YALSA’s 2018 YA Services Symposium: Salt Lake City Travel Tips & Recommendations

Attending YALSA’s YA Services Symposium in Salt Lake City next week? Here are some tips to help you enjoy your visit to Salt Lake City.

Transportation

If you don’t want to wait for the Sheraton Hotel’s shuttle, you can always take TRAX for $2.50 one way. From Terminal One, take the Green Line to the Courthouse Station. Depart and head south on S Main St. Turn right onto 500 S. And speaking of TRAX, you can ride free inside the city limits when you ride in the free fare zone.

Want alternative means of transportation? Check out Lime Scooters and Bird Scooters. Email Nichole O’Connor (noconnor@ala.org) for a Lime Scooter promo code. For bicycle enthusiasts, check out Green Bikes.

Dining Around

If you are looking to have dinner with a group at the Symposium, YALSA has dine arounds scheduled for Gracie’s and Caffé Molise on Friday and Saturday nights. You can sign up near registration.

Or, ask other attendees and start your own dine around. Salt Lake City offers a variety of eating options. Check out some recommendations below.

Italian
If Italian fare is your thing, check out Tony Caputo’s Deli, Valter’s Osteria, Maxwell’s East Coast Eatery, Settebello  and Caffé Molise. Mexican restaurants include Alamexo, and Chile-Tepin. Spanish style cuisine can be found at Finca. For Mediterranean street food try Spitz.

American/New American
Restaurants with American and New American menus include the Market Street Grill, Red Rock Brewing Co., Squatter’s Pub, The Copper Onion, Tin Angel Café and Whiskey Street.

Vegetarian and Vegan
Vertical Diner and Zest Kitchen and Bar.

Casual Dining
Try Mollie and Ollie, Robin’s Nest, Pretty Bird, R&R BBQ and J-Dawgs.

Sushi
Sushi anyone? Try Itto Sushi and Takashi.

Other favorites include Bodega (Bar), Bruges Waffles and Frites (Belgian), Gracie’s (Gastropub), Himalayan Kitchen, The Melting Pot (Fondue), The Pie (Pizza Delivery), P.F. Chang’s (Chinese) and The Rose Establishment (Café).

Around Town

Ever see Ken Sanders on Antiques Roadshow? Well here’s your chance to visit his store, Ken Sanders Rare Books, just two blocks east of a TRAX station. And check out City Creek Center for some major retail therapy.

Along with the Clark Planetarium, Leonardo Museum, Natural History Museum of Utah, and the City Library, Salt Lake City is home to Temple Square and the Mormon Tabernacle choir. Arriving Thursday night? Choir rehearsals are open to the public every Thursday from 7:30 to 9:30pm in the Tabernacle.

Want to jazz up your Friday night? Attend a Utah Jazz basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies beginning at 7:00pm.

Get Away for a Day

If Utah’s five National Parks are too far away, there are a number of places worth visiting within an hour or two drive from Salt Lake City. Do some hiking and experience wildlife on Antelope Island, a State Park 41 miles north of Salt Lake City. There is a $10 per vehicle entrance fee.

Approximately 40 miles east of Salt Lake City, Park City is known for skiing, the Sundance Film Festival and is home to the Utah Olympic Park. The Park hosted five events during the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympic Games. About 30 minutes from Park City is Midway, home to the Homestead Crater, a geothermal spring, hidden within a 55-foot tall, beehive-shaped limestone rock.

Spiral Jetty, a work of art, is located a little over 100 miles north of Salt Lake City on the Great Salt Lake. While up north, take a visit to the Golden Spike National Historic Site located at Promontory Point. May 10, 2019 will mark the 150th anniversary of the completion of the first transcontinental railroad.

Learn more about the programs and events taking place at the YA Services Symposium at www.ala.org/yalsa/yasymposium.

Registration for YALSA’s 2016 Young Adult Services Symposium now open

feature-slides-reg-openRegistration for YALSA’s 2016 Young Adult Services Symposium, which takes place Nov. 4-6 in Pittsburgh, is now open. Individuals can register for the symposium with early bird rates now through Sept. 15, 2016.

Early bird rates are as follows:

  • $199 YALSA Personal Member
  • $199 Pennsylvania Library Association Members
  • $199 Pennsylvania School Librarians Association Members
  • $249 ALA Personal Member
  • $310 Nonmembers
  • $59 Students (enrolled full-time in a library program)

Register early to take advantage of up to $50 in savings. Registration includes:

  • Opening session and reception Friday evening
  • Educational programming Saturday and Sunday
  • Option to register for additional events
  • Access to a free webinar
  • Certificate of participation with your contact hours
  • Snack breaks Saturday and Sunday
  • Symposium tote bag

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Takeaways from Portland: YALSA15

imageI practically lived on coffee and doughnuts this past weekend at the YALSA Symposium in Portland. Not that I’m complaining; if you’re going to drink lots of coffee, Portland is the place to do it. I began my symposium experience with the Friday afternoon preconference Hip Hop Dance and Scratch: Facilitating Connected Learning in Libraries with the hope of gaining some programming ideas. I walked out three hours later with a newfound comfort-level using the program and, yes, concrete ideas for how to use it at my library. Having three hours allotted for experimenting, asking questions, and watching what other people created helped immensely.

At Teen Services without Borders, a panel of school and public librarians and an independent bookseller that discussed challenges and successful partnerships that cross library, departmental, and district lines. Boundaries can feel like brick walls when they prevent teens from accessing the library, and the panel members ultimately decided they needed to serve teens and not the rules, viewing themselves as part of the same community, not competitors. Tips they shared include: Give up your ego. Put kids first. Promote each other’s programs and services. Ask for help and keep trying until you find the right person. Finally, take a hard look at the rules – can any be broken?

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Preparing for Portland: YA Services Symposium 2015

This year’s YALSA Young Adult Services Symposium has an awesome program filled with presentations, panels, and papers covering many different aspects of YA services. Plus, there are over 30 YA authors that will be attending the symposium. I will be traveling all the way from St. Petersburg, Russia to Portland just for the symposium and there is one more aspect that absolutely makes it worth the trip: the attendees!

As a solo librarian, I welcome every opportunity that I get to interact with other librarians in youth services. Through my involvement in YALSA and use of Twitter, I have had the chance to get to know quite a few librarians throughout the U.S. At last year’s symposium in Austin, I got to meet many of these librarians in person for the first time. There is so much to be learned by spending time with other librarians in a social setting. After the panels ended for the day, our professional development did not end. Over drinks and delicious food, we discussed books, library programs, blogging, and life. It’s awesome to find that your friends are just as awesome IRL as they are online.

Don’t worry if you are new to YALSA or the symposium either! In my experience, the community of attendees is incredibly welcoming. I attended the opening night meet-and-greet with one friend, but by the time we left for a taco run, we had grown to a group of ten – the majority of which we had never interacted with before.  By connecting with fellow librarians I got new ideas right away and also found ways to stay in touch throughout the year. I am able to regularly check in with YA librarians to see what programs they are running, what books they are promoting, and how they are making a difference for their patrons. I cannot wait to see who I will meet this year.

The more pro-active you are, the more you will benefit from being surrounded by awesome librarians. It’s never too early or too late to start. Get online before you leave for Portland and follow the Symposium’s hashtag #yalsa15 to see who else will be attending. When you are there, don’t be afraid to compliment someone on their cat-patterned cardigan or awesome haircut. Say hello to the person next to you in line for coffee. Ask someone which author they will visit first during the Book Blitz. I know how difficult these interactions can be for some people, but I promise they will be worth it.

The 2015 YALSA Young Adult Services Symposium will take place November 6-8, 2015 at the Hilton Portland & Executive tower. Register today!

-Jessica Lind, find me on Twitter before #yalsa15 and say hello! @sadrobot