Online Tools Help Map Cultural Hot Spots In Utah

May 30, 2017

Map of Utah.
Credit https://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/united_states/utah_90.jpg

Different Utah groups are using online and social media tools to help preserve interest in this state’s heritage.  A new phone app created by Map-N-Tour, called Story Road Utah, is one of the portable guide’s leading to some of the area’s more memorable sites.

The app includes audio clips to help tell stories about historical landmarks. This clip is from The Panguitch Quiltwalk story, a story about the settlers of Panguitch, Utah who were on a journey to get food after their first harvest failed.

 

“One of them realized as long as we’re on the quilt we aren’t sinking through the snow," from the Map-n-Tour story app "The quilt spread their weight over the larger surface area preventing them from breaking through the crust.”

 

This story is one of about 40 stories cataloged in the new interactive phone app. And, plans are also in the works for another tool, a cultural map, that will soon be online from the Utah Cultural Alliance.

 

Crystal Young-Otterstrom is with the alliance and said the map will highlight the cultural diversity of Utah.

 

“It’s almost awe inspiring to see how amazing it is and how much there is," Young-Otterstrom said. "I think that we can be proud as a community about the amazing culture - arts and humanities - happening here.”

 

Learning about Utah’s culture is important, said Young-Otterstrom,  because of the way it shapes Utah’s communities.

 

“A big problem we come across often," Young-Otterstrom said. "is that people have no idea how amazing, diverse and often world renowned are the various cultural offerings that exist in this state. Not only that, but a lot of these organizations are significant economic drivers for their communities.”

 

The cultural map is still in development but will be available in the next few weeks. The Story Road Utah app and the Cultural Map website have ways for community members to contribute to the interactive sites. Project organizers said having people share their knowledge of area culture and artistic projects is one of the benefits of using new technology.