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Planes, trains and orangutans: 12 distinctly Utah things to do this summer

Summer excursions » 12 distinctly Utah things to do this summer

By Scott D. Pierce

| The Salt Lake Tribune

First Published May 23 2013 06:23 am • Last Updated Dec 07 2013 11:32 pm

Summertime is almost here. Kids will be looking for fun things to do, while their parents will want them to do something interesting and educational.

While there’s always a park or swimming pool, we suggest trying one — or all — of these 12 adventures that are distinctively Utah.

At a glance

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Antelope Island State Park

This island filled with bison, pronghorn and bighorn sheep is a Utah treasure. There’s a great visitor center, hiking, biking, backpacking. And it’s the best way to see the Great Salt Lake.

Where » 4528 W. 1700 South, Syracuse

Open » Seven days a week, 7 a.m.-10 p.m..

Admission » $9 per vehicle ($6 seniors); $3 cyclists and pedestrians

Online » stateparks.utah.gov/parks/antelope-island

Heber Valley Railroad


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The historic, restored engines and passenger cars are like stepping into a movie or TV show. This weekend, Friday-Monday, that will be especially true: Thomas the Tank Engine from "Shining Time Station" will be in Heber.

Where » 450 S. 600 West, Heber City

Open » Times and tours vary. Check the website for more information.

Admission » $8-$30; family packages available

Online » hebervalleyrr.org

Hill Aerospace Museum

This indoor-outdoor museum features more than 90 aircraft and missiles. Kids will be fascinated, as will adults.

Where » 7961 Wardleigh Road, Hill AFB,

Open » Seven days a week, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Admission » Free, but donations accepted

Online » hill.af.mil/library/museum

Hogle Zoo

The most distinctively Utah thing about this zoo is its location — a 42-acre site at the mouth of Emigration Canyon.

Where » 2600 E. Sunnyside Ave., Salt Lake City

Open » 9 a.m.-5 p.m. seven days a week

Admission » $9.75-$12.75

Online » hoglezoo.org

Lagoon

Utah’s amusement park is part of the state’s history. It opened in 1886; it includes the Pioneer Village (filled with historic buildings); the wooden coaster dates to 1921. It’s a local tradition.

Where » 375 Lagoon Drive, Farmington

Open » Now open weekends and Memorial Day; open seven days a week June 7-Aug. 25; times vary.

Admission » $29.95-$49.95 day pass; season passes available

Online » lagoonpark.com

Natural History Museum of Utah

This is where you’ll find the dinosaur bones. Learn about American Indians. Discover gems and minerals. And look into the future. Fascinating for kids and adults.

Where » 301 Wakara Way (on the University of Utah campus), Salt Lake City

Open » 10 a.m.-5 p.m. every day but Wednesdays, when it stays open until 9 p.m.

Admission » $8-$11

Online » nhmu.utah.edu

Ogden Nature Center

This 152-acre nature preserve features walking trails, bird blinds, live bird exhibits, picnic areas, tree houses and more.

Where » 966 W. 12th St., Ogden

Open » Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Admission » $2-$4

Online » ogdennaturecenter.org

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