Monday, May 05, 2008

Vacation part 4: St. George, Utah

When we got "home" from our hike, we set out for downtown St. George to check things out. Having looked it over, we decided to go get the kids and to hang out there. One of the climbing guides made a comment about downtown St. George not being very exciting. Now, if you were evaluating downtown St. George on its adventure sports, that could be true.

Right next to the public library, there was a large fountain, designed for kids to play in. This was a big hit for our kids; they loved climbing on the fountain, running in the water, and splashing around. It was a super hit. (also note Jonathan's versatile shoes - they work well for hiking and for water play)

After we'd been playing in the fountain for long enough, everyone was hungry, so we walked through downtown, looking for somewhere to eat. We ended up at a pretty good pizza place (it passed the parking lot test and though it wasn't crowded, it was certainly doing good business). We ate our fill and then went out for a little more exploring at which time we found this:

Yes, a real fire truck for the kids to play on! They were so excited about it! It was hard to get them away from it, even though we were well past bedtime already.

But when we got back to the library (where the car was parked), it was St. George's big Thursday night celebration, where there were bands playing, vendors selling, and big inflatable games set up for the kids. Jonathan got to ride the big slide (a little nervous about it) and jump in the moonwalk (loved it). The guy let him jump for a loooooonnnngg time.

So the verdict is: we liked downtown St. George. It is an extremely clean city and it seems to have all the benefits of a city without a lot of the downside. They have a flourishing art community, there are plenty of activities for children and families, there are lots of trails and bike paths all through the city, there are lots of parks (it's the goal of the city leadership to have a park within 1/2 mile of every resident), it is near Zion and Bryce and a plethora of state parks we never even had time to visit...

The only downside (as I see it) is it gets pretty darn hot in the summer.

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