Back in the Day in Park City Utah
Remember the good old days? Streets were clean, people were friendly, windows had flowerboxes, buildings had fresh paint, and the grass was green. It was safe to go out at night, children and parents had picnics in the park while enjoying free music concerts, and artists sold paintings on the sidewalks. The air was fresh and sweet, days were always sunny, and the sky was always blue. At night stars filled the clean, inky black skies, and if you saw a falling star, you could make a wish. But what for? Life was filled with all the good things anyone could want.
Wishing for the way it was back then? Wish no more. The good old days are alive and well in Park City, Utah.
All the sweet things that life once was are what Park City is all about this summer.
True, in January, Park City is known as the home of a young, hip, all-too-crowded but fun Sundance Film Festival, and in fall and winter the city is known as one of the most beautiful snow ski resort destinations in America, but in summer Park City is entirely different. The crowds are gone. It’s quiet and serene and summer provides the perfect time for travelers to visit this remarkable place.
First of all, the scenery is awe-inspiring, and the town is a small, enchanting summer place with a slow pace and very few tourists. As in any ski resort city, summer is the low season, meaning rock-bottom rates at fine hotels and condominiums, sale prices in all the shops, no lines at the theatre, no waiting for tables at fine restaurants, and a higher quality of service in all areas. Shuttles from the Salt Lake City airport (and lodging at the hotels) are nearly empty (and affordable), and the town is waiting with open arms to greet its summertime guests.
What is there to do in Park City? The downtown area flanks an old-fashioned main street whose buildings echo the old style of its roots as a silver mining town. Delightful little shops, bookstores, candy stores, theatres, and restaurants line the street. Mountains blanketed in deep green pine forests rise on either side of the little village. And just up the mountainside a short way, the Deer Valley Resort boasts a beautiful outdoor amphitheatre at Snow Park Lodge (reminiscent of the Hollywood Bowl, only smaller), where each Wednesday night in the summer residents spread out blankets and bring picnics to hear live music while the children run and play, rolling down the soft, grassy hillside. The Utah Symphony & Opera's Deer Valley Music Festival, a weekend jazz festival, and other concerts are also held in the outdoor amphitheater, and gourmet picnic baskets are available for purchase at the Lodge.
Recommended Park City lodging include the Silver Queen Hotel (with its decorative, eclectic and interesting rooms—each a work of art) and the spacious condos at the Caledonian, which will make you feel as though you’ve moved into a large home in the area. (These two fine hotels/condos have full kitchens so you can save money by dining in). The Park City Hotel and the Canyons at Park City are resorts you’ll want to visit, as well. For the budget traveler, the Holiday Inn Express is not far from downtown, and a free bus shuttles visitors all over the town and up the mountainsides to the resort areas.
Park City’s restaurants are amazing—try the Mustang Grill, or Robert Redford’s restaurant “Zoom,” or have Asian-infusion cuisine at Shabu, which Conde Nast Traveler just named one of the best in the U.S. My favorite lunch spot was the Royal Street Café up on the mountainside at the Deer Valley Resort. Which was better, the view or the menu? I can’t decide.
Be sure to stop and visit Olympic Cauldron Park, home of the 2002 Winter Olympics, a place where you can see future Olympians in training and visit the Alf Engen Ski Museum, as well as tour the area where the Olympics were held.
All the things you loved about the good old days are happening today in Park City, Utah. So, quick—visit before the snow falls in late October!
Happy Days are here again!
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