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Category: visit

most-charitable-state

It’s no surprise, Utah has – for many years – been recognized as the #1 state in the nation for volunteerism.  Utahn’s in large numbers – approximately 50% of every man and women and most teenagers – are scoutmasters, ticket takers, literacy tutors, mentors for at risk kids, volunteer soccer, softball, basketball coaches, and many other assignments – are willingly donating time, talents and obviously financial support without any expectation of remuneration.

A new recognition for the Beehive State is as the most “generous” state in the nation, as measured by thirteen indicators of charitable giving and volunteering, in a recent report from Wallet Hub, a service of Evolution Finance.

To arrive at this designation, WalletHub.com measured the percentage of income donated, rate of volunteering, hours volunteered per capita, percentage of the population who donates time and money, percentage of the population who donates collected and/or distributed food and clothing, number of public charities per capita, percentage of sheltered homeless, and whether there is a community service requirement for high school graduation.  When all the data was collected and analyzed 2016’s Most and Least Charitable States ranked Utah as the most generous state, as it did last year, followed by Minnesota, North Dakota, Maryland, and Oklahoma. According to this same source, the states least likely to open their pocketbooks or give of their time and resources as Arizona, California, Texas, Nevada, and Hawai’i.

Among the poorest states, but whose citizenry are also still charitable, were West Virginia, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Tennessee, while the residents of California, Hawai’i, Texas, Rhode Island and Massachusetts were found to be the richest but least charitable.

Here in our community, local residents step up without hesitation when the needs of others in our community are made known to them, including our staff and management – all really nice people tending to the needs of vacationers looking for comfortable, affordable vacation resort rentals.  If you are one who believes in charity begins at home, it also applies to your home-away-from-home. Register today online for a beautiful vacation resort rental at St. George Resort Rentals at stgeorgeresortrentals.com or Five Seasons Resort Condominiums at laspalmasresortcondos.com.   Come stay with us for a week or a month and let us put a smile on your face!

Looking for a pleasant day trip while visiting in St. George?  Try Cedar City, an easy 50-mile drive up the I-15 freeway.  Different in many ways from nearby St. George, Cedar City’s elevation is much higher, the population is much smaller and the weather is much cooler, but the people are just as nice and there’s plenty to see and do. 

Also known as the “festival city” as the home of the renowned, Emmy award winning Utah Shakespearean Festival, a visit to Cedar City would not be complete without a walkabout on the campus of Southern Utah University where The Bard’s works come to life throughout the summer theater season.  Even if there is nothing on stage, the grounds are amazing, including a completely new theater complex opening in the summer of 2016.

The Iron Gate Winery, a one-of-a-kind business in southern Utah located at 102 N. 200 West, offers tastings, tours of the wine production area, and sales of world-class wines made in Cedar City from grapes sourced from some of the finest California, Oregon and Washington vineyards.  The first and only winery and tasting room anywhere in this part of the state is open during the spring and summer each Monday through Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. while in the fall and winter months, the winery is open the same hours but only Thursday through Saturday.

A tour of Frontier Homestead State Park (formerly known as Iron Mission State Park) will provide visitors with up-close displays of turn-of-the-20th century pioneer artifacts, including horse-drawn vehicles and agricultural implements, a variety of craft demonstrations, rotating art exhibits, interpretive lectures, and guided tours. An iron industry exhibit displays a town bell, the only known artifact from the original foundry, as well as other items of interest including several historic cabins, a large collection of horse-drawn farm equipment, and a replicated pioneer household.

Another stop you’re certain to enjoy in nearby Cedar City is an easy one-mile hike to the Cascade Falls overlook on Cedar Mountain.  While this is considered a hike nearly anyone can manage, the trail elevation is about 8900 feet in altitude … and it is accessible only in the summer months when there is no threat of snowfall.

You are also certain to enjoy a drive – generally best seen from June through October – through the Dixie National Forest and Red Canyon State Park to Cedar Breaks National Monument, a natural amphitheater, stretching 3 miles across and about 2,000 feet deep. Remember though, for those who find it difficult to breath at high elevation, the rim of the amphitheater is over 10,000 feet above sea level.

You can always return to Cedar City If you haven’t crossed everything off your to-do list, but the best thing about daytrips is coming back at the end of the day to your comfortable and affordable home-away-from-home at St. George Resort Rentals or Five Season Vacation condominiums.  Register online today at stgeorgeresortrentals.com for accommodations at the St. George Resort Rentals or laspalmasresortcondos.com for Five Seasons Vacation condominiums. We’ll be waiting for you!

What’s Up Down South?

If you are vacationing in St. George in consideration of moving to our bustling community to start a business – or if you are just interested in knowing more about the local economic climate – you’ll want to attend the 20th Annual “What’s Up Down South” Economic Summit on Thursday January 14.  Considered the premier business event in southern Utah, this year’s event – which will kick off 2016 for the business community – will feature important information and updates on technology. 

There will also be a wealth of exciting and informative breakout sessions as well as keynote speakers throughout the day at the Dixie Convention Center, including Paul Gustavson, president of Organization Planning and Design, Inc.; Lecia Langston, Senior Economist with the Utah Department of Workforce Services; and, Peter Horan, CEO of Horan Media Tech Advisors. 

Tickets are available online at whatsupdownsouth.com.

You’ll know “what’s up?” when registering online for a comfortable, attractive and affordable vacation home-away-from-home here in southern Utah.  Check us out today at stgeorgeresortrentals.com for accommodations at the St. George Resort Rentals or laspalmasresortcondos.com for Five Seasons Vacation condominiums.  We’ll be waiting for you!

The St. George Marathon

 The St. George Marathon is definitely a favorite race, not only to the runners who are racing but for the spectators too! Runner’s World rates the St. George Marathon as one of the four “Marathons to Build a Vacation Around” in the world.  All of us here at Five Seasons Vacation Rentals could not agree with Runner’s World more! St. George, Utah and some of the surrounding areas here in Southern Utah are the perfect places to experience all the adventure you need to while on vacation, and we can help!

As you find one of our cozy Five Seasons Vacation Rental private homes to vacation in and call home for a little bit, adventure awaits outside your doorstep and waiting for you to get some red dirt in your shoes! St. George is not just home of the St. George Marathon, but it is home to so many other outdoor adventures as well. Runners, hikers, bikers, climbers, walkers, photographers, anyone and people of all ages…St. George is waiting for you to come make it your vacation destination!

There is such a variety of things to do in and near St. George. Fortunately, the St. George community caters to everyone…young or old, book worms or active adventure seekers, art lovers, food finders, shopping mamas, sports fans, you name it and I think St. George has you covered! Take and look and browse through our luxurious condos and private homes to see which one will best suite you and your crew on your vacation to St. George, Utah!

If you are old enough to remember the theme song from the old TV show “The Beverly Hillbillies” you are probably humming it right now. 

Washington County’s history includes a brief venture into the production of oil when “black gold” was discovered in the small town of Virgin, Utah not far from Zion National Park.  In about 1930, drillers struck oil at 480 feet.  Pumps installed brought only about 15 gallons a day to the surface, but the small success – especially during the Great Depression years – encouraged local businessmen to try another well.  At 739 feet, they struck oil again – and hot sulphur water.  Although an attempt was made to cap the well, it continued to produce a steady flow in equal parts of oil and hot sulphur water, until the early 1960’s.

Although Virgin’s oil business experienced only limited success, the town did produce stove oil used throughout the territory for many years; and, a derivative of Virgin’s oil was used on area dirt roads to control dust, since water – then and now – was at a premium in the desert.  Estimates of wells dug in the area number in the thousands, though Virgin’s venture into the petroleum market generated only poor quality  products local residents nicknamed “stinkoline.”

You’ll pass through Virgin, Utah on your next visit to Zion National Park, although there isn’t anything left to see of the once “thriving” Southern Utah oil industry.  And, to enjoy the beautiful accommodations waiting for you at St. George Resort Rentals  you won’t need black gold. We look forward to serving your vacation needs whether for a week or a month.

DIxie Regional Medical center

Dixie Regional Medical Center, a major medical referral center for northwestern Arizona, southeastern Nevada and southern Utah, is a nationally recognized and award-winning, 245-bed member of Intermountain Health Care, Inc., a corporation President Barack Obama identified by name and called, “a possible national model in big health care.”

Visitors to our community can rest easy when it comes to available healthcare while vacationing in southern Utah, because among its many distinctions and recognitions, in 2014 Dixie Regional Medical Center was:

  • recognized by the Women’s Choice Award as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Patient Experience and received an award of excellence in cancer care, orthopedics and obstetrics
  • ranked #29 of 100 Best Hospitals for Patient Engagement by Becker’s Hospital Review and #17 in the nation on their list for heart failure readmission rates
  • Dixie State University’s choice for the Community Partnership Award, with Terri Kane (CEO at DRMC) named as their Quiet Champion of Hope 2014
  • named a Healthstrong Hospital by iVantage
  • received the American Heart Association’s “Get with the Guidelines Gold Plus Award” for heart and stroke care
  • named a Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission on Hospital Accreditation
  • placed #11 in Soliant Health’s Top 20 Most Beautiful Hospitals in America
  • began this year treating the same kind of injuries as a Level 2 Trauma Center
  • named Organization of the Month of December 2014 by the Studer Group, a national consulting group

The local hospital is also the second largest employer in this part of the state, providing jobs for more than 2000, and with nearly 300 physicians, in every medical specialty, on staff. Of course, no one plans a vacation around the need for great healthcare, but if you need it,

we’ve got it! We’ve also got your vacation resort rental waiting. Book online today at stgeorgeresortrentals.com or laspalmasresortcondos.com

RED CLIFFS

The Red Cliffs Desert Reserve is 62,000 acres – approximately 20 miles wide and 6 miles deep – of spectacular scenery set aside by the Federal government primarily for the protection of the threatened Mojave desert tortoise.

The Red Cliffs Desert Reserve, implemented in 1996 through the Endangered Species Act, is considered a very successful Habitat Conservation Plan.  Administered by Washington County in a collaborative partnership with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), Utah Department of Natural Resources (DNR), and State of Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration (SITLA), the Reserve protects the desert tortoise but also manages recreational activities and utility projects in an extraordinarily unique environment.

The Reserve is north of Ivins, Santa Clara, St. George and Washington City and can best be seen from your vehicle along the west side of the northbound I-15 freeway.  But the Reserve can also be accessed on foot, bicycle or horseback. According to their website, “When you enter the Reserve at any one of the distinctive ‘step-over’ gates, you are entering a special place – not just another mountain bike trail or horseback ride.

“At the merging of three great ecosystems, the Mojave Desert, the Great Basin, and the Colorado Plateau, the Reserve is biologically rich with a unique array of animals and plants. The Reserve contains the most northern populations of the desert tortoise, Gila monster, sidewinder rattlesnake, and chuckwalla – reptiles typically associated with hotter and more southerly deserts, like the Mojave. The conditions in the region are such that several endemic species, which occur nowhere else in the world, can be found here.”

A free visitor center is located in downtown St. George at 10 N. 100 East.  Not only can you find all the information necessary to explore this Washington County treasure, you can also learn about local wildlife, plants, ecosystems and the purpose of the HCP as well as enjoy a preview of the Reserve through impressive exhibits and presentations to small groups by the Reserve’s expert staff.  Regular visitor center hours are 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday.

And, a not-so-gentle reminder … for your own safety, make certain you are adequately prepare to explore the Reserve with proper footwear, a wide brimmed hat and plenty of water.  It can’t be stressed enough … it’s really, really hot in Washington County from mid-April until early November.

Whether its history, 360-degee vistas, or hiking, biking or horseback riding in the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve, Southern Utah has it all.  Fill out the form on this page to reserve your vacation rental!

Tonaquint Nature Center

Tonaquint-nature-center

Have you come across the Tonaquint Nature Center yet? If not, make your way over there because you are missing out on this lovely mini oasis. Tonaquint Nature Center is located just west of Southgate Golf Course and you are bound to enjoy some peace and quiet, that is unless there is an event taking place. If so, plan another day! It is what one would refer to as a little hidden gem in the middle of St. George and it is nestled right along the Santa Clara River.

  • Take in the songs of all the birds that call Tonaquint Nature Center home.
  • Observe the playful ducks and swans as they stir about in the pond.
  • Enjoy the sounds of the Santa Clara River as the water slowly ripples by, or stop and cool your feet off.
  • Try and count the numerous lizards that will cross your path in every direction.
  • Sit and enjoy a book in the amphitheatre or bring along a bag of costumes for the kids to put on an impromptu skit!
  • Take pleasure in the trails that go through the Tonaquint Nature Center. You can stay within, or venture out and enjoy the St. George trail system.

Here: you can view a video of the Tonaquint Nature Center for a better idea of what can be expected. Pretty certain you will enjoy it anytime of the year!

Alone or with a group, Tonaquint Nature Center is the perfect place to get out and enjoy your surroundings without feeling like you are in the heart of town. However, let’s not forget that just within the same parking area and walking distance is the Tonaquint Park. This particular park has a number of amenities within it such as a playground, covered pavilion with picnic tables, and tennis courts too!  You can find all the amenities included at the park here.

The best part is that Tonaquint Nature Center and the Tonaquint Park are just minutes away from our Resorts that are just up the road! You can easily jump in the car, or grab your bikes and hop on the trailhead and make your way down to enjoy a fun-filled afternoon at Tonaquint Nature Center!

The Tonaquint Nature Center is located at:

1851 South Dixie Drive
St. George, UT 84770
(435)634-5948

What’s Up Down South

Economic Summit

We know you are on vacation when you come to St. George Vacation Rentals, but if you own a small business anywhere else in the world … or are thinking about starting a new business, you will enjoy learning and networking with other business people as well as state and community leaders at the 18th annual What’s Up Down South Economic Summit, the premier business event in southern Utah. The 2015 event will feature a number of technology updates and improvements,  informative break out sessions on a variety of business-related topics and high-energy keynote speakers including Utah Lt. Governor Spencer Cox, Bob Grow, CEO of Envision Utah and Olympic medalist Noelle Pikus Pace.  Regularly attracting more than 1,000 participants each year, the 2015 event will be held on January 15, 2015 at the Dixie Center in St. George.

For the economic summit, register online at www.whatsupdownsouth.com.  To register for a beautiful room with a view at St. George Vacation Rentals, fill in the form on this page.  We look forward to your visit.

Twinkle, Twinkle Christmas Lights

st-george-christmas-lights

Thomas Edison, known as much for his rather strange marketing ideas as for his invention of the light bulb, introduced the first electric Christmas light display in the 1880 holiday season.  Brian Murray’s article “Christmas Lights and Community Building in America” describes Edison’s yuletide efforts to increase sales by stringing up incandescent bulbs all around his Menlo Park laboratory to excite passing commuters on the nearby railway with his colorful Christmas miracle. But Edison being Edison, he decided to make the challenge a little trickier by powering the lights from a remote generator eight miles away.

Christmas lights are popular everywhere, but no more so than in St. George.  Homes from Ivins and Bloomington to Washington City and Hurricane, are lit up with red, green, blue, white and yellow lights, twinkling merrily in the darkness in eager anticipation of the arrival of the Jolly Old Elf, but representative of the Star of the East which rested on that cold winter night over the stable where laid the new born Babe in Bethlehem.

If Christmas lights – and a retelling of the real “reason for the season” – are your thing, then hop in your car for a short ride to some of the best lighting displays.  The St. George LDS Temple is a good place to start.  Walk the temple grounds to enjoy the twinkling lights and see a lifesize nativity scene on display against the backdrop of the dazzling white sacred structure completed in 1877.

Another display of lights can be found on the grounds of Dixie Regional Medical Center on River Road, but, the best and brightest display is at Tuacahn Center for the Arts.  Multi-colored bulbs light up the Canyon of the Gods, but there is much more to see.  Take pictures with you or your little ones on Santa’s lap between the hours of 6:30 – 9 p.,m.  You can also enjoy a holiday train ride on the Old Salty Train (on loan from Ruby’s Inn), some hot chocolate around a blazing fire pit before or after a showing of the Live Nativity, which through music, narration and acting tells the story of the birth of the Christ child. Everything is free – except the hot chocolate and the reenactment of the Christmas story, performed twice each Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday through December 22 at 7 and 8 p.m. at a cost of only $2.00 per person or $15 for a family pass (up to 10 people).

One thing’s for sure: No matter what the reason or the season, the human desire to light up trees and houses in the cold darkness of the winter months is guaranteed to get your jingle going.  Its also one really nice holiday activity you can do from the warmth and comfort of your own vehicle.

There’s still time to enjoy Christmas in the desert.  Reserve your Christmas holiday vacation getaway overlooking the lights of the city, at  St George Resort Rentals. Fill in the form on this page to make a reservation. Get out of the winter cold for a day, a week or several months.  We’re here to help make your holiday season the best ever.

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