SUU’s ‘Community on the Go’ offers outdoor guided learning adventures with 17 options

Participants in Southern Utah University's "Community on the Go" summer program can visit rock art sites during the Native Heritage Summer Experience driving tour. Location and date of photo not specified. | Photo courtesy of SUU Summer Experience, St. George News / Cedar City News

CEDAR CITY — Continuing its commitment to providing adventure opportunities for community members, Southern Utah University’s “Community on the Go” program is launching new guided adventures with 17 options for visitors and locals alike.

Participants in Southern Utah University’s “Community on the Go” summer program can hike with a geologist at Thunderbird Gardens and Three Peaks, Cedar City, Utah, date of photo not specified. | Photo courtesy of Iron Springs Adventure Resort, St. George News / Cedar City News

The announcement comes just in time for summer as temperatures begin to rise and residents flock to higher elevations for fun and relief, according to a recent SUU news release announcing the new program offerings.

SUU Summer Experience is set to offer guided learning adventures led by SUU and community experts. Experiences are designed to immerse participants in local culture, history, scenery and recreational opportunity. Even longtime residents of Iron County can find new ways to explore the region through the new offerings, the release states.

“Summer Experience engages adventurers of all ages in the incredible outdoor and cultural offerings the Cedar City area has to offer,” Melynda Thorpe, executive director of Community and Academic Enrichment for SUU, said in the press release. “Led and taught by professionals, experiences include hikes and driving history tours, petroglyph crawls, outdoor art and water recreation courses, wagon rides and Sunday history brunches.”

During three different geologist-led hikes, participants can learn about the geologic events that shaped southwestern Utah’s spectacular landscape.

“Few places in the world can rival the diversity of geologic structures and rock types that are superbly exposed in our own backyard,” said Tyler Knudsen, geology hike instructor and professional geologist for the Utah Geological Survey.

Photographers looking to further develop their talents will enjoy an astrophotography course. During a new moon period, this four-day experience will take participants to Cathedral Gorge State Park to learn how to successfully shoot the Milky Way.

Participants in Southern Utah University’s “Community on the Go” summer program can learn how to shoot the Milky Way during the program’s astrophotography class, location and date of photo not specified. | Photo courtesy of SUU Summer Experience, St. George News / Cedar City News

For those interested in learning more about the area’s rich history, there are experiences that will take participants back in time to learn about first inhabitants and early settlers. The native heritage experience offers an exclusive tour of SUU’s Archaeology Repository, a field trip and special presentation by Eleanor Tom, a Paiute tribal elder.

On a two-day migrant trail driving tour, participants will make stops along the Old Spanish Trail and dine at Iron Springs Adventure Resort.

Registrants may also choose to enjoy one or all of a series of weekly Sunday brunch history lectures at the Iron Springs Resort west of Cedar City.

On June 16, they can hear the incredible story of Old Iron Town and its significance in Southern Utah’s historic mining industry. On June 23, Ryan Paul, museum curator for Frontier Homestead State Park, will be presenting images and stories of Cedar City’s oldest buildings and those forging an oasis in the desert. And on June 30, Paula Mitchell, assistant professor of library media for SUU, will tell about the unique partnership between the Union Pacific Railroad, the U.S. National Park Service and Utah Parks Company that developed early tourism in Southern Utah.

SUU Summer Experience offers educational opportunities to spend quality time with a friend or family member and to explore the region. For more information or to register for classes, click here, email bewise@suu.edu, call 435-865-8259 or stop by the office at 136 W. University Blvd., Suite 003, Cedar City.

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