ST. GEORGE – Instead of a New Year’s Eve party, St. George City has put a pause on the festivities until Jan. 10, 2012, when a seven-day-long celebration marking the city’s 150-year birthday will begin.
A plethora of performances and activities will be taking place in downtown St. George, Dixie State College and the Dixie Center during the week-long events called St. George Heritage Days. All events will be free to the public.
People can find a detailed list of Heritage Days activities at the St. George City website.
Performances will be had at the Opera House and the St. George Tabernacle. In conjunction with the Visual Arts Association of Utah, presentations and art seminars involving The Red Rock Film Festival, DocUtah, Arts to Zion, the St. George Children’s Museum and many local artists will also be held throughout the week.
One of the larger activities scheduled to take place is the Decades of Dixie Heritage Festival, an event that Summer Robertson, the chairwoman of St. George Heritage Days, described as “a giant family reunion.”
The festival will include local talent, food vendors, children’s games and numerous exhibits of memorabilia, artifacts and items that were used in southern Utah’s Dixie and define the St. George Area.
“This is a call for displays of items that are distinctive to our region,” said event organizers via a press release from the city.
Items as early as 1862 through to the present such as quilts, food and recipes, paintings and other artwork, furniture, clothing, houses wares, photography, musical instruments, news clippings and history displays from families, businesses or organizations are asked for.
“We are inviting the public to come and share their heritage,” Robertson said.
More information on the Decades of Dixie Festival can be found here.
As the week reaches its conclusion, however, what grand finale do the planners of St. George Heritage Days have in store for the public?
“We have a big birthday bash concert at the Burns Arena,” Robertson said.
The public is invited to join the mayor and city council at the Burns Arena at 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 17, the official birth-date of St. George City. American Idol finalist Brooke White will be giving a live performance, followed by a 20-minute documentary on the history of St. George produced by veteran film maker Phil Tuckett.
Birthday cake will be provided, Robertson added, and fireworks – the same pyrotechnic displays missed over New Year’s Eve – will be back and exploding in the skies over St. George as the concert, and St. George Heritage Days, come to an end.
“We don’t turn 150 often,” she said.
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