Saturday, July 23, 2011

Happy Pioneer Day

This past week my husband and I took a little jaunt down to Cedar City and St. George.  We had a great time, but I couldn't help feeling sympathy for those early pioneers who not only made the long trek across the plains to Utah, but were then asked to continue on to settle "Dixie."  The temperature hovered above 100 degrees while we were there, reaching 107.  I couldn't help wondering how those poor pioneers survived without the air-conditioning we found in our car and in our motel. 

We saw Richard III while in Cedar City and enjoyed it immensely.  The actor's interpretation of Richard was different from the way I had previously seen it played, but I liked it and found myself actually sympathyzing with him at times.  I had been told to expect dark and gloomy, but found myself chuckling at some scenes even though the overall story is one of greed, deceit, murder, and perhaps madness.  I was impressed with all of the major characters.  My only criticism might be directed toward some of the knights or soldiers who were a bit too chubby to be taken seriously as soldiers.  Again I thought of those early pioneers who left the Utah Territory and the LDS Church with a heritage of appreciation for the arts and a yearning for culture.

We took a little side trip to Cedar Breaks and found it beautiful and refreshing, then on to St. George and The Little Mermaid.  The show was a delight.  Of course, it's a story meant for children and there were many children in the audience, but it thrilled adults too.  There were a couple of Disney executives and the writer of the Disney version of the old classic present, seated not far from us.  The special effects created by a water curtain and projections onto the watery screen won the audience's approval. It's no wonder the night we attended was the production's twentieth consecutive box office sell out.

This whole weekend will be devoted to honoring the pioneers who settled Utah and much of the West.  It's a time for those of us who are descendants of those early pioneers and for all of those who share in the heritage they left Utah, the LDS Church, and our families to pause and give thanks for their courage, determination, and faith.  As much as any political leaders, historical heros, or social icons, these people left a legacy our generation will be hard pressed to match. Enjoy the parades, picnics, camping trips, fireworks, and all that goes with the celebration of those men, women, and children's heroic feat.  I think they'd want us to remember them by enjoying this day set aside in their honor.

1 comment:

Sara said...

I used to live in Cedar City, and have missed the Shakespeare festival so much! Tuachan as well, I am completely jealous of your adventure!