Archives for April 2017

Fayette Town leadership and representatives from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development Agency inspect the town’s spring, which is currently contaminated. Pictured are (L-R) Mayor LaMar Bartholomew, USDA Public Information Officer Jamie Jaro, Vice-Mayor Janice Bown, USDA Area Specialist Karl Larsen and USDA Community Programs Director Heath Price.

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Snow Alumnus Utah Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox is scheduled to give the 2017 graduation commencement address on Saturday.


Snow to graduate largest class ever


Robert Stevens

Managing editor



EPHRAIM—Utah Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox will give the commencement address for the largest graduating class ever on Saturday.

Students, their guests, faculty and staff will gather at 10 a.m. for commencement, where degrees and certificates will be conferred on 1,065 students.

The college will award 22 bachelor’s degrees in commercial music, 1,044 associate degrees and 50 certificates of completion. (Some students will receive more than one degree or certificate, which is why the number of degrees and certificates exceeds the number of graduating students.)

Cox and his wife, Abby, both Snow College alumni, will receive honorary degrees recognizing their service to Snow College and the state. Cox is a former mayor of Fairview, county commissioner and Utah state representative.

Also receiving honorary degrees will be Mark and LeAnn Stoddard. Mark Stoddard is president and CEO of Central Valley Medical Center in Nephi and has served on the Snow College Board of Trustees. LeAnn currently serves as chairwoman of the Snow College Foundation Board. Both are Snow alumni.

“The Stoddards work tirelessly in helping to advance Snow College’s mission, and are some of our biggest cheerleaders and advocates,” said Marci Larsen, assistant to Snow president Gary Carlston.

Other speakers will be this year’s valedictorian and salutatorian. Bryce Sorenson, Gunnison, is the class valedictorian. Sorenson is a self-described dirt farmer who took advantage of the Snow agricultural program. “He excelled in all his classes and is known as a self-starter and hardworking student,” Larsen said.

Jessica Guymon Cox of Emery County is the 2017 salutatorian. “As an early-childhood education major, she took many Home and Family Studies classes,” Larsen said. “She was also highly involved in various clubs across campus.”

According to data from the college, of the 1,065 diplomas Snow will issue, 643 will go to females, and 422 to males. The average graduate age is 22. The youngest graduate is 17 and the oldest 56. The average GPA was 3.3.

The graduates come from 28 Utah counties, 14 states and 14 foreign nations.

There are119 students set to graduate summa cum laude (with highest honors). Magna cum laude (with highest honors) will go to 144 students. Another 215 will graduate cum laude (with honors).

The top 10 majors in the 2017 graduating class are nursing, business, music, pre-engineering, art, psychology, education, social work, agri-business and natural resources.

Abby Cox and Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox

LeAnn and Mark Stoddard

Members of the Manti High School theatre team hold up their trophy as they ride a fire engine through Ephraim after winning their third straight state championship.


Three-peat: Manti High Theatre team is state champion again


Bob Bahlmann

Staff writer



RICHFIELD—After two days of performances in Richfield, the Manti High School theatre team won its third straight 2A state championship last weekend. The win followed the school’s sixth straight region championship.

The team finished the weekend with a total score of 294 points, only six points shy of a perfect score of 300.

“The kids all pulled together, supported each other, and performed at a superior level,” said theatre coach Kory Howard. “It is such a privilege and joy to work with the theater students at Manti High School.”

Manti’s one-act play, “The Miracle Worker,” received all superior ratings and finished second out of 12 plays in the competition. Abby Huff was awarded best actress for her part in the play.

The Templars also swept the classical-scenes category with the team of Conner Meacham and Ellie Christensen taking first place. The team of Sydney Eichelberger and Zane Howick earned second place, while Kyler Nelson with Miriam Bishop took third.

In pantomime, Keyera Cox and Jordan Olsen won first place, while Justin Bawden and Jena Bailey were second.

Abby Huff took first place in musical theatre, while Sydney Howell was third.

“I’m just so proud of them,” said Manti principal George Henrie. “What great sports they were. They were absolutely wonderful. They were congratulating other people and supporting other people who were performing. They really are great kids.”

“There is no other team like this group of kids,” Howard said. “I’m lucky to be part of their journey and experience.”

Anthony J. Christensen


Domestic violence suspect appears in court


James Tilson

Staff writer



MANTI — Murder suspect Anthony Christensen made his initial appearance in Sixth District Court in front of Judge Wallace Lee on April 12, while more than a dozen family members of the victim, Kammy Edmunds, sat in the courtroom.

Christensen was informed that he was being charged with homicide, a first-degree felony; obstruction of justice, a second-degree felony; and abuse or desecration of a body, a third-degree felony.

David Angerhofer, his appointed attorney, asked for another hearing to be set in approximately six weeks. He said he anticipated he would have to go though a great deal of material and information during the discovery phase of the case. He said he would need time to examine the reports and conduct an investigation before coming back to court.

Judge Lee set a hearing for May 24 at 10 a.m. in the courthouse in Manti.

An ammunition can like this was found chained to a public monument in Spring City last Thursday, causing police to evacuate nearby homes and call in the Utah County Bomb Squad. The can was discovered to be a geocache location. Cans just like it are commonly used for the GPS scavenger-hunting hobby.


Geocache spooks residents, bomb squad called


Robert Stevens

Managing editor



SPRING CITY—An ammunition can being used as a makeshift geocache location caused officials to evacuate homes in Spring City and call in the Utah County Bomb Squad.

The ammo can was discovered chained to a public monument near the baseball field on 100 South. It had been partially buried, says Spring City Police Chief Clark Christensen, and was discovered at approximately 8:30 a.m.

After the police evacuated the area, the Utah County Bomb Squad was called in to verify if the can was dangerous in any way.

In the end, the can turned out to be a geocache location, used by hobbyists as a safe and sturdy spot to stash items for use in a GPS scavenger hunt.

Geocachers commonly use similar ammo cans for their hobby. The cans often contain a visitor registry logbook and prizes meant for those who discover the locations on their satellite enhanced scavenger hunt.

Ephraim rescinds shut-off order for DJ Trailer Court


James Tilson

Staff writer



EPHRAIM — The Ephraim City Council has approved repairs at the DJ Trailer Court owned by David Strate and rescinded the shut-off order for the court utilities.

The city council listened to the Power Department Superintendent Cory Daniels and Public Works Director Chad Parry describe the state of repairs completed in the park since January, when the council voted give Strate until the April 19 meeting to finish remaining plumbing and electrical repairs.

“I’m really happy with it,” Parry told the council. He noted that old water meters have been fixed or removed, and individual hook-ups have double-valves now.

He told the council that the Snow College football team was scheduled to do a clean-up at the park on Saturday, April 22.

Daniels said even though some parts of the park still needed upgrades, “everything else looked great. All items on the Sunrise list have been addressed.” Most of the remaining issues, he noted, are in individual trailers.

“It needs to continue,” Councilman Tyler Alder said. “It needs to upgrade.”

The council also heard a presentation from Utah National Guard Capt. Chris Tarbett with the Blackhawk Aviation Unit stationed in West Jordan.

Tarbett informed the council of an upcoming operation his unit would be participating in the air over Sanpete County.

The unit will deploy to Iraq next year, he explained. Operation Wasatch Hammer will be a practice mission to prepare for the deployment. The operation will run from next Saturday through May 13; however, most activity will occur from May 5-9 between noon and 2 a.m.

Tarbett said that three tents will be set up on the Mt Pleasant airstrip during the operation. There will be a “community day” on May 8. Otherwise, the public will not have access to the unit’s personnel.

During the staff comment period near the end of the meeting, City Manager Brant Hanson informed the council that the owner of the Travel Inn had received bids from contractors to tear down the dilapidated structure. Hanson said he believed the work should be starting soon.

Manti gets ready for spring runoff


Judy Chantry

Staff writer



MANTI—City workers have been getting things ready for spring runoff, said Manti Public Works Director Dale Nielsen. To what extent flood channels will be put to use remains to be seen in coming days.

Nielsen gave a report on public-works’ efforts when he spoke to the Manti City Council on Wednesday, April 12.

“We have been checking the flood channels throughout the city and cleaning those that need to be cleaned,” Nielson sad.

Mayor Korry Soper asked if there was any concern about flooding. Nielson responded that it all depends on how fast things warms up. “There is a lot of snow up there,” he said, “but we feel good about the flood channels, and the preparations we have made puts us in a lot better shape than we used to be.”

Apart from that, Nielsen said his workers had been working at the old fire station, installing a sprinkling system as well as other improvements. Additionally, crews have been working at the property that will soon become the Manti City Sports Complex on the north end of town.

On the topic of the sports complex, Garrick Willden from Jones and DeMille Engineering met with the council to announce the successful bidders for construction. The construction of the concession building was awarded to Todd Alder Construction of Ephraim. Alder will subcontract for amenities associated with the building.

Harward and Rees of Loa was awarded the contract for field construction. Groundbreaking for the complex will be around the first of May, with actual construction beginning shortly after that. City crews have been involved in some of the preliminary work, including home demolition and fence removal.

City Administrator Kent Barton announced that John and Susan Frischknecht had donated five acres of property adjoining the complex, which will allow for dedicated soccer fields. He also thanked the citizen’s committee for their efforts in design recommendations for the complex.

Regarding continuing business, the council approved an $850 contribution to the Sanpete County Food Pantry for repaving and improvement on their parking lot. A representative of the food pantry had solicited funds at a previous council meeting.

Mayor Korry Soper reported on his attendance at Utah League of Cities and Towns meetings in St.             George.

“There were interesting sessions, one of which was in regard to more transparency in public meetings,” Soper said. He went on to say that city councils are urged to have video feeds of city council meetings. A few years ago, Manti Telephone’s public-access station Channel 3 did it for about a year. They recorded the meetings and rebroadcast them on Channel 3.

“With today’s technology, I don’t think the Legislature will let us get away with not doing it much longer,” Soper said.


Residents and volunteers, including the Snow football team and Manti High students, work together to clean up Ephraim’s DJ Trailer Court.


Many ages and cultures pitch in to help clean up trailer court


Robert Stevens

Managing editor



EPHRAIM—Efforts to improve the living conditions at the DJ Trailer Court by the residents, park owner and local community volunteers were furthered last Saturday with a group clean-up event.

Malynda Bjerregaard, Snow College professor of communications, who has been helping organize volunteer efforts, says that park residents and park owner David Strate have made the majority of improvements, but volunteers continue to chip in.

“I think it’s important to mention that the park’s owner was responsible for getting the water, sewer and electricity issues improved,” Bjerregaard said. “But the volunteer outreach has been amazingly helpful.”

Bjerregaard says Fairview resident David Brinkerhoff has been particularly instrumental in the cleanup effort.

“David has essentially spearheaded so much of the organization and logistics of this volunteer effort,” Bjerregaard said. “He has done an enormous amount of work getting things together.”

Student volunteers have also played a huge role in the cleanup effort, she says. The Manti High soccer team and Spanish class had volunteers at the park Saturday working to clean up trash and build a community garden.

The Snow College football team, Snow construction students, and other students and faculty from Snow have been involved in the park improvements as well.

“We have had all age ranges and many cultures working on this project,” Bjerregaard said. “The residents themselves have done a huge amount of work on their park.”


Last Saturday at Ephraim’s DJ Trailer Court, the park owner, park residents and community volunteers joined in a major cleanup.

This stretch of U.S. 89 from 400 North to 600 North will be widened as the first phase of UDOT’s Manti Main Street Renewed project that begins May 1.


UDOT to widen and resurface parts of U.S. 89 through Manti City


Robert Stevens

Managing editor



MANTI—The Utah Department of Transportation(UDOT) is in the final planning stages of a project to repave Main Street through Manti and make other improvements along the street.

According to a UDOT press release, the goal of the project, is to preserve the life of the road and provide a smoother driving surface for the public.

The project will widen U.S. 89 from 400 North to 600 North, replace the top layer of asphalt from 650 South to 400 North, repair curb and gutter in areas where it is damaged, improved drainage systems where needed and upgrade pedestrian curb cuts.

Work crews will begin on the north end town with the goal of completing work from 400 North to 600 North first.

The project will begin May 1 and run until the end of July. Work is scheduled Mondays through Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

During work hours, crews will maintain one lane of traffic in each direction in areas where there are currently four or five lanes.

In all other areas, work crews will keep one lane of traffic open during working hours and use flaggers to stop and direct two-way traffic. During non-working hours, one lane of traffic will remain open in each direction.

UDOT hopes to be finished with the project by the end of July. From Thursday, June 15 until Sunday June 25, there will be no road work to alleviate congestion during the Mormon Miracle Pageant.

To sign up for weekly updates on the project, send an email to with “Updates” as the subject.

For questions or comments call (801) 859-3770.



It’s time for all towns to get on board with buffer zone planning


For more than a year, the Sanpete County Planning and Zoning Commission has been grappling with what to permit in the buffer zones around many of the 13 municipalities in the county.

Buttressed by some unhappy experiences, the planning commission has concluded that a lot more language needs to be written and added to the county zoning ordinance,  starting with defining what a buffer zone is, and from there, stating what is allowed in each buffer city buffer zone.

In other words, the time has come for much tighter coordinating between city planning commissions and the county planning commission in approving homes, subdivisions and even things like billboards in the buffer zones.

We agree. If cities, city planning commissions, the county and the county planning commission don’t get on the same page, we’re going to have some awful messes in our county. In fact, we already have such a mess west of Manti.

But to understand what is going on, we need to take a step back. In 2002, Bruce Blackham, then a county commissioner, led a project to rewrite Sanpete County’s zoning ordinance.

County commissioners and citizens advising on the rewrite agreed that the county should try to push housing development into, or at least in the direction of, the 13 municipalities in the county.

The goal was to avoid a hopscotch pattern of housing developments dotting expanses of agricultural land. By doing so, conflicts between residential and agricultural uses would be avoided, which would help preserve agriculture.

But how do you put such a concept into action? The answer was buffer zones.

The county would invite each of its 13 municipalities to define an area extending up to a half mile out from its boundaries. Once the town approved a buffer zone, the zone would go on the county zoning maps.

The most common zone throughout the unincorporated county is A-1, an agricultural zone permitting one housing unit on a maximum of five acres. But under the 2002 zoning rewrite, land in buffer zones was zoned RA-1 (for residential-agriculture). That zone permits one home per half acre.

Meanwhile, the county subdivision ordinance says that someone can subdivide land into four lots, creating a so-called “minor subdivision,” without putting in paved streets, curbs, gutters, sewers, etc.—the types of improvements required in subdivision ordinances in nearly all our Sanpete cities.

There was one more provision of the zoning rewrite: If someone proposed a development in a buffer zone, the county would refer the application to the city involved.

If the city chose, it could annex the land, which would mean development would proceed under city ordinances. If the city chose not the annex, development would proceed under more lenient county rules.

So what has happened? For starters, telling cities if they want to have a say in what happens just outside their boundaries they need to annex the land has not worked. As a big annexation in Ephraim last year demonstrated, annexation is a complicated and expensive process that takes about a year. There’s no way a city can respond to every development application in its buffer zone by trying to annex the property.

Rather, development has proceeded under the county zoning ordinance. In a number of cases, the county planning commission has not been comfortable with what a developer was proposing. But it has been forced to go by the laws on the county books and approve the project.

“All that is doing,” says Loren Thompson, chairman of the county planning commission, “is putting us in a position of sticking it to the cities.”

Take the Manti example. A developer came to county planning and got approval for a minor subdivision in the Manti buffer zone. Then somebody else came in and got another minor subdivision approved next to the first one. Then a third minor subdivision went in nearby.

One of the minor subdivisions had one lot that was pretty large. So someone came to county planning and applied to take the lot, which, mind you, was inside a previous minor subdivision, and subdivide it.

The net result is what is essentially a city neighborhood. Yet there has been no coordination of roads. A city road is paved up to the city boundary. From there, there’s a gravel road running past the entrances to a couple of the subdivisions.

Branching off the gravel road is another gravel road with several houses along it. In fact, it terminates in a cul-de-sac. But the cul-de-sac road has been declared private.

Across the street to the north from where the gravel road starts is other  developable property. It would make sense to plan for an extension of the gravel road into the new area. But that can’t happen. There’s a house in the way.

Meanwhile, someone is putting in a home lot on different property very close to the cul-de-sac. That second developer is running a paved street to his lot. But the paved street can’t connect to the subdivision served by the cul-de-sac vision. Why? Because the other subdivision road is private.

Meanwhile, traffic from all of the minor subdivisions in that part of the Manti buffer zone is flowing onto the Manti City paved road and using it to reach U.S. 89.

To start taking steps to prevent such situations, the county planning commission has asked every city to provide some information. Specifically, the county has asked cities what zoning they would like in their buffer zones, for their future annexation plans (those are required by state law anyway), and for road development plans. The materials would be the basis for new ordinance language regulating what goes on in the various buffer zones.

The information was due April 1. So far only two cities—Manti and Ephraim—have submitted anything. The 11 other cities in Sanpete County need to get on the stick.

City-county coordination of development in buffer zones probably looks like a daunting task. But over time, with jurisdictions working together, it can be done. It has to be done.

Sweethearts and Princesses will lead out at fair events


James Tilson

Staff writer




MT. PLEASANT — In a competition that measures horse-riding skill and knowledge as well as appearance, Jessica Everitt was named Miss Sanpete County Cowboy Sweetheart, and Alana Nielsen was named Sanpete County Junior Princess.n that measures horse-riding skill and knowledge as well as appearance, Jessica Everitt was named Miss Sanpete County Cowboy Sweetheart, and Alana Nielsen was named Sanpete County Junior Princess.

The competition took place over two days, Friday and Saturday, April 21-22.

On Friday night, the contestants showed the public poise and speaking abilities, while on Saturday they got to show off their horse skills.

The Sweetheart competitors were aged from 13-18 years. Crowned as the Sweetheart royalty were Mesa Cartright, second attendant; Amandah Malstrom, first attendant; Miss Cowboy Sweetheart Jessica Everitt; and Beth Malstrom as alternate.

The Junior Princesses were age 8-12, and included Mattisen Wanner, second attendant; Kenley Kelso, first attendant; Junior Princess Alana Nielson; and Sadie Cartright as an alternate.

Everitt is the daughter of Deric and Muria Everitt of Ephraim. Nielsen is the daughter of Colby and Lynsey Zeeman of Sterling, and James and Jenn Nielsen of Moroni.


The Sanpete County Junior Princess Royal Court are (l to r): Miss Junior Princess Alana Nielsen, First Attendant Kenley Kelso, and Second Attendant Mattisen Wanner. Not pictured is alternate, Sadie Cartright.

The Sanpete County Cowboy Sweetheart Royal Court are (l to r): Second Attendant Mesa Cartright, Miss Cowboy Sweetheart Jessica Everitt, First Attendant Amanda Malstrom, and Alternate Beth Malstrom.



Six ladies will compete for Miss Ephraim on Saturday, April 29.


Six contestants will face off for Miss Ephraim crown


Robert Stevens

Managing editor



EPHRAIM—Six young ladies aim to shine during the 2017 Miss Ephraim Scholarship Pageant this Saturday.

The pageant will begin at 7 p.m. on Saturday, April 29 at the Snow College Eccles Center. The pageant theme is “Light up the Night.” Heather Harward and Sheryl Wilkinson are pageant directors.

Contestant No. 1, Alyssa Ogden, will be competing on the platform “Finding the Special in Special Needs.” Her talent will be a piano solo of “Rondo Alla Turca.”

Alexis Jaussi is contestant No. 2 and her platform is “You Can’t Beat a Healthy Heart.” Her talent will be a jazz dance solo to “The Edge of Glory.”

Competing with the platform “Don’t Sugar Coat it: Diabetes Awareness,” Hallie Cook is contestant No. 3 and will perform a guitar and vocal solo of “I Never Told You.”

Contestant No. 4, Kaylin Morris, will perform a “Dango Daikazoi” as a violin solo and her platform is “A Drop in the Ocean: Knowing your Worth.”

Makenna Cherry is contestant No. 5. Like Jaussi, she too will perform a jazz dance solo to “Brand New,” and compete with the platform “Have Courage and Be Kind.”

Last, but not least, Morgan Draper is contestant No. 6 and aims to wow judges with a classical ballet variation from “La Esmerelda.” Draper’s platform in the pageant is “Take Home Library: Putting Literature in Children’s Homes.”

The winning contestant will be crowned by Miss Ephraim 2016 Lundyn Wood.

Cameron Bingham and Chase Carson


Carson ~ Bingham


Evan and Amy Bingham of Manti, Utah (currently serving an LDS mission in Chicago, Illinois) are happy to announce the marriage of their son, Cameron Bingham to Chase Carson, daughter of David and Kathryn Carson of Fillmore, Utah.

Cameron and Chase will be married in the Chicago Illinois LDS Temple on Friday, Aug. 28, 2017.  An open house will be held on Friday, May 5, 2017 at the Barton residence (390 W 500 N) in Manti from 6-8 p.m. and also on Saturday, May 6, 2017, from 6 – 8 p.m., at the Carson residence (455 S 200 W) in Fillmore. Please feel welcome to come and celebrate with us.

Cameron graduated from Manti High School in 2014 and served an LDS mission in the El Salvador San Salvador West Belize Mission. Chase graduated from Millard High School in 2014 and has also graduated from Snow College

The couple will live in Provo where they are attending BYU.

Rebecca Patterson and Taylor Call


Patterson ~ Call


A Snow College True Badger kiss on a random full moon night in October led to a long friendship that slowly grew into love for Taylor Call and Rebecca Patterson.

They are now excited to announce their marriage on April 29, 2017 in the Manti LDS Temple.

A reception will be held in their honor on April 29, 2017 at the Manti House Inn, 401 N Main St., Manti from 6-7:30 p.m.  If by an oversight, you did not receive an invitation, please come celebrate their marriage with us.

Taylor is the son of Todd and Anita Call of Manti.  Rebecca is the daughter of Les and Elisa Patterson of Hyde Park, Utah.

Taylor was born and raised in Concord, Massachusetts and attended high school in Bentonville, Arkansas, graduating in 2010. He went on to attend Snow College and graduated in 2016. He is a currently studying Political Science at Southern Utah University.

Rebecca grew up in Cache Valley and graduated from Sky View High School in 2014. She went on to attend Snow College and graduated in the honors program in 2016. She will be studying Family, Consumer, and Human Development at Southern Utah University starting fall of 2017.

Taylor and Rebecca will be moving to Washington D.C. immediately after their wedding, where Taylor will be working as a summer intern for Senator Orrin Hatch.

The couple will return to Southern Utah University in the fall to continue their education.



Jared Fullmer and Noemi Mickelson


Mickelson ~ Fullmer


Scott and Karen Mickelson, of Manti, are pleased to announce the marriage of their daughter, Naemi, to Jared Fullmer, son of Jim and Penny Fullmer, of Ephraim. The wedding will take place on April 29, 2017, in the Manti LDS Temple.

A reception will be held that same evening from 6-8 p.m. in the Manti Stake Center, 555 E. Union.

Noemi graduated from Manti High School in 2013, and Snow College in 2016. She is presently working towards her CAN and is employed by Mission at Community Rehabilitation and Assisted Living Center in Centerfield.

Jared graduated from Manti High School in 2010, and Snow College in 2015. He served a 2-year mission for the LDS church in the New Mexico Farmington Mission. He is attending BYU-Idaho, majoring in welding engineering.

Jared and Noemi will spend the summer in Ephraim before moving to Idaho in the fall, where Jared will continue his education.

Kelsey Allen and C. Shawn Kegerreis


Allen ~ Kegerreis


Corbin and Dallas Kegerreis are excited to announce the marriage of their mommy, Kelsey Dawn Allen, to their daddy, C. Shawn Kegerreis, Saturday, May 13 at 2 p.m.

The ceremony, with a reception following, will be in Ephraim Pioneer Park, 75 W. 100 North in Ephraim.