Orem: A City of Community Spirit
As the Mayor of Orem I have the privilege of being able to attend many events throughout the city each week. As I write this newsletter article, it is Saturday evening, April 20th, Easter Weekend.
As I traveled from my city office this morning to UVU, I passed by the Mountain View High School football stadium on Center Street where Orem City was hosting its annual Easter Egg Hunt event. There were cars lined up all down Center Street. And the entire parking lot was filled. There were hundreds of families there. It was a grand event.
Next thing this morning I attended the autism "Uplifting Celebration" event on the lawn next to the UVU UCCU Center. I was greeted by a rainbow of colored balloons over the walkway leading to many booths, tables, and people playing games, painting faces, eating hot dogs, and generally having a great time together. At noon we all moved over to the baseball stadium where two large bags of multi colored balloons were let go into the sky. Next an autistic boy threw out the first pitch for a UVU baseball game. I met many wonderful people and families from all over the county there. Everyone was having a fun celebration together.
As I left there, I traveled over to the Sunset Heights East Neighborhood clean up day lunch and get together at the city park next to the recreation center, where I helped to cook hot dogs and hamburgers for a little while before I walked around to spend time talking to the residents of that great neighborhood. About 8 missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints were also in attendance. I met many mothers, fathers, grandfathers, grandmothers, and many children, each enjoying the company of those around them. This is an annual event that I always look forward to each year. Council Member David Spencer was there helping to cook with me. We had many of our great City Firemen there to help out as well. It was a great gathering. I noticed while sitting next to one the missionaries that his arm was red with scratches from cleaning up bushes and trees in the neighborhood. I am thankful for all who care so much for their neighbors and neighborhoods to clean them up in the spring.
Afterwards I left and drove over to the University Place Mall Orchard Park where a Giant Easter Egg contest was being held. There were blow up inflatables, fresh ice cream, music, an egg drop contest, warm freshly made cotton candy - some of the best I have ever tasted, farm animals to pet, and a Giant Easter Egg Contest. I don't know how many people showed up, but the parking lots were full, and the park had people and activities going in every corner. To top it off the water fountains were running and fun to watch. I had the fun opportunity to be one of the judges of the Giant Easter Egg Contest. The kids were laughing, eating.
As I traveled home, I thought about how much fun I had at all of these events in the city today. But more than that I thought about how awesome it was to watch so many in the community enjoying a wonderful spring day in Orem together.
Orem truly has a sense of community spirit whereby families and individuals can just enjoy spending time with each other in fun, wholesome, and worthwhile activities on a beautiful Easter Weekend.
Orem will celebrate its 100th year birthday this coming Saturday on May 4th starting at 5 PM at the University Place Orchard Park. There will be music, games, food, fireworks, and yes birthday cake. Please come and again enjoy spending time together as a community celebrating our great City's birthday.