Happy Pioneer Day!

So, I had no idea Pioneer Day even existed until I went out to Utah for school. I mean - the whole state shuts down. My work was closed and a lot of other businesses close. It's a big deal. It's to celebrate the Mormon pioneers settling in Utah and all that jazz.

When I moved back to Virginia and was put into the Primary presidency, I wanted to do something special for a Pioneer Day sharing time. I wanted the kids to learn about the holiday and get excited about it. So, I went overboard. I dressed up like a pioneer - wig, dress, boots, fake accent and all! I essentially ripped off the old Apple game "Oregon Trail", moving from east to west with the kids pulling slips out of a bag that said, "Hayden broke his leg. Lose two days" or "Sage has died." The kids loved it and I had lots of props and activities along the way.

It's been three years and this was my 4th Pioneer Day sharing time. I mixed things up a little bit, adding a fake fire, cricket ambiance, making butter to later eat with bread, and letting the kids dress up as well with colored handkerchiefs. The bucket of ice made it's triumphant return as did "hunting" with the nerf gun and printed animals.

It's never as quiet or focused as I'd liked, but that's usually because the kids are having so much fun, which is the point anyways. My senior primary kids loved the bread and butter, all asking for seconds and thirds.

Here's til next year!

The junior primary singing Pioneer songs around the fake fire. 

My senior boys enjoying some bread and homemade butter that they shook and made themselves!

Sweet Claire was a bit "pioneery" today as well!

Maggie taking a turn hunting for food on the pioneer trail. Notice the "buffalo chips" by her feet?

Each year I have an icy bucket of water. I ask the kids to stand in it while I tell the story of the three teen boys that carried the company across the icy river. Autumn wanted a turn, but only managed one foot (she refused to put the other in) before promptly hopping out. 

In past years I've had them hold ice, then put their hands in icy water, but this was the first year they could stand in it.

In this photo we're packing up our cart/covered wagon. I had a series of items to pack, showing how toys, personal effects and unnecessary items wouldn't fit and had to be left behind when the Pioneers headed west.

1 comment

  1. It was a great sharing time, and I appreciate the effort you put into this. The dress that Claire wore is actually my dress; my mother made it for me to wear as the flower girl in her wedding. I loved how it fit with the pioneer theme!