tourism and Hospitality for the Best of State We are excited to welcome Aisza to the Chamber and look forward to working with her to take the Chamber to the next level!

Welcome New Member Businesses

SG Travel Two (a division of the Cruise Lady) – 9118 S. Redwood Rd – 801-280-4796

Wingers – 9175 S. Redwood Rd. – 801-567-9799

Mountain Point Pavement – 801-550-0095

Thank You to our Sponsors

8000 So. Redwood Road, West Jordan, Utah 84088 Phone 801-569-5151 | Fax 801-569-5153

The Miracle League was founded in 2009 with the help of the West Jordan Rotary and West Jordan City. It has become a place of high fives for the players in the league. Photo courtesy of Kolbie James


ith a tight grip on the handle of the bat Hunter Swindell from Eagle Mountain has taken his place in the batter’s box of the West Jordan based Miracle League. His swing and contact of the rubber baseball bring the park to life. “Go, go, you did it” can be heard as cheers erupt. It is hard to tell who is more excited the players or the fans on Saturday mornings behind Gene Fullmer Recreation Center. The Miracle League opened its season on April 9. The league is an adaptive based baseball program for individuals ages 3-22 with mental and physical disabilities. “This is our first year in the program. I love it, it gives my son (Hunter) an opportunity to learn something and be involved. It also gives him some exercise,” Eagle Mountain resident Tyler Swindell said. Fans line the stands and grass around the field. Inside the fences the teams and several volunteers line the field of play. Several high school and little league teams volunteer to support the teams as the county staff runs the games. “I think Copper Hills baseball was one of the first teams to come out and help. Now we have Tooele, Riverton and little league teams that line up to help. It means alot to everyone. It is remarkable to see when these kids put on the uniform and hat what it can mean to them. It is all about these kids,” the Cardinals team coach Glenn Fitzpatrick said. The volunteers pitch, help gather up the baseballs, push players around the diamond and offer support. The 11 and under Utah

Blues coach Aaron Whitaker said it teaches his players that there is more to life than playing baseball. “It is a huge boost to these kids happiness level. Sometimes it is just organized chaos, but we want these kids to feel like superstars,” field announcer Elan Ollf said. Ollf plays entertaining music and announces each hitter as they come to plate. Often times giving play by play of monstrous home runs or amazing outfield plays. He helps each player imagine his name in lights with highlight reel plays that make the local news sports reports. The rubber based softball diamond was funded by the West Jordan Rotary and opened in 2009. The specially designed field is required for players in wheelchairs to be able to maneuver the bases. The players hit the ball and run the bases. No one is ever recorded as out and everyone scores. The Salt Lake County Recreation runs the program Saturdays April 9 - May 21. This season 12 teams of approximately 10 players each make up the league. The major division is available for players that may have more baseball skills. The Rotary Club served hot dogs, chips and drinks to the players and parents of all the teams on opening day. Every player and volunteer was greeted with smiles handshakes and high fives at the completion of every game. No one knew the final score or even seemed to care. The only thing heard over the cheering was, “when do we play again?” l

May 2016 | Page 17

W estJordanJournal.Com

Salt Lake County Council Honors Fallen Law Enforcement


everal months ago our community mourned the loss of Doug Barney, a Unified Police Department officer who was killed in the line of duty. This was a tragic loss for our community. During that time, one of my constituents asked if there was a way that we could memorialize those in law enforcement who have paid the ultimate price. May 15 is Peace Officers Memorial Day. During that week, I will be issuing a proclamation during our Salt Lake County Council meeting to honor all law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty. Police officers are a vital component in a much larger system that seeks to address the root causes of criminal behavior —a system that includes multiple different arms of county-level efforts to truly make a difference. The county provides many public safety-related services, including felony and misdemeanor prosecution by the district attorney’s office, incarceration at the metro jail and Oxbow facilities, law enforcement services through the sheriff’s office, pretrial and probation services provided by criminal justice services, and the justice courts. Whether cities use the Unified Police Department or

have their own police department for local law enforcement, all send arrested individuals to the Salt Lake County Metro Jail for booking and potential incarceration. The jail is also one of the most significant items in the county budget. That’s why criminal justice is an issue we’re addressing at the county level through multiple fronts. The Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office and Criminal Justice Services provide criminally involved residents of Salt Lake County with effective and innovative alternatives to incarceration in the county jail. These services focus on offender accountability, risk to the community and behavioral change in order to reduce the likelihood of recidivism. Salt Lake County Behavioral Health Services is another crucial component, given the number of offenders who suffer from mental health disorders or struggle with substance abuse. Behavioral Health Services connects residents with evidence-based treatment practices throughout the community and appropriate community-based services that provide support along the road to recovery and healing. These entities work in tandem to address root causes of criminal behavior, help residents avoid future offenses and

ultimately reduce the demands on the county jail system. The entire system works well because we have good people addressing each criminal justice need for our county. While we have more work to do, I cannot emphasize enough my appreciation for what these many committed men and women do each day for the people of Salt Lake County. Law enforcement officers in every corner of this county are the most important resource we have to protect our residents, address criminal justice challenges and ensure we are raising our families in safe, healthy and happy communities. I want all officers and their families to know they have the support and appreciation of the County Council, as well as the county as a whole. When I saw the outpouring of love and support to the family of UPD Officer Doug Barney, I was reminded again of the goodness of our residents in the county and state, as well as the unfailing dedication of our officers to their sworn duty. I look forward to May 15, when we can honor Officer Barney and the rest of our men and women who have paid the ultimate price to keep our county safe. l

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Page 18 | May 2016

West Jordan Journal

Girls Tackle Football Expands in West Jordan By Greg James

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The Hurricanes and Ice Demons line up in the Utah Girls Tackle Football League’s second season. Photo courtesy of Kolbie Jamesa

The UGTFL in West Jordan has doubled in size in its second season. Photo courtesy of Kolbie James

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t all started from a YouTube video and a father’s pride in his little girl. Several years later it has grown into a league with eight teams of girls. Sam Gordon never dreamed that her success playing football with the boys would grow into this. “My dad [Brent Gordon] posted the video and it exploded from there. I broke several stereotypes of girls and football. I never thought about the idea of a league. I was speaking at an elementary school and I asked how many girls would like to play football. Most of the room raised their hands. I thought if that many at this school would like to play how many more were there in Utah or even America,” Gordon said. The YouTube highlight video of Sam slashing and running for several touchdowns was on every highlight reel across the country. It was on ESPN’s Sports Center, “The Today Show” and many other national sports shows. Sam visited Roger Goodell (NFL Commissioner), J.J. Watt (NFL Player) and the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team. Her stats were amazing. In her first season playing football with the boys she racked up 35 touchdowns and nearly 1900 yards. Her attitude that she can do anything has inspired people all across the world. With the help of co-author Ari Bruening she even wrote a book, “Sweet Feet,” which outlines her experiences playing on all-male teams. “I think Sam got the ball rolling. She showed the world that she could play football even though she was a girl,” Utah Girls Tackle Football director and president Crystal Sacco said. The Utah Girls Tackle Football League (UGTFL) is believed to be the first girls tackle football league in the country. The league was officially formed April 7, 2015. Its initial season included four

teams. This season the number of players has doubled to 110 and eight teams will play eight games plus playoffs and championships. “This year there are names on the backs of the jerseys. We have logos on our helmets. It is super fun to play here. The competition is getting better,” Sam said. The purpose of the league is to provide girls with the opportunity to play tackle football and increase girls’ overall participation in the sport. All of the coaches are USA heads-up certified (a safe tackling certification). The teams play eight-oneight with a junior-size football and modified defensive rules. “The excitement is a big deal. The girls are excited to do anything I ask of them. Unlike boys I have coached there is no complaining about their positions. Even doing sprints they are happy,” fifth- and sixth-grade head coach Shawn Goetz said. The UGTFL board has plans to open as a high school club sport next season. Teams in Murray and Herriman have already begun to form. Women’s tackle football teams like the Utah Falcons and the Utah Blitz have reached out to the league to begin forming a bond with its young fans. The adult teams have practiced with and coached the younger girls, increasing the league’s footprint amongst its young players. “These girls have a passion to play. They all play other sports like volleyball, basketball and softball. We even have a couple of cheerleaders. They just love to get out there and play and tackle,” league board member Dan Powers said. The league operates through May 28 at Westland Elementary School in West Jordan. More information can be found on the league’s website at l

May 2016 | Page 19

W estJordanJournal.Com

Francois D. College


igger doesn’t always mean better. In fact, some pretty great things come in relatively small packages. Puppies, chocolate chips, Swiss Army knives, diamonds—all are things worthy of the prestigious small-package distinction. When it comes to beauty colleges, one also qualifies for that accolade: Francois D. College of Hair Skin & Nails. “I think the difference about us is not that we want to be the biggest beauty school out there, but that we want to give our students the best,” says Patricia Downward, founder and owner of Francois D. College of Hair Skin & Nails. “We are very family oriented. We don’t just prepare [students] to pass their tests, but to become successful professionals in the salon.” The college was founded in 1991 by Francois and Patricia. When Francois retired in 1998, Patricia couldn’t see the school— her love and her passion—in anyone else’s hands, so she and her husband purchased it. This year the college will commemorate its 25th anniversary of opening with much to celebrate, including a new location. Last fall they had the opportunity to relocate the school to Taylorsville, and they jumped on it, now being the only beauty school in the Taylorsville and West Valley areas, west of Bangerter Highway. Three programs are offered at Francois D. College: Cosmetology, Esthetics, and Master Esthetics. Students in these

programs have the opportunity to work with real clients in the college’s on-campus salon. They are able to provide stylish cuts, coloring, facials, makeup, advanced skincare, and other beauty services under the guidance of an experienced instructor. Hands-on training allows students to learn not only expert hairstyling, skincare, esthetic, and beauty skills, but also how to interact with clients and to communicate effectively. In addition to comprehensive cosmetology and esthetic skills, the college also educates students in practical business management to prepare them adequately for a successful and sustainable career, with the option to open their own salon or spa. “On my path to make my dreams a reality, I have gained so much knowledge and confidence thanks to Francois D. College,” says Whitney Dehlin, a current cosmetology student. “In addition, I have made friends who are now family.” For those who aren’t contemplating an education in cosmetology and esthetics, there is still reason to check Francois D. College out. They offer salon and spa services to the public at discounted rates—generally half of what someone would pay in a salon—for the reason that supervised students will be the ones performing the services. If you’re interested in going back to school, and wondering if training for a professional beauty career is right for you, the

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Mom… I’m Bored…. The Cheapest and Easiest Way to Entertain the Kids this Summer




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an you believe it? Summer is almost here, that time of year where kids take a break from their structured routine and turn to the adults in their lives for entertainment ideas. What will you do to help your kids enjoy their time off? One only need to turn to Pinterest and Youtube to find dozens of Millennial Mama experts sharing all kinds of amazing ideas for summer fun. Turn an old rain gutter into a river, paint with flyswatters or, there’s always the old standby of making rainbow unicorn poop slime, (Google it) that’s not to be confused with rainbow unicorn puke slime. You’ll want to save that for another day. Parenting has become very precious to the digital generation. The pressure to have the perfect house, perfect marriage and perfect children seems to be stronger than ever. Leaving them feeling that in order to be a “good parent” they must create an utterly magical fairytale, and delightful childhood experience for their kids, right down to the bug bite sandwiches and peanut butter snails. Holy Crap! I get shaky hands, a sick panicky feeling and a stress rash just thinking about it. Staring at twelve long and unobstructed weeks trying to figure out how to keep the kids entertained so they won’t sleep too late, lose brain cells and ruin their vision playing computer games, or utter those dreaded words “Mom, I’m bored”. How can a parent these days possibly balance it all? Parents out there, I’m about to share with you a secret

trick, a plan of attack that moms for generations have been using for decades. A place so magical your kids will never forget it and will look back on it fondly for a lifetime. It’s a place where your kids will learn to build, socialize, exercise and dream all without your help. It’s cheap, easy to get to and will provide hours of entertainment. Are you ready for it? It’s called outside. Prior to the digital drama of today it never occurred to our moms to entertain kids non-stop, fund expensive summer activities or endeavor to create stimulating and crafty projects for brain development. Our mom’s simply said “get your butts outside” and we did. We built forts from broken branches, made city roads in the dirt for our matchbox cars, choreographed dance routines, made up songs and rode our bikes. It’s these very activities that allowed our minds to develop coping skills, learn for ourselves to be creative and dream the seemingly impossible. What better gift and life skills can you give a child than the ability to imagine, dream and build for themselves? This summer save yourself the fret and stress of building a bowling ally with coconuts or a carwash with PVC pipe and give them a pool noodle and pack of plastic cups from the dollar store and the gift of figuring out what do with them on their own. If we don’t remove easy entertainment from our children’s lives they will never learn the skills to create and l invent on their own.

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Gee. Thanks, Mom


rom the moment I was born, my mom looked for ways to make my life miserable. Admittedly, I don’t remember anything before the age of 4, but I’m sure her pattern of behavior extended back to my birth. For instance, my mom insisted I play with my little sister, even though my little sister was a demon who wailed like a banshee whenever I pinched her. Mom had this harebrained scheme that being forced to play with my siblings would make us friends. (Okay, she was right on that one. My siblings are pretty cool.) But here’s another example of my mom’s ruthless conduct. After school I could only watch TV for ONE HOUR. That’s all. Once my 60 minutes of Zoom and School House Rock was over, I had to engage my mind with something “enlightening.” Mom would force me to listen to classical music or make me memorize a poem she taped on the fridge. (I still randomly recite “The Highwayman.”) And there were books she required me to read like “Jane Eyre” or the Nancy Drew series. She even made me write book reports. “But it’s Saturday! School’s over!” I exclaimed when she handed me the illustrated book of Shakespeare. “Learning is never over,” she’d reply. Now I can’t go anywhere without a book. Gee. Thanks, mom.

When Atari hit the market, mom made it perfectly clear we would not be getting a game console. She told me video games would rot my brain, then she had the nerve to send me OUTSIDE where I had to resort to bike riding, playing baseball in the street or shooting hoops with the neighbors. (Eventually she caved and bought a game system, but even then there were strict usage guidelines.) Mom was a homework Nazi. She’d drill me on times tables (which I still hate) and spelling (which I admit comes in handy at times) and she insisted on attending every single parent teacher conference, just to embarrass me. Attendance at dinner was mandatory. Mom had read somewhere that family dinner time was vastly important and would lead to the decline of society if families didn’t eat their meatloaf together. She force fed me vegetables from her garden, peaches from her tree and raspberries from the bushes in the backyard. And there was no fluffy Wonder Bread for my lunches. Instead, I had to consume peanut butter sandwiches made with home-baked bread that was denser than granite, but kept me full for several days. It doubled as a blunt object if a boy was chasing me at recess. When it came to dessert, she was heartless. Even though I begged her to purchase Oreo cookies or Chips Ahoy (because no one else in the universe had to gag down homemade

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chocolate chip, oatmeal or gingersnap cookies), she would only buy them on special occasions. Like never. But the final straw was when she rolled pink, spongy curlers into my long hair every Saturday night so I’d have ringlets for church. Before she added a curler, she’d dip a comb in water and run it through my hair, dripping ice-cold water down my back. And in the morning, removing those curlers was akin to being scalped. As Mother’s Day approaches, I grudgingly acknowledge that once in a while my mom probably wasn’t trying to make my life miserable. But for all her nefarious efforts, all I learned from her was to love my family, enjoy learning, get outside, eat real cookies and get dressed up for special occasions. Gee. Thanks, Mom. l


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Sandy Resident Invited to Experience Utah Premiere of Elaborate Horse Show By Kelly Cannon |


art horse show, part live theater, part Cirque du Soleil and part concert, Cavalia presents Odysseo in its Utah premiere performance in Sandy. Opening April 14, this elaborate show is a multi-media experience staring 65 horses and 48 riders, acrobats, dancers and musicians. The show will take place under the White Big Top at South Towne Center. Valued at $30 million, Odysseo is the largest touring company in the world. The show began its tour in 2011 in Montreal. Since then, more than 1.8 million spectators in Canada, the United States, and Mexico have seen the show. Cavalia describes the Odysseo as a show unlike any other on the planet. “These magnificent animals play in complicity and with freedom, in a respectful relationship with the riders, acrobats, and aerialists, charming and fascinating everyone who has the chance to witness this moving artistic and emotive partnership,” according to a press release from Cavalia. Benoit Fontaine, logistics director, explained the tent used is the biggest big top tent in the world made special out of Italy. “The surface of the big top is 60,000 square feet, about the same size as a NFL football field,” Fontaine said. The tent can hold 2,000 people at a time. Sixty employees fly in to each location to help with the set up and 110 trucks hall the equipment, not including the horse transportation.

Marie-Pierre Ouellet has been the equestrian back stage manager since 2012. Prior to this job, she had no horse experience. Now, she manages a team of 12 employees who help make sure the horses are taken care of at the stables. All 75 horses are male. Cowboy and Mikko are two of the horses. “These two operate as a team and are very fond of each other,” Ouellet said. “These two exhibit the strength of this bond more than others. If separate, they will cry for each other.” Ouellet explained the horses don’t like to be alone. When they retire, they are adopted out together. Rachel Karabenick is one of the aerialists in the show. She said she was a regular girl with a regular desk job five years ago when she hear about aerial performing. After joining various circuses, she was able to quit her desk job “because I had enough work in the circus.” Karabenick said she was hesitant to work with Odysseo because she had no experience with horses, being raised in Chicago. Now she feels fully comfortable around them, even riding one during the show. Parts of the performance include a stateof-the-art video screen three times the size of the world’s largest cinema screens, a threestory mountain for added perspectives and a real lake made of 40,000 gallons of recycled water which appears for the finale. Spectators should pay special attention to the music in the show. The music is performed


Riders perform acrobatic tricks on horses during the Odysseo performance. —Dan Harper

by a singer and five members of the band. Unlike traditional shows where the band sets the pace for the music, the horses instead set the pace. The band leader watches the horses steps, timing the beat to the music to match the horse’s trots. Presale tickets are already available and are priced from $39.50 to $129.50 plus applicable fees. A Rendez-Vous package is also available which offers the best seats in the house, a dinner before the show, an open bar, desserts


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Profile for The City Journals

West Jordan May 2016  

Vol. 16 Iss, 05

West Jordan May 2016  

Vol. 16 Iss, 05