Tuacahn will host inauguration ceremony of new governor

Composite photo of the entrance of the Tuacahn arts facility, ther Utah flag and Governor-elect Spencer Cox. | Photos by (from left) Hollie Stark, Wikipedia, Mori Kessler, St. George News

IVINS CITY — The inauguration of Utah’s new governor will not take place in Salt Lake City, but in Ivins City.

FILE – In this on July 7, 2020, file photo, Lt. Gov Spencer Cox speaks during a press conference at the Utah State Capitol in Salt Lake City. Cox, the Republican candidate for governor, is running against Democratic candidate Chris Peterson in Tuesday’s election. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

The Tuacahn Amphitheatre will host the inauguration of Governor-elect Spencer Cox as well as other Utah government officials on Jan. 4 at 11 a.m. It is the first time since statehood that the inauguration is taking place outside the state capital of Salt Lake City.

However, it will not be the first time a governor of Utah was inaugurated south of Provo.

From 1850 to statehood in 1896, Fillmore served as the capital of what was then the territory of Utah.

A spokesperson for Cox said in a statement that precautions for COVID-19 are being taken into account for the outdoor ceremony. Attendance will be restricted to 25% or less of Tuacahn’s 2,250-person capacity and guests will be physically distanced.

“The Utah Inaugural Commission and governor-elect are working closely with state health officials to monitor the spread of the coronavirus and will adjust inaugural plans as needed,” Jennifer Napier-Pearce said.

Along with Cox, Lt. Governor-elect Deidre Henderson, Treasurer David Damschen, Auditor John Dougall and Attorney General Sean Reyes will also be publicly sworn in for their new terms.

Included with addresses by Cox and Henderson will be musical performances, a 19-gun salute and a flyover by the Utah National Guard.

Tuacahn Amphitheatre, Ivins, Utah, June 18, 2020 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

St. George resident Stephen Wade, founder of the Stephen Wade Auto Center, is serving as the co-chair of the inauguration committee.

Cox will be the first new leader of the state since 2009 after Gov. Gary Herbert decided not to run for re-election. Cox defeated Democratic candidate Chris Peterson by a 63.9%-30.8% margin to win election as the state’s 18th governor.

The inauguration will arguably be the most significant event to be hosted by Tuacahn, which opened its doors in 1995.

A random drawing will determine who is awarded free tickets to the event. Those seeking to attend the inauguration can fill out this online form by Dec. 16.

The Utah Inaugural Commission web site is also hosting a food drive for the public to contribute to the One Utah food drive.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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