Saturday, April 19, 2014

Tanzania Cancer Center–Kilimanjaro

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The following message and fundraiser was created by my cousin’s husband, Colby Thackeray. In the same week that he will get to meet his first baby, he will also bury his beloved mother. I cannot imagine the emotions he is feeling as he says goodbye to one loved one, and hello to another. For him to be thinking of others at this time of great emotions and wanting to bring cancer treatment centers to those without access is truly amazing and touching. – Michelle Powell, Enjoy Utah founder

Created by Colby Thackeray on April 16, 2014


In March 2015, a select group of largely amateur mountaineers will climb the tallest mountain on the African continent in a fundraising endeavor to bring cancer services to the surrounding community in Moshi, Tanzania. No cancer center currently exists in that region of Tanzania. All funds raised through this climb will go directly to the building of this cancer center. Our team will carry prayer flags in honor of those who have faced the struggle of cancer head on. High at the summit, we will fly these flags, which are inscribed with names of individuals who have in some way been afflicted by cancer (radiating hope).

I had thought about doing this as soon as I found out about it.  My mother passed yesterday, April 15th, and it has now become a priority to climb in her honor.  My mothers prayer flag is one of the flags and I've been granted permission to carry her flag to the summit.  It would be an honor and emotional journey I will never forget, and to be able to help a region with no ability to treat cancer will make it that much sweeter.  The funds will cover my adventure, but the majority goes to  This foundation was founded by the gentleman, Dr. Brandon Fisher, that has been treating my mother over the course of the last 2 and a half years.

This horrible disease affects everyone at some point in their life and it is up to us to encourage and give hope to those battling this disease. This climb is not to only remember our mother, but to give hope to those that may feel they have been forgotten. We need to give to people that do not have access so that they may be able to have a fighting chance. If we all join together we can make this happen and we can give love, comfort, support and the proper resources to those who are fighting for their life.

"Climbing a mountain is a perfect symbol of an individual patient's battle with cancer. Oftentimes, as you climb higher and higher, you feel the physical strain of the climb, and also sometimes the sickness that goes along with high altitudes. Yet you climb on! The summit in your sights, you push through physical pain, mental exhaustion and push yourself to new physical and emotional heights"(

Thank you for your support!
Colby Thackeray

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Friday, April 18, 2014

Things to do in Delta

Delta might seem like it's in the middle of nowhere, but we found some really great activities for families there. If you are planning a trip near Delta, check out these cool places that we enjoyed at Utah Valley Family Adventures.

Great Basin Museum: Located on Main Street in Delta, this museum has a lot of pioneer history of this area. There are great period pieces, and the museum is free (donation suggested).

Snow Goose Festival: Every year in February, migrating snow geese stop at the reservoir outside Delta. Up to 20,000 geese can be viewed in one of the most spectacular migration scenes in the western United States.

The Great Stone Face: This short hike takes you to a large basalt stone known as the Great Stone Face. Early pioneers saw the face of their slain Prophet Joseph Smith in this rock, and it became a place of pilgrimage for Delta residents.

Fort Deseret: Early pioneers in Utah built many adobe forts in the small towns of central Utah because they were afraid of the Indians. All of those forts were later taken down so the towns could advance-- except for Fort Desert. This fort still stands in a recognizable state.

Territorial Statehouse State Park: Utah's capital was originally in the small town of Fillmore just down the road from Delta. Later, for convenience, the capital was moved to Salt Lake, but not before President Millard Fillmore gave $20,000 for the building. Since those days, the capital has served as a prison, and school, and now a museum.

Yuba Lake State Park: This state park is all about camping and water sports. If you are a boater, a swimmer, or enjoy the beach, you'll enjoy your time spent at Yuba Lake State Park, which is located east of Delta.

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Saturday, April 12, 2014

“Because Of Him” Easter Initiative

Because of Him

Beginning Palm Sunday, April 13, 2014, and running through Easter, April 20, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is launching an Easter initiative called “Because of Him,” focusing on the hope, healing, and salvation made possible through the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

(Enjoy Utah readers are getting the chance to see it one day before the launch!)

Elder David F. Evans, Executive Director of the Missionary Department, said, “As followers of Jesus Christ, we seek to do as He has instructed: ‘Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.’ The ‘Because of Him’ Easter initiative is part of an ongoing effort to follow the Savior’s admonition.”

Read more about this campaign on

400 Goodbye meme

#BecauseOfHim I know that this life isn't all there is. We will see our loved ones again, and we will live again. We will hold those precious babies that we never got the chance to hold just one more day. #BecauseOfHim, I can feel peace, and know there is hope.

(View the “Because Of Him” message in Spanish or Portuguese.)

BOH-photo-challenge_01 (1)

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Friday, April 11, 2014

Utah Easter Events 2014

Easter button

This year, Easter Sunday falls on April 20th. Below are some fun activities and events to celebrate this special holiday.

If you know of an event or activity we have forgot, please email us at Check back often! ……This list will grow as we hear about more events!

You can also check our Calendar page for reader-submitted events.

#BecauseOfHim Easter Initiative

Salt Lake County

Utah County

Wasatch/Summit County

Tooele County

Davis County

Weber County

Grand County

Washington County

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Thursday, April 10, 2014

A Great Book For Your Salt Lake Spring/Summer Adventures!


Limited-Time Discount:
This would be a fabulous gift to purchase for somebody for a birthday or Mother’s Day! Buy a handful now, and keep on hand to give as birthday gifts throughout the year! For a limited time you can get 20% off when you use coupon code enjoyutah20. Books can be ordered on the PlaydateSLC website. The books are not available in large stores yet, so the website is the only way to get them.

About the book:

I was recently introduced to a new book out called “Playdate With Salt Lake City and Utah’s Wasatch Front” by Emily Smith Robbins and Meilani Smith Kongaika, and was so excited when I received this book that I couldn’t wait to review it and tell you how fabulous it is!

This is a great book full of resources for parents when looking for something to do with their family. Organized into 20 different sections makes it easy for parents to find what they are looking for. Even though it’s a Salt Lake City resource book, they even include places along the Wasatch Front, including Park City, Heber and other fun places that you need to know about out of Salt Lake City.

“Utah is a great place for families,” said Jeanette Herbert, First Lady of Utah. “We have wonderful parents who are involved in their children’s lives. But building strong families does take some work and planning. A guide to activities and places of interest throughout the state can assist you in planning and discovering your own family memory-making traditions and adventures.”

Each listing has information about hours, location, parking information, food information and what to expect while visiting that specific place. They have also included other places close to that location, so that you can plan your entire day without driving all over the valley!

I was also impressed with the high quality, color photographs included with each listing. The authors personally visited each location with their families in order to give you a complete, honest description of the specific attraction.

As if that wasn’t enough, there is an appendix at the back of the book with more resources, including online resources (such as Enjoy Utah!), family friendly theaters, maps, parental support groups and an alphabetical listing.

“Meilani Kongaika and Emily Robbins are like many Utah moms who want to spend quality time with their children, while exposing them to new experiences,” Herbert said. “What a tremendous resource this book is for parents!”

View a sample of this book on the Playdate Salt Lake City website.
Connect with Playdate With Salt Lake City:


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Meet Me At The Show DISCOUNT and SPECIAL EVENT!: Shrek The Musical at The Empress Theatre


Shrek The Musical is coming to The Empress Theatre, and we are so excited, that we have scheduled an Enjoy Utah day at the show!

  • We will have a special meet and greet with the characters on the stage after the show
  • One lucky Enjoy Utah participant will win a "Shrek Gift Pack"
  • Tickets are only $8 instead of $10

The showing will be on Saturday, May 3, 2014 at 2pm. Tickets will be $8 instead of $10. You MUST reserve your seat in advance to get this special discount, and there are only 30 seats available for this special event!

To reserve your spot with Enjoy Utah, email how many tickets you want to and put “Enjoy Utah event” in the subject line. The front of house manager will give you a call to get your tickets confirmed.

Deadline to get this special discount is April 26th. You MUST email and reserve your tickets before that date!

More Shrek fun with The Empress Theatre:


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My Getting Fit Inspiration: Shannon

Shannon Burnham

This month on Enjoy Utah, I have devoted April to sharing bits of information about getting in shape and staying motivated.

Shannon is one of my inspirations as I have watched her on Facebook over the last five years get in shape and lose a ton of weight. Seeing her progress on Facebook day after day makes me feel like “Hey, I can do it too!”

I want to send a big thank you to her for allowing me to share her story in the hopes that others will find it as motivating as I have!

A big pet peeve of mine is hearing “lose weight fast” stories, and products that claim to help you lose the weight on a short amount of time and still eat what you want. I think that is why Shannon’s story is so inspirational to me. She didn’t jump on the bandwagon of any fad diet; she exercised and watched how much she ate.

Here is Shannon’s story:

My journey started about five years ago when I was at my biggest of 275ish lbs. I was perfectly healthy as morbidly obese people come. My blood pressure and cholesterol were fine. I was not diabetic or even pre-diabetic. I literally decided one day that I was done. I couldn't be that big anymore and it had to change. My goal then was never to be where I am now. It was to do what I could and hope the weight came off.

I didn’t go on any crazy diets or even join the gym. I refused to pay for a gym pass I wouldn't use until I could commit to myself of working out at home for a month. I started out doing 10 minute work-out videos on They kicked my butt!! Five days a week I did 10 minutes of exercise a day. That's it. Food-wise I didn't change much, other than I tried to control how much I ate rather than what I ate. That first month I dropped 10 lbs. The next month I started adding in stairs to my workouts and would run (more like walk) up them as fast I could and back down for three minutes.

I joined the gym shortly after that and got addicted fast. I was working out five days a week and still couldn't last a whole class, but I was there! Over the course of probably 2 years I dropped 60 lbs.; and then life happened. I got stressed with work and just life in general and I stopped working out for months. I slowly gained back 40 lbs. of it and then I got pissed last year and said enough, and that fueled the start of my current fire.

That's really it. Baby steps. I didn't lose it over night. Sometimes it has come off easier than others and sometimes it comes back and I fight with it. I will likely always fight with it for the rest of my life. For me its just easy to do small goals that are actually possible. Because eventually those small five lb. goals turns into almost 85lbs. and training for a marathon and a triathlon.

Someone told me once something I still tell myself. “You can do anything for a minute.” If you can only run for a minute and then walk. It’s still more than not doing it at all.

Want to know what inspires me? I know a girl who was nearly wheelchair bound because her body didn't want to cooperate, and that girl climbed up a mountain with me and is training for a 5k, despite the trials she's going through to get there. I know a girl who has battles major health issues who is also training for a 5k and thinks she's in it alone, but she's not. I know a girl who has lost 100lbs, and despite life happening, she's still trying again. Those are the people that inspire me to keep going when I don't want to. Because if they can do it so can I!

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Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Rita’s Italian Ice Opening in Sandy and Provo

Rita's logo

Popular “Ice, Custard, Happiness” Shop Opens New Locations in Sandy and Provo Salt Lake City, UT – April 7, 2014 - Rita’s Italian Ice, the nation’s largest Italian Ice concept with more than 600 outlets in 21 states will open two new locations in Utah. The franchise will open a new location in Sandy, Utah on April 9 and will follow with the grand opening of its first location in Provo, Utah on April 30. As part of each grand opening, Rita’s will donate $1,000 to the Road Home.

The Road Home is a private non-profit social services agency that assists individuals and families experiencing homelessness in Salt Lake County and along the Wasatch Front.

The new Sandy store will be housed at 11348 South State Street and the Provo location can be found at 1283 North University Ave. In celebration of the grand opening, the first 50 guests in line who donate a toy for The Road Home win free Italian Ice for an entire year. Every guest on March 19 will enjoy a free regular Italian Ice in the available flavor of their choice, including Rita’s #1 flavor, Mango, as well fan favorites such as Cherry, SWEDISH FISH®, Alex’s Lemonade and Cotton Candy, just to name a few!

Rita’s Utah-area developers and franchisees, Todd and Anna Larson, are longtime local residents. The couple opened two Rita’s locations in 2013 and plan to open five more stores in 2014. The company also recently launched a Rita’s truck that will take the area’s best frozen treats on the road.

“Introducing our famous Italian Ice to Utah last year was a real thrill for us and we plan to spread Rita’s Ice-Custard-Happiness throughout our great state,” said Todd Larson. “We were overwhelmed by the response to our first two locations and we are thrilled to open our newest stores in Sandy and Provo. Rita’s Italian Ice is a very unique, cool treat. Finding your favorite Italian ice treat is top priority. Mine? I can’t get enough of the Misto! It’s a great treat when you’re busy and on the run!”

While Rita’s is known for Italian Ice, its signature product is Gelati, a delicious layering of Italian Ice and creamy Frozen Custard. Gelati comes in an almost endless combination of flavors and toppings and is the top seller for Rita’s in Utah. With the 65 flavors of Italian Ice changing constantly, customers are encouraged to sign up for their innovative “Cool Alerts” which will notify them anytime they are serving their favorite flavor!

Rita’s, the “Home of Cool Treats,” offers many delicious options that combine their famous Italian Ice and Frozen Custard, including their layered Gelati, blended Misto® Shake, or a Blendini which combines Ice, Custard and a delicious topping, such as Reese’s® Peanut Butter Cups. Other tempting treats include

Rita’s Milkshakes, Sundaes with Unlimited Toppings, Frozen Custard Cakes and Custard Cookie Sandwiches to enjoy at home. Light Custard is also available.

With its motto, “Ice, Custard, Happiness”, Rita’s has been dedicated to serving up a big dose of happiness with their freshly made, delicious “Cool Treats” since 1984. Rita’s Italian Ice in Sandy and Provo will feature the same great combination of fresh made Ice in a clean, fun atmosphere that patrons have loved since the first Rita’s location opened, nearly 30 years ago. That’s almost 30 years of Rita’s happiness!

About Rita’s Franchise Company

Rita’s Franchise Company, founded in 1984 and headquartered in Trevose, PA, is the largest Italian Ice concept in the United States, currently operating in 20 states with more than 600 outlets. Rita’s presently has international outlets opening in China, India, ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao) and Canada, and is continuing to grow nationally and internationally through franchise opportunities.

The popular chain offers a variety of frozen treats including its famous Italian Ice, made fresh daily with real fruit, available in more than 65 flavors, Old-Fashioned Frozen Custard, Milkshakes, Sundaes with Unlimited Toppings, Light Custard, Frozen Custard Cakes, Custard Cookie Sandwiches made with OREO®, layered Gelati as well as its signature Misto® and Blendini® creations. Since 1984, “Ice, Custard, Happiness,” has been the brand’s motto, and 30 years later, Rita’s is still dedicated to serving up a big dose of happiness with their freshly made, delicious, custom treats, in a fun-filled atmosphere.

In addition to topping the Zagat Survey for the #1 Best Quick Refreshment, Ice Cream/Custard for 2012, Rita’s was named one of the Top 25 Franchise High Performers by the Wall Street Journal’s “Startup Journal” and named Top 100 on Entrepreneur Magazine’s “Top 500 Franchise Rankings” in 2012. For more information about Rita’s please call 1-800-677-7482 or visit or

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BOOK REVIEW and GIVEAWAY: Motherhood Realized


From the same authors that brought you “Deliberate Motherhood”, the Power Of Moms authors are back with another booked titled “Motherhood Realized”, and just in time for Mothers’ Day! While reading this book, I highlighted many quotes and experiences, and in each section below I will share one of my favorites from that chapter.

“Motherhood is rarely what we think it will be. But when we gather with other deliberate mothers and share our most powerful perspectives – like the ones in this book – our mothering experiences can become even better than we hoped.” – Linda Eyre, New York Times bestselling author.

Motherhood Realized is an inspiring book for “the hardest job you’ll ever love”. The book is divided into four chapters, and within each chapter are mini-sections from the Power of Moms community. Each section ends with a thought-provoking question, as well as a challenge.

Becoming Our Best Selves

This section was all about not being so hard on ourselves, and to stop comparing ourselves to other moms. Along with that, we also need to stop judging other moms so harshly. Because each child is different, each mother is going to be different. Our children are ours because WE are what they need, not the “perfect” mom we read about on mommy blogs or see at the park and on Pinterest.

“My mother didn’t specialize in home décor or gourmet cooking, and she didn’t lift weights or run marathons. But she makes me feel like I am the most important, wonderful person ever born. If I could pick any mother in the whole world, it would be my mom…. If you ever find yourself looking in the mirror at a woman who feels badly that she hasn’t yet made flower-shaped soap, please offer her this helpful reminder: Your children want you!” – April Perry

Getting Through The Hard Times

Hard times are something that every mom is going to go through, and are so different for each of us. We each deal with hard times differently, and face a unique set of challenges within our own family. If we just accept that hard times will come, and pass, then we can face them with greater strength.

“The pain and joy of motherhood go hand in hand. They are inseparable. You can’t get the baby without the waves of labor pains. You can’t become the strong and patient and knowledgeable mother you want to be or raise the resilient and wonderful children you dream of without the waves of trials and joy that stretch and grow you and bind hearts together.” – Saren Eyre Loosli

Shifting Our Perspectives

Happiness is always about perspective. By finding the joy in everyday tasks, you will find true happiness and teach our children to enjoy the little things. The most miserable person is going to be miserable at Disneyland, the “Happiest Place On Earth”, and the person with a different perspective on life is going to find joy in a day spent cleaning up the yard. It all depends on your perspective, and if we learn to shift our thinking, we can find joy in motherhood.

“We don’t know our days. This is even more pressed on me as I look at pictures of little children, no older than my own kids, whose lives were unfairly lost in the tragic school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. Those parents would give anything for a room cluttered with a pile of stuff and an eager little one there to help sort through the pieces, and here I was grumbling. Perspective, perspective, perspective.

Sadly, it’s often when we lose the things that matter most that we regain the perspective of just how much those things, those people, matter to us. It baffles me how quickly I lose sight of the joys in life that are smack in front of my face.” – Rachel Martin

Savoring Moments

This is the chapter that I went through a box of tissues to read. My grandma is always telling me that the best years of your life are when you have your children at home with you, and it is gone is such a short amount of time.

The chapter starts out with an experience a mom shares about encountering new parents at Target with their brand new baby. She compliments them on their beautiful child, as the lady behind them in line grumbles about “Oh just wait!” and goes on about unruly teenagers. Too often, we look at the negative forget about the positive. Instead of going on about how challenging that sweet baby will be, we could tell those new parents about the look on your child’s face as you pick him up from his first day at preschool. We can offer support to other mothers who are struggling. We need to slow down and savor the everyday moments in our journey of motherhood, because way too soon our children are grown and those moments are just memories.

“The joys of life, and particularly of motherhood, come and go in the moments. If we let those moments slip by without any recognition of them, we might find it more difficult to enjoy this journey. Someone once told me that when the sweet moments come, we need to breathe them in long and deep. As a mother of three small children, I’ve loved that advice. It is what I try to do: savor the moment, let time stop, and breathe it in long and deep, because in another moment it will be gone.” – Emily Ashton

Order the book:

This is a book that all moms should read. Your perspective and joy in motherhood changes from reading the experiences each of these moms have shared.

“Every mother deserves to wake up excited and go to bed content. Every mother needs to know that she is the right mother for her family. Every mother has the privilege of experiencing deep meaning in her family work and breathtaking power in her family life that is simply unmatched by any other organization in the world” – Saren, April, and the Power of Moms Team

Visit the Power of Moms website for links to order the book on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.


One Enjoy Utah reader will receive an e-copy of “Motherhood Realized”, and one person will receive a hard copy of the book. Enter the rafflecopter below. Deadline to enter is Tuesday April 22, 2014 at 11:59pm.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About Power of Moms and the meaning of “deliberate motherhood”:

Power of Moms is the gathering place for deliberate mothers interested in growing through motherhood – not just going through motherhood. Our overall vision is to offer moms around the world the chance to “network” with other moms who share their same values, motivations, hopes, and dreams. We aim to help moms take care of the person inside the mom while taking care of their families. “Deliberate motherhood” means you really think about what you do as a mom. You really care about your family and want the best for them. Plus you want to learn and grow and develop yourself as a person through the experience of motherhood. You live life purposefully. You embrace what you uniquely bring to your family.
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Friday, April 04, 2014

Summer Camp: Petersen Family Farms

Petersen Family Farms is in their second year of running a Farm Summer Camp for kids ages 5-11. Their camp is a unique opportunity for children to experience a real working farm. 
The children have so much fun learning and interacting with the farm animals. They also love planting their own pumpkins and coming back in the fall to harvest a pumpkin.
This is a hands on experience that encourages children to appreciate where their food comes from.
Learn more and register online at the Petersen Family Farms website.
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April MercoBox Stuffed Full of Local Utah Products

April MercoBox

In February I received my very first MercoBox from MercoLocal, and was SO excited to learn about local Utah companies that I had not heard of before. I was super impressed with the products, and have purchased from many of those companies since then! Read all about my very first MercoBox from MercoLocal.

I am such a fan of supporting local businesses, and this is a great way to learn about some you may not have heard of! This also makes a great gift; each month you receive something different!

This month when I received my MercoBox, it was bursting at the seams! Here are some of the great products that were in the Box:

You can order your MercoBox on their website. This is also a great gift for a friend or loved one! Make sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Google +, YouTube and LinkedIn.

DISCOUNT: Enter discount code "iheartutah" for 25% off.


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Olympic & Paralympic Homecoming Parade and Celebration


To honor the Olympians and Paralympians that live, train and coach in Park City, a Homecoming Parade and Celebration will be held on Park City’s historic Main Street, Saturday, April 5, 2014 from 1-5 pm.

Come and see Women's Ski Jumping USA Olympians Sarah Hendrickson, Lindsey Vanand Jessica Jerome. Over 20 Olympians and medalists are expected to participate.

Participants will gather at the top of Historic Main Street at 1pm, and parade down to lower Main Street. The parade will culminate at the Town Lift Plaza and the bottom of Main Street, and will feature Olympians and Paralympians together with local youth athletes from the Youth Sports Alliance Teams, Get Out & Play Program, and the Winter School.

The community is invited to line the parade route, support Park City’s homegrown Olympic talent and join in the post-parade celebration featuring live music, food, beverages and a free fireworks show. All participating Olympians will be available to meet and greet fans, residents and visitors for autographs and photos following the parade.

The event is a collaboration of the Youth Sports Alliance, the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation, the National Ability Center, Park City Municipal Corporation, the Park City Chamber & Visitors Bureau, Summit County, and the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Association.

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