Fun things to do in Salt Lake City

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Salt Lake City

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    Hogle Zoo

    by Segolily Updated Dec 7, 2011

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    I almost hesitate to include this as a thing to do. They try hard, but it is a small zoo and resources are limited. Hogle Zoo is okay for here, but it cannot compare to any of the nice and large zoos of the world. It is still packed on summer days and you can wander the Emigration river gully looking for lions and tiger, giraffes and monkeys.

    I haven't been to see our baby elephant "Zuri" whose birth really was a great treat. Nor have I seen the new Aisian Highlands exhibit.

    The bears are gone until they can get a better space for them, but the giraffe are nice, the apes are good.

    One thing nice about Hogle Zoo is that because it is smaller you can see it without becoming exhausted.

    Hogle Zoo
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    Church Art and History Museum

    by Segolily Written Mar 5, 2011

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    The Art and History museum is located west of Temple Square and north of the Family History Library. Entrance is free. There are rotating and permanent exhibits. I like to come on occasion to see the fantastic art of members of the LDS church from all over the world. It is moving to me to see the love and care they show in creating art.

    The history part of the museum also has some good information about the growth of the church as seen from the perspective of the 16 Presidents of the church.

    In between the two buildings is an original log home built 1847 by Osmyn and Mary Deuel. According to the sign in front this is one of two remaining homes from that first year the pioneers were in the valley.

    Lee Udall Bennion Stained glass window from old church Bas Relief at entrance Original log home
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    Conference Center

    by Segolily Updated Mar 5, 2011

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    The Conference Center is on the block north of Temple Square. Built to seat many more people than was possible in the Tabernacle, it hosts the Church's two General Conferences in April and October. It was finished in time for April 2000's General Conference and has hosted numerous events since including the Tabernacle Choir's summer broadcasts and their annual Christmas Concert.

    It can hold up to 21,000 people in the vast auditorium. Built from the same rocks as the Temple it blends in nicely to the surrounding area. Featuring a 4 tiered waterfall in front and on the roof a beautiful Utah inspired garden, which is only available via tour.

    There are free tours offered to see both the inside and roof garden. There are some nice views on top and if you visit during wildflower season (end of June?) you'll get an extra treat.

    East side of the center
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    Salt Lake Meridian marker

    by Segolily Updated Feb 8, 2011

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    At the southeast corner of Temple Square, outside the wall, (intersection of Main Street and South Temple) is an unobtrusive marker placed to show where all land surveys in Utah begin.

    Utah begins at latitude 40 degrees 46' 04", longitude 111 degrees 54' 00", and 4327 ft above sea level.

    Meridian marker Meridian plaque
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    City Hall

    by Segolily Written Feb 8, 2011

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    The Mayor lives here. And the City Council. And other city offices. I believe you can still get married here.

    Originally finished in 1894 this building had a tumultuous beginning. It was the City and County building until its renovation in the 1980's when the county moved out. It also housed the Utah state Legislature until the capitol was finished in 1916.

    The architecture is after the Richardson Romanesque style (I hadn't heard of it either until writing this tip). With a tall central clock tower and statue on top depicting Columbia and the large block-size park surrounding it the City Hall is a very distinctive place.

    There are tours, (I didn't know that and haven't taken one.) Washington Square Park surrounding the hall is the site for various city activities notably the "Living Traditions Festival".

    I've been inside a couple times, but both were before the 1980's renovation when the floors still squeaked, the wooden doors still had transoms and the lighting was quite poor. When I get more time I'll go take a tour and be back with all sorts of good info.

    Salt Lake City Hall Clock tower and Columbia
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    City Library

    by Segolily Written Feb 8, 2011

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    Citizens are justly proud of this architecturally amazing building. Designed by international architect Moshe Safdie the building incorporates several wonderful elements.

    A wide sweeping arch full of windows encompasses the lobby and outdoor plaza. Inside the lobby is open and full of light.

    Built with the newest available technology in 2003, with computer terminals as part of the plan rather than added later, the library also treasures one the of 1860 Bien edition of James Audubon's "Birds of America".

    The surrounding Library Plaza hosts the city's annual Arts Festival.

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    University of Utah

    by Segolily Updated Oct 16, 2010

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    The University of Utah looms large over the city of Salt Lake. Not only does it cover a huge swath of the northeastern corner but the educational, cultural, scientific and technological influence it has is tremendous. It began as a "U" shaped campus at the end of 2nd south, but has grown and sprawled over the former Ft Douglas, many of whose buildings have been incorporated into the U's.

    I have spent much of my life visiting the campus, from learning to swim, to watching all variety of concerts, plays, state and university ball games, researching at the library, attending classes, working. I have visited patients at the hospital where the first US artificial heart was implanted, or taken field trips with my kids to the Natural History Museum featuring the fossils, rocks and minerals that have helped Utah be a mining rock star.

    It is a great campus. It is a dynamic campus, changing both physically and elementally as the years go on. Some of my favorite features have been changed or eliminated over the years to make way for new and up to date buildings. But the U, home to the Utah State Arboretum, is still a beautiful place to wander.

    Thinking of attending? Take a campus tour.
    Want to visit the Utah Fine Arts museum, Natural History Museum, Olympic Cauldron Museum, watch a play at the Pioneer Theater, listen to music at Gardner Music Hall, watch the championship Red Rocks Gymnastic team, or the Running Ute Football team. They are all here.

    Park Administration Bldg Marriott Library atrium The Cowles bldg where I spent much of my undergrad A school of fossil fish at the Sutton Bldg
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    Ft Douglas Cemetery

    by Segolily Updated Jul 7, 2010

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    The Fort Douglas Cemetery is a small old cemetery half forgotten tucked behind the Research Park's new buildings for technology and bio medicine, hotels, and the Red Butte Garden. I worked nearby for awhile and would walk up for lunch to explore it. It is a quiet retreat and quite interesting.

    Ft Douglas on the Salt Lake benches was built in 1862 by volunteer militia from California led by Patrick Conner who wanted to fight in the Civil War. They were instead sent to keep the Mormons in line, the trade routes open and quell Indian aggression. One of the first things they did was massacre a whole tribe of peaceful winter-gathered First Americans up along the north reaches of the Utah Territory.

    There is a monument at Ft Douglas to those who gave their lives in this battle. Patrick Conner, who received a promotion for the Bear River Massacre, is also buried. Soldiers from Civil War era, and all wars up unto the Vietnam War are laid to rest here.

    At the southwestern edge is the monument to German prisoners of war who died while being kept here during World War 1. They were captured from ships in the pacific and held here for a year or so. Having just visited many US cemeteries in Europe I was especially interested in knowing that there were foreign soldiers buried right here in my home town.

    According to the sign at the entrance there are also German, Japanese and Italian prisoners from WWII.

    http://www.media.utah.edu/UHE/g/GERMANS.html

    Original entry to Ft Douglas Last resting spot of Patrick Conner Monument to German POWs
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    Ft Douglas Museum

    by Segolily Updated Jul 7, 2010

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    Ft Douglas is no longer an operating fort. First opened in 1863 by the California Volunteers who wanted to fight in the Civil War and led by Col. Patrick Conner, Ft Douglas was the second fort built by the U.S. Army in the Utah Territory. (Camp Floyd being the first). At its height in WWII Ft Douglas was a major induction and staging base.
    Given slowly piece by piece to the University of Utah and other public and private entities the final decommission took place 1991.

    The Ft Douglas museum is seeking to keep alive the memory of the many years of service and other military history of Utah.
    Entrance is free, parking is free.

    Behind the museum is an artillery collection.

    Though the fort is no longer a working military base, the historic Officers Quarters, built a century ago from the red sandstone of Red Butte, and parade ground are still there and continue to be used as the headquarters of the 96th Army Reserve Command and as a base of operation for U.S. Navy and Marine Reserves and are quite interesting to see.

    http://web.utah.edu/facilities/fd/history/history.html

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    Deseret Village

    by Segolily Updated Jul 20, 2010

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    This recreated frontier town is located at This is the Place Monument. While there is no charge to see the monument, the village is a fee area.

    The Visitor's Center is a replica of the Old Sugar Mill that stood in Sugarhouse. The Visitor's Center has a small shop, exhibits and information about the park and monument.

    Laid out in the Mormon tradition of straight wide roads the village is filled with old homes, stores, barns and mills gathered from around the state which are original and other that have been authentically reconstructed.

    There are the one room cabins where pottery and rug making are practiced. There is the old pharmacy and blacksmith shops. A bookstore and hotel. Old homes of different constructions. The one room schoolhouse, a reconstructed Pine Valley Chapel. The old firehouse, an Indian village and Mountain man camp. An old fashioned bowery serves as a picnic area. Further away is Brigham Young's old Farm house and along the way there are a barn with petting animals.

    During the summer and festival days there are docents dressed the part to help create the sense of an 1850's town. There used to be wagon and stage coach rides, but the last time I went it was a train to transport guests from one area to another. I guess that holds more people. As the roads are wide and the blocks are long it does require some stamina to get around to it all. This is a fun place to take kids to introduce them to a different time and lifestyle.

    Log cabin road Brigham Young Farm house Making pots Rebuilt Social Hall Indian Village
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  • The Temple Square area of Salt...

    by CDNgirl Written Aug 24, 2002

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    The Temple Square area of Salt Lake City gives an interesting insight to the foundation and building of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints(the Mormons). The tabernacle, the big domed building is an interesting bit of architecture, as is the Temple, although only Mormons in good standing can enter the temple as it is considered sacred and a holy sanctuary. The Joseph Smith building across the street is also beautifully historical as the former Hotel Utah. There are other interesting museums of Mormon history(they are very good at preserving records and historical accuracy) in the Temple Square area, including Beehive House, which was Brigham Youngs home, and shows what life was like under the old church doctrine of polygamy.(The practice of polygamy was discontinued in the Church when Utah became a state, although there are still a few splinter groups who chose to leave the church to continue the practice even today) It was amazingly well organized, which impressed and surprized me, as a female, how so many women could get along in such 'interesting' circumstances. Lots of informative guides(missionaries from all over the world)all over who really know their stuff and are willing to answer all kinds of questions, and also speak different languages if you ask for them at one of the vistor centers on temple square.

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    Volunteer a day Welfare Square

    by Ekahau Updated Jun 17, 2013

    A Place of HOPE

    Volunteer a day Welfare Square they have a food bank and a thrift store part of Deseret Industries you do not have to be Mormon (I do not happen to be) but was made very welcome.

    yes this will really get you int o the swing of the culture bang up and makes friends with committed social service types salt of the earth folks and the wonderful communities they are helping adjust.

    meet refuges from all over he world and enjoy the wonderful smiles and faces with a little act of kindness it will be the highlight of your visit to American

    Welfare Square is a modern facility composed of a towering, 178-foot-tall grain elevator, a large storehouse, a bakery, a cannery, a milk-processing operation, a thrift store, and an employment center—all designed to help people.

    A saint in the food Bank A place to turn Welfare Square Pacific Island culture in SLC African Refugee's first Job USA Thrift store
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    City Creek Center

    by MicheleH Written Jun 18, 2013

    Beautiful, upper end outdoor shopping mall. There were lots of expensive upscale stores in the mall. It is located right across from the LDS temple. Had lots of beautiful fountains. some were even designed for the kids to play in.

    Had stores like Rolex, Tiffany's, Godiva Chocolates, Swarovski. Shops way beyond my budget, but fun to walk through.

    Dancing Fountain 3 fountains in a row

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    Cathedral of the Madeleine

    by Segolily Written Dec 3, 2011

    A few blocks east of Temple Square on South Temple Street is the Catholic Cathedral of the Madeleine. The Cathedral is a gem of beauty. There are numerous stained glass windows, murals and wood carvings and more create a small center of energy. The Children's Cathedral Choir is active and has regular concerts.

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    Clark Planetarium

    by Segolily Updated Dec 7, 2011

    The place for all things space. Located in the Gateway Mall entrance to the planetarium is free. There are plenty of exhibits, a foucault pendulum and a nifty store. The planetarium also offers "star shows" which are focused on some scientific space concept. They also have "laser shows" which are completely for fun. Or you can watch a current movie on the huge IMAX screen

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