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24TH OF JULY CELEBRATIONS

Four Sanpete communities feature Pioneer Day events

ROBERT STEVNS / MESSENGER PHOTO
Fairview’s rodeo always include popular events such as the one you see here from 2017, Mutton Bustin, where kids get a chance to show off their rodeo riding skills on the back of enthusiastic sheep.

The month of July’s patriotic festivities will continue this week with Pioneer Day celebrations scheduled throughout Sanpete County.

After the year away from normal events due to COVID-19, four cities are gearing up for a week full of music, sports tournaments, parades, fireworks and even a visit from the governor. 

Sanpete residents can celebrate the 24th of July in Fairview, Spring City, Mayfield and Centerfield. There will be a full range of patriotic attractions and activities this year.

Fairview

An entire week in Fairview will be spent celebrating Pioneer Day, with plenty of activities to give everyone a chance to celebrate.

“We’re really excited about all the events,” Fairview Councilman Brad Welch told the Messenger. 

As a change this year, all concessions will accept credit card transactions, Welch said.

The festivities kicked off on Friday, July 16 with sand volleyball and horseshoe tournaments at the Fairview Sports Park.  More competitions, including a golf tournament, and rodeos followed until Wednesday. 

On Thursday, residents can visit the Fairview Museum at 2:45 p.m. for the annual Heritage Art Walk to see the art pieces from throughout the state. The tennis tournament will continue with men’s singles at 6 p.m.  Residents can make their way to the arena at 7 p.m. to watch the kid’s rodeo. 

Clomping down State Street, the annual Horse Parade will begin at 6 p.m. on Friday.  Following the parade, a rodeo will be held in the arena.  Through Friday, residents can bid in a silent auction at the museum for Luella Hall’s 2,000-piece “Farmgirl Quilt,” a representation of her years growing up in Fairview, Welch said. While at the museum, interested residents can purchase raffle tickets, which will be held in conjunction with a live auction between 2 and 3 p.m. on Saturday.  The silent auction winner will be announced toward the end of the raffle and live auction event.

The largest slate of events was saved for Saturday, beginning with a 5K run, a 1-mile children’s walk and the fireman’s breakfast, all at 6 a.m.  For the first time, the 5K will be sanctioned by the organization Runner Card, so interested runners can report their times to help them qualify for more competitive races, Welch said. Participants should register online at runnercard.com/roadrace/public/raceGroup/976731.  

Residents can see a presentation of colors at the flag raising ceremony at 7 a.m at City Hall. The children’s walking parade will make its way down State Street at 10:30 a.m.  Then, at 11 a.m., grand marshals Maurice and Rodaleen Turpin will lead the main parade. Following the parades, residents can enjoy a vintage car show, old-fashioned games in the park and a scrambalooza. The city’s annual demolition derby will begin at 7 p.m.  As of July 16, Welch said reserved seats for the derby were sold out, but about between 500 and 600 were still available and will be sold at the door.  The fireworks show, a collaboration of fire departments from several North Sanpete towns, will begin at 10 p.m. at the arena.

“It’s going to be a good one,” Welch said.

To close out the celebration, Gov. Spencer Cox will speak at a Daughters of Utah Pioneers program reflecting on Fairview’s heritage. The program will be held at Rock Church, 131 East 100 North, on Sunday at 7 p.m.

Spring City

Spring City will also spend a week celebrating the pioneer’s arrival into the Salt Lake Valley. In-person events commenced with an ice cream social and “Saga of Spring City,” a presentation about the history of the city and the state of Utah on Tuesday, July 20. 

The city is focused on celebrating 125 years of Utah statehood and reminding residents about their pioneer heritage, Spring City Mayor Cynthia DeGrey said. The city received a grant from Thrive125 for their week of celebrations, hoping for an extraordinary return to normalcy. 

 “We’ve packed in two years’ worth of celebrating into one week,” DeGrey said.

Residents can go on a treasure hunt by following clues that will be posted every morning of the week on the Spring City Facebook page, DeGrey said.  The winner will receive a $250 cash prize, donated by SecurityNational Mortgage Company. 

On Wednesday there will be a children’s baking contest, with the winner revealed on Saturday.  Families can enjoy a screening of Luca in the park at dusk on Thursday. And on Friday, starting at 8 p.m., residents can join JD Fox on Main Street to dance and enjoy some music. The city will also hold a three-on-three basketball tournament for men’s, women’s and youth divisions on Friday and Saturday.

On Saturday morning, Spring City will have a fireman’s breakfast and 5K run/walk at 7 a.m.  The parade will filter down Main Street at 10 a.m., and judges will choose first, second and third place-winning floats. Following the parade, there will be games and attractions at the park, a concert from Fiddle Express and a community barbeque. Residents will be able to see local stars compete in “Spring City’s Got Talent” for a chance to win cash prizes.  Because of the drought conditions and concern about water resources for potential fires, Spring City will forego their fireworks show this year. The city also adopted Sanpete County’s Stage Two Fire Restrictions and will not permit any fireworks within city limits.

The festivities will end with a performance from Old Time Gospel Music Revival at 7 p.m. on Sunday.

Mayfield

On Saturday, Mayfield will hold a full day of activities for residents to enjoy. Starting bright and early, there will be a 5K run/walk to raise money for Mayfield Youth Town Council.           

The money will go toward the council’s service projects and events.  Following the fun run, floats will make their way along Main Street and 100 West in the Pioneer Day Parade. Grand Marshals of this year’s parade, Val and Mitzi Fuller, will lead the procession in vintage cars.

From 11 a.m. until 2 p.m., attendees will be able purchase tickets for games, eat food and enjoy entertainment from Junction 89. 

Kids will also have an opportunity to win one of five bicycles that will be given away at the event.  By purchasing tickets to enter a wind machine, kids will have to grab as many “dollars” in the machine as they can.  Each “dollar” is a chance to win one of the bikes.

As usual, the Pioneer Day festivities are also a fund raiser by the Mayfield Lions Club for improvements around the town and the park. In past years, the raised money has gone towards renovating the baseball fields, the exercise course, gazebo and yearly additions to the park’s playground equipment, said Mayfield Lions Club member Laurel Christensen.  The largest fund raiser, the auction, will begin at 12:30 p.m.  Items available for bidding include an electric organ, quilts, hand-carved wooden bowls, corn hole game sets and paintings.

But it is not too late for individuals or businesses to donate items. Anyone interested in donating items for the auction should contact Laurel Christensen, 851-2115, to make arrangements. 

Following the auction will be the pig race and the duck race.  Due to the ongoing drought, Christensen said, the creek will not have enough water flow to float the rubber ducks. The club will have an alternative method.  Prizes for the duck race are $1,000 in groceries, $1,000 in meat from South Sanpete Pack and a large screen TV with a sound bar, Christensen said. 

Centerfield

Before heading to Mayfield on Saturday, interested residents can attend Centerfield’s celebration on Friday.

The fun will commence with the parade strolling down Main Street with grand marshals Ned and Shirlene Sorenson at 6 p.m.  Judges will determine the best floats and prizes will be awarded. 

Normally, 24th of July activities are held at the LDS Church Park on Main Street, but this year attendees will flock to Centerfield City Park for the celebration, said city treasurer and head planner of the event Lindzey Young.

At the park, kids will be able to catch some air time while jumping in the bouncy house. Once they master the air, kids can move on to water as they soar down the giant inflatable water slide. There will also be a variety of games and several different food trucks to choose from.

The city is starting a new tradition at this year’s celebration with a cornhole tournament, Young said. The winning team will receive a $100 cash prize, along with a brand new “travelling trophy.” The trophy, Mayor Tom Sorensen’s idea, will leave the celebration with the winners and return next year, where it will be presented to new winners, Young said.  The second place team will also receive a cash prize.

A fireworks show beginning at dusk will close out the town’s day of festivities.