Articles published in the Blue Mountain Panorama

This blog was created to preserve digitally, articles written by Janet Wilcox for the Blue Mountain Panorama. This newspaper is published in Blanding, Utah by Neil and Becky Joslin. By publishing digitally, more photographs can be added, and your comments and corrections can be quickly noted. Thanks for reading my articles in the newspaper, as well as on the Internet. If you have ideas for stories, please contact me at

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Dr. D. Gibbons Home Torn Down

Day 1 of the official demolition of the Dee Gibbons home July 10, 2012.  The Gibbons home was used for over 20 years as an integral part of the San Juan Campus.  Prior to the 10th, inside doors, windows & fixtures had been removed, but once the roof was removed the die was cast, and the beautiful home was soon destroyed.

Day 2 Tri-Hurst (De)Construction made quick work of demolishing the front and upper floors of the Gibbons home the 2nd day  on July 11

By Day 3 -- all that was left to remove was the basement of the home and the beautiful west arches on the west.    It is a sad ending to one of the most beautiful homes in Blanding and a reminder of how our little community college began.

Our family was personally connected to Dr. Gibbons and his family, as they lived in our ward and neighborhood for many years.  He delivered 5 of our eight children, doing a masterful job at performing C-sections.  Because our wedding anniversaries were in the same month, we often helped orchestrate December Anniversary parties, and Dee and Beppy were a part of that as well.  

In the early days of my journalism career for the San Juan Record, I wrote a feature story about his practice, and how federal and state regulations were nearly driving him out of business.  It was a sympathetic look at what rural doctors do to provide service.  He was also instrumental in getting Dr. Jim Redd into med school and to come back to practice in Blanding.  

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Twenty-three years of Blanding Quilt Shows

2001 Quilt Show booth with Jolene Holt

For those who quilt and attend quilt shows, it’s obvious that that Blanding has hosted a standout quilt show for more than five years, (contrary to what last years, and this year’s 4th of July program advertises).

Starting in 1989, Blue Mountain Shadows sponsored an expansive Folk Fair Festival with all kinds of folk arts, programs, and food booths.  This was held at San Juan High school for seven years.  The quilt show was in the cafeteria and each year it was totally filled with beautiful quilts.   Other folk craft booths lined both sides of the hallway, with presentations done in classrooms.

 Some of the die-hard quilters who helped with these early shows, included Eve Lynn Perkins, Kathleen Lyman, Bonnie Meyer, Norma Madden, Ada Rigby, Edith Young, Gayle Marian, Ingrid Meyer, Ruth Nielson, and Kathy Hurst as well as their husbands, and sons and grandsons. Many, many others helped orchestrate the shows, as it takes a lot of manpower to hang 100 quilts or more in just a day! 

The biggest show the local guild ever masterminded was in 1996 for the State Centennial Celebration.  They joined forces with Monticello quilters and pulled in 200 beautiful quilts of all makes and styles.  In addition, quilters were photographed and a short story and photo were framed for display at the folk festival, and were later hung at the Senior Citizen Centers.  Eventually these frames were given back to the quilters.  Though many of these quilters are no longer with us, but their influence is still remembered. 

Both Monticello and Blanding made beautiful Centennial Quilts for the 1996 state celebration and those two quilts are featured as cover photos in the 1997 issue of Blue Mountain Shadows which was celebrated 100 years of quilts and the people who made them.  This magazine was compiled and edited by Kathy Hurst.  Quilts along with short biographies of 147 San Juan County quilters are included in that heirloom issue, which will be on sale at this year’s 27th annual quilt show.

It’s possible that quilt shows began even before this, back when Blanding hosted Frontier Days, but someone else will need to find records on those---anyway, quilt shows have been going  a lot longer than five years!