CEDAR CITY –The upcoming dedication of the Cedar City Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in October is motivating one city councilman to call on the public and city staff to get the town “cleaned up,” an action he argues is long overdue.
The dedication of the LDS temple, slated for Oct. 27, is expected to draw international attention and bring in thousands of visitors, giving Cedar City an opportunity to show its best side to the world, Cedar City Councilman Fred Rowley said.
Rowley read a self-penned letter Wednesday night during council meeting calling on the community and the mayor, with the support and assistance of the council and city staff, to “begin a campaign to make Cedar sparkle.”
“Regardless of one’s religious convictions,” Rowley read, “I believe that these events will have a profound positive impact on our community due to the publicity and financial infusion we will receive. Thousands of people from Utah, and surrounding states will be coming to Cedar City to take a tour. I expect that hundreds of former residents will be coming from event farther distances to visit their hometown.”
While Rowley said he believes the city is already “beautiful” in its present state, he said he feels there are areas of town that need work. He also pointed to various projects he said would improve the cityscape, including painting signs and decorative light posts along Main Street, installing directional signs, repairing sidewalks and refurbishing well-worn home exteriors.
The councilman said he wants visitors to want to come back to Cedar City but, at the same time, wants the community to remain a small rural area.
“I hear people say they want a Costco in Iron County,” he said, “but to have a Costco you have to have a population of at least 200,000 people. I don’t ever want to be that big – ever. What I want is, people to want to come back to Cedar City and bring their families and stay in our hotels and eat in our restaurants.”
Councilwoman Terri Hartley said she hopes the community will answer Rowley’s call to action by volunteering and pulling together to help get things ready for when the temple dedication will showcase the town on the international stage.
“We really do have areas that need some work and cleaning up, and while we have ordinances that we can use, we’d rather have people step up on their own and take responsibility rather than having to send in enforcement,” Hartley said.
Rowley reiterated those same sentiments.
“We want the public to care and want to do this because they’re proud of their community and want the world to see us at our best,” Rowley said. “I’m hoping that’s what will happen.”
Rowley said he would like to see Mayor Maile Wilson launch a clean-up campaign to get people excited and motivated.
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