National Utah Day


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National Utah Day

The Beehive State is recognized during National Utah Day January 4th, to honor when it officially became a state in 1896.

As the 45th state to gain statehood, Utah is home to The Great Salt Lake, a deeply rooted Native American heritage, and a far-reaching desert history. Travel in the footsteps of Utah’s namesake, the Utes, or the Shoshone, Navajo, or Goshute. Follow the trails of early explorers or Mormon settlers. They all lived among the natural arches and bridges formed long ago. These architectural wonders of nature are a cornerstone of Utah.

Find treasure everywhere you look. From the sunrise to the spiraling cliffs and the bejeweled night sky. Catch an unobstructed view of the Milky Way for miles or schedule a trip just in time for a meteor shower. Utah significantly less light pollution to make viewing spectacular!

Discover why some still believe the world flat by visiting Bonneville Salt Flats. Home of land speed records and a barren environment, the salt flats were once part of a much larger lake. The Great Salt Lake is one of its remnants.

Here are 50 random facts about the state of Utah!

  1. Completion of the world’s first transcontinental railroad was celebrated at Promontory where the Central Pacific and Union Pacific Railroads met on May 10, 1869. It is now known as Golden Spike National Historic Site
  2. Levan is “navel” spelled backward. It is so named because it is in the middle of Utah.
  3. Utah is the site of the nation’s first department store. Zions Co-operative Mercantile Institution was established in the late 1800s. It is still in operation today as ZCMI.
  4. The Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City took 40 years to complete. The Mormon temples in St. George, Manti and Logan Utah were completed before the Salt Lake Temple.
  5. Interstate 70 enters the eastern edge of the state, from Grand Junction Colorado, and ends where it intersects Interstate 15, near Cove Fort. This section of Interstate 70 is one of the most deserted stretches of Interstate in the United States.
  6. Rainbow Bridge, Nature’s abstract sculpture carved of solid sandstone, is the world’s largest natural-rock span. It stands 278 feet wide and 309 feet high.
  7. The Great Salt Lake covers 2,100 square miles, with an average depth of 13 feet. The deepest point is 34 feet.
  8. The average snowfall in the mountains near Salt Lake City is 500 inches.
  9. Because of the state’s inland location, Utah’s snow is unusually dry. Earning it the reputation of having the world’s greatest powder. 14 Alpine ski resorts operate in Utah.
  10. Utah mountain peaks, on average, are the tallest in the country. The average elevation of the tallest peaks in each of Utah’s counties is 11,222 ft.-higher than the same average in any other state.
  11. Salt Lake City was originally named Great Salt Lake City. Great was dropped from the name in 1868.
  12. State symbol: The Beehive symbolizes thrift and industry.
  13. State animal: The Rocky Mountain Elk.
  14. State fish: The Rainbow Trout.
  15. The Uinta mountain range is named after the Ute Indians.
  16. The Wasatch mountain range is named after a Ute Indian name meaning “mountain pass” or “low place in a high mountain”
  17. The name Utah comes from the Native American Ute tribe and means people of the mountains.
  18. During World War II Alta ski center became involved in the war effort when paratroopers from the 10th Mountain Regiment trained on its slopes.
  19. Annual precipitation varies from less than five inches in Utah’s arid Great Salt Lake Desert to more than 60 inches in the northern mountain ranges.
  20. Utah’s professional sports teams include the Utah Jazz of the NBA, the Salt Lake Buzz of Triple A baseball, the Utah Grizzlies Hockey club of the International Hockey League and the Utah Starzz of the WNBA.
  21. Utah has five national parks: Arches, Canyonlands, Zion, Bryce and Capitol Reef.
  22. Utah has seven national monuments: Cedar Breaks, Natural Bridges, Dinosaur, Rainbow Bridge, Grand Staircase-Escalante, Timpanogos Cave and Hovenweep.
  23. Utah has two national recreation areas: Flaming Gorge and Glen Canyon.
  24. Utah has six national forests: Ashley, Dixie, Fishlake, Manti-LaSal, Uinta, and Wasatch-Cache.
  25. On February 8-24, 2002, Salt Lake City will host the XIX Olympic Winter Games. Along with more than 2,000 athletes from 85 nations, the world will share in the drama and excitement of 75 medal events in 10 different sports.
  26. The Escalante River is generally considered to be the last major river to be “discovered” in the contiguous United States.
  27. The controversy surrounding the construction of the Glen Canyon Dam and Lake Powell is often cited as the beginning of the modern-day environmental movement.
  28. Capitol Reef National Park protects The Waterpocket Fold a 100-mile long wrinkle in the earth’s crust known to geologists as a monocline. The Waterpocket Fold extends from Thousand Lakes Mountain to the Colorado River.
  29. Cedar Hills is built upon an alluvial fan or bench, created thousands of years ago when it was a shoreline of Lake Bonneville.
  30. Fillmore was Utah’s first territorial capital and was named for U.S. President Millard Fillmore. The statehouse was never completed, but the first wing remains Utah’s oldest governmental building and now serves as a state museum.
  31. The Heber Valley Railroad’s magnificent steam engine and ten passenger railroad cars have been filmed in over 31 motion pictures over the past 20 years.
  32. The 4th Fighter Squadron at Hill Air Force Base, also known as the Fightin’ Fuujins, became the U.S. Air Force’s first operational Tactical Fighter Squadron in March 1980. The squadron’s nickname, “Fuujin”, refers to the Okinawan god of wind.
  33. The city of Hurricane lies in line with traffic going to the National Parks and Lake Powell. Average daily traffic on Hurricane’s State Street is 7,397 visitors per day, or over 2.7 million visitors a year.
  34. Tuacahn High School for the Performing Arts located in Ivins is the first charter school in the state of Utah. The name Tuacahn comes from a Mayan word meaning “Canyon of the Gods.”
  35. Kanab is called “Park Central” because it is located only minutes away from a grand array of three (3) national parks, three (3) national monuments, one (1) national recreation area and two (2) state parks. Two (2) national forests and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) wilderness areas also surround Kanab.
  36. Kanab is known as Utah’s Little Hollywood because of the large number of motion pictures that are filmed in the area.
  37. Kaysville became a city on March 15, 1868 the first city to be incorporated in Davis County.
  38. La Verkin at the entrance to Zion National Park is a beautiful valley and is called the “Garden Spot of Dixie”.
  39. Beaver is the birthplace of two very famous individuals of the past, Philo T. Farnsworth, the inventor of television and Butch Cassidy, the notorious western outlaw.
  40. Utah is the only state whose capital’s name is made of three words. All three words in Salt Lake City have four letters each.
  41. Utah was acquired by the United States in 1848 in the treaty ending the Mexico War.
  42. Utah has 11,000 miles of fishing streams and 147,000 acres of lakes and reservoirs.
  43. The name “Utah” comes from the Native American “Ute” tribe and means people of the mountains.
  44. Utah covers 84,900 square miles of land and is ranked 11th largest state in the United States.
  45. The federal government owns 65% of the state’s land.
  46. The Great Salt Lake, which is about 75 miles long and 35 miles wide, covers more than a million acres.
  47. The television series “Touched by an Angel” is filmed in Utah.
  48. Utah has the highest literacy rate in the nation.
  49. The largest public employer in Utah is the Utah State Government.
  50. The Navajo Indians were referred to by the Apache as “Yuttahih” meaning “one that is higher up.”

National Utah Day

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