Saturday, March 16, 2013

Happy St. Patrick's Day

On the back of Van Turner's Fire Truck with Sarah and Jessica
For over 16 years, St. Patrick's Day has involved green (as in the color), my girls including Cathy, and pretty much one of Van Turner's fire trucks in the St. Patrick's Day Parade in Salt Lake City.  You can't attend the parade and not plan to have some fun, and this year was no exception.  Great crowd, beautiful weather and the association of many friends and family.  Not much Irish blood in my veins, but it does run in my children courtesy of one of Cathy's distant ancestors who married a Scot.  That in itself explains that fierce competitiveness in Cathy but it also gives me a reason to have an Irish Flag, which flies in our front yard along with a house adorned in green lights.  I don't drink so I need some way to celebrate the Holiday!
One of the early St. Patrick's Day parades for the family
From our early days on the council, we have been in nearly every parade.  In 16 years, I may have missed a couple, but I've always tried to make it work.  It's one of the few parades that have allowed children and I've always appreciated that they have allowed me to do it with my family.  As I went back and accumulated my pictures, it's been nostalgic to watch my kids grow up as well.
One year shortly before her death, we were able to take my mother
in the parade.
My mother was always a lover of parades.  One year they told us we needed to find our own rides.  I had a green explorer, a green trailer, so we put down some green carpeting and used some straps to secure a recliner chair for my aging mother.  She had the time of her life, wearing her green dress, adorned with her crazy green jewelry and Jessica walked with Daisy our dog behind. I followed up the rear.  Nearly every parade involved cousins and sometimes friends.
2003, was one of the first years through the Gateway, and we pulled Sarah in a wagon
Van Turner's Fire Truck is always a mainstay for the council.  Sarah
and Jessica with cousins Abby & Lexi
Even though Van Turner lost his re-election, he's been kind enough the last few years to offer his fire truck for the City Council to ride upon.  He does all the work, gets it in place, checks in for us and we just show up.  Anyone who knows Van, knows he's the kindest guy in the world, but the guy loves Parades, loves his fire trucks and enjoys sharing it with the community.
Cathy, Jessica, and Sarah in the rear join me for this year's parade, one last time!
I suppose it's never really good-bye
So I may be on the sidelines next year, but my house will still be lit in green, the Irish flag in the front yard, and I'll be one of the zany spectators having fun with the passersby.  Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Saturday, March 9, 2013

April 13 - A great day for our community

Trax car running on newly finished North Temple
No, this isn't Friday the 13th, which wouldn't have a good track record as far as luck goes, but Saturday, April 13th!  Put it down in your calendar, tell your friends and above all, come on over and try out the new Trax line to the Airport going down North Temple.  UTA has announced that it will be free to the public that day, with revenue operation starting the next day on Sunday, April 14th.  You're encouraged to bring a can of food for the Utah Food Bank and there will be activities along the corridor.  The Green Line will start in West Valley City, come through downtown and then proceed along 400 West and across the new North Temple viaduct.  There is a transfer point on the viaduct down to Front Runner and then out to the Airport.  You'll not want to miss it!

Another exciting thing that will also happen on Saturday, April 13th with be the Northwest Community Health Fair.  In conjunction with the Northwest Recreation and Community Center, a health fair with good information on how to improve yourself will be held on site of the Rec Center at 1300 W and 300 N.  Many of you may remember when I won the most improved in the My Heart Challenge and in so doing, won $1,000 to be used in my own community to help improve health.  In working with Kay Cameron at the Rec Center, we decided to partner up other health care providers to provide basic information on health related issues and allow blood pressure checks, BMI screenings and other tools to help you see where you are and more importantly help you set a course to improving your health.  The Health Fair will go from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. that day, park, come participate and then walk the Jordan River Parkway trail over and take a ride on Trax!

Also on April 13, there will be a 5K race associated with the Health Fair that starts at 9 a.m.  For a modest registration fee, you can run (or walk with me) and start your "spring training" off right.  In addition to the 5 K, you can register at the Rec Center during the month of April for a new program, "Six Weeks to a Healthier You".  To register, you must be 10 years or older and each participant will receive 2 - day passes to the Northwest Recreation Center.  In addition, there will be a dozen free activities over a six week period that if you participate in at least half, will be eligible for a prize drawing at the Northwest Riverfest in June.  Each participant will be eligible for a T-Shirt and more importantly, will help you get started in becoming a healthier you!

You might ask, why such an emphasis on being healthy?  The answer is obvious, we all need it.  However as equally important, it helps you become more involved in our community and see what resources are available, many for free.  It's always fun to do it with others and in so doing, encourage each other in working to do better. So set aside as much of April 13th as you can and let's have some fun!