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Trip planning - need help

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Perth
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Trip planning - need help

Guys

Could really do with some local input on our plans.

We are a family of 2 adults and 4 kids (13, 11,9,7). After many years of begging the kids have finally worn us down and we are taking them to Disneyland.

We don't expect to be getting back to the States anytime soon and thought we would try to work in LV and SLC into the trip. So, after about a week in and around Anaheim we will drive to LV and spend a couple days there (I'll save that for the LV forum). Then we plan on driving up to SLC. It just happens that we will be there over General Conference weekend.

My plan at the moment looks a bit like this:

Fri: - drive from LV to SLC - Fri night - Jazz game

Sat - morning - temple square/church history museum, lunch at Lion House, afternoon - dunno - shopping??? Any other ideas?

Sun - conference??? - afternoon - This is the Place and Heritage Village

Monday - would love to take the kids sledding - will there still be snow? Where would be a good place to take them?

We will probably leave on either the Monday or the Tuesday to head back to LV.

So, ideas for a young Australian family who want to try to cram in as much as they can over a long weekend?

Thanks.

Salt Lake City, Utah
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1. Re: Trip planning - need help

johnpaladin, (can gals answer as well ? ;-) )

It is great that you want to visit SLC. Is there any reason you want to visit Las Vegas? Because really I would not want to drive from LA to SLC and back again for a short visit. But maybe you are used to very long drives? It is about 7 hrs from LV to SLC, and back again and about 5 hrs to LA depending on traffic. So anyway, I would really recommend missing LV and flying to SLC. Personally. (But then I get to LV on a fairly regular basis and have gotten over the glitz, but anyway, think about it)

However to answer your questions. Your plans sound great.

FIrst of all be sure to have hotel reservations since they do get full Conference weekend.

Is there for sure a Jazz game Fri night? That would be fun.

You can certainly spend more than a morning touring temple square, plaza, church history and art museum, Joseph Smith Memorial bldg etc. The Garden restaurant might be nice for lunch as well. Shopping at City Creek across the street would be great, a visit to the State Capitol and maybe to the Daughters of the Utah Pioneer museum next door to the capitol as well.

Sunday if you want to attend a conference session it would be best to have tickets. These are available from your local LDS church leaders. Without tickets you'll be in the long line for extra seats for which you do need to get there extra early on Sunday morning. The choir broadcast is first and people need to be in their seats for that (as well as the morning session) by 9:15 when they close the doors since it is a live broadcast... so any other session of conference would be nicer to attend than that one in which for a standby seat you reportedly might need to be in line by 6 or 7 am. ( I haven't tried for a few years so things may be different). But maybe think about a Saturday session.

This is the Place is a fun place to visit and would be a great sunday afternoon activity if the weather is good. Another place that might be fun would be the Utah Museum of Natural History. Great for dinosaurs and other science stuff.

I'm assuming you are talking about April? Skiing goes until April 15 unless conditions are really bad, but I expect you would be able to find somewhere to sled. There are several places with tow ropes and tubes and runs like Gorgoza and Soldier Hollow. Or you could buy a sled a kmart (or other similar store) and try the less organized Jordan Pines/ Spruces up Big Cottonwood canyon.

Have fun, feel free to ask other questions as well.

Perth
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2. Re: Trip planning - need help

Thanks Kbecjeans - my 'guys' was meant in an entirely gender-neutral way so of course responses from gals (or even dolls) is welcome.

I don't have any problem with the drive - in fact we will be making a 4 hr each way trip for the weekend right before we leave for the States.

Our reason for coming to SLC is really just that we thought we were unlikely to get back there anytime soon and thought it would be worth seeing the 'mothership'. ;-)

Yes, the Jazz are definitely playing. Looking at tickets on Stubhub ATM.

Was thinking Lion House for lunch and maybe Garden for dinner (hear the views are something).

As for Conference tickets - my preference is for Sunday morning because we are somewhat limited in what we can do on a Sunday. However, I have recently found out that the policy for international tickets has changed just in time for it to mess up our plans. Tickets are no longer arranged through local leadership - now you need to arrive at the ticket booth at the Conference Centre, show your passports (and some immigration form) and collect tickets.

However, the tickets open on the Monday before Conference and we don't plan to get there until the Friday before. So, we now I have real doubts as to whether we would be able to get tickets at all - despite coming all the way from Australia. Also you need to be seated quite early and no children under 8 are permitted. So, that rules out my 7 year old and, since we could hardly leave her alone, it rules out my wife (or me) too. Since we also have a 13 year old with special needs who would find it hard to seat still for that long and since my wife is out anyways it'll probably be easier for him to stay out too - so that's half my family out and no guarantee of tickets.

On this basis I am starting to wonder about my plan. Maybe we just tell the kids its a Saturday and go sledding on the Sunday instead. We can pick up 'This is the Place' and maybe some shopping in Park City on the same day. Then we can leave SLC a day earlier than planned. Would love to know a bit more about possible sledding options. I will google Gorgoza and Soldier Hollow.

What do you think? Will stuff be open on Conference Weekend and especially the Sunday? Is there anything else we must do/see while we are there? Is it worth trying to squeeze in Antelope Is? Do you think we could get a quick look at Zions on the way back to LV or is that pushing it for time? Thanks again.

Perth
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3. Re: Trip planning - need help

Sorry - having googled some sledding options - what are the chances that the local parks would still have sledding over the weekend on 5-7 April? Or is it too late in the season? (obviously you can't be expected to predict the weather but what do you think) I like the idea of just picking up a sled at Kmart (or similar) and just rocking up at a local park and going for it. Seems so quintessentially American. Oh, and can you help with what clothing would be required for sledding? Do you need boots and waterproof pants? Never taken the kids to the snow before - they will absolutely flip if there's still snow all around.

Oh, I won't need tyre chains or anything will I?

Sorry if this sounds dumb.

Salt Lake City, Utah
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4. Re: Trip planning - need help

So much to think about for sure.

Okay, not sure how they expect international visitors to get tickets a week ahead... sounds unfair to me. Maybe they'll have some held back. I think they now have it broadcast into the tabernacle as well. But the 8 year old rule...is that for Sunday morning only? or all sessions? Because of the choir broadcast things are a bit different for sunday morning...Even if you don't get in it is fun to be on Temple Square during conference, but you'll get a bit of that Saturday morning as well...

Lion house for lunch, the Garden for dinner would be fine.. though I have never tried it during conference. Things just get very busy those couple of days.

Very most likely there will be no snow for sledding in the valley (ie local parks). Obviously that is always open for change, but it would be very rare. You'll need to be in the mountains. And you'll want gloves and coats for sure, and while waterproof pants are best we didn't ever have them when we were young. But the kids will definitely get colder faster and you'll need something warm to change into.

other stuff: I think I mentioned : Another place that might be fun would be the Utah Museum of Natural History. Great for dinosaurs and other science stuff.

There is no change for conference, places that are open will still be open, places that are closed will still be closed, and most stuff is open sunday, except for City Creek mall which is closed so check it out Saturday.

And a stop off at Bryce (you'll probably like it better) and Zion along the way either going or coming would be a great addition. You'll need half a day each at the very bare minimum. (take some time away from LV... really)

Edited: 11:40 pm, February 12, 2013
Salt Lake City, Utah
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5. Re: Trip planning - need help

I think I'll chime in on this one.

I have 5 children, 3 of which are still at home (17, 11, 7) and I live in Murray, UT. For late-season sledding we usually go up to Big Cottonwood Canyon and sled on the hills by the parking lot to Donut Falls. They have snow until May (unless we get a freaskishly hot Spring). It's hard to find sleds in stores now, all of the Spring merchandise is up. Unless you are thinking of taking your kids to the paid sledding hills... which I am not too sure if they will still have snow, it really depends on the weather.

This is the Place Park is priceless. My kids love it and want to go to it every year even though we live just a few miles away. Don't miss it. They are only open 10-4 on Sunday so don't wait too long if you're going to go visit. Plan on at least 2-3 hours there.

Lion House luncheon, it's not bad. It's a little too cafeteria style for my taste but not bad. It's nice to eat in an old, historic building.

The Garden does have a spectacular view of Temple Square but it does get REALLY busy Conference Weekend. At times they reach full capacity and will stop taking names.

For General Conference, it is hard to get tickets, like you stated. But just simply going to Temple Square and mingling with thousands of people from all over the world is a blast. They broadcast the talks over speakers on the grounds and inside the visitor centers (in case you get cold).

I hope this helps.

Paul

Salt Lake City, Utah
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6. Re: Trip planning - need help

<< For late-season sledding we usually go up to Big Cottonwood Canyon and sled on the hills by the parking lot to Donut Falls.>.

Yup that is the one by Jordan Pines/ Spruces

7. Re: Trip planning - need help

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