Contributors: Brandon Burt, Stephen Dark, Bill Frost, Jamie Gadette, Ted McDonough, Eric Peterson, Scott Renshaw and Ted Scheffler
No, you’re not experiencing déja vu. And yes, we ran a feature like this in our 2008 Summer Guide. We thought we’d solved all the world’s problems back then, but new ones have since cropped up. There will always be problems to solve, it seems, in deriving the maximum pleasure from summer. So here are the pickles of 2009 … along with easy DIY solutions, all lovingly designed to make your summer more chill, and dill, as it were.
THE PICKLE: Warm wine on a summer day is as disgusting as warm beer year-round.
THE FIX: Many of the DABC’s wine stores offer wine-bottle chilling (sorry, no boxes) on request; just drop it into the futuristic steel water tank, wait a few minutes, watch the li’l yellow duck swirl around, and, presto! Nicely chilled vino, ready to go to the barbecue, garden party or parking lot. OK, not parking lot. Now, when are the State liquor stores going to offer this convenient service for beer?
The Wine Store, 1602 S. 300 West, 801-412- 9972, and several others. alcbev.state.ut.us/stores/wine_stores.html
THE PICKLE: You love tribute bands, but have to settle for seeing them one at a time.
THE FIX: The first annual Utahpalooza at The Canyons Mountain Resort in Park City, masterminded by Tony Oros. Singing for several tribute bands (most notoriously as Nigel Thames of Liquid Joe’s mainstays Metal Shop, as well as Rattle & Hum, Mullet Hatchet, et al) across the country, Oros is buds with working musicians far and wide—so he decided to throw a Labor Day weekend party and invite them all to play on one stage for one all-day show in his adopted hometown. It’ll be that rare occasion when “Freebird” requests are encouraged and honored.
Utahpalooza, The Canyons Mountain Resort, Park City, Saturday Sept. 5, 3-10 p.m. Info: TonyOros.com
THE PICKLE: WWE pro wrestling won’t be back live in Utah all summer.
THE FIX: Who needs ’em? Locally based American Xtreme Wrestling (who claim to have put on the first-ever “death match” in Utah, and who’s going to argue?) throws thrilling rasslin’ shows in the valley every month at Club 90 in Sandy. Upcoming Sunday-night events include June 14, 28 and July 12; full cards of wrestling action for a mere $5. AXW also has a training school, should you rather get in on the action rather than just watch it.
THE PICKLE: You’re staying in town for your vacation.
THE FIX: Act like a tourist in Salt Lake City. You know all those touristy places you never go to, but probably should? Now you can see them on the cheap using the Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau “Salt Lake Connect Pass.” For one low price, the one-, two- or three-day passes will get you deals at many popular local attractions such as Red Butte Garden, Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort, the Utah Museum of Fine Arts, Utah Olympic Park, Hogle Zoo, Tracy Aviary and Clark Planetarium. For an adult, the pass is $20 for one day, $30 for two days, $40 for three days. And, if you can work it all in, it’ll be well worth it.
Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau, 90 S. West Temple, 801-534-4900, VisitSalt-Lake.com
The Pickle: You have the last parking strip with water-sucking grass on your block.
THE FIX: The Utah Rivers Council’s “Rip Your Strip” program, which has probably helped all of your more-conscientious neighbors save up 7,500 gallons of water per year— this is a desert, after all. Sign up at RipYourStrip.com, take the “I realize that this is a desert, after all” pledge, and download free instructional PDFs, sample xeriscape layouts, and coupons from local landscape supply shops and nurseries. Start with the strip—maybe it’ll lead to ripping out your whole lawn.
THE PICKLE: You want to sleep through the recession.
THE FIX: Free coffee every Monday at Cucina Deli. Your 401(k) may be nonexistent, but that doesn’t mean you have to face Mondays in a decaffeinated state. Every Monday until the Dow Jones Industrial Average hits 10,000, Cucina Deli offers free coffee to all comers—all day from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Bring your own to-go mug, or enjoy a cuppa joe right there. Poverty may suck, but at least you’ll be awake to enjoy it!
Cucina Deli, 1026 Second Ave., 801-322- 3055, CucinaDeli.com
THE PICKLE: You think you will miss the old private-club laws.
THE FIX: Go to The Trapp. When the new liquor laws doing away with club member requirements kick in on July 1 and make you nostalgic for the bad old days, fear not: Some clubs, such as The Trapp, are opting to maintain the old membership system. Sure, you have to pay a yearly membership fee—but since most clubs won’t require membership cards starting July 1, it kinda feels like you’re something special when they let you in. And, of course, you are.
The Trapp, 102 S. 600 West, 801-531-8727
|THE PICKLE: You long to become a wine expert, but a trip to Napa just isn’t in the cards.
THE FIX: Attend the fifth annual Park City Food and Wine Classic, an epicurean extravaganza that combines the best of both worlds for a weekend of savory—and educational— entertainment. Refine your palate and accrue the type of knowledge that’ll wow friends and family at your next dinner or cocktail party. This year’s Classic kicks off at the High West Distillery followed by a weekend of seminars on selecting, tasting and pairing wine, champagne and whiskey. If you can only make one event, don’t miss the Saturday Grand Tasting featuring nearly 70 wineries representing 600 different wines offering their wares to guests along with gourmet cooking demos and samples.
Park City Food & Wine Classic, July 9-12, ParkCityFoodandWineClassic.com
THE PICKLE: You forgot to slim down for swimsuit season.
THE FIX: Artful concealment. Two words: “board shorts.” Those of us who are, er, more amply proportioned are in luck this summer as the oversize, floral-print microfiber shorts do a great job of hiding certain parts we’d rather not share with the rest of the world. Available in both men’s and women’s styles, board shorts don’t discriminate on the basis of gender.
THE PICKLE: You feel like if you don’t chillax soon, you’re gonna go postal.
THE FIX: Just repeat after me, Om. What is Om, you ask? How about an old-school yoga meditation on the infinity of the universe, the meaning of nothing and everything all at once. And while you’re meditating on that, ponder this: for $125, you can escape the rat race and go on an Om Shanti retreat at the Krishna Temple in Spanish Fork June 26-28. The retreat offers yoga sessions, raw foods cooking classes, Kirtan devotional chanting classes and a llama hike along the Bonneville Pacific trail. OMG, that’s a good deal!
Sri Sri Radha Krishna Temple, 8628 S. State Road, Spanish Fork, 801-798-3559, Utah-Krishnas.com, June 26-28
THE PICKLE: Under your mild-mannered exterior is a mythical elf-warrior desiring to do battle with dark minions in the park.
THE FIX: Yes! You can admit to yourself that you want to become a LARP, otherwise known as a Live Action Role Player. You’ve suffered the jokes and derision. But look, you’ve got to be you, right? Don’t worry, it’s OK to let your inner warrior out—because there’s a community of combatants like you who revel in donning wool-knit tights and faux-chain mail to wield particle board shields and foam swords in boff battles. So, come out for your mythical LARP quest. Or, if you’re still in the LARP closet and/or are a mocking detractor, LARP battle-spotting makes for a great park day activity.
Check LARP sites SLarpo.com or Mythic-Realms.com. For LARP spotting safaris, try Saturday afternoons at Liberty Park, 900 S. 500 East, or Crestwood Park, 1700 Siesta Drive (7485 South), Sandy
THE PICKLE: Handmade products make great gifts for summer birthdays—but where to find them?
THE FIX: Craft Lake City, Utah’s first annual outdoor alternative arts festival, appeals to both expert DIY artists and creative types who’ve never gripped a pair of knitting needles. In this post-Stitch ’n’ Bitch era, there’s no telling what vendors will showcase. Inspired by festivals like the Bazaar Bizarre and sponsored by SLUG magazine, Craft Lake City aims to present screened posters, progressive crafts, reconstructed clothing, hand-pressed books and other items that represent a new wave of handy folk. For a preview of things to come, check out Craft Sabbath the first Sunday of every month.
Craft Lake City, Gallivan Center, 239 S. Main, Saturday, Aug. 8, 2-10 p.m. CraftLake- City.com, MySpace.com/CraftSabbath
THE PICKLE: After much resistance, you’re ready to embrace fútbol.
THE FIX: When professional soccer first hit town in 2005, many folks raised a skeptical brow and gave the sport a year at most before organizers took the team elsewhere. Four years later, Real Salt Lake is holding its own and attracting new followers with each low-scoring victory. Tickets are relatively inexpensive and Real’s new Rio Tinto Stadium digs are an improvement over its former football-stadium rental. Did we mention the stadium offers in-seat food service? Goal!!!!
|THE PICKLE: Through the long winter months, you’ve been dreaming of refreshing glass of Saison.
THE FIX: Many of Utah’s local breweries put out special brews just for the summer months. It’s like Christmas in July. This year’s offerings include the Four brewery’s Sum’r, an organic ale made with lemony Japanese hops. Wasatch has two summer seasonal brews for 2009: Summer Twilight, a Kolsch, and a Czech-style pilsner with 5.6 percent alcohol called Summerbrau. Then there are the trusty standby summer beers from local breweries like Red Rock’s smoky Bamberg Rauch bier. We can always hope for a repeat of Squatters Belgian-style Saison Fifth Element from summer 2008.
FourPlusBrewing.com, WasatchBeers.com, RedrockBrewing.com, Squatters.com
THE PICKLE: Only a sandwich of crisp
vegetables will do in the 100-degree heat, but the produce at the
grocery store tastes like wood.
THE FIX: A growing number of Utah microfarms can supply all your summertime produce needs through a program called community-supported agriculture. You purchase a “share” in a farm before the growing season and receive regular allotments throughout Utah’s June-October growing season. Most of the 14-or-so participating farms are already booked for this summer, but now is a good time to add your name to a 2010 mailing list.
THE PICKLE: No amount of air conditioning will alleviate that sticky August feeling.
THE FIX: Take a dip. Nothing takes the edge off summer like a swimming pool. Don’t let fears of cryptosporidium keep you away from the community pool; Utah is filled with quality watering holes. And increased health-department regulation implemented after disease outbreaks in 2007 should keep splashing safe. Salt Lake County alone boasts 19 public pools, including the beautiful Steiner Aquatic Center, built as a training facility for the 2002 Olympics near the U of U. Before swimming, just remember: Wait a half hour after eating, and whatever you do, don’t look up the word “cryptosporidium.”
THE PICKLE: You’re jonesing to catch a wave, but you live in landlocked Utah.
THE FIX: Yes, we do live in a desert, but there are some places where you can reconnect with your primal tidal pull. Wave pools are featured at a number of Utah water parks, including Seven Peaks in Provo and Raging Waters in West Valley. Hop on a rentable inner tube, and bob along at the whim of the waters—or, if you’re less keen on the big waves, float along the parks’ lazy rivers. And then there’s Utah’s year-round ocean: Layton’s Surf ‘n Swim. The supersize wave pool might not quite match the thrills of the Pipeline on Oahu, but it’s still more kicks than most of the things you’ll do this summer. Many people don’t realize this, but Surf ‘n Swim features four different types of waves from around the world. Apparently, not all waves are created equal.
SevenPeaks.com; RagingWatersUtah.com; Layton’s Surf ‘n Swim (LaytonCity.org)
THE PICKLE: You’d love to picnic under the stars, but you’re too lazy to shop for food.
THE FIX: Up at Deer Valley Resort, they’ll assemble gourmet picnic baskets for you and have ’em waiting when you show up for any of the Deer Valley Concert Series shows, including the Utah Symphony’s Music Festival performances, the St. Regis Big Stars, Bright Nights series and the Park City Jazz Festival. This season’s baskets will feature yummy options such as lightly smoked salmon or chilled petit filet of beef; antipasto of steamed artichokes with homemade aioli, imported olives, Creminelli truffled salami and pear tomatoes; double cream French Brie with a fresh baguette; and fresh fruit along with delectable sweets from Deer Valley pastry chef Letty Flatt. Baskets are $40 per person or $75 for a two-person basket. Seventy-two hour advance notice is required to order a Picnic Basket, so plan accordingly. Accompanying wines or beer can also be ordered with advance notice.
Deer Valley Resort, Park City, 435-645- 6613, DeerValley.com
|THE PICKLE: Your backyard hammock doesn’t offer nearly enough swing time.
THE FIX: Bend, twist and fly with AntiGravity Yoga. Developed by Utah native Christopher Harrison, the creative fitness regime incorporates modified versions of the movements gymnasts engage in to explore the air along with dance, pilates and calisthenics techniques. The workout is designed with the everyday athlete or weekend warrior in mind and is now being offered in select locations including Salt Lake City’s Imagination Place. Classes are held seven days a week. Get realigned and in shape for summer!
1155 E. 3300 South, 801-463-9067, ImaginationPlace.com
THE PICKLE: You love outdoor concerts, but you’re trapped in the ’burbs.
THE FIX: The Sandy Amphitheater—celebrating its 10th anniversary season—offers a surprisingly solid lineup of warm-weather open-air entertainment, particularly for those who like their music on the mellow side. In 2009, headliners include Marc Cohn (June 20), ABBA tribute act Arrival (July 22), Clint Black (July 30), Air Supply (July 31) and the Manhattan Transfer (Sept. 12). And, if you pre-purchase your concessions with your ticket, you can get up to 25 percent off of your at-the-venue meal. That’s a picnic worth checking out no matter your home base.
THE PICKLE: Exploring the native wildlife of Madagascar requires more vacation time—and money—than you’ve got handy.
THE FIX: Hogle Zoo’s newest exhibit, Madagascar!, isn’t a tie-in to an animated movie. It’s an opportunity to experience some of the rare critters who call the Indian Ocean island—which boasts 5 percent of the world’s animal species—their home. In fact, more than 75 percent of its native species are found only there. Catch a glimpse of the rare lemur-eating fossa, or hear what a hissing cockroach sounds like. Check out the tiny, spiny tenrec (a hedgehog cousin), or tree boas. The Tropical Gardens that housed the rare white alligator for the last couple of seasons has become an island forest—and you can visit without having to get inoculated.
2600 Sunnyside Avenue (840 South), 801- 582-1631, HogleZoo.org
THE PICKLE: Rain douses your plans for barbecued brats.
THE FIX: Hungry friends are coming over to lunch on your barbecue of brats and steaks, but it’s a downpour outside. If you don’t want to cancel, then try this Italian sausage casserole dish instead: Boil the pricked brats in water to get rid of the fat. Fry some onions until tender with garlic, add a couple of tins of chopped-up tomatoes, oregano, a pinch of brown sugar, then toss in the whole sausages and let it cook into a rich, savory casserole for 45 minutes. Served with pasta or mashed potatoes. It’s the perfect group nosh.
|THE PICKLE: Despite your best intentions, you haven’t been granted magical wishes or developed a mutant ability to fly.
THE FIX: Yes, you can fly, poor silly, suburban Daedalus! Your wings are of the gliding kind, however, and believe it or not, the Point of the Mountain along Interstate 15 offers ideal conditions for paragliding and hang-gliding. And luckily, a variety of schools offer classes ranging from tandem flights with skilled instructors to full certification courses. Utah’s Cloud 9 company even boasts the nation’s largest paragliding facility where classes range from intro lessons that get you off the ground from as low as $95 up to costlier full P2 pilot certification courses that get you set to fly solo and free as a bird for up to $1,195. Various schools offer classes and gear; check out:
ParaGliders.com, BirdmanAcademy.net, HangGlide-utah.com, WingsOverWasatch.com
THE PICKLE: Twilight cocktails will leave you hungover mañana.
THE FIX: After a night sitting out and drinking with neighbors on the porch, the only answer to your pounding head the following day is usually the hair of the dog. But forgo that Bloody Mary and try a bowl of menudo instead. Stumble over to La Frontera and order the tripe, hominy and chile delight. Like any good stew, menudo provides a restorative bite to kick-start your morning. Its fierce, rich, red broth blasts out the cobwebs of the previous night’s booze abuse and leaves you bright, if somewhat flushed, and ready to start the day. La Frontera Café, multiple locations.
THE PICKLE: You wake up downtown in the belly of another inversion, craving fresh air.
THE FIX: Head up to Little Cottonwood Canyon to Tanners Flat. This perfect campground runs up alongside the thundering waterfalls of the currently snow-melt-plumped waters of Little Cottonwood Creek. At 7,200 feet, the air doesn’t get much more crystal-clear than this. After your picnic lunch, take a nap with the roar of the falls in your ears. This time, at least, you can sleep comfortably knowing the air you breathe is as pure as it gets.
Tanners Flat Campground, 4.15 miles up Little Cottonwood Canyon, reservations 877-444-6777, www.Recreation.Gov
THE PICKLE: Your kids yearn for farm life.
THE FIX: A trip to the zoo can be an expensive proposition for a family with numerous kids in tow. It can also test your patience when it comes to coping with the crowds. So, if your kids are pining for an animal to pet, look southwards and head up Interstate 15 to Barnyard Buddies at the Gardner Village in West Jordan. There, for just a couple of bucks, your animal-affection-starved little lovelies can mingle with and stroke rabbits, pigs, donkeys and llamas to their hearts’ content. And the pony ride is only $3.
Gardner Village Barnyard Buddies, 1100 W. 7800 South, West Jordan 801-455-5679
|THE PICKLE: You’ve come to the (correct) conclusion that nothing is better than a summertime organic heirloom tomato.
THE FIX: Kenyon Organics has you covered. This Sugarhouse-based outfit has dozens of organic heirloom tomato plants for you to take home and plant in your own garden. Among the heirloom tomato plants that Cory and Carolyn Kenyon raise with love and care are Legend, Black Cherry, Chocolate Cherry, Stupice, Bear Creek, Red Pear, Black Krim, Cherokee Purple, Hawaiian Pineapple (yes, it’s a tomato), Old German, San Marzano, Super Snow and Earl of Edgecomb, just to name a few.
To place an order or request a catalog, phone 801-699-7540 or e-mail KenyonOrganics@comcast.net. KenyonOrganics.blogspot.com.
THE PICKLE: Baby, you were born to run … but you got no wheels.
The Fix: A 2009 Ferrari F430 Scuderia Spider convertible from Steve Harris Imports. This droptop will have the wind wafting through your locks post haste with its 4.3-liter 503 horsepower V-8 engine and race-tuned suspension. Sixty mph in 3.4 seconds? You bet. And there’s an iPod touch pre-installed too. Base price: $233,297 with all the options and the $3,000 gas guzzler tax. But, hey, you just gotta have the 6-speed F1-style paddle-shift manual transmission, right? It’s well worth the extra $11,137. Lots of color options besides Ferrari Red—such as Daytona Black, Blue Tour de France, Gray Gun Metal Metallic and Yellow Modena. You’re going to turn some heads on the Legacy Highway.
Steve Harris Imports, 808 S. Main, 801-521-0340, FerrariSales.com
|THE PICKLE: You can’t wait for winter to come back, so you can go skiing. Plus you really dig the blues.
THE FIX: Go skiing. Snowbird is planning to stay open weekends—Fridays through Sundays—through at least June 14. Access to top-of-mountain snow comes via the Tram Even after the resorts close there are plenty of summertime activities at the ski resorts, from a mountain coaster at Park City to a zip line and climbing walls at Snowbird. Many resorts keep chairlifts open for sightseeing rides. Better still, abandon all the gadgets and go for a walk through the wildflowers at resorts in Big and Little Cottonwood canyons. Whatever you do in the mountains, the temperature should drop about 10 degrees compared to the valley. Also, don’t miss The Snowbird Rock & Blues Festival (July 24-26) at the Snowbird Renaissance Center. It promises a stunner lineup from Coco Montoya and Alejandro Escovedo to the legendary Steve Earle—a master in the art of bittersweet, boozy/bluesy ballads of despair and self-destruction. (Day passes go on sale June 12 at SnowBirdRC.org)
Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort, Little Cottonwood Canyon, Snowbird.com