City Guide 2015: Out & About | City Guide | Salt Lake City Weekly

City Guide 2015: Out & About 

The people to know and the places to be

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Pioneers in Progress
Utah loves its pioneers, both past and present.
By City Guide Contributors
comments@cityweekly.net

If Utah's Mormon pioneers hadn't pushed their handcarts and farm wagons across the country in 1847 against all odds, the bustling metropolis in which we find ourselves today might be simply a wide spot in the road. Many Salt Lakers, in fact, descend from those plucky souls who felt called to make the desert bloom. So, what becomes of all that pioneer DNA when there are no more continents to cross, no more frontiers to tame?

For some Utahns, today's frontier is not so much out there, but here at home. One pioneer is working to house Salt Lake City's homeless, another assists immigrants and LGBT youth through her ministry, and still another is forging a new definition of marriage. Two more are creating new ways to connect audiences with the arts. They don't yet have schools named after them, but give them time. They're pioneers in the making.

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Travis Hysell
Modern Humanitarian
Travis Hysell is president and founder of The Legacy Initiative, a Utah County-based nonprofit that does outreach to Salt Lake City's homeless. Formed in 2012, the organization works to build support for an affordable-housing project for the homeless, based on Portland's Dignity Village. Hysell's nonprofit includes seven unique teams made up of 400 volunteers aimed at fighting hunger, providing humanitarian aid and educating people. The Grey Team, for instance, renders services and direct aid to the homeless and their pets. The Red Team provides safety and community-watch services, while the Green Team is involved with sustainability and community gardens. The "Causeplay" Team volunteers dress up in costumes and bring sunshine to kids suffering from homelessness, poverty and serious illness.

"A new player like The Legacy Initiative gives us a chance to think differently," says Salt Lake City Councilman Kyle LaMalfa. "I like the opportunity to work with the Legacy people and have them push us to think in different ways."

The legacy in Hysell's mind is "to remind the members of our communities how to look after those in need, and to get engaged in creating positive change at a local level. We want to inspire all people to be the change, and make a permanent, positive contribution to our community; to build a legacy we all can be proud of." LegacyInitiative.org (By Jacob Stringer)

C. Jane Kendrick

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Concert Impresario
Provo's music scene is no longer its best-kept secret, and one of the people to thank for that is local writer C. Jane Kendrick.

Kendrick was part of the original group of artists, musicians and other community-minded Provoans who came up with the Rooftop Concert Series five years ago. The free summer shows feature mostly local acts performing on the roof of the Provo Town Square's parking terrace. 2014's series culminated in a special five-year anniversary show with hometown heroes Neon Trees, Fictionist and The Blue Aces.

Kendrick admits that she was a rookie to Provo's music collective when she first helped launch the series in 2009. "I didn't even know who the Neon Trees were," Kendrick says. "And I still feel like an imposter in the [music] scene sometimes."

But that doesn't temper Kendrick's reputation as the series' most ardent and visible advocate. Much of that has to do with the popularity of her blog, an ongoing series of confessions from a progressive Mormon raising four kids in a famously conservative city.

"I have felt for a long time this pressure to present Provo in a better light," Kendrick says. "I get why people hate on Provo ... but it's changing—and in some really dynamic ways."

Armed with a devoted readership and the passion of a homegrown community activist, Kendrick is an essential evangelist for Provo's unique brand of cool. RooftopConcertSeries.com (By Kimball Bennion)

Troy Williams

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Equality's Champion
Local LGBT activist and media producer (aka "the gay mayor of Salt Lake City") Troy Williams—one of "the Capitol 13" arrested in 2014 for protesting at the Capitol in support of the Senate Bill 100 nondiscrimination bill—continues to instigate social change in a new, perhaps more effective way.

Since becoming Equality Utah's executive director in late 2014, Williams is now equipped with organizational support and a more diplomatic approach. Williams says SB100 is still a top priority for Equality Utah, and he is hopeful it will pass this year due to growing support. "You can still be fired from your job or evicted from your house for being gay or transgender," he says. "You can be denied service in public spaces. We are asking the state of Utah to update their laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity."

Williams gives partial credit to his Mormon upbringing for his commitment to social justice. "As a Mormon, you are taught to give back to the community and make the world a better place," he says. His involvement also stemmed from seeing a great rift between the LDS and gay community. "This conflict wasn't just throughout the state," Williams says. "My own family was divided over these issues."

Williams is very happy in his new role. "Equality Utah has had a tremendous historical impact on changing the climate of Utah," he says. "I want to be able to live up to the legacy of this organization, help sustain it and make it stronger."

After SB100 passes, Williams says there will still be a lot of work to do. "We have to change laws, but more importantly, we have to change hearts and minds, and that's the hardest work." EqualityUtah.org (By Deann Armes)

The Rev. Patty Willis

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Well-Rounded Minister
You might say that the Rev. Patty Willis, developmental minister of South Valley Unitarian Universalist Society, took the long way home to arrive at her current position.

A graduate of Brigham Young University, Willis earned a master's degree in French literature at the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana. Upon graduation, she and her partner, Mary Lou Prince, moved to a small Buddhist village on the west coast of Japan where they founded a theater company.

After spending more than two decades in Japan, they returned to the United States, settling in Arizona near the Mexican border. Willis felt a connection with the immigrants she met there. After seeing the hardships they had to endure, she felt the call to attend a Quaker seminary school in Indiana.

Willis then returned to Utah, where, in 2012, she and her partner began working with the South Valley Unitarian Universalist Society, she as developmental minister and her partner as choir director. Willis has encouraged the congregation to aid homeless LGBT youth and has worked with local leaders of other faiths to address police brutality and violence. "I have loved ministering in the place where my ancestor, Patty Bartlett Sessions, settled in the mid-1800s. I have continued the work that I began in seminary to weave my life into a whole. Each sermon has been part of this process," Willis writes on her website. SVUUS.org (By Nathan Turner)

Brittany Reese

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Arts Innovator
Between the Rose Wagner Center, Capitol Theatre, Pioneer Memorial Theatre and numerous private theaters, Salt Lake City does not lack performing-arts venues. In 2007, however, dancer and choreographer Brittany Reese identified something missing among spaces for the performing arts, namely a multi-use space designed specifically for emerging and mid-career artists looking to stage and exhibit their own work. Enter Sugar Space, a small facility in the heart of Sugar House that might feature a dance class one day and an art exhibit the next. It can host a local theater company's short production run for one week and a traveling classical pianist on the weekend.

The concept has more than succeeded—so much so that in 2013, Sugar Space purchased and began renovating a set of buildings at 130 S. 800 West in an area known as the River District. The new location houses a 10,000-square-foot multi-use facility that includes a converted warehouse with a mezzanine gallery and a black-box theater that holds 350 people. Then there's the dance studio, a house including private art studios and conference area, and a patio where weddings, vendors and special events have quickly become the norm. To top it off, Utah Repertory Theatre just signed a 10-year lease with Sugar Space Arts Warehouse. Talk about the sweet taste of success. TheSugarSpace.com (By Jacob Stringer)

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Claims to Fame
26 reasons to gloat about Salt Lake City's arts & entertainment offerings.
By Jerre Wroble
jerre@cityweekly.net

Shhh. Don't tell anyone, but we're simply flush with must-see arts and entertainment in Utah's capital city. From the avant-garde to the more classic or family friendly, there's a performance and exhibition for every taste, budget and perspective. But let's keep it to ourselves, shall we? We like being able to buy tickets to a Broadway show without having to stand out in the cold overnight. Salt Lake City's abundant arts scene is a little slice of heaven we give ourselves, made possible in part by a ZAP (Zoo, Arts and Parks) sales tax—a penny on every $10 spent in Salt Lake County.

click to enlarge Ballet West - Aladdin
  • Ballet WestAladdin

CULTURAL CRED

1. Founded in 1963 by William F. Christensen, Ballet West (50 W. 200 South, 801-869-6900, BalletWest.org) is one of the top companies in the country, having toured the world several times, and even selling out the Kennedy Center in December 2014. Led by artistic director Adam Sklute, Ballet West now occupies the new 55,000 square foot Ballet Centre adjacent to the Capitol Theatre. In 2015, look for Ballet West to serve up its annual holiday shows of The Nutcracker, as well as Swan Lake (Feb. 6-15), Aladdin (April 3-5), Almost Tango (April 10-19), and its annual showcase of new works called Innovations (May 15-23).

2. Now under conductor Thierry Fischer's baton, Utah Symphony (801-533-6683, UtahSymphony.org) is 75 years old, filling not only the rafters of Abravanel Hall (123 W. South Temple) with the music of Dvorak, Strauss and Shostakovich, but the skies above five national parks, where the symphony took the show on the road in summer 2014. In 2015, Fischer continues his Mahler symphony cycle, with Symphonies No. 3 (Feb. 6-7) and No. 4 (May 22-23) on tap in the spring.

3. Founded in 1978, the Utah Opera (801-533-5626, UtahOpera.org) merged with the Utah Symphony in 2002. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Christopher McBeth since the early 2000s, the company in 2015-16 will stage at Capitol Theatre Cosi Fan Tutte (March 14-22), The Rake's Progress (May 9-17), Tosca (Oct. 10-18), The Merry Widow (Jan. 16-24, 2016), Aida (March 12-20, 2016) and The Marriage of Figaro (May 7-15, 2016).

4. Pioneer Theatre Company (300 S. 1400 East, 801-581-6961, PioneerTheatre.org), in residence at the University of Utah, is a professional regional theater under the artistic direction of Karen Azenberg. PTC produces seven plays September through May each year, from classics to musicals to dramas and comedies. Look for that star quality in The Crucible (Feb. 13-28), I Hate Hamlet (March 20-April 4), and The Music Man (May 1- 16).

Broadway Across America - The Book of Mormon
  • Broadway Across AmericaThe Book of Mormon

5. Bringing the really big shows to Utah, Broadway Across America Utah (BroadwayInUtah.com) has lined up blockbuster performances you won't want to miss this spring and summer: Mamma Mia (March 13-15 at Kingsbury Hall), Once (April 7-12 at Kingsbury Hall) and The Illusionists (June 23-28, Capitol Theatre). But the year's showstopper, no doubt, will be the Utah premiere of The Book of Mormon (July 28-Aug. 9, Capitol Theatre).

Ririe Woodbury
  • Ririe Woodbury

6. Founded in 1964, Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company (801-297-4241, RirieWoodbury.com) is an internationally renowned contemporary-dance company. The Nikolais/Louis Foundation for Dance partnered with the company in 2003 to present the works of Alwin Nikolais, which they went on tour to perform for 12 years. Coming April 9-11 are two world premieres in the Spring Season performance.

7. Founded in 1966, Repertory Dance Theatre (801-534-1000, RDTUtah.org) represents "the scope and diversity of modern dance past and present" in Utah. Its Reunion performance on April 23-25 will feature alumni choreographers in advance of its 50th anniversary.

CHALLENGE YOUR THINKING

8. Located in the historic 19th Ward House of Worship in the city's Marmalade district, Salt Lake Acting Company (168 W. 500 North, 801-363-7522, SaltLakeActingCompany.org) has a 45-year history of "brave contemporary theater" that includes regional and world premieres, plays by local playwrights and Saturday's Voyeur, the annual summer sendup of Utah's cultural dysfunction. The coming season includes: Two Stories, Feb. 4-March 1; Mr. Perfect, April 8-May 3; Saturday's Voyeur (June 24-Aug. 30).

9. Giving voice to women playwrights, directors, actors and characters, Pygmalion Theatre Company (138 W. 300 South, 801-355-2787, PygmalionProductions.org) was founded in 1995 by Nancy Roth and Reb Fleming. This year's productions include Hellman v. McCarthy (Feb. 27-March 14) and Mocking Bird (April 17-May 2).

10. Wasatch Theatre Company (801-355-2787, WasatchTheatre.org) has made it its mission to create a nurturing environment for actors, directors, playwrights and technicians. Its Page-to-Stage Festival is a chance for local playwright to see their works performed on stage by local actors.

11. Since 1991, Plan-B Theatre Company (801-297-4200, PlanBTheatre.org) has made it its goal to produce socially conscious theater, with an emphasis on new plays by Utah playwrights. In 2015, look for A/Version of Events (March 5-15); Pilot Program (April 9-19); and Ruff (Aug. 31).

12. Founded by Jared and Tiffany A. Greathouse in 2010, The Hive Theatre Company (HiveTheatre.Blogspot.com) is newer on the scene and focused on innovative theater productions. In 2015, look for BUPKIS: A Play About Nothing (May 8-16), Cock (June 19-27), The Secret Lives of Clowns (Oct 9-17).

13. Having found a new home at the Sugar Space Warehouse Theater, Utah Repertory Theater Company, (435-612-0037, utahrep.org) has developed a "Season of Levity and Consternation" in 2015 with scheduled performances of The Last 5Years (Feb. 27-March 7), Rabbit Hole (July 10-24), Amadeus (Sept. 12-28) and Carrie (Oct. 29-Nov. 14, Sugar Space Warehouse Theater).

14. University of Utah theater department's Babcock Theatre and Studio 115 (Theatre.Utah.edu) productions allow you to catch a glimpse of the next generation of Utah actors. Coming up at the Babock Theatre are The Children's Hour (Feb. 6-15) and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (April 3-19). At Studio 115, look for The School for Lies (Feb. 27-March 8) and Godspell (April 23-26)

15.SB Dance (SBDance.com), newly renamed Strange Beast Dance Circus, performs original works of dance and theater known for being "out there" in the dance world, but that may be just what you are looking for. The company's big summer show is titled New Creation 2015 (June 12- 21). They are also planning a "twisted alternative performance adventure" based on 2014's Cannibal, A Love Story on Oct 23-25, 2015.

16. Wiseguys West Valley City (2194 W. 3500 South, 801-463-2909, WiseguysComedy.com) and Wiseguys Ogden (269 Historic 25th St., Ogden, 801-622-5588) are hubs for touring national headliners, as well as talented local comedians.

FUN FOR THE FAMILY

17. Founded by Nathan and Ruth Hale in 1985, the Hale Centre Theatre (3333 S. Decker Lake Drive, West Valley City, 801-984-9000, HaleCentreTheatre.org) will celebrate 30 years of community theater with the following 2015 roster: Ghost the Musical (Feb. 20-April 11), Over the River & Through the Woods (April 17-May 23), Disney's The Little Mermaid (June 5-Aug. 1), Oklahoma! (Aug. 12-Oct. 3), Big Fish (Oct. 14-Nov. 28) and A Christmas Carol (Dec. 5-24)

18..The parodies and melodramas performed at the Desert Star Playhouse (4861 S. State, Murray, 801-266-2600, DesertStar.biz) are your chance to enjoy dinner with a twist of mirth. The 2015 season includes Pirates of the Scaribbean (Jan. 8-March 21), Into the Hoods (March 26-June 6), Grease'd (June 11-Aug. 22), Star Wards (Aug. 27-Nov. 7) and Ebenezer Scrooge (Nov. 12-Jan. 2, 2016)

19. Since 1994, The Off-Broadway Theatre (272 S. Main, 801-355-4628, TheOBT.org) has presented comedies, musicals and plays, as well as hilarious spoofs. In addition to hosting the improv comedy troupe Laughing Stock each weekend, the OBT features a 2015 season including Indianapolis Jones (March 6-April 11), The Revengers (May 1-June 6), The Compleat Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) June 19-July 18, Jurassic Park City (Aug. 7-Sept. 12), Breaking Vlad (Sept. 25-Oct. 31) and The Grouch Who Stole Christmas (Nov. 20-Dec. 26).

20. Founded in 1994 by Derryl Yeager, Odyssey Dance Theatre (801-495-3262, OdysseyDance.com) is the "common man's" dance company, combining ballet, jazz, modern dance, hip-hop, tap, ballroom into a form of dance entertainment. Coming up March 5-7 is Carmen Today and later in the year, the now-annual October production Thriller.

MUST-SEE MUSEUMS

The Leonardo - HOWARD JACKMAN
  • Howard Jackman
  • The Leonardo

21. The Leonardo (209 E. 500 South, 801-531-9800, TheLeonardo.org) is Salt Lake City's science, technology and art museum that features touring exhibits (such as Body Worlds), activities and workshops.

22. With more than 1.2 million objects in its collections, the Natural History Museum of Utah (301 Wakara Way, 801-581-4303, NHMU.Utah.edu) will host the Extreme Mammals exhibit (Feb.7-July 26) as well as a Lecture Series that includes: Dr. Caleb Scharf: Cosmic (In)Significance (Feb. 26), Robert J. Grow: Envisioning Utah's Future: Challenges & Opportunities (March 12), and David Pogue: Disruptive Tech: The Unrecognizable World of Tech and Culture (March 26)

FILM MAGIC

23. Founded in 2001 to help preserve a crumbling art-house movie theater, the nonprofit Salt Lake Film Center has expanded its mission to serve as the bastion of high-quality art-house films and documentaries in Salt Lake City. Its Broadway Centre Cinemas (111 E. 300 South, 801-321-0310, SaltLakeFilmSociety.org) offer six screens and a newly remodeled lobby, while the historic Tower Theatre (876 E. 900 South, 801-321-0310), with its single screen, is where you'll find cult-classics and pop-culture favorites.

ART STARTS HERE

24. In 2005, the Legislature recognized the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (410 Campus Center Drive, 801-581-7332, UMFA.Utah.edu) as a flagship art museum for the state of Utah. Current exhibits include America: The Latino Presence in American Art from the Smithsonian American Art Museum (Feb. 6-May 17) and con]text (through July 26).

25. The multiple galleries at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (20 S. West Temple, 801-328-4201, UtahMOCA.org), showcase a variety of contemporary and groundbreaking local and national artists. Look for Panopticon (Feb. 13-July 25).

26. A leading venue for contemporary art in Utah, CUAC (175 E. 200 South, 385-215-6768, CUACCenter.org) uprooted itself after two decades in Ephraim, Utah—due to censorship by Ephraim City officials—and relocated in downtown Salt Lake City where Adam Bateman now serves as executive director and curator.

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A Week of Worship
Salt Lake City is nothing if not spiritually abundant.
By Kolbie Stonehocker
kstonehocker@cityweekly.net

Salt Lake City may serve as home turf for the worldwide headquarters of the LDS Church, but that doesn't mean that all spiritual paths here are guided by the Book of Mormon. A diverse array of churches and spiritually focused groups can be found here, inviting the curious to walk through their doors and find meaning and inner peace, regardless of past religious experiences and affiliations (or lack thereof). Whether you're looking for a traditional churchgoing experience or an unconventional one, Salt Lake City has something to offer seekers of all spiritual walks of life. And no, it doesn't all happen on Sunday.

We'll begin our week of spirituality on Monday, at Two Arrows Zen (230 S. 500 West, Suite 155, 801-532-4975, Salt Lake City, TwoArrowsZen.org), a Zen Buddhist community center located just south of the Old GreekTown Trax station in the Artspace building. If you've risen with the dawn, you'll arrive just in time for the zendo's first weekday meditation session, held at 7 a.m., where you'll find a centered state of being by engaging in mindful breathing and spirit-soothing meditation. Meditation sittings are held Monday through Friday, and you aren't required to have prior experience with Buddhism or meditation to participate.

click to enlarge Crone's Hollow - NIKI CHAN
  • Niki Chan
  • Crone's Hollow

On Tuesday, if it happens to fall on the night of the Dark Moon, bring your drum (or any other percussion instrument) to Crone's Hollow (2470 S. Main, Salt Lake City, 801-906-0470, CronesHollow.com). Every month, the magical-supply store and pagan community center hosts Dark Moon Drumming, a communal drum circle that's meant to "drum back the moon," inviting it to begin to wax again.

If the demands of the week have left your soul feeling depleted, visit The Cathedral Church of Saint Mark (231 E. 100 South, Salt Lake City, 801-322, 3400, StMarksCathedralUT.org) on Thursday for Holy Eucharist at 10 a.m. (the Episcopal Church invites people of all faiths to partake). In the evening, the Centering Prayer, held at 5:30 p.m. in the Colton Library—where you'll be able to sit in silent contemplation, followed by a group prayer—is a good way to do just that.

On Friday, if you find yourself wondering if Asatru, Wicca, traditional witchcraft or another pagan path entirely is right for you, swing back to Crone's Hollow for its weekly Cryptic Coffee event, held in the store's lounge area. You'll get the opportunity to network with representatives from various local covens to learn about their respective traditions, all while sipping a cup of coffee from the onsite Steamhead Café.

Most Saturday mornings, the Congregation Kol Ami (2425 Heritage Way [2760 South], Salt Lake City, 801-484-1501, ConKolAmi.org) holds its Shabbat Morning Reform Service. Whether you're Jewish by birth or by choice, or in an interfaith family, here, you'll find a welcoming community, services and religious school.

Come Sunday, you'll have your pick of assorted Salt Lake City church dominations that all welcome visitors. But there are some that offer a progressive outlook, including The First Baptist Church of Salt Lake City (777 S. 1300 East, Salt Lake City, 801-582-4921, FirstBaptist-SLC.org), which is an LGBT-friendly church with a "blended" approach to worship, and its 11 a.m. service includes elements of traditional liturgy, nontraditional music, call & response, dance and more. If you're a proud liberal, The First Unitarian Church of Salt Lake City (569 S. 1300 East, Salt Lake City, 801-582-8687, SLCUU.org) is the place for you, with services at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. that, instead of adhering to dogma, teach the importance of building a just world.

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Powder Brats
We admit it: When it comes to snow and slopes, we're spoiled.

By L. Clark Tate
comments@cityweekly.net

Words Utah skiers like: monster dumps. Lake-effect snow. Bluebird pow days. Words skiers don't like: ice. Slush. Long lines. And the worst: climate change.

It's true. We're staring down the barrel of warmer winters, so ski resorts have to switch it up. Several new ownership schemes are making waves in 2015, and efforts to up snow-independent activities—such as foodie events, specialty kid camps and summer activities—offer new options beyond wintertime fun.

But fear not. There are still monster dumps, lake-effect snow and bluebird pow days. Utah's Cottonwood canyons remain one of the snowiest places in the world. As such, lately, the trade group Ski Utah along with seven ski resorts have been promoting the concept of OneWasatch, which, if permitted, would connect Big and Little Cottonwood canyons with Park City resorts. To give you a hint of what this European-style skiing experience will be like, Ski Utah is now offering Interconnect Tours to advanced-to-expert skiers age 16 and older from Deer Valley and Snowbird resorts. The Deer Valley tour covers an average of 25 miles and travels to Park City Mountain Resort, Solitude, Brighton, Alta, Snowbird and the backcountry terrain in between.

The Snowbird tour is advanced, as it involves more hiking and sidestepping. It travels to Alta, Brighton, Solitude and the backcountry in between. Phone 801-534-1907 for pricing and information.

And for those just looking to schuss down the slopes, you can find out what's new with your favorite ski slope on the following pages.

SALT LAKE AREA

Alta Ski Area
  • Alta Ski Area

Alta Ski Area
• Top of Little Cottonwood Canyon—45 minutes southeast of SLC
• Highway 210 Little Cottonwood Canyon, Alta, 801-359-1078, Alta.com
• Adult Day Pass: $84 (plus $37 per day for Snowbird)
What's New: The popular Corkscrew run, the only green run to access the Wildcat Base, mellows out even more with a newly graded slope. By pre-registering for the Boarding Pass program, air travelers flying to Salt Lake City International Airport can ski Alta (and Snowbird) for half price within 24 hours of arrival.

Snowbird Ski & Summer Resort
  • Snowbird Ski & Summer Resort

Snowbird Ski & Summer Resort
• Little Cottonwood Canyon—40 minutes southeast of SLC
• 9600 Little Cottonwood Canyon Road, Snowbird, 801-933-2222, Snowbird.com
• Adult Day Pass: $95
What's New: A new restaurant/restroom/ski patrol/hangout on Hidden Peak is under construction. It should be up and running by the 2015-16 season. By pre-registering for the Boarding Pass program, air travelers flying to Salt Lake City International Airport can ski Snowbird (and Alta) for half price within 24 hours of arrival.

Brighton Resort
• Top of Big Cottonwood Canyon—50 minutes southeast of SLC
• 8302 S. Brighton Loop Road, Brighton, 801-532-4731, BrightonResort.com
• Adult Day Pass: $68
What's New: Brighton is going for a big- bang-per-buck factor by keeping lift, rental and lesson prices affordable. A dozen or so freestyle terrain-park events will keep things lively, while night skiing offers long days of family fun.

Solitude Mountain Resort - MICHAEL BROWN
  • MICHAEL BROWN
  • Solitude Mountain Resort

Solitude Mountain Resort
• Big Cottonwood Canyon—45 minutes southeast of SLC
• 12000 Big Cottonwood Canyon Road, Solitude, 801-534-1400, SkiSolitude.com
• Adult Day Pass: $77
What's New: A new, yet-unnamed run from the Sunrise Lift offers fresh terrain, and two new snowcats will help smooth out the snowpack. Efforts to replace the Summit Chairlift are underway; a shiny new version should be in place for the 2015 season. And the Honeycomb Grill will be serving brunch this season every Sunday.

Sundance Resort
• Provo Canyon—one hour south of SLC
• 8841 N. Alpine Loop Road, Sundance, 866-259-7468, SundanceResort.com
• Adult Day Pass: $65
What's New: Season tickets include three free days at Brian Head along with year-round lift use (for hiking and biking tours come spring). Two punch-card lift-ticket options provide five days of skiing for the price of four ($295) or 10 for the price of eight ($550). The twilight race series is back, offering cool prizes and a chance to "beat the pros" at their own game ($12 participation, $10 lift ticket).

NORTHERN UTAH

Powder Mountain
• Ogden Valley—one hour northeast of SLC
• 8000 N. 5100 East, Eden, 801-745-3772, PowderMountain.com
• Adult Day Pass: $69
What's New: The Sundown Lift, accessing green, blue and black mountaintop terrain, is now a speedy, modern quad. Powder Mountain is celebrating its 42nd anniversary by amping up value, offering $42 tickets every Wednesday. Locals ski mid-week for $54, as do season-pass holders for any other Utah resort on any day. College kids ski for $40 (Monday through Thursday) with a valid ID.

Snowbasin A Sun Valley Resort - RYAN POW SHOTS_SNOWBASIN_A SUN VALLEY RESORT
  • RYAN POW SHOTS_snowbasin_a sun valley resort
  • Snowbasin A Sun Valley Resort

Snowbasin Resort
• Ogden Valley—55 minutes north of SLC
• 3925 E. Snowbasin Road, Huntsville, 801-620-1100, Snowbasin.com
• Adult Day Pass: $89
What's New: The Dining Discovery program offers culinary expeditions and classes, while the snowpack will get a boost from 30 energy-efficient snow guns and three new cats. A new snowboarding park, the Burton Dinosaur Riglet, teaches 3- to 6-year-olds to ride while traversing lava and mountain landscapes.

Beaver Mountain
• Logan Canyon—two hours northeast of SLC
• 40000 E. Highway 89, Garden City, 435-946-3610, SkiTheBeav.com
• Adult Day Pass: $48
What's New: The Beav is offering season-pass holders a bonus this year: three free days at Brian Head Resort. Well-known Logan caterers Justin Hamilton and Chip Lara are taking over The Café at Beaver Mountain; expect delicious results.

Cherry Peak Resort
• Cherry Creek Canyon—two hours northeast of SLC
• 3200 E. 11000 North, Richmond, 435-554-8344, SkiCPR.com
• Adult Day Pass: $42
What's New: Located near Logan, Cherry Peak is Utah's newest ski resort, bringing the number of ski resorts to 15. Cherry Peak features three triple chairlifts serving 20 runs and 200-plus skiable acres. In addition, there is a five-lane tubing hill, ice skating and a snow-making system.

Nordic Valley
• Ogden Valley—one hour north of SLC
• 3567 Nordic Valley Way, Eden, 801-745-3511, NordicValley.com
• Adult Day Pass: $39
What's New: New owners, old name—Wolf Mountain is back to its Nordic Valley roots. The ski area is also expanding, debuting four new intermediate-to-advanced ski lines this winter. While a lift is in the works for next season, all-terrain vehicles will lap the runs this year. Every Friday night after Jan. 1, a slopeside rail jam will offer prizes. The lodge offers expanded seating and upgraded fare (gluten-free pizza, anyone?) And this is just the beginning of the resort's five-year plan; stay tuned.

SOUTHERN/CENTRAL UTAH

Brian Head Resort
  • Brian Head Resort

Brian Head
• South of Parowan—four hours south of SLC
• 329 S. Highway 193, Brian Head, 866-930-1010, BrianHead.com
• Adult Day Pass: $54
What's New: Brian Head celebrates turning 50 this year and is marking the occasion with a new high-speed Giant Steps quad lift that cuts ride times in half. A new terrain-based learning center will speed the progression from newbie to nonstop shredder. Saturdays and Sundays, Brian Head hosts NASTAR racing.

Eagle Point Ski Resort
• Near Beaver—three hours and 30 minutes south of SLC
• 150 Southwest Village Circle, Beaver, 855-324-5378, SkiEaglePoint.com
• Adult Day Pass: $30 Thursday, $48 Friday-Sunday
What's New: This is the first full season that the Little Eagle Lift will service the Tushar Ridge steeps. Park Lab, the resident terrain fest, has 12 new features to test out your tricks. Anyone under 6 or over 70 skis free all season. Kids 6-17 ski free, except for holidays, with certain Eagle Point Reservation lodging packages.

PARK CITY

Canyons Resort
• Park City—40 minutes east of SLC
• 4000 Canyons Resort Drive, Park City, 435-649-5400, CanyonsResort.com
• Adult Day Pass: $107
What's New: The killer season deals doled out last season—the Epic and Epic Local passes—are back. The deal allows unlimited access to 12 of Vail's resorts, as well as 10 others spanning Europe and Japan. Dream Peak's Cloud Dine, usually bursting at the seams, is nearly doubling its indoor and deck seating.

Deer Valley Resort
• Park City—45 minutes east of SLC
• 2250 Deer Valley Drive South, Park City, 435-649-1000, DeerValley.com
• Adult Day Pass: $114
What's New: Deer Valley is throwing down $6 million on upgrades. New restaurant The Brass Tag offers comfort food hot out of the brick oven, while the artisan-cheese operation in Silver Lake Lodge is expanding. Shiny toys include four new Cadillacs, expanded snowmaking infrastructure, 34 EPA-approved snowmobiles and five new snowcats ready for the nightly grooming prowl.

Park City Mountain Resort
• Park City—40 minutes east of SLC
• 1345 Lowell Ave., Park City, 435-649-8111, ParkCityMountain.com
• Adult Day Pass: $105
What's New: Vail purchased Park City Mountain Resort in fall 2013, bringing it into the Epic fold. Thus, a PCMR season pass now rates benefits at 22 resorts (including unlimited skiing at 12 Vail resorts in the United States). A restricted Epic Local version is also available. Plenty of popular events will be back this season, including the family-oriented Snowasis carnival March 28-April 5.

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