For those who live outside of the Beehive State, the 24th of July is officially called Pioneer Day … which celebrates the entry of Brigham Young and the first group of Mormon pioneers into the Salt Lake Valley on July 24, 1847. Pioneer Day is generally a day of parades, fireworks, rodeos, and other festivities in most of Utah and in parts of neighboring states with strong LDS populations, which help commemorate the event. Be aware this is a state holiday so most government offices and many businesses are closed. Although the holiday has strong links to the LDS Church, it is officially a celebration for everyone, regardless of faith and nationality, who are or consider themselves to be pioneers.
Utah’s second July holiday is – this year – the 3-day weekend of July 22-24 when we observe the 170th anniversary of the arrival of the Mormon pioneers to the Valley of the Great Salt Lake. Traditionally, this holiday – at least here in Southern Utah – has been celebrated simply, with family reunions or picnics in the park. This year, however, we’ll have a new way to celebrate when members of the world-famous Osmond family will produce and present The Pioneer Legacy.
This free-to-the-public charity event will be held on Pioneer Day at Dixie State University’s Legend Solar Stadium. The program is expected to entertain thousands of local residents and visitors with original music telling pioneer stories of this area. There will also be skydivers, fireworks and a massive song-and-dance routine featuring a cast of 150 local youth depicting the journey of the Utah pioneers here to Dixie, one of many untamed valleys in the Utah Territory.
Under the stars on a warm summer evening, you’ll experience both the challenging drama and the joyful conquest of this barren landscape. There will be wagons, handcarts, live animals, special guests and one of the largest firework displays in the St. George area. This production will tell the story of ALL the original colonizers to this part of the world, including Catholic missionaries as well as Greek, Italian, Chinese, and Jewish pioneers who lived and worked alongside early Mormon settlers.
Proceeds from the Pioneer Production will benefit local deaf and hard-of-hearing children with the gift of hearing through the Olive Osmond Hearing Fund. Merrill Osmond, the creator and producer of this program and family representative of the Olive Osmond Hearing Fund, is honored to have sponsors and supporters who have helped raise over $100,000 in direct services for the local deaf and hard of hearing.
If you are vacationing in Southern Utah in July – you have our sympathy and an invitation to take part in our celebration of America’s independence or of our pioneer heritage. Register today online for a beautiful, comfortable and affordable vacation resort rental at St. George Resort Rentals at stgeorgeresortrentals.com or at laspalmasresortcondos.com for Five Seasons Vacation condominiums. We can’t wait to meet you … or welcome you back!