Moab Happenings Archive
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Moab Museum Host Charter School Pop-up Art Exhibition
by Mary Langworthy, Moab Museum Membership & Community Outreach Coordinator

From left to right, Avi'Onna Higareda Chavez, A'Laya Bylilly, and Beoncye Chavez Aldaba show off their work on February 16th

The creative and versatile young artists of the Moab Charter School brought a pop of color to the Museum for a full week. From February 15th through 19th, the Museum hosted a temporary pop-up exhibit of student art ranging from paintings to sculpture, which was open to the students, families, staff, and friends of the Charter School. The exhibition featured artwork from all grade levels.

Kindergarteners, exploring with collage and acrylic paints, created abstract pieces which were then combined together into a sculpture suspended from the ceiling. First through sixth graders created watercolor paintings inspired by the stunning scenery of southeastern Utah. Classes were provided with a photo of an iconic landmark such as Monument Valley or Delicate Arch as inspiration, and each student brought their own personal style and imagination to creating their own renditions. The contrasts between students’ differing depictions of the same landscape evoke the magic of the region, and the versatile color schemes the desert can contain.

Tara Baker, "Ms. T", the art teacher who put it all together for the students.

“I can’t believe my art is in a Museum!” Remarked one visiting third grader.

Charter School art teacher Tara Baker is very proud of the students’ artwork displayed at the exhibition and their creative efforts.

“The opportunity to display student artwork in the professional setting of the Museum is really fun, I think it’s very special for students to see their work alongside other objects and artworks that are important to this community.”

Baker, known in her classroom as “Ms. T,” joined the Charter School staff in the fall of 2020. A versatile artist of a wide range of media, Baker began teaching elementary level art in 2013 at the Art Association of Jackson Hole, in Wyoming.

In total, about 100 visitors attended the special exhibit. COVID-19 accommodations were implemented and include masks, cleaning and frequent sanitization of surfaces, and a limited capacity to ensure physical distancing.

Moab Museum is proud to host exhibits that support the efforts of our schools and their teachers and students. Watch for more events coming up this spring by visiting our website:





The Pioneer Heritage of Utah's Canyon Country
Goulding’s museum

San Juan County — Utah’s Canyon Country — offers unique opportunities to see life through the eyes of the pioneers who settled in the beautiful, rugged, red rocks of Southeastern Utah. From Monticello all the way down to Monument Valley, pioneers have shaped and influenced Utah’s Canyon Country.

Walk among the replicas of Monticello’s original historic buildings at Pioneer Park located in Monticello, Utah. These well-crafted replicas can be visited year-round, but stopping by on July 24 for Pioneer Day for the spectacular celebration of pioneer heritage is well worth the trip.

Photo by Emily Sierra
Bluff Fort

Blanding is home to the Pioneer museum located in the Blanding Visitor Center. View everything from phenomenal quilts stitched by pioneer women to artifacts and read the histories of the pioneers who established the town of Blanding. If you’re staying in Blanding, take time to visit this free museum. Get a sense of what life was like for those who traveled the 250-mile, Hole-in-the-Rock trail to settle in this corner of Utah.

To really delve into pioneer history, a visit to Bluff Fort Historic Site is a must. Get a hands-on history lesson by donning pioneer clothing, pulling handcarts, panning for gold and walking among the replicated buildings of the original Bluff Fort. The log cabins, each representing a family who took part in the Hole in the Rock Expedition, have been furnished with actual furniture and belongings which were donated by the families of the first pioneer settlers. Visitors can also tour inside traditional Native American dwellings. The Barton Cabin, the oldest pioneer building still standing in San Juan County, also resides at Bluff Fort Historic Site and is the only original log cabin structure on the premises.

Photo by Emily Sierra
Bluff Fort

Goulding’s museum, located in Monument Valley, is another great stop to see many iconic pieces of history that have touched Utah’s Canyon Country. Goulding’s Museum holds within its walls, history of the many people who have lived in the Monument Valley region from Native American to pioneer history and even the more modern Hollywood film history of Southeastern Utah.

These are only a few of the many places and ways to see the impact of the pioneers on San Juan County. With plenty more to see and learn, follow our Pioneer History Itinerary for the full pioneer experience. Find the itinerary at along with other fantastic travel ideas and brochures.

Movie & Western Memorabilia Museum at Red Cliffs Lodge

Indiana Jones PosterRed Cliffs Lodge, on the banks of the mighty Colorado River, is home to the Moab Museum of Film & Western Heritage. The lodge is built on the old George White Ranch, a key location for nine of the big westerns including Rio Grande, Cheyenne Autumn, Ten Who Dared, The Commancheros, and Rio Conchos.

The late George White was founder of the Moab to Monument Valley Film Commission, the longest ongoing film commission in the world.

In the museum one can learn more about film locations, how the sets are built, and how the filming process is managed on nature’s own sound stage. On display in the museum are production photographs, movie posters, autographed scripts, props from the many pictures filmed in the area, and displays about the western ranching heritage. For information, call Red Cliffs Lodge at 435-259-2002.

Rio Grande Through the magnificent landscapes of southeastern Utah, writers have been inspired and stories born here. Zane Grey, the famous western novelist, traveled through the area in 1912. His visit inspired him to write his book Riders of the Purple Sage. The book was made into a movie starring Ed Harris and Amy Madigan, and filmed on locations around Moab.

A partial list of stars that have made movies in Moab
John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Henry Fonda, Lee Marvin,
Rock Hudson, Jimmy Stewart, Richard Boone, Anthony Quinn,
Mickey Rooney, Shirley Temple, Kris Kristofferson, Billy Crystal,
Robert Duvall, Gene Hackman, Bill Murray, Jack Palance, Susan Sarandon, Geena Davis, Ted Danson, Tom Cruise, and many more.
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