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Experience Utah’s Family-Friendly Festivals
Millions of visitors flock to Utah’s annual events and festivals to celebrate every aspect of life in the Beehive State, from the performing arts to its heritage. Book a Best Western hotel today to get a front row seat for all the fun.
Among the most popular events are the famous Sundance and Slamdance Film Festivals, held every January in Park City. Here, travelers have the opportunity to experience the world’s best independent films. Cedar City is home to the Tony Award®-winning Utah Shakespeare Festival and the Utah Arts Festival in Salt Lake City showcases thousands of artists and live performances every June. Springville plays host to the “largest international dance festival” in the country when World Folkfest comes to town.
The Living Traditions Festival honors the cultures represented in Utah and has been a family favorite for more than 32 years. Likewise, the two-day Midway Swiss Days Festival in Heber Valley showcases the area’s Swiss heritage with crafts and performances, including a Swiss Chorus, dancers and a master yodeler.
Other “can’t miss” events include the Craft Lake City DIY Festival in Salt Lake City, Heber Valley Music & Cowboy Poetry Gathering and the six-week run of performances by the Utah Festival Opera.
Check Out Utah Pioneer Day
Enjoy the Days of '47 in Beautiful Utah
Whether it’s the fireworks and parade at “Handcart Days,” in the city of Bountiful, to the famous Days of ’47 Parade (among other celebrations) in Salt Lake City, Utahns are quite proud of their state.
From northern Utah, to Moab and central Utah, and all the way south into St. George, summer visitors will find a variety of ways to help celebrate 1847, the year of the first Mormon settlers to the area.
Guests of any of the Best Western hotels in Tooele, Sandy, Salt Lake City, Park City, and North Salt Lake City will be in premier locations for some of the best celebrations Utah has to offer.
Salt Lake City is the hub of celebrations – be sure to plan a visit to any one of the three different parades, lace up your running shoes and participate in the Desert News Marathon – or 5K walk, if that’s more your suit – and don’t forget about one of the most exciting rodeos of the year, the Days of ’47 Rodeo, held at the Maverik Center.
At the Utah State Fairpark, be sure and check out Family Fun Day – a free admission event, great for you and the kids. Complete with an art garden, carnival games, and a Mini King and Queen Royalty competition, Family Fun Day is a great way to start off the Utah Pioneer Day celebrations.
America's Freedom Festival
Celebrate the United States of America in the third largest city in Utah County. Make plans to attend the America's Freedom Festival in northern Utah's Provo – located south of Lehi – and home of Brigham Young University. Throughout the years, the festival has gained popularity becoming one of the country's largest celebrations of patriotism.
Bring the whole family to LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on July 4th to celebrate the country's independence during the Stadium of Fire – complete wiith plenty of fireworks and live entertainment. Additional events include the Balloon Fest, Colonial Fest, Freedom Run, Freedom Days, the Grand Parade and the Children's Art Show.
Moab Mountain Bike Festival
The beautiful red rocks of Moab in central Utah are ready for mountain biking action each fall. Bring your mountain bike to join in the fun during the Moab Ho-Down Mountain Bike Festival & Film Festival.
Each year for four days, festival participants have fun racing on Moab's red rock trails. The Shimano Super D Race takes riders through five miles of the lower Porcupine single-track trail and portions of the Porcupine Rim Trail.
Get ready for speed on the North Face Downhill Race, where riders race down the false summit of Amasa Back. Enjoy watching racing movies throughout the festival, and catch awards ceremonies, costume parties, and a hot pepper eating contest.
Sevier County Fair
Travelers along Interstate 70, stop in central Utah for family fun in Richfield. Each August, the Sevier County Fair is the place for great food, dancing, rodeo events, and contests. Held at the Sevier County Fairgrounds, fair events include a demolition derby, 4-H exhibits, a treasure hunt, beauty pageants, a reptile show, a dog show, cooking demonstrations, a FMX stunt show.
St. George Arts Festival
The Town Square of historic Saint George is the site of the long-standing St. George Arts Festival – celebrating works of art from local and national artists. Set in southern Utah, the festival features more than 110 juried artists presenting thousands of pieces of original art, as well as live entertainment.
St. George Arts Festival attendees enjoy sampling the variety of delicious food, taking the kids to the children's area, or catching a ride on the carousel in Town Square.
Utah Arts Festival
Be a part of history in Salt Lake City by attending the Utah Arts Festival. The event has been a celebration of arts, music, and food in downtown Salt Lake City since it debuted in June of 1977.
Spanning four days, the festival has grown to become the state's largest outdoor arts event, drawing approximately 80,000 people. The Utah Arts Festival features more than 100 performing arts groups, over 140 visual artists, over 18 culinary artists, five stages of live performances, and a film festival – and kids have a blast in Art Yard.
Utah Shakespearean Festival
Celebrate great theatre and rich traditions in the southern Utah town of Cedar City. Attend a performance at the Utah Shakespearean Festival and get ready for a night of entertainment. Since 1962, this Utah festival of outdoor theatre has gained popularity and recognition.
The festival has grown from modest beginnings to become a year-round production at the Adams Memorial Shakespearean Theatre, on the campus of Southern Utah University. While at the festival also enjoy the seminars, orientations, backstage tours and Repertory Magic.
Utah Summer Games
Held annually in June, the Utah Summer Games are a series of sporting events located in Cedar City. Set in southern Utah, the Utah Summer Games were established in 1986 – and today supports athleticism of all ages.
The Utah Summer Games sports festival features events in archery, cycling, swimming, tennis, and wrestling – plus some alternative sports like arm wrestling, pickleball, bowling, ultimate Frisbee, and horseshoes.
The games, including a 5K and 10K run, are held for three weeks at Southern Utah University.