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Temple Square and The Great Salt Lake

Posted by on May 25, 2014

New Reflections 2-

We arrived in Salt Lake City just in time to see the spring flowers planted around Temple Square.  This is an amazing sight.

The first day I walked through Temple Square the place was buzzing with people pulling carts of flowers, some were planting and some were driving up along the streets with more flowers. Now these were not just flats of baby flowers like you would buy at the Home Depot® and plant in our yards in the spring. Oh no, these were fully blooming adult flowers. All sizes. Tulips that were almost 2 feet tall, Oriental Poppies, Pansies, daffodils,ferns and well really every spring flower you could imagine. Flower Power at its best. I decided I’d come back the next day after a day at the Library to see how it all looked and get some pictures.


Spring flowers in the square


Orange Poppy with Bee


I read in the paper that over 167,000 plants were planted in over 200 different beds around the square with over 700 varieties. The gardens are redesigned every six months and replanted mostly by volunteers and seven full time supervising gardeners.   If you like flowers, here’s a selection of what I saw. Click to enlarge:




 Below is the Assembly building and although I didn’t get a good close up of the sculpture, there is a seagull sculpture featured at the top of the monument. It was sculpted by Mahroni Young.

In 1848 the Mormon pioneers planted crops for their first spring season in Utah. As the crops ripened, crickets descended upon the farms from the foothills east of the valley. The insects consumed many of the fields.



Temple Square buildings

The Assembly Building


According to traditional account, the harvest was saved by flocks of native seagulls which devoured the crickets. This event, popularly called the “Miracle of the Gulls”, is remembered by Latter-day Saints as a miracle.


Seagul Monument


Next to the Family History Library is a pioneer home that was part of the original settlement built in 1847. It was the home of the Deuel Family. 

A typical pioneer cabin from 1888

A typical pioneer cabin from 1888


photo 4

Inside the Pioneer Cabin

Inside the Pioneer Cabin

Driving west from Salt Lake City on Interstate 80, you can’t help but notice a large building built right out on the edge of the Salt lake.  Its interesting architecture drew my attention right away ~  THE SALTAIR.


The first Saltair, was completed in 1893 it  rested on over 2,000 posts and pilings, many of which remain and are still visible over 110 years later.

The Saltair-Pavilion-1900

The Saltair-Pavilion-1900




The pavilion and a few other buildings were destroyed by fire on April 22, 1925.   A new pavilion was built and the resort was expanded at the same location by new investors  With a huge new dance floor – the world’s largest at the time,  Saltair II became more known as a dance palace, the amusement park becoming secondary to the great traveling bands of the day, such as Glenn Miller.  Saltair II was forced to close during the Second World War, which forced the rationing of fuel and other resources while it took many of the resort’s paying customers and vital employees out of Utah. The resort closed in 1958.  



  The last pavilion, Saltair III, was constructed out of a salvaged Air Force aircraft hangar and was located approximately a mile west of the original. Once again the lake was a problem, this time flooding the new resort only months after it opened. The waters again receded after several years, and again new investors restored and repaired and planned, only to discover that the waters continued to move away from the site, again leaving it high and dry.





Today, there are still concerts held here after several investors from the music industry pooled together to purchase the building.  It’s a very interesting building. Looks like architecture from a far away country.   It has a great view of the salt lake to the west.




The view from Saltair

The view from Saltair


A mountain of salt at a processing plant

A mountain of salt at a processing plant


 Moving west along Interstate 80 about 50 miles from Saltair the highway crosses what’s left of the ancient Lake Bonneville.  Now also known as the Bonneville Salt Flats.


Tourists at Bonneville Salt Flats

Tourists at Bonneville Salt Flats





Heading west following Interstate 80








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