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Utah Workshop on Methods and Applications in Molecular and Solid-State Theory

Park City

Park City was first settled as a mining town, with many residents in the late 1800’s  involved in the mining of silver.  There are many mine shafts below the inhabited part of the Park City area, but at this time there is no mining activity nor public access to the underground workings.

By the middle of the twentieth century the silver mines in Park City had become unprofitable and the town was well on the way to becoming a ghost town.  However, enterprising local residents had the foresight to create downhill skiing opportunities, at first with rope-tow lifts;  Ecker hill (north of Park City) became a significant ski-jump locale, and Park City gradually came back to life, not as a mining town but as  a snow-sports venue.  The nearly abandoned Main Street (where lot prices had dropped to around $100---whether or not containing a building)  little-by-little  became redeveloped, and by the time of the 2002 Winter Olympics had morphed into an upscale shopping area with a generous number of quality restaurants and bars.  The once-primitive ski areas grew into three resorts, one (the Park City Ski Area) becoming a major “standard-quality” operation, another (at different times under different names) a budget destination for locals, and a third (Deer Valley) a luxurious high-quality operation.   The “standard” and “budget” areas were recently acquired  by the organization operating the Vail (Colorado) ski resort and were combined to create the largest ski resort in North America.

The luxury Deer Valley resort attracted a wealthy clientele, spawning the development of multi-million-dollar vacation homes; a number of these home-owners were entrepreneurs who also made Park City a center for their business activity.  The original and newer residents have worked together to control and regulate growth, with at this point the result that the area has remained a pleasant place to live and work as well as a premier winter resort.  The seasonal nature of winter-sports activity has now been offset by summer activities, including hiking and mountain biking, and the affluent population has created demand for a wide variety of cultural activities and events, including a local live-stage theatre, a film festival, many sporting events, and numerous art-gallery exhibitions displaying the works of the vibrant local art community.
Utah was mostly settled by Mormons (members of the Church of Latter-Day Saints), whose leaders and membership have conservative views regarding alcohol use, activities appropriate to the Sabbath, and other areas. Park City is unique to Utah in that it was settled by heathen outsiders.  Park City, while respectful of Mormon traditions, has retained its non-Mormon origins, offering visitors a cosmopolitan and non-religious atmosphere.

Summer activities

Among the activities available to Workshop participants and accompanying persons, we call attention to the following  (not all available every day; more information may be obtained at your hotel):

  • Ski area plaza:  alpine slide, zip line, miniature golf, horseback rides, mountain hikes, lift-assisted biking
  • Bike rentals (manual and power-assisted)
  • Gallery stroll (xxx-days)
  • Egyptian Theatre (stage productions)
  • Outdoor concerts (several locations)
  • Movie theatres (including one that shows non-commercial and period films)
  • Park City Institute shows (musicians, comedians, misc.)
  • Silly Sunday street market
  • Heber Valley Railroad
  • ??? Other ???


Park City Map


Last Updated: 2/7/19