Zoo, Arts & Parks Blog
Gale Center of History & Culture
The City of South Jordan’s museum,
Gale Center of History & Culture, was originated by several long-time residents to create a place to learn about, appreciate and experience the rich history of South Jordan City.
In 1859, the first homesteaders found land in the southern end of the Salt Lake Valley for their crops and animals. Families came here to build a life together in a new place, start traditions and build memories that could be passed down to future generations. Today, our
resources still include a rich environment and enthusiasm of hardworking citizens. As a result, our City boasts comfortable homes, thriving commercial development, modern manufacturing, varied cultural and academic opportunities, and beautiful open space for
A Walk Through the Museum
Visitors to the Gale Center of History & Culture enjoy; explore; learn; and discover the history and story behind the development of South Jordan. We reach families with children, retirees with grandchildren, school groups, scout troops, activity day girls, visitors and tourists to South Jordan, and the art community.
A lot of our museum visitors are drawn to the interactive areas and enjoy playing in the schoolhouse. They sit at the original teacher's desk and ring the school bell. They move on to a replica house and pretend to be an early South Jordan pioneer while
wearing old time bonnets and aprons, cooking dinner, setting the table and hanging clothes on the line. And what is more fun than shopping at the old H&E store? Children pick up their baskets and shop for their fruit, vegetables and canned goods. They can even take them
to the scale and cash register.
The Gale Center of History & Culture also offers a monthly Terrific Tuesday program, which is family friendly and includes fun activities like arts and crafts, guest speakers, movies, games, demonstrations and storytellers.
The Gale Center of History & Culture offers art programming and a monthly Resident on Display program that spotlights an artist or photographer from South Jordan. We love to show off the amazing talent of the residents of South Jordan! The Gale Center also features, annually, a gingerbread house contest and
an art show.
The Gale Center of History & Culture will celebrate its ten year anniversary on July 1, 2016. Planning for exciting, celebration activities is already underway.
We invite you to visit the Gale Center of History & Culture and experience Grandma’s House; the Schoolhouse; our farm equipment; the Dugout; and much more.
The Gale Center of History & Culture has 32 full-time, volunteer docents that allow us to be open Tuesday – Friday, 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., with one full-time Museum Coordinator. For more information, or questions, please feel free to contact me at 801-254-3742.
Candy Ponzurick is the Gale
Center of History and Culture Museum Coordinator. Candy is a member of
the American Association for State and Local History, and the Western Museums
Association. Candy is originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but has
worked for South Jordan City for 20 years and greatly appreciates the museum
sharing the history and story behind the development of South Jordan.
ZAP Partners with the Salt Lake County Fair
The Zoo, Arts and Parks (ZAP) Program is excited about its new-this-year partnership with the Salt Lake County Fair. We invited ZAP grantees to participate in the festivities at the fair. We're pleased to announce that the following groups will join the fun:
We are thrilled to see you at the fair. If you want to learn more about the events at the
Salt Lake County Fair, visit their website. Admission is free and parking is $10. We're excited to see this partnership develop!
Mosaic Mural Shaping Up in South Salt Lake with Mural Artist Roger Whiting
We at the
South Salt Lake Arts Council and City Hall are brimming with excitement as we see the progress that is being made on a mosaic mural project for our Central Park Community Center, located at 2830 South 200 East in South Salt Lake. Central Park is one of the nine South Salt Lake Neighborhood Centers, located in schools and community-based locations, that serve South Salt Lake’s children, youth, families, seniors, and people who work in South Salt Lake through academic, arts-based, physical fitness/recreation, social, and cultural programs at no or low cost. The centers improve quality of life and also provide a place for community involvement, volunteerism, and networking.
South Salt Lake and SSL Arts Council have been working with mural artist, Roger Whiting, on creating a mural that represents the diverse interests and cultures of youth who attend our Central Park Community Center. Roger has an impressive background in creating fabulous works of art for communities, businesses, and individuals alike. You can learn more about his work by visiting his website,
His passion lies in working with disadvantaged youth and helping their talents and expression find their way into the designs of his murals. Roger spent time working with the youth of South Salt Lake’s Promise After School Program in creating the ideas for the Central Park mural and how they wanted these ideas to be represented.
According to Roger, “the youth at Central Park are so creative. This project reflects the joy and enthusiasm they have for life.”
With Roger’s help, boxes of porcelain tile were smashed into small pieces, and then carefully arranged and adhered on sheets of mesh that will eventually be hung on the walls of the entrance to Central Park. The Arts Council wishes to thank the Sorenson Legacy Foundation for generously providing a portion of the funding to make this mural possible.
The photos below show the concepts the youth developed for the mural. The youth will be involved with creating the colorful mural, while Roger will work further on the black, white, and red Central Park sign, also done in mosaic, that will be placed above the mural. We are looking forward to seeing how this mural will add vibrancy to our building, but especially seeing the youth excited about their contributions to this permanent art installation. Many thanks and a shout out to the staff of Promise South Salt Lake and the Central Park After School Program for their support in allowing this project to take place.
Stop by and see the progress next time you are in the area. And we hope that this will be the first of many mosaic projects in South Salt Lake, so stay tuned!
Lesly Allen is the
Arts Council Coordinator for South Salt Lake. She has a Masters degree in
Community Leadership with an emphasis in Arts Administration from Westminster
College. Lesly also serves on the Board of Directors for Utah Arts
Alliance and Splore. Lesly has a passion for public art and using art as
a way to unite and revitalize communities. Lesly is a native of
Salt Lake City, has four beautiful daughters, and enjoys skiing, cycling, and
riding her motorcycle.
What Can We Say in 140 Characters or Less?
I considered tweeting this entire post over a day or so. How would you like that flooding your feed? #NotSoMuch #IThoughtSo.
A big part of my job is wrapped up in posting and tweeting.
I love promoting all the events, performances, classes and opportunities that ZAP-funded organizations offer. I enjoy seeing the good work these organizations are doing. Mostly, I relish in connecting with the public – the people of Salt Lake County.
But I have a confession to make. I hate Facebook. Seriously. (Kind of).
Facebook and I have a love/hate relationship. I’ve dumped it… twice. My most recent return to Facebook was prompted by a need to, yet again, familiarize myself with the ever-changing medium due to a surprise-addition to a past job description. Now, with my new job (which is the best job ever!) at
Salt Lake County, I’ll probably be keeping it for good.
I’m not too sad about it now. I’m ready to commit.
I’m putting down roots because of the potential, I think.
Yes, I believe in the power of social media as a marketing tool. But, even more, I believe in the power of social media as a tool for connection. In a world where people identify lack of time as the most common barrier to attending the arts (
NEA Barriers to Arts Attendance), what better way to connect with our audiences than to meet them on their phone while they’re on the go?
But how can we connect with our audiences in a more meaningful way? Social media marketing the way we currently do it works, but is it best? Does promotion, promotion, promotion ever get tiring? These are all real questions I’ve been asking. And they’re questions I don’t necessarily have the
answer to. Do you?
I recently read a blog post entitled “
Bringing Backstage Onstage with Social Media.” It’s from 2013. In the break-neck world of social media, it could have been written a hundred years ago. But, honestly, I think arts organizations are still figuring this one out. I recommend you take a peek, if you haven’t already.
The author describes a few scenarios. A playwright writes a play in a storefront window while the document is projected on a screen to passersby in real time. A man creates a virtual choir – gathering voices from across the planet. A museum uses Pinterest for internal communication about
museum design and programming – and all of this is pin-able and accessible to the public. What do all of these projects have in common? They proudly display the work of creating. And they invite the public to be a part of the work, too.
Social media isn’t going away. At least not any time soon. Why don’t I see more invitations like this?
We’re protective of our craft.
I understand that. There are copyrights and personal protections to consider. I get it. But, for me at least, I didn’t fall in love with theatre because I saw a play. I fell in love with theatre when I was in my first show. To me, the process was much more
magical than the performance could ever be. Knowing the process helped me appreciate and love the product so much more. Is it that way for you?
Maybe it’s about vulnerability. Are we nervous about sharing the unfinished, unpolished work we do? It’s a vulnerable position to be in. A position that is displaying what is not yet done. Not yet perfected. A position that is learning. But, in my experience, it’s the vulnerable moments that make life worth living. And isn’t
that what art does best? It pokes at all our vulnerable spots to show us (and remind us) we’re human.
Sorry, I’m philosophizing. Let me get back to the point. How can we share the work we do (the good, the bad and ugly) on social media? How can we remind our audiences that we’re human and it’s hard work to create and be vulnerable? How can we build real audience relationships over social media? How
can we invite people to join us in the process?
And then, at some point, we will need to make connections in
We will need to speak face-to-face. We will need to experience something together in real time, in person. But might social media be the impetus for this meeting? And how much more meaningful will that experience be if we’ve already built something together?
I don’t think social media is the answer to all our audience development problems. But, if we start thinking creatively (which is what we do best) about it, it could be one of the answers.
So, now I want to hear from you.
There are a lot of questions in this post. It’s pretty much full of questions. If you’re part of an arts organization, what do you think? What ideas do you have to make social media more meaningful? How are you inviting audiences to be a part of your
work? If you’re a member of the public, how would you like arts organizations to relate to you on social media?
Let’s hear it. Post a comment below!
7 Things I Learned in Chicago
As rain splattered on the dark sidewalks between skyscrapers, I sat in a room on the twelfth floor of a hotel shrouded in blankets and ideas. I waded through everything I’d soaked in earlier that day. I was at my first
Americans for the Arts Conference (#AFTAcon). Like the lightning outside, the conference theme, “Art Empowers us All,” flashed through my mind. All day long, quick strikes of inspiration lit up my mind. And I want to share seven of those thoughts -- those flashes of light -- with you. Come along on a trip through my mind -- and Chicago:
1. Artists are more powerful than we remember.
Theaster Gates, Urban Planner/Potter/Artist/Community Organizer, gave the keynote address. This thought is from him. After saying, "Artists are more powerful than we remember," he added, "but we can't do it alone. Check out his
Ted Talk. He's an inspiring speaker.
2. Having power is having purpose.
This is another thought from Mr. Gates' keynote address. In response to a question about how artists can obtain the power to make real change, he stated that he doesn't know power as anything different from purpose. Purpose, in itself, is powerful.
3. Community engagement cannot be done at a desk.
I went to a lot of sessions on community engagement. Real community engagement is about empowering a community to be change makers in their place. This can't be done at a desk. It has to be done out and about. It has to be done through listening. It has to be done through building a relationship.
4. Arts were created to inspire humanity.
If we remember that the arts were created to inspire humanity, then how does this inform our discussions about equity in the arts?
5. Do the arts matter?
Nobody at the conference was arguing that the arts don't matter, but there were a lot of conversations about relevance. How does your organization stay relevant to the community? Or, in other words, why does your art matter to the community?
Hideo Mabuchi, physicist/potter and MacArthur Fellow, talked about the arts being a way to continue searching. He said that searching is good for your soul and your art. In what ways are you constantly searching?
7. Find one small thing.
We may not be able to move from A to Z all at once, but we can move from A to B. So, what's one small thing you can do?
It was an enlightening conference for me. I'm curious about what lights up for you? I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments.
FYI: Did you know that Americans for the Arts will be in Salt Lake City this fall? Join us at the
National Arts Marketing Project Conference!
Megan is the ZAP Grant and Communications Program Coordinator. She's the voice behind ZAP's
pages. She is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Community Leadership, with an emphasis in Arts & Cultural Leadership, from Westminster College. She collects children's books and loves teaching children's theatre.