Rolly: Dance troupe plans salute to raise money for women vets memorial
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The Fort Douglas Military Museum has valiantly worked to promote a certain group of heroes in our military who perhaps haven't received the attention they deserve: women.

Plans are underway for a Women's Military Service Memorial Park at the museum just east of the University of Utah campus.

But while more than 100 bricks bearing the names of Utah women veterans have been sold at $100 apiece, museum Director Bob Voyles says the effort to reach a goal of $500,000 to complete the museum is behind schedule.

This is where art meets history.

The Repertory Dance Theatre (RDT) will stage a benefit performance Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center titled "Women of Valor: In the Spirit of Service."

All proceeds that night will go toward to the women's memorial. Casts of two bronze statues depicting different eras of women military veterans will be on display.

Tickets, which can be purchased through artTix.org or by calling 801-355-ARTS, cost $30 for the performance only. A $75 contribution will also include a VIP reception featuring several prominent women veterans, including retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Wilma Vaught, who was the driving force behind the creation of the Women in Military Service for America Memorial at the gateway to the Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.

RDT also will perform Friday and Saturday at the same time and place with those proceeds going to the dance company.

In addition to several specially choreographed dances, the show will feature dramatic narrations of servicewomen's personal stories.

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Preparing girls for the future? • Salt Lake County's library system is sponsoring a series of educational programs for grade-schoolers that give them hands-on fun experiences learning about history and science.

The classes are titled "No Girls Allowed."

The boys-only classes are scheduled about a week apart at various libraries. On Friday at the Magna Library, boys between ages 7 and 11 will get to learn about sharks vs. trains, and which is stronger, and the principles behind that science. They will learn through games and other projects.

On April 18, the boys-only group gets to learn about the elements, many of which are "wicked and cool," according to the catalog. That will be at the Sandy Library. And, on April 24, at the Kearns Library, they will learn about the gladiators, using swords and other props to bring that history to life.

Allison Madsen, youth-services librarian for the county, said the politically incorrect title was deliberate because research has shown boys in that age group lose interest in going to the library and reading books. Research shows boys that age also don't like girls to be in their play groups, so the idea is to encourage boys to participate in learning experiences at the library. Including girls in the classes, she said, might keep some of the boys away.

There are classes geared for girls, although they are not dubbed "No Boys Allowed."

A class Tuesday at the Holladay Library for elementary-age girls featured selected books and discussions. It emphasized "food and crafts."

Bipartisan effort? • Bipartisanship seems to be an ancient idea in the world of politics, but it appears to be the centerpiece of a campaign to fix the nation's debt crisis.

It's a national campaign, but in Utah, it has been embraced by Democratic State Chairman Jim Dabakis and Republican State Chairman Thomas Wright, who have made joint appearances on its behalf.

The Utah co-chairmen are Republican Scott Anderson of Zions Bank and Democrat Kem Gardner, a developer. They are hosting a light lunch Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. in the Zions Bank Founders Room. The featured speaker will be Scott Smith, mayor of Mesa, Ariz., a Brigham Young University graduate and possible candidate for governor of Arizona.

Admission is free but limited. The Salt Lake Chamber and the Bennett Group also are sponsoring the event.

prolly@sltrib.com