Adventures for ALL Seasons
With school in full swing, the start of the holiday rush, and the onset of colder weather, you may be noticing that you and your family are not getting enough fresh air, exercise, and most importantly quality time together. This happens to almost everyone, every year, but you can break the cycle this season, and we at the Abbey Inn want to help.
No matter the season, there is always something epic to experience in Southern Utah. Here are just some of the things you can do in Zion, Bryce, Cedar Breaks National Monument, and Dixie National Forest.
- Hiking, biking, backpacking, camping, climbing, canyoneering (of course)
- River trips
- X-country skiing & snowshoeing
- Horseback riding
- Star gazing and star parties
- Wilf life watching
- Geology, astronomy, biology, and anthropology talks
- Various youth and junior activities (30-45 minutes long)
Seasons may change, but the adventure never stops!
Now, if your family includes a 4th grader, you can access these sites for free. The White House has announced the initiative “Every Kid in a Park” to connect 4th graders to America’s public treasures. As of September 1st, all fourth graders attending school in the U.S. can get their very own park pass which grants them (plus three adult guests) access to any national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and more for FREE. Students and parents can visit www.everykidinapark.gov to get their pass.
Also, show your “Every Kid in a Park” pass at the Cedar City Abbey Inn and receive a discount. See here for more details.
Best 5 Planning Tips for a Resourceful Family Vacation
Budget-friendly family vacation planning requires a lot of research. Particularly when you are traveling with your kids you need a perfect planning so that you can spend your vacation peacefully. Most people do the common mistake by miscalculating the expenses during vacation. When you are planning your vacation budget, don’t forget to include cabs, meals, tips, souvenirs and other miscellaneous expenses. Though you planned for an affordable budget vacation, you still can enjoy a lot of fun activities and you can spend quality time with your family.
Photo Credit: Lagniappe Destinations on flickr
Select a Vacation Spot Closer to Home:
People generally look forward to going different places in the world for a memorable vacation. Faraway destinations, plane rides often come to their mind when they plan for a vacation with a family. But, there is a possibility to find a better vacation spot closer to your home, like Newyorkers can opt for Florida or Hawaii destinations. Similarly, Florida residents can choose New York City or Caribbean destinations for a happy and budget-friendly vacation with family.
You don’t need to spend a lot of money for flight tickets to have fun; you can as well choose the closer areas that offer you loads of fun and excitement. After all you are looking for a peaceful get away to be with family and friends. Plan your activities and follow it exactly so that you won’t miss anything.
Involve Children to Choose Activities:
Make sure to involve your kids in choosing the activities, plan your day trips perfectly, so that kids do not get bored and tired. Also, make sure to get a nice and comfy hotel for your stay, it makes kids happy and naturally you will be happy. Planning is required especially when you have a limited budget and it is not something bad to make a perfect plan to save money, when you involve children in selecting the day trips can make them happy and one less worry for you. So, go ahead and involve all your kids in choosing activities and day trips when you are on vacation.
Camping is Fun:
If you and your family are comfortable camping at campsites, then choose to camp, it is the best and fun way to bond and catch up with your loved ones. Camping at the campsite can cost you very less compared to the hotel room. Many campgrounds and state parks charge over 25 dollar per night, isn’t it amazing!! You can have quality time as well as save some money.
Choose Travel Dates Wisely:
If you are planning to visit little far places for vacation, then you must choose the dates that are convenient for everyone, wise choice can save your time and also save on package deals that most airlines, hotels and resorts offers for the visitors on offseason. If you go in peak season, you will end up paying lot for plane tickets, hotels and other activities. So, be wise and choose appropriate dates to save money and rush so that you will have a peaceful vacation.
Don’t wait for desperate Travel Deals:
Many people wait till last minute to obtain travel deals and discounts, they believe that they should obtain them only in the last minute deals including airlines, hotels, and car rentals. But, most of these deals are not valid in peak season. Also, all these deals and discounts have limited time; they expire on that specified day, so you should check clearly if these coupons are valid or not before using them. But, for the convenience of visitors many hotels, car rentals and airlines offer these deals throughout the year.
These are 5 vital tips for planning an affordable vacation with family. Taking the entire family on a vacation is not easy as it requires a lot of budget for air tickets, hotel rooms, and etc. Therefore, one has to plan it well to make their vacation the most memorable and fun.Read More
Must See, No Cost – 9 Cedar City, Utah Attractive Places
Situated in Utah, Cedar City provides an opportunity for all year round activities to be carried out. This ranges from Brian Head Mountain biking at summer time to skiing during winter time.
1) Visiting Parowan Gap Petroglyphs
Water, wind and sand passes out from this natural passageway which was at one time used by the ancient Native Americans as a thoroughfare. The many carved petroglpyhs in the Gap is evidence of the various cultures. Lunar and solar calendars have been selected by researchers as well as cultural and hunting glyphs. This is the Stonehenge version of North America.
2) “Red Hill” and Cedar Canyon:
This is usually open to the public all year round as long as the weather permits. The Cedar Canyon park is situated on both sides of the Coal Creek. There are two pavilions available for gatherings in the group. Also available is the playground and volleyball court. The scenic paved walking trail is situated along the Coal Creek’s banks, weaving its way up for 3.5 miles into the Cedar Canyon Park. The trail begins at the Baseball Complex of the Cedar City and goes past the Cedar Canyon Park, ending just after the Rusty’s Ranch House. This trail is appropriate for bikes, roller blades and strollers too.
Photo Credit: Tonya Wilson on flickr
3) Park Discovery:
Above the Cedar City on a hill is an assembly of mazes, wooden towers, dinosaur digs, slides, rocket ships and volcanoes. The Park Discovery is an educational fun filled place where children of all ages can play and learn. Concepts from more than 4,000 kids locally are integrated in the park’s concept’s design. Besides the play elements of education, there is an outdoor classroom, stage area and a toddler’s separate play area, swings, accessible handicap ramps, and a ¾ walking paved trail which surrounds the entire park.
4) Exit 59 Skateboard Park:
Open throughout the year, this attraction features several rails and ramps if the weather permits.
5) Daughters of the Utah Pioneers:
This is a free museum that has a collection of various pioneer artifacts
6) Veterans Park:
This monument was established in the year 2006 in honor of the veterans of the Cedar city. It was put up for both world wars; the Iraqi, Afghanistan war and the Vietnam and Korean wars. The park is situated just adjacent to the Canyon Trail that is a scenic walking trail and which goes 3 miles up the canyon. The trail is perfect for strollers and bikes and various beaches are available where one can rest as he is enjoying the surrounding scenery.
7) Woods Ranch:
This attraction is open to the public from late May and all through to September. Situated 12 miles to the east of Cedar City, the site is good for picnics, playing volleyball and hiking through the Rim Trailhead Virgin River. The Kids pond is free for kids below the age of 12 years. However, the kids have to be accompanied by an adult who has got a valid license in Utah fishing which can be purchased online ahead of time.
8) Old Iron Town:
The firing kiln explores the remains of an old town in mining.
9) Main Street Park
Best for Saturday afternoons with good weather, one can watch the practice of Mid Evil Jousting or free concerts of outdoor music at fall and summer time. The park which was put up in 1886, it features swings, a bandstand that was newly constructed and a covered pavilion.
The above named nine places are free, friendly and family attractions that come in handy making it a great place for holding affordable family vacations in Cedar city.
Free Winter Activities in Cedar City
Star Party In Brian Head
Every winter, Brian Head Ski Resort holds “Star Parties” at Navajo Lodge. Locals and visitors alike are all welcome to join in the fun and experience the nights wonders like never before! These events are free of charge and last about two hours. Enjoy possibly seeing star clusters, galaxies and the winter Milky Way!
Cross Country Skiing – Dixie National Forest
There is over 2 million acres to explore at the Dixie National Forest. Deer Hollow Non-Motorized Recreation Area is about 30 minutes from Cedar and consists of nearly 1,300 acres of area that can be explored, ideal for cross country skiing.
Photo Credit: Karen Neoh on flickr
Cedar Breaks Yurt Hot Coco
At the beginning of January you can find volunteers at the Yurt located at the Alpine Pond Trailhead each Saturday handing out hot coco to all the visitors. Perfect to warm up after an adventure such as snowboarding, sledding, skiing, or snowshoeing.
Winter At Cedar Breaks
Due to heavy snowfall, Highway 148 is normally closed during the winter. Luckily, it becomes a groomed trail perfect for snowshoeing and cross country skiing throughout the park. Enjoy Cedar Breaks red rock formations, and explore the trail as far as you’d like for free (or very cheap).Read More
The Digital Age and Family Reunions: How to attain the most out of a gathering
In 1932 when my ancestors took a family reunion photo, they did not have in mind our generation, inasmuch as they minded lunch. Instead, they would search for where little Melvin had vanished to and worry about when it was time to leave to get home. However, I am very glad for the time they spared as this photo has now become priceless for the whole family.
This Summer when there is a get together for family reunions, it is important that you ensure future generations can access family reunions that are considered important. Stories and FamilySearch photos offer tools that help in capturing, preserving and sharing memories for the family and future generations.
The following are useful tips and ideas for using stories and photos that may add some flair to reunions. You may try this out in case you haven’t had the chance of using stories and photos before. An automated search was recently added which is useful in finding your ancestors photos. On the photo page, you’re only required to click the blue button in order to log in and see the photos that others have added.
Photo Credit: Christi Olerich (Humble) on flickr
At any family gathering, you will find several photos related activities that may happen. The following are some of the ideas.
Taking a Group Photo- This is a no brainer, and for purposes of generations to come, it is important to have all family members captured.
Photo slideshow- You may set up your television or laptop with a looping slide show of family members. Get as many people as possible to contribute to the slide show. Ensure that the photos are uploaded to FamilySearch.org in order for family members to see the photos on their arrival.
Photo name tags— From every attendee, obtain a headshot and for larger events get their ancestral origin placing a name tag on each photo in order to ensure that everybody remembers their names. Most get-togethers and family reunions are held in locations or other buildings that have Wi-Fi. Other family members may bring along some sort of Internet Hot Spot. Whatever the case is, take advantage of internet access, if available, for you document the family history on FamilySearch.
Story presentation and Photos- On FamilySearch.org when uploading the photo, tag and link it to your family tree. One can arrange for a projector for use in larger groups. A laptop would come in handy for smaller groups. All photos linked to the ancestors in the 4th generation pedigree chart will show up. Just to test it, one may visit the FamilySearch Photos page and click on the blue button.
Photo identification- In order to identify the people in these photos that have been uploaded, work with groups and individuals. The picture of my family reunion is a great example. I do not know everybody in the photo but the blanks can be filled by working together.
Offer time for exploring- In order for the Family Tree fan chart to be explored, it is important to have a few laptops together with stories of their own pace. Stories may be added to photos and other people who were previously unknown can be added to the photos.
Recording time- A video recorder together with a handheld digital audio recorder may be used in capturing individuals sharing memories and telling stories which can be cherished and preserved by future generations.
Nevertheless, you will be glad to share a reunion photo by use of this approach. The stories and photos of our ancestors may be useful in creating a connection that bridges generations.
Favorite Restaurants In Cedar City
Cedar City upon first glance might come off as small and “boring”. Which is funny, because it is quite the opposite of boring, small yes. Boring? Not really. There are actually quite a few things to try out and enjoy while visiting this little town, on of those being dining. We all love food right? Here are some of Cedars top restaurants:
Sonny Boys BBQ
If you’re looking for the best BBQ this side of the Mississippi then you need to check out Sonny Boys. This family owned business started when father and son decided that they wanted to bring some of the best BBQ to Utah. Not only do we think that they succeeded in that goal, we think that they have surpassed that goal.
The Pizza Cart
Made from scratch, wood fired pizza. Do we really need to say much more? This is actaully one of the more popular places to eat in Cedar. This charming and humble little pizza spot started out as an actual cart in front of ace hardware where a couple sold pizza to help pay their way through school. Eventually they opened up the shop and the rest is history!
Grind Coffee House
“Down to earth coffee shop”, that really about sums it up. This place serves espresso, light breakfasts and some lunch. It’s the perfect little spot to set up the laptop and do some homework. The staff here is friendly and welcoming and the decor is warm! Really a relaxing and enjoyable atmosphere.Read More
Bryce Canyon Rim Trail
Bryce Canyon Rim Trail
Length: 4.7 miles one way
The Rim Trail will take its hikers to an elevation gain of less than 200 feet. This trail is decent shape which offers an easy hike to visitors. The hike will basically span the border of the amphitheatre from above north at Fairy Point, passing underneath the Bryce Canyon Lodge and into the Bryce Point. From diametric perspective, this deranged crescent shaped trail offers captivating sceneries to its visitors.
Along with the border of the canyon is where a majority of the trails commences providing an easy hike for those enthusiasts who wanted to increase another loop trail in exploring the Rim Trail. There is hassle in starting at Bryce Point though the Fairyland Point is marked as the trailhead. It is important that hikers should plan ahead otherwise they will have to shuttle relay and start from the beginning all over again.
Fairyland Point marks the northernmost point of the Rim Trail and likewise as trailhead for Fairyland Loop Trail as well as serves as a vantage point for visitors who wish to explore the wonders of Fairyland Canyon, Campbell Canyon, boat Mesa and the Sinking Ship. Because of its distant location from trails that goes together like Sunrise, Sunset and Inspiration Points, this destination offers a more alluring panorama of the park.
Close to half-way throughout the Rim Trail, the Sunrise Point which serves as trailhead to Queens Garden Loop Trail. It is located just atop the Sunset Point and east of the Bryce canyon Lodge. From this point, visitors will experience an absolute scenery of the Queens Garden, Mormon Temple and Bristlecone Point as well as distant landmarks to include Boat Mesa and the Sinking Ship.
Photo Credit: Darlene Bushue on flickr
Sunset Point is situated underneath its sibling, the Sunrise Point, close to the center of the Rim Trail. This serves as the trailhead of the Navajo Loop Trail, considered as the park’s most popular trail. From this very position that visitors can have a close stare at some of the wonderful spots in the park such as the Bryce Amphitheatre, the Silent City, Thor’s Hammer and the tops of the Wall Street’s deep canyon.
Sitting along Rim Trail’s lower leg is the inspiration Point, closer to the west of the Cathedral and beneath the amphitheatre. Inspiration Point holds an immense and good angle spots of the popular landmarks of Sunrise and Sunset Points as well as the Bryce Point even though it has no official trail of its own.
Bryce Point serves as the upper end of the Under the Rim Trail and lower end o the Rim Trail, heading their path from Rainbow Point towards the south. Also serves as Peekaboo Loop Trail’s trailhead, this meanders underneath the side of the amphitheater along with the Cathedral and the Alligator, likewise in the Wall of Windows.
Fishing With Kids
Fishing can be a wonderful hobby not only for adults but for kids as well. Here are top five tips for an enjoyable fishing with children:
Photo Credit: Dominic Cristofor on flickr
Start by getting the right equipment based on the child’s height and weight. A fishing rod should never exceed the size of the child over six inches. The button reels are perfect for beginners and children.
Instead of using a boat, fish in a small pond so when the child starts to get bored, he can run around.
3. Teach Them
Provide as much guidance as possible, but giving the least possible physical assistance. They must do everything themselves – the fight is so exciting! A good fight with a fish of any size is a remarkably fun experience for children.
Even if it’s hot, bring a pair of pants and a sweatshirt or long sleeve shirt. It is cooler near the water. And if mosquitoes begin attacking, children can be covered.
Start with live bait. The worms are ideal. It is more effective to catch fishes – not to mention it is so fun to play with a worm! After practicing a bit, your children will be ready to try the artificial bait. Use lures and baits. They are easier to use and produce good results.Read More