Building a dynamic and diverse community that is the regional center for culture, commerce and entertainment. #DowntownSLC
Start at the Clark Planetarium (385-468-7827, 110 S. 400 West, clarkplanetarium.org, open daily 10:30 a.m.to 7 p.m.), arguably one of downtown’s coolest free attractions. This spring and summer the planetarium staff will be busy installing and prototyping an entirely new set of exhibits. Sure, old faves like the Newton’s Daydream and the Foucault Pendulum will remain, but during this summer’s total facility remodel visitors will have a chance to give exhibits like the Moonlander Simulator and Defend the Earth (an asteroid deflection simulator) a try and weigh in on what will be part of the planetarium’s new permanent exhibitions, slated for a grand unveiling in late October Once you’ve blown your mind considering outer space, head over to Harmons Grocery (801-428-0366, 135 E. 100 South, harmonsgrocery.com) for a mid-day bite. With a sushi bar, deli sandwiches, gelato bar, soup and salad bar, and hot entrée station, everyone gets what they want here. Take lunch upstairs to the sunny café or bag it up and head to your next stop, downtown’s illustration of where science, technology, and art meet, The Leonardo (801-531-9800, 209 E. 500 South, theleonardo.org, open noon to 5 p.m.). In June The Leonardo opens its newest exhibition, Flight, an interactive, immersive exploration of the science, technology and engineering behind air travel. Both you and your clan will get to discover the many different ways flight is possible and to envision yourselves among the aerospace innovators of the future through a series of immersive, hands-on exhibits. Now it’s finally time to head outside. Head east of The Leonardo toward one of downtown’s most striking pieces of open space, Library Square (210 E. 410 South). Race your kiddos up the exterior staircase, sweeping up from the library’s plaza level five stories to the rooftop garden. Or simply while away the late afternoon hours meandering through the grounds’ sculpture garden and past the granite water wall and reflection pool, located at the base of the library’s wall of radiant-heating windows, dubbed the Lens.
First stop, Uffens Market (336 W. Broadway). Petunia the metal pig greets visitors (and serves as a repository for donations to fund programming here) walking through the archway of one of downtown’s most eclectic retail areas. Businesses in this unique space include a seafood market, deli, and specialty foods shop, bakery, and Thai restaurant. Sit out on the street under the patio umbrellas with a crunchy, chewy, sweet, and oh-so-good liege waffle from Bruges Waffle & Frites (801-363-4444, brugeswaffle.com). After breakfast venture into Tony Caputo’s Market & Deli (801-531-8669, caputosdeli.com) for picnic lunch provisions. Order a sandwich to from the deli counter or choose from Caputo’s virtually endless selection of meats, cheeses, craft chocolate, and fresh bread. Once your lunch is packed it’s time to hit the road. Take advantage of downtown’s minimal Sunday road traffic and rent a tandem from Salt Lake City Bicycle Co. ($50/day, 801-746-8366, slcbike.com) or snag a GREENbike from the 300 W. 300 South station ($5 for 24-hour pass, $3 for from 31 to 90 minutes, $3 per hour after that, greenbikeslc.org) and ride to Memory Grove Park. (Get there: Head east on 300 South. Turn left (north) when you get to 800 East. Pedal to the intersection with South Temple. Make a left and then immediate right onto K Street. Ride K Street two short blocks to a left onto 2nd Avenue which you’ll stay on until you make a right onto the Canyon Road (120 East) and pedal into the park.) Hang out on Memory Grove’s lush lawns and indulge in a leisurely lunch while feeding the ducks at the pond. Be sure to check out the veteran memorials and Liberty Bell replica here before you depart. Return downtown along the same route from which you arrived at the park. (But if you if you rented a GREENbike, stop at the dock station at 160 E. Broadway and park your bike there.) Next item on the agenda: cocktails and tapas at The Copper Onion (801-355-3282, 111 E. Broadway, thecopperonion.com). Share the daily charcuterie and/or cheese board and an order of the ricotta dumplings. Pair your plates with a glass of sangria or the Copper Onion’s signature cocktail, The Egyptian, made with Lunazul tequila, blood orange pok pok (drinking vinegar), and GranGala orange liqueur. Or, since it’s Sunday and you reserved a spot on the sidewalk patio, the aforementioned appetizers pair just as well with an ice-cold can of PBR. End the idyllic day by moseying next door to the Broadway Centre Cinemas (801-321-0310, 111 E. Broadway, saltlakefilmsociety.org) to take in an independent flick.
Start this bros-only day by getting caffeinated at Toaster’s (888-339-3354, 30 E. 300 South, toastersdeli.com) while waiting for your posse to arrive. Once all are assembled, hop on your bikes (or demorent one at Bingham’s Cyclery, 801-583-1940, 336 W. Broadway, binghamcyclery.com) and head up through Memory Grove Park (See the previous section for directions) to the mouth of City Creek Canyon. Pedal the almost-6-mile climb up the canyon’s paved service road. (Open to bikes any day until the last Monday in May when cyclists are allowed on odd numbered days only.) Keep an eye out for hikers and wildlife along the way. Make the grateful coast back downtown for brunch at Whiskey Street (801.433.1371, 323 S. Main St, whiskeystreet.com, open at 11 a.m.). Menu standouts here include the eggs benedict—available four different ways—and the Irish car bomb pancakes, made with Guinness stout and served with Bailey’s whipped cream. Wash it all down with a Bloody Mary, Bellini, or Breakfast Martini. Since it wouldn’t be a guys-only day without sports, the next stop on the agenda is Salt Lake Bees baseball game at Smith’s Ballpark (77 W. 1300 South, milb.com). This ballpark holds more than 15,000 fans—the largest in the Pacific Coast League—making games here feel more like the Big Show versus the minors. End the day long bro-fest with burgers, beers, and free pool at Lumpy’s (801-883-8714, 145 Pierpont Ave, lumpysbar.com). We recommend the jalapeño cream cheese burger or the Ute burger, topped with barbecue sauce, onion rings, lettuce, tomato, and mayo. And have no fear. If there’s a game going on somewhere, it will be on a screen at Lumpy’s where dozens of TVs line both the bar and common areas.
Bring an empty bag, wear comfortable shoes, and prepare to shop ’til you drop at the Urban Flea Market (600 S. Main, fleamarketslc.com, open on May 15, June 12, July 10, August 14, September 11, and October 9, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.). Grab a coffee from one of of the on-site vendors and then spend a few hours meandering through the booths offering finds ranging from vinyl records and funky home décor to vintage clothing and toys. Once you’ve had your fill of retail therapy, head over to one of downtown’s most iconic and beloved brunch destinations, Market Street Grill & Oyster Bar (801-322-4668, 48 W. Market St, marketstreetgrill.com, brunch served 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.). You can’t go wrong with the eggs benedict, especially when ordered with fresh Maine lobster, a crab cake, or the filet mignon. And go ahead and indulge in one of those sweet rolls delivered to the table. After brunch, move the party to the at Sanctuary Day Spa & Salon (801-456-2375, 42 N. Rio Grande St, sanctuaryds.com, open noon to 5 p.m.) for a little well-deserved TLC. Stay close by your besties with a round of mani-pedis or indulge in a little alone time with a massage or facial. If, after pouring yourself out of the spa, you’re able to muster one more stop, end this fabulous girls’ day with cocktails and tapas at the BTG Wine Bar (801-359-2814, 63 W. 100 South, btgwinebar.com). More than 100 wines are available here by the taste, glass, or bottle served by the never snooty staff who can recommend just the right vintage to pair with the bruschetta misto (herbed bean puree, marinated Romas, and fresh spinach), the polenta con funghi, or other delightful tapas served from the Caffe Molise kitchen next door.