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Old 01-23-2011, 11:12 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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We, the regular posters, decided we needed a FAQ stickie more than we needed an official chat thread. We will be adding to this as it is created. I did not write these but I am the one posting them.

For a view of LDS (i.e., Mormon) cultural practices, see The lowdown on us Mormons..., particularly post #391.
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Last edited by SouthernBelleInUtah; 02-01-2011 at 11:59 PM..
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:58 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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WEATHER FAQS for Salt Lake City:
Question: So what’s the climate like in Salt Lake City? Is the summer heat unbearable? Do the winters last forever? Do you even have spring and fall there?

Answer: Salt Lake City has four distinct seasons, which is one reason people like it here so much. As to which of them is “unbearable” and “lasts forever,” that’s strictly a matter of personal opinion. Here are some actual facts to help you decide for yourself how you’d like the climate here:

With an average of about 60 inches of the cold, fluffy, white stuff annually, Salt Lake City is the third snowiest city in the United States. We can expect to see our first snowfall on about November 6, and our last one on roughly April 18. That means snow is a reasonably likely possibility 45% of the year. While temperatures seldom drop to below 0 degrees, it is not at all unusual during the winter months for the mercury to not hit 32 degrees.

Spring is typically wet, with quite variable temperatures and an occasional big overnight surprise. Just when the temperatures climb into the 70s for a few days and everyone thinks winter’s over, a cold front moving in out of Alaska will dump a few more inches of snow on the ground. But at this time of the year, new snow on the ground lasts only a day or so at the most.

Summers are hot and dry. In an average year, there will typically be 45-55 days of temperatures in the 90’s. On five or six of those days, the mercury will hit 100. If that sounds hot, it’s because it is, but due to our unusually low humidity, it’s much more tolerable than it would be otherwise. The only real moisture we can expect during the summer months comes in the form of July and August thundershowers originating with the Mexico and Arizona monsoons. Utah ranks as the second driest state in the country, following Nevada.

Fall is beautiful, marked by Indian Summer days and crisp, chilly nights. The transition from summer to winter normally seems to be more gradual and a little more predictable than the one from winter to summer. This is the time to enjoy the vibrant fall colors as the mountains east of the city begin to turn gold and red. It’s also probably the best time to visit Utah’s five National Parks.

info from Katzpur

Last edited by SouthernBelleInUtah; 02-06-2011 at 04:13 PM..
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Old 01-30-2011, 11:12 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
19,864 posts, read 60,015,703 times
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Default Inversions

What are these temperature inversions I hear about? Are they bad for you and do they last all winter long?

A temperature inversion is the phenomenon which occurs when the air at ground level is colder than the air higher up. When the cold air stops circulating, it becomes murky. The dust and pollutants which might otherwise not be so noticeable, are trapped where they are not just breathable but visible. The result can be some very unhealthy air. While temperature inversions can affect areas throughout northern Utah, Salt Lake City and Logan are notoriously bad in this regard. Inversions are made worse by snow remaining on the ground for days at a time, and yet the only thing that gets rid of them is a good strong storm, which inevitably clears the air but brings more snow.

We can find ourselves in a pattern of inversion after inversion for weeks at a time. The weather will warm up a few degrees before a storm, the wind and snow coming in – usually from Alaska – will hit us, we’ll have a couple of beautiful days with snow covering the ground and brilliant blue, cloudless skies. These will be followed by a few days of hazy sunshine and then a few days of brown muck. Then the process will repeat itself. The “inversion season” generally starts in late December and extends into mid-February, when it starts getting a little better.

As has already been pointed out, the air we are compelled to breathe during these periods of time is unhealthy for all of us. For those with asthma or other respiratory problems, it’s even worse. Still many people with these medical conditions do live and thrive in the northern Utah valleys. And even for those whose breathing isn’t noticeably impacted by the bad air, day after day with no direct sunshine and visibility of perhaps only a couple of blocks can affect your mood. When that happens, take a drive up to one of the ski resorts since they are never plagued by this dreaded mud soup. If you can’t do that, you might at least hope to catch one of the magnificent sunsets over the Oquirrh Mountains to the west of the city. On hazy days when the inversion isn’t at its worst, the atmosphere plays tricks with the sun’s rays, and the sky can be a pretty spectacular explosion of color.

info from Katzpur
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Last edited by SouthernBelleInUtah; 02-09-2011 at 01:50 PM..
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Old 02-03-2011, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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Neighborhoods of the Valley:

Sugar House
Sugar House is an older section of the city that is named after a sugar mill that was never built. It runs roughly on from 1300 South to 2700 South, and from 700 East to Foothill Dr. Here is a link to a map of the area: http://www.sugarhousecouncil.com/index.php/map.

Most of the houses were built between 1915 and 1950, more or less. There are a few new apartment buildings and one major shopping area, Sugar House Center, off 2100 South between 1300 East and 1100 East. That contains a ShopCo, a dollar movie, Whole Foods, PetCo, many chain restaurants, Barnes&Noble, a Public Library, and various stores. It is open vs. being a mall. Nearby is Westminster College.

There were no master planned communities when the area was built. The houses are all individual and there are no HOAs unless one of new PUDs have one. Many of the houses that look original were completely gutted inside and re-done in the last 10 yrs or so. You can’t tell from the outside what the inside looks like. Most people who renovated chose to keep as many period details as possible. We love the charm and individuality of the area! There are mature trees and landscaping throughout the area. Almost all lots are fenced. Many areas have alleys with the garage off the alley.

In SLC, Community Councils have a lot of power over zoning matters. A variance must come before the respective council before it goes to the Zoning Board. The Board generally listens to what the Council recommended. Here is a link to the Sugar House Community Council: Sugar House Community Council


Daybreak
Daybreak is the largest new master-planned community in Salt Lake County with over 4,000 acres in size being built by land development company Kennecott Land in South Jordan, Utah. Construction began in 2004 and the community is expected to continue building for the next 18 to 20 years. When completed, it will contain more than 20,000 residential units.

Daybreak is designed using a traditional neighborhood development model (TND) which means that all homes within the community are within a five-minute walk or bike ride of a major amenity such as a park, the lake, or a shopping area, reducing resident's dependence on automobile travel and providing the opportunity for a healthier lifestyle.

The home designs have been inspired by Salt Lake City's historical neighborhoods such as Sugar House, The Avenues, and Harvard-Yale areas, and include large front porches and alley-loaded garages. Exterior styles include Colonial Revival, Craftsman and Victorian. The homes along each street also contain a brighter color palette than is found in most suburban neighborhoods. Recently, homes with a more modern style and even solar powered homes have been added.

Some of the questions we often hear about Daybreak include:

How are the Schools in Daybreak?
We love the elementary schools here; they are nice and new with tons of amenities (30 new Macs in the computer lab etc.) We have four kids all in elementary and we are very happy with the school. One thing we like is parental involvement, they have a ton here. My wife likes to help in the classes and in a couple of the grades she is in rotation with many other parents.

The only downside I see is the size of the school but they seem to manage it well, most classes are well under 30 kids. The upside is most kids are well behaved so the teacher can focus. They have 2 schools with year around schedules (we like that, no 3 months of torture LOL) but the Charter school in Daybreak is traditional schedule. You can check out the 3 schools here (Daybreak, Eastlake and Early Light) http://www.jordandistrict.org/ this group gave a lot of money to our school last year. http://www.jordaneducationfoundation.org/

We are not LDS are there other Christian churches in our near Daybreak?
There are dozens of non-LDS churches in within 20 minutes of here but we now have two in Daybreak. One is an offshoot of a big church in Draper http://smccutah.com/content2/ and the other just opened last week using the Early Light school facilities. http://www.onecommunity.tv/

Isn’t Daybreak a far commute to downtown Salt Lake?
Far is relative depending on where you come from but Downtown is about 17 miles from Daybreak so the drive can be 30-40 minutes depending on the time of day. Starting in August Daybreak will have two light rail train (TRAX) stops making it it easy to get to almost anywhere in the valley.
They are also building a new highway and future freeway called Mountain View Corridor, this will help ease north and south traffic once completed.

Is there any shopping or restaurants in or near Daybreak?
Daybreak has a few restaurants in SoDa row but just down the hill is the District with a Megaplex, shops and restaurants, grocery etc.
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Last edited by SouthernBelleInUtah; 02-06-2011 at 07:02 PM..
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Old 02-06-2011, 04:12 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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Is Ogden as run-down as "they' say it is? Is it safe? How are the schools?

When one asks this question, it is necessary to be quite specific. Ogden is one city--the main city--in Weber County The entire county has a population of around 200,000 people. The simple answer is that much of downtown Ogden and inner city Ogden is "run down" by most objective standards.

On the other hand, other cities right next to it are in great shape. Roy, Riverdale, South Ogden, North Ogden, and Pleasant View are growing vibrant communities. Out west in the county there are some communities such as West Haven, Plain City, Farr West, and Hooper that are also pretty good places to live.

When one drives through downtown Ogden, one will likely note there are many empty office buildings, empty lots where buildings used to stand, and marginal businesses occupying space in the very heart of the downtown area. Venturing away from Main Street (Washington Boulevard) just a block or two in any direction one will find a lot of old housing. Much of it was built sixty or even seventy years ago. Much of it is badly maintained. This area sees its share of crime (violent and nonviolent) and than some.

To be fair, there has been a sort of "Renaissance" in the downtown area in the last decade. A new mall has been built. You will find a few restaurants, new apartments, Gold's Gymn, a Children's Museum, and other businesses. If you look around town, there are new signs of life. Some government buildings are being built and a new Walmart is under construction on a formerly bad part of Wall Avenue. One very notable feature about Ogden is a Dinosaur Museum at the mouth of Ogden Canyon.

The consensus of most though is that while these are promising signs that Ogden still has a very long way to go. Perhaps, in twenty years this community will be a place that young working families will choose to settle. For now, that goal remains elusive.

Ogden schools are not good. Statistical measures show that the students in these schools achieve less than students in the nearby Weber School District. However, this is probably much less a function of teachers, buildings and staff than it is the families many of these children come from.

If one must live in Ogden proper, the best part of the city is undoubtedly the southeastern part up by Weber State University. The houses here are a little newer and nicer.


info from MarkG
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:24 AM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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Where should I live if I want to be around others who drink, smoke, and aren't real religious?

Answer: Salt Lake City is probably the least LDS area in Utah (if there is such a thing). Census figures show that the population in the state of Utah is over 60% Mormon. There are areas though which are more diverse than others.

If being around folks who drink and smoke and aren't LDS is a major concern to you, I'd recommend the following areas within Salt Lake County:

1. Inner City Salt Lake.
2. The area around the University of Utah.
3. The Sugarhouse Area.

The eastbench of Salt Lake and Federal Heights are pretty diverse too. However, living in these places is going to be very expensive. The houses available can easily run $500,000.

As a general rule, the closer you get to Salt Lake, the less "LDS" the area is. You'll also find more religiously diverse areas north in Ogden. If you really want to live in outlying areas, I'm lead to believe that Grand County (Moab), Carbon County (Price), and Tooele County (west of Salt Lake) are diverse too. These communities are so small though that you will give up many "big city" amenities by living there.

2. How hard is it to get a particular wine in Utah?

A starting point for the answer to this question is the simple fact that there is only one place you can go in Utah to purchase a bottle (not a glass), but a bottle of wine. Those places are the state liquor stores run by Utah Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control. The state has given itself a "monopoly" on sales of both wine and hard liquor.

You'll find liquor stores around the Salt Lake Valley. They are more rare in the outlying cities. Although, all significant cities in Utah have at least one state liquor store.

In recent years, the state has tried to cater more to the drinking population than it has in the past. As a result, you'll find specialty liquor stores in Salt Lake and Ogden that cater to wine drinkers. They are usually called the "Wine Store". If you don't find what you are looking for here ask the clerk.

The reality is you probably can't get the rarest French Bordeaux or that very unique wine you found at the family owned winery on your trip to the Napa Valley in California. The state purchases a bulk liquor supply for its stores. Its rumored that many of the purchasers are non-drinkers.

While the state is doing better than it has in the past, Utah is simply not the best place to buy and consume alcoholic beverages. If this is a major part of your life, you may wish to reconsider your reasons for moving here.

I will repeat this: You can't buy wine or hard liquor in grocery stores here. Here is the link to the state's web site for alcohol, with lists of what they carry. http://abc.utah.gov/

3. What Christian Churches are there?

This may surprise you, but we "LDS" consider ourselves Christians. However, this is not what you mean. I accept that you mean what denominations of traditional Christianity are present in Utah.

The answer is that in the Salt Lake area just about every denomination of church is present that you can imagine. We have Catholic Cathedrals, Muslim Mosques, and Buddhist Temples. The religious diversity in the Salt Lake area is far more than people think that it is.

If you are Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, Episcopalian, Catholic, Unitarian, Quaker, or just a fundamentalist non-denominational Christian there is a church here for you. I do point though that despite the large number of non-LDS churches present in the Salt Lake Valley that the vast percentage of people do call themselves LDS and LDS churches and institutions will predominate.

Outside of Salt Lake County there is less diversity. However, I have found very satisfied members of denominational Christianity living in Ogden, Layton, Bountiful, and even St. George.

info from MarkG
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Last edited by SouthernBelleInUtah; 03-11-2011 at 02:03 PM..
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Old 03-07-2011, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
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Best Resort to learn to ski? Best for lessons?

Welcome to Utah where we really do have "The Greatest Snow on Earth"! Salt Lake City is a great place to stay with 11 Ski areas within 60 minutes of the airport.

If you are staying on the Park City side of the Wasatch Mountains, Deer Valley is the best place to learn to ski and take a lesson for the following reasons;
1) No Snowboarders allowed. I can hear the groans now...Snowboarders move down the hill differently, get on and off lifts differently. This alone can "scare" beginner skiers in what can be a somewhat anxiety filled day to start with.
2) "Magic Carpet" at 2 base areas. A Magic Carpet is basically a conveyor belt that you stand on to get up the hill. Great way to get used to "sliding" down before you need to worry about loading/unloading from lift chairs.
3) Ski School limits the amount of skiers in the classes. For Adults, they have a limit of 4, kids usually are around that same number. This allows for a more personal and fun experience instead of the "herding cats" situation of large classes.
4) Deer Valley has been ranked the #1 Ski Resort in North America for the last 3 years in a row for a reason. They love what they do and it shows in every little detail. You may pay a small amount more than at PCMR and Canyons but you get what you pay for.
One thing to keep in mind about DV, if you are coming up during Holiday times, book EVERYTHING including lift tickets and rental gear ahead of time. Lift tickets are limited to 7200ish per day and they sell out frequently during peak times-same for rental gear all over Park City at those times. Let your fingers do the walking on the Internet and save yourself any disappointments.

If you are staying in SLC, I would head up to Alta for alot of the same reasons listed above. Once again, no snowboarders allowed, small class sizes and a "Magic Carpet" too.
Alta has a nice relaxed feel to the resort, all the amentities you need and some beautiful scenery.
Be aware on lessons, it is first come first served, no reservations.
Alta really wants people to learn to ski and you can actually go up and ski for FREE after 3 pm. Check the Alta websight for the details, but what a fantastic way to introduce your kids/girlfriend/boss etc to a great sport.

Info from SkiBarbie

Last edited by SouthernBelleInUtah; 05-01-2011 at 04:38 PM..
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