Introduction to Salt Lake City, Utah
Salt Lake City is both the capital of Utah and the state's largest city with a population of nearly 200,000 people. It is also the largest city in Utah. According to U.S. census estimates, the Salt Lake City metropolitan area has an estimated population of just over one million people.
Salt Lake City is located in central Utah, near the eastern shore of the Great Salt Lake. It is home to three Fortune 1000 companies. The world's largest copper mine, the Bingham Canyon Mine, is located near Salt Lake City. It is the largest manmade excavation on earth. It is a half-hour drive southwest of Salt Lake City.
Salt Lake City was ranked as the 9th "Most Fun U.S. City" in a survey conducted in 2003 by Cranium Inc. Factors taken into account include the number of sports teams, restaurants, dance performances, toy stores, the amount of a city's budget that is spent on recreation, and other factors.
Salt Lake City's climate is characterized by four distinct seasons. January is the coldest month of the year with average daily temperatures of 39 degrees Fahrenheit. July is the warmest month with average annual daily temperatures of 89 degrees Fahrenheit. On average, Salt Lake City receives just over 15 inches of rain a year and 54 inches of snow. Nearby mountains can get as much as 500 inches of snow during winter.
Salt Lake City History
Salt Lake Valley was originally settled by Native Americans who lived in the valley for thousands of years prior to the arrival of European settlers. Salt Lake City was founded by Brigham Young and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons).
Some key dates in Salt Lake City's history include:
- In 1857, the Utah War began over disputes between Mormon settlers in the Utah Territory and the federal government over the Mormon's widespread practice of polygamy.
- In 1893, the Mormon Temple was completed and dedicated after 40 years of building.
- In 1896, with Utah statehood, Salt Lake City became a state capital.
- In 2002, Salt Lake City hosted the Winter Olympic Games.
Salt Lake City Arts and Culture
Salt Lake City is a center for arts and culture. Salt Lake City offers museums, the performing arts, and more. Some of Salt Lake City's more notable museums include:
- The Children's Museum of Utah
- The Clark Planetarium
- The Red Butte Garden and Arboretum
- The Utah Museum of Fine Arts
- The Utah Museum of Natural History
For patrons of the performing arts, Salt Lake City is home to many wonderful performing arts attractions. Some of the more notable include:
- Ballet West
- The Off Broadway Theatre
- The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
- The Pioneer Theatre Company
- The Repertory Dance Theatre
- The Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company
- The Salt Lake Acting Company
- The Salt Lake Symphony
- The Utah Symphony
- The University Orchestras
- Utah Youth Symphony Orchestra
- Utah Children's Dance Theatre
- Utah Opera Company
Salt Lake City is also home to the Sundance Film Festival as well as the Utah Arts Festival.
Salt Lake City Sports and Leisure
For a relatively small city, Salt Lake City has plenty to offer even the most avid sports fan. Salt Lake City is home to the following major sports teams:
- Baseball - There are three Minor League Baseball (MiLB) teams that play in or near Salt Lake City, including the Salt Lake Bees, the Ogden Raptors, and the Orem Owlz. The Bees are a Triple-A affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, the Raptors are a Rookie affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and the Owlz are a Rookie affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
- Basketball - The National Basketball Association (NBA) Utah Jazz, and the American Basketball Association (ABA) Salt Lake City Dream.
- Football - The Arena Football League (AFL) Utah Blaze.
- Hockey - The ECHL Utah Grizzlies who play in nearby West Valley City.
- Soccer - The Major League Soccer (MLS) Real Salt Lake.
The mountains around Salt Lake City are a winter sports enthusiast's dream. Salt Lake City is within a half hour drive of some of the most renowned ski resorts in the world. There are also at least fifteen national parks and monuments, within a day's drive of Salt Lake City.
Salt Lake City "Must See" Attractions
Salt Lake City has attractions too numerous to do justice in a simple list. Some of Salt Lake City's more notable and unique attractions include:
- Kennecott's Bingham Canyon Mine
- The Great Salt Lake
- The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
- The Salt Lake Temple (Mormon Temple)
Salt Lake City at Night
Salt Lake City has many nightlife entertainment options, including country western line dancing, jazz and blues, rock n' roll, and more. Good places to find out the latest attractions, events, happenings, performances, and restaurants include the "Entertainment" section of the Salt Lake Tribune, Salt Lake City Weekly, and Salt Lake magazine.