Time to Say Thank You!

IMG_4709To many the July 4th week is full of fun and celebration but like any fun party there is a host of behind the scenes work that most of us don’t ever realize or appreciate.

It goes without saying the thousands of hours Freedom Festival volunteers put into making it all happen but I’d like to give a shout out today to the Provo City employees that start early and end late spending their holiday making sure the rest of us are safe and happy during our holiday.

Thanks Provo PD for the 24/7-overtime effort. Thanks for taking care of the lost child, helping us safely navigate difficult intersections, keeping an eye on the bad guys and worrying about the myriad of things that could go wrong.

Thanks Provo Fire and Rescue for being everywhere all the time. Thanks for being there for the sprained ankle, the heart attack, the traffic accident and of course the fires. Can you imagine being responsible for fires while hundreds of thousands of fireworks are being used throughout the city? A big thanks to our dispatchers who get our people to the right place at the right time.

Thanks to Provo Public Works Department. Have you ever noticed how quick the parade route is cleaned up? Followed shortly behind the last float are employees from Provo Public Works. They do an outstanding job of putting the city back together.

Thanks to Provo City employees for taking care of the parade route. Each year Provo City employees volunteer their time to monitor the parade route before the parade and do their best to protect the homes and businesses along the route from the throngs that love to come early to stake out their seat for the parade.

Thanks to hundreds of  employees who work on the holiday to accommodate the record setting number of our residents and guests at the Recreation Center, Splash Pad and other parks. Thanks to those who keep the power on, the water running and all of our other utilities functioning.

Thanks to those in my office who worry about getting me in the right place saying and doing the right thing.

Of course, there are too many to mention but please know that behind the scenes Provo City employees work extremely hard in difficult conditions to make sure you have a safe and fun holiday.

Stadium of Fire Giveaway:
Taste of Provo

Stadium of FireAmerica’s Freedom Festival is thrilled to welcome rock and roll’s legendary JOURNEY to headline the Stadium of Fire on Saturday, July 4th, at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo! Olivia Holt, star of Disney Channel’s popular series I Didn’t Do It, will also make a special musical appearance. The event, hosted by television personality Montel Williams, will conclude with the BIGGEST fireworks show in Stadium of Fire history. There’s simply no better place to be on Independence Day!

Every year I’ve had the opportunity to give out prizes at the Stadium of Fire. I’m happy to announce that I will be on stage again and I’m excited to reveal the amazing giveaways and grand prizes for Saturday’s show! Drumroll please….

Patriotic Provo Shirts

If you’ve got tickets to the Stadium of Fire, you could be a lucky winner of a limited-edition patriotic #vote4provo shirt! Keep your eyes peeled because we’ll be throwing out t-shirts to the crowd. You can also try your luck and win a shirt here.

Freedom Shirt

Year Supply of Cupcakes

Now pay attention! We’ve got some prizes within these t-shirts! There will be three lucky winners of a year’s supply of cupcakes from the Sweet Tooth Fairy. If you catch a shirt, make sure to see if you are a winner. (There will be a certificate attached to the shirt.)

Sweet Tooth Fairy

Taste of Provo

Provo’s thriving independent food scene is something to be proud of – so why not highlight some of our amazing sit-down restaurants? Inside one of the t-shirts is our grand prize giveaway, the “Taste of Provo”. One lucky person will win a free dinner for two at 12 participating Provo restaurants. That’s right! The winner will get a free entree and a free fountain drink at:

Black Sheep Cafe –  Contemporary Southwestern Native American cooking served with a full bar in an upscale-casual space. | 19 N University Ave | (801) 607-2485

Brick Oven Pizza – Flagship of a pizzeria chain serving all-you-can-eat pasta, soup & salad, plus signature root beer. | 111 E 800 N | (801) 374-8800

Cafe 300 –  Whether you come in for the custard-inspired French Toast or go with a savory Ham Steak with eggs you can’t go wrong with breakfast. | 465 S University Ave, Provo | (801) 691-0218

Communal Restaurant – Locally sourced seasonal American menus star at this comfy kitchen with shared farm-table seating. | 102 N University Ave | (801) 373-8000

Foundry Grill – Woody, elegant Sundance Resort destination with mountain views & upscale, renowned American cuisine. | 8841 Alpine Loop Scenic Byway | (801) 223-4220

Gloria’s Little Italy – Cozy family-owned Italian restaurant with a classic menu & pastry counter housing homemade desserts. | 1 E Center Street | (801) 805-4913

La Jolla Groves – Serene space decked out with lemon trees presenting haute, garden-fresh New American cooking. | 4801 N University Ave #610 | (801) 224-5111 

Los Hermanos – Colorful, long-standing cantina serving casual Mexican favorites & nonalcoholic frozen drinks. |  71 E Center Street | (801) 375-5732

Oregano Italian Kitchen – Warm, inviting interior and fine art from Utah’s best artists, offers the best handcrafted New York Italian food in Utah. | 1600 N Freedom Blvd | (801) 788-4185

Shoots Chinese Cuisine – Offering creative takes on Chinese fare in a striking space. | 4801 N University Ave #820 | (801) 225-0445

Station 22 Cafe – Casual eatery serving updated American classics, sandwiches & veggie options in a unique atmosphere. | 22 W Center Street | (801) 607-1803

Tucanos – Brazilian steakhouse chain serving all-you-can-eat churrasco & specialty skewers in a vibrant space. | 4801 N University Ave Unit 790 | (801) 224-4774

If you haven’t been to one of these restaurants, be sure to check them out!

Blog Giveaway

What’s your favorite sit-down restaurant in Provo? Let me know in the comments and you’ll be entered to win a #Vote4Provo shirt. I will randomly select 3 lucky winners from the comments. The winner will be announced Monday, July 6. (Just in time to wear your shirt for Pioneer Day.)

Good Luck!

Get Tickets

Tickets to the Stadium of Fire range from $29-$175. Get your ticket today while they are still available!

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Rooftop Concert:
Sustainability Committee Booth

Hope you’ve added the Rooftop Concert Series to your list of Independence Day activities! The Moth and the Flame will be performing with Static Waves and Baby Ghosts this Friday, July 3! The concert starts at 7:30 PM on CENTER STREET and did I mention that it’s free?! This is one show you won’t want to miss, so bring some friends and get ready for something great! P.S. I’ll be co-hosting the concert with C. Jane Kendrick and we will be throwing out #Vote4Provo shirts from the stage! We’ve got George Washington on a bicycle and Harriet Tubman on a skate board! Sustainability Committee Booth Provo’s Sustainability Committee will …

Brown Bag Concert Series

The Covey Center for the Arts presents the “Brown Bag Concert Series” this summer through early September. Invite your friends, family, and neighbors and enjoy your Wednesday afternoon listening to local music and entertainment. Bring your own lunch or purchase food from selected food trucks. It’s easy, casual and fun! Where: The Covey Center, outside on the East side Terrace (follow your ears) When: Every Wednesday at 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Starts/Ends: June 3rd-Sept 9th Provided: Music/Entertainment and food for sale This week presents the vocal styles of Samantha Parks and lunch from The Mouse Trap food truck. Samantha is an …

Freedom Festival Parade 2015

This Saturday, July 4 at 9:00 AM is the Freedom Festival Grand Parade – the largest of its kind in the state of Utah – highlighting freedom through bands, professionally crafted floats, giant helium balloons and local and national performers. I will be in the parade, riding in style on Provo Beach’s authentic Surrey Bike! The Surrey Bike is a red, 4-person bike with a canopy and a large Provo Mayor banner – you can’t miss me! Keep your eyes peeled because I will be giving out limited edition patriotic #Vote4Provo shirts along the parade route! If you see me – cheer loud and …


This week GENTRI will be performing at the Freedom Festival activities including the Patriotic Service and Stadium of Fire. As part of the events they are offering a free download of their just released Patriotic Medley  (see www.GENTRImusic.com for details). In their words, “We put together this arrangement and video to remind people that we truly live in one of the best places in the world and to pay tribute to and honor those who have given and continue to give so much for our country.” GENTRI (short for “The Gentlemen Trio”) was established in June 2014. After just a year …

Provo #1 Best Medium-Sized City for Jobs 2015

Forbes recently ranked Provo the #1 medium-sized city in the United States for Jobs in 2015! According to Forbes, Provo’s underlaying success for strong job growth is our social cohesion – translating into a high percentage of families with children, as well as emphasis on education and enterprise. Forbes also reports that the most striking element about Provo is the diversity of our economic growth. Since 2009, employment in Provo is up 23.5%, with gains in virtually every sector, paced by increases in construction and natural resources (60%), information (30.1%), business services (46.5%) and even manufacturing (16.4%). Check out the ranking here: forbes.com/sites/joelkotkin/2015/06/12/best-small-and-medium-size-cities-for-jobs-2015

Katie Waltman: Provo Retail Spotlight

Katie Waltman Jewelry was founded in Salt Lake City, Utah during the Spring of 2002.  First inspired by her grandmother’s bead collection, Katie began making pieces for herself.  Since then, Katie’s jewels have become highly sought-after treasures. Katie Waltman jewelry has been seen in People Style Watch, Elle Magazine, and Oprah.com and has a clientele that includes Molly Sims. She attributes her success to her passion for creativity and her love for all things beautiful. Katie’s newest store is located right in the heart of The Shops at Riverwoods. Be sure to stop by and check out the Provo shop at …

Open Fire & Firework Restrictions 2015

Effective immediately, Provo Fire & Rescue has issued an open fire restriction for the foothills on the east bench and all areas of the Provo City watershed including South Fork. These restrictions are implemented due to the high fuel levels in the foothills and the decreasing fuel moisture content. Fires are restricted to established fire pits in improved parks and campgrounds. Open fires, except in designated fire pits in improved parks and campgrounds, are prohibited in Rock Canyon, Slate Canyon, all foothills along the eastern border of the city, and in the Provo City watershed in South Fork. All restricted …

Clear the Air Challenge 2015

According to the Utah Division of Air Quality, if all drivers living along the Wasatch Front were to park their cars just one day per week, vehicle emissions would be reduced by 6,500 tons per year. This means that every vehicle trip counts, and every mile you devote to smarter travel pays Utah back with cleaner, more breathable air. The Clear the Air Challenge is a month long competition starting July 1st that gives you the chance to reduce your vehicle emissions by choosing alternatives to driving alone using TravelWise strategies. By driving less and driving smarter, you will ultimately help improve air quality, …