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Discovery Road

The road trip adventures continue with this ongoing series of programs about the people and places of the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA). "Discovery Road" features a 1977 Mercury Cougar with a fancy red and white exterior and a plush red velvet interior! Hosted by series creator James Nelson this show travels along U.S. Highway 89, All-American Road State Route 12, and Scenic Byway State Route 24. As the car drives along these roads, viewers will "discover" the things that make the MPNHA worth driving to themselves. "The MPNHA wants to tell a story and Discovery Road is one of the best ways we can do that. It takes people on a heritage journey just like they used to do with Sunday afternoon car rides," said MPNHA Executive Director Monte Bona. Using music, storytellers and the characters in the communities along the way, Discovery Road will present Utah's history, scenery and culture in an entertaining and educational manner. The Mormon Pioneer Heritage Area (MPNHA) is a federally designated area of central and southern Utah running along the beautiful and historic U. S. Highway 89 — including the All-American Road Utah State Route 12, and Capitol Reef Scenic Byway Utah State Route 24, which both intersect with U.S. 89 and together form the MPNHA’s Boulder Loop. The area includes the counties of Sanpete, Sevier, Piute, Wayne, Garfield and Kane. The Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance is the local coordinating entity of the MPNHA and receives annual funding from the National Park Service. Its purpose is to preserve, tell and interpret the stories, history and heritage of the area, and to promote its culture and value.

Discovery Road  
  • The Collectors
    Saturday, December 10
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road travels the state in search of historic collections and fun things people just seem to gather and save! The program opens with World War II relics including a telegram sent to a Utah family of a missing airman. Then a rare glimpse of the late Utah Governor J. Bracken Lee with his personal collection of baseballs. A visit to Brent Ashworth’s rare books and artifacts store reveals some stunning items for the Discovery Road audience. Ashworth shows a Pony Express bible used by a rider out west in 1860. A handgun and holster that once belonged to Butch Cassidy comes with a story about the outlaw possibly living out his years as an adding machine salesman in Spokane, Washington. Ashworth then shows a rare photograph of a soldier from the Battle of Bunker Hill that might have known people from the 1600s.The program makes a stop in Moroni, Utah where a man shows wagons once used by pioneers and trail blazers from around the country for hauling grain, bales of hay, wool and delivering milk to homes and neighborhoods. The historic Peteetneet school in Payson, Utah is where a retired educator has been operating his miniature train collection for over two decades. Teacher Doug Lamb discusses his lifelong passion for model trains, planes and automobiles. The Collectors is the latest episode in the award-winning Discovery Road series written, produced and created by journalist James Nelson.
  • The Collectors
    Wednesday, December 14
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road travels the state in search of historic collections and fun things people just seem to gather and save! The program opens with World War II relics including a telegram sent to a Utah family of a missing airman. Then a rare glimpse of the late Utah Governor J. Bracken Lee with his personal collection of baseballs. A visit to Brent Ashworth’s rare books and artifacts store reveals some stunning items for the Discovery Road audience. Ashworth shows a Pony Express bible used by a rider out west in 1860. A handgun and holster that once belonged to Butch Cassidy comes with a story about the outlaw possibly living out his years as an adding machine salesman in Spokane, Washington. Ashworth then shows a rare photograph of a soldier from the Battle of Bunker Hill that might have known people from the 1600s.The program makes a stop in Moroni, Utah where a man shows wagons once used by pioneers and trail blazers from around the country for hauling grain, bales of hay, wool and delivering milk to homes and neighborhoods. The historic Peteetneet school in Payson, Utah is where a retired educator has been operating his miniature train collection for over two decades. Teacher Doug Lamb discusses his lifelong passion for model trains, planes and automobiles. The Collectors is the latest episode in the award-winning Discovery Road series written, produced and created by journalist James Nelson.
  • The Untold
    Saturday, December 17
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road are bringing forward historic images, interviews, taping and original research to present “The Untold” documentary episode. The half-hour program features strong women and determined men that left their mark on the landscape of the American West. The program opens with the story of a Payson, Utah school teacher who was forced to leave her classroom career, then travel overseas to become a midwife only to tragically perish aboard the Titanic on her journey home. Payson historian Dee Stevenson operates a school museum that honors the heartfelt story of Irene Colvin. He tells Discovery Road how the young instructor still teaches us.
  • The Untold
    Wednesday, December 21
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road are bringing forward historic images, interviews, taping and original research to present “The Untold” documentary episode. The half-hour program features strong women and determined men that left their mark on the landscape of the American West. The program opens with the story of a Payson, Utah school teacher who was forced to leave her classroom career, then travel overseas to become a midwife only to tragically perish aboard the Titanic on her journey home. Payson historian Dee Stevenson operates a school museum that honors the heartfelt story of Irene Colvin. He tells Discovery Road how the young instructor still teaches us.
  • Road Trip
    Wednesday, December 28
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road are bringing forward historic images, interviews, taping and original research to present the“Road Trip” documentary episode. The half-hour program features iconic Airstream trailers along with a tour of Utah businesses that bring the aging old motor homes back to life for people around the world! The bright and shiny Airstreams are bucket list items for families and photograph centerpieces for tourists. Airstream trailers travel along the roads like a proud roving exhibit delivering fun and joy like an ice cream truck for children. It started with Wally Byam who was born on the 4th of July in 1896 in Baker City on the Oregon Trail. He knew his grandparents had traveled west in a covered wagon fully outfitted with food, water, and a stove. It all inspired him to create the Airstream trailer. He built his first travel trailer, tested it and streamlined it. The Airstream continues today! Discovery Road wanted to know what people eat on the road and where they get their food. The answer is pretty much everything and everywhere. Food for travelers can be found at roadside diners, brought on the trip in packed coolers or garnered in fast drive-throughs cafes. The real discovery we found was homemade pizza cooked in a vintage truck and served sizzling hot for patrons up and down the heritage corridor. An intriguing segment of this episode comes forward when Discovery Road follows a professional still photographer on assignment to get some good pictures. Despite worldwide experience covering a myriad of big events the cameraman still finds his best images along Heritage Highway 89. Discovery Road introduces viewers to George Frey who has taken hundreds of thousands of photographs around the world but those images from Utah and the heritage area are among his favorites. The Basin Drive-In in Mt. Pleasant, Utah is one of the few outdoor movie theaters still open and operating in the country. The open-air shows are popular with locals and a big attraction for people from surrounding communities and the region. The fourth generation of one family has kept the silver screen going with good service, entertainment and a snack bar that always has something good to eat! The line at the snack bar starts long before the movies. It’s because the hamburgers and cheeseburgers all have a special sauce that makes them delicious and in high demand. Sacks of burgers and hot popcorn are popular favorites! “Most people come in and say they’ve heard about our hamburgers. The first thing they always ask for is, ‘Do you serve fries?’ That’s how we know they are out of towners. We always say we serve popcorn and nachos. But they’re always excited to do something different and have fun and be able to come out and enjoy the environment out here.” said snack bar employee Michelle Akauola of Mt. Pleasant, Utah. Discovery Road gives viewers one more gem in this installment. It’s Freedom Road. A small stretch of black-top in the Sanpete Valley. The road leads to simple and wonderful things that are certainly worth the stop. A town named Freedom is a surprising road trip discovery . Discovery Road Show producer and creator James Nelson says this episode offers stories that will excite and inspire people to start planning their next road trip. “I think the car, the family and a map still work for everyone. This program is an entertaining glimpse into Airstream history and a sample of what a night at the drive-in is like. Toss in some roadside pizza and an open road discovery of real freedom and you’ve got a pretty darn good show.” Nelson said.
  • Saving History
    Saturday, December 31
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Sangre De Cristo National Heritage Area (SDCNHA) and Discovery Road are bringing forward the little-known story of the Japanese in the San Luis Valley of southern Colorado. Using historic images, interviews, and original research they are proud to present the half-hour documentary episode “Saving History”. The program features a fascinating profile of Joseph Masahito Sato, who was one of the first Japanese to settle permanently and add to the agriculture of the big southern Colorado valley.
  • Saving History
    Wednesday, January 4
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Sangre De Cristo National Heritage Area (SDCNHA) and Discovery Road are bringing forward the little-known story of the Japanese in the San Luis Valley of southern Colorado. Using historic images, interviews, and original research they are proud to present the half-hour documentary episode “Saving History”. The program features a fascinating profile of Joseph Masahito Sato, who was one of the first Japanese to settle permanently and add to the agriculture of the big southern Colorado valley.
  • Treasure Boxes
    Saturday, January 7
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road present “Treasure Boxes” a documentary episode about stagecoaches in the American West. The half-hour program features a visit to the Terry Ranch in southern Utah where an imposing rock stagecoach station once known as Moroni Springs stands next to the roadway. Family members tell viewers how silver bullion from nearby mines was hauled on stagecoaches and they share a favorite family recipe for Apple Crisp once served to stagecoach passengers.
  • Treasure Boxes
    Wednesday, January 11
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road present “Treasure Boxes” a documentary episode about stagecoaches in the American West. The half-hour program features a visit to the Terry Ranch in southern Utah where an imposing rock stagecoach station once known as Moroni Springs stands next to the roadway. Family members tell viewers how silver bullion from nearby mines was hauled on stagecoaches and they share a favorite family recipe for Apple Crisp once served to stagecoach passengers.
  • Cowboy Way
    Saturday, January 14
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road present the documentary "Cowboy Way", featuring three prominent Utah ranch families. “These three families are all incredible stories the public needs to hear about. Each family story tells an important chapter of Utah history about surviving on the land, maintaining the ranch lifestyle, and keeping the cowboy spirit alive over several generations. These cowboy stories are real and wonderful," Discovery Road producer James Nelson said.
  • Cowboy Way
    Wednesday, January 18
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road present the documentary "Cowboy Way", featuring three prominent Utah ranch families. “These three families are all incredible stories the public needs to hear about. Each family story tells an important chapter of Utah history about surviving on the land, maintaining the ranch lifestyle, and keeping the cowboy spirit alive over several generations. These cowboy stories are real and wonderful," Discovery Road producer James Nelson said.
  • Worth Remembering
    Saturday, January 21
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    Bank art, artifacts and one song.
  • Worth Remembering
    Wednesday, January 25
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    Bank art, artifacts and one song.
  • The Amish Show
    Saturday, January 28
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Amish show.
  • Dutch Way
    Saturday, February 4
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    “The Dutch story in Colorado is one of survival, faith and community. We found out the best way to learn about their story was to go to church. We did and we discovered an amazing people!” says Discovery Road producer James Nelson. Long ago in the Netherlands struggling families were told to cross the ocean and they will find paradise in America. It was the clarion call for many Dutch families in search of a better life. The SS Dubbledam, stuffed with 508 passengers and the Dutch flag whipping in the wind knifed through the icy waters towards America. The anxious families then boarded a train to Colorado anticipating a paradise.

 

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  • Horse Power
    Wednesday, December 7
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road saddles up for an educational ride through the history of the horse in the American West. The show opens with a visit to the Cleone Peterson Eccles Equestrian Center in Mt. Pleasant, Utah. The top-notch facility and indoor arena plus 200 horse stalls accommodate numerous events throughout the year and serves as a training ground for Wasatch Academy students. A stop at Burns Saddlery in Salina, Utah reveals one of the most historic horse related companies in the country. Boots, hats, belts and saddles are just a few of the quality products the business has been making for well over a century. Discovery Road then visits Kanab, Utah for the opening of new horse and hiking trail. The trail is connected to an amazing story of two ranching brothers who succeeded against tough odds to make their ranch work years ago. The role of horses in the western movies is then explored through the experience of one man in Kanab who worked with Hollywood to find the best horses for the silver screen. Denny Judd reminisces about working with movie star Dean Martin and others, years ago. The Discovery Road closing segment is a simple tribute to a Kane County man who spent the last years of his life, giving horse and wagon rides to people. Horse Power is the latest episode in the award winning Discovery Road series.
  • Horse Power
    Saturday, December 3
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road saddles up for an educational ride through the history of the horse in the American West. The show opens with a visit to the Cleone Peterson Eccles Equestrian Center in Mt. Pleasant, Utah. The top-notch facility and indoor arena plus 200 horse stalls accommodate numerous events throughout the year and serves as a training ground for Wasatch Academy students. A stop at Burns Saddlery in Salina, Utah reveals one of the most historic horse related companies in the country. Boots, hats, belts and saddles are just a few of the quality products the business has been making for well over a century. Discovery Road then visits Kanab, Utah for the opening of new horse and hiking trail. The trail is connected to an amazing story of two ranching brothers who succeeded against tough odds to make their ranch work years ago. The role of horses in the western movies is then explored through the experience of one man in Kanab who worked with Hollywood to find the best horses for the silver screen. Denny Judd reminisces about working with movie star Dean Martin and others, years ago. The Discovery Road closing segment is a simple tribute to a Kane County man who spent the last years of his life, giving horse and wagon rides to people. Horse Power is the latest episode in the award winning Discovery Road series.
  • Becoming Bryce
    Wednesday, November 30
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road travels to Bryce Canyon National Park in search of a story about a shipbuilder. Ebeneezer Bryce is the pioneer the park is named after and his story is both historic and fascinating. As a ship builder Bryce found himself constructing the Pine Valley Chapel in southern Utah. Discovery Road toured the structure which is now the oldest operating Mormon church in the state of Utah. Our next story is about murals that seem to be making a comeback along the historic corridor. Muralist Patti Lewis has transformed the look and feel of Kanab, Utah with her colorful, western themed art on stores, shops and gas stations. Discovery Road then visits Grass Valley Mercantile in Koosharem, Utah. It’s a century old hardware store that serves as a community gathering place and popular tourist stop. The store has aisles of supplies and adventure for everyone. Our last stop is at a gas station which no longer pumps gasoline. Ole’s Place is an historic museum that gives tourists a chance to fill up on gas station history.
  • Becoming Bryce
    Saturday, November 26
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road travels to Bryce Canyon National Park in search of a story about a shipbuilder. Ebeneezer Bryce is the pioneer the park is named after and his story is both historic and fascinating. As a ship builder Bryce found himself constructing the Pine Valley Chapel in southern Utah. Discovery Road toured the structure which is now the oldest operating Mormon church in the state of Utah. Our next story is about murals that seem to be making a comeback along the historic corridor. Muralist Patti Lewis has transformed the look and feel of Kanab, Utah with her colorful, western themed art on stores, shops and gas stations. Discovery Road then visits Grass Valley Mercantile in Koosharem, Utah. It’s a century old hardware store that serves as a community gathering place and popular tourist stop. The store has aisles of supplies and adventure for everyone. Our last stop is at a gas station which no longer pumps gasoline. Ole’s Place is an historic museum that gives tourists a chance to fill up on gas station history.
  • Hello Neighbor
    Wednesday, November 23
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road crosses the border into southern Colorado and northern New Mexico to find out how people are connected through history, culture and the landscape itself. “Hello Neighbor examines early Mormon settlement in southern Colorado and visits with descendants of some of the first families in the San Luis Valley.The incredible story of how Mormon Battalion soldiers who had fallen ill were nursed back to health by Hispanic people is told. The back story of one of the Hispanics who aided the soldiers is revealed with a surprising contemporary ending. The longstanding battle over water in the San Luis Valley is addressed through the lens of a tough elderly resident who challenges people to share the water and be fair.The water story and the land is viewed through three brothers whose ancestors homesteaded the area. The Jack Dempsey story comes alive on screen with a visit to a Manassa, Colorado museum honoring the boxer. Colorful murals and other forms of art in the San Luis Valley demonstrates diversity and history while taking the viewer to church at the same time. The program concludes with a visit to one of the most recent people to enter San Luis Valley-the Amish. Their settlement is new compared to other groups but no less vibrant and important.
  • Hello Neighbor
    Saturday, November 19
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road crosses the border into southern Colorado and northern New Mexico to find out how people are connected through history, culture and the landscape itself. “Hello Neighbor examines early Mormon settlement in southern Colorado and visits with descendants of some of the first families in the San Luis Valley.The incredible story of how Mormon Battalion soldiers who had fallen ill were nursed back to health by Hispanic people is told. The back story of one of the Hispanics who aided the soldiers is revealed with a surprising contemporary ending. The longstanding battle over water in the San Luis Valley is addressed through the lens of a tough elderly resident who challenges people to share the water and be fair.The water story and the land is viewed through three brothers whose ancestors homesteaded the area. The Jack Dempsey story comes alive on screen with a visit to a Manassa, Colorado museum honoring the boxer. Colorful murals and other forms of art in the San Luis Valley demonstrates diversity and history while taking the viewer to church at the same time. The program concludes with a visit to one of the most recent people to enter San Luis Valley-the Amish. Their settlement is new compared to other groups but no less vibrant and important.
  • Crossing Time
    Wednesday, November 16
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road takes viewers across the historic Rockville Bridge in southern Utah to see efforts by residents to save the aging structure with open air art competition that took place around the nearby ghost town of Grafton, Utah. In 1866 Grafton was the county seat to Kane County but a year later boundaries changed that giving the honor to Rockville. Several intriguing stories are discovered in and around the unique bridge and Grafton including a German couples’ worldwide journey in an RV. There’s the bicyclist from Louisville, Kentucky who just had to see the 1924 bridge up close and the woman from France who saw it and wanted a photo of the bridge as a souvenir. The amazing story of the Zion Park Tunnel is then told using historic black and white photographs and film of the construction and 1930 dedication ceremony. Discovery Road then takes a ride through the portal that changed how people visit area national parks. The program concludes with a fascinating story about the first official tourists to visit Zion National Park. The tourists’ saga starts with a scrapbook discovered on ebay by a Manti, Utah woman and concludes with a book she and her husband wrote about six University of Utah girls who were selected to showcase the opening days of Zion National Park nearly a century ago.
  • Crossing Time
    Saturday, November 12
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road takes viewers across the historic Rockville Bridge in southern Utah to see efforts by residents to save the aging structure with open air art competition that took place around the nearby ghost town of Grafton, Utah. In 1866 Grafton was the county seat to Kane County but a year later boundaries changed that giving the honor to Rockville. Several intriguing stories are discovered in and around the unique bridge and Grafton including a German couples’ worldwide journey in an RV. There’s the bicyclist from Louisville, Kentucky who just had to see the 1924 bridge up close and the woman from France who saw it and wanted a photo of the bridge as a souvenir. The amazing story of the Zion Park Tunnel is then told using historic black and white photographs and film of the construction and 1930 dedication ceremony. Discovery Road then takes a ride through the portal that changed how people visit area national parks. The program concludes with a fascinating story about the first official tourists to visit Zion National Park. The tourists’ saga starts with a scrapbook discovered on ebay by a Manti, Utah woman and concludes with a book she and her husband wrote about six University of Utah girls who were selected to showcase the opening days of Zion National Park nearly a century ago.
  • A Good Road Story
    Wednesday, November 9
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road takes viewers back to the early days of road building and automobiles which then introduced the public to the concept of a road trip. A man named Charles Bigelow is responsible for much of the early promotion of cars and roads in the western United States, but he gets little public credit for decades of making it all come together. Bigelow’s scrapbook of promotion articles inviting people to travel in an automobile to scenic America is shown in the program. Next up is the story about a man who creates incredible art related to classic cars, road trips and our national parks from his garage in Manti, Utah. The stunning work of John H. Clark is known worldwide and will fascinate viewers. Other features in this show include a tour of the strange Hole N’ Rock home near Canyonlands National Park and a visit to a once popular grocery store in Sterling, Utah where visitors could buy food and gasoline and fill up with friendly stories. The once abundant roadside motels make an appearance and tell an intriguing tale about life under the old neon signs. The episode concludes with a visit to some car shows and a ride in a classic automobile to find out what attracts people to the vintage cars they preserve and showcase all across America.
  • A Good Road Story
    Saturday, November 5
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road takes viewers back to the early days of road building and automobiles which then introduced the public to the concept of a road trip. A man named Charles Bigelow is responsible for much of the early promotion of cars and roads in the western United States, but he gets little public credit for decades of making it all come together. Bigelow’s scrapbook of promotion articles inviting people to travel in an automobile to scenic America is shown in the program. Next up is the story about a man who creates incredible art related to classic cars, road trips and our national parks from his garage in Manti, Utah. The stunning work of John H. Clark is known worldwide and will fascinate viewers. Other features in this show include a tour of the strange Hole N’ Rock home near Canyonlands National Park and a visit to a once popular grocery store in Sterling, Utah where visitors could buy food and gasoline and fill up with friendly stories. The once abundant roadside motels make an appearance and tell an intriguing tale about life under the old neon signs. The episode concludes with a visit to some car shows and a ride in a classic automobile to find out what attracts people to the vintage cars they preserve and showcase all across America.
  • Honor, Valor & Heritage
    Wednesday, November 2
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road travels along the road in search of military history with connections to heritage along the highway 89 corridor in central Utah. Our first stop is in historic Spring City, Utah where we discover efforts are underway to add some important history to the community which is already listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Hundreds of veterans who have served in every war even before Utah became a state are going to be recognized on the new monument in Spring City. The B-17 heavy bomber airplane then makes an appearance as several World War II vets tell their stories about service aboard the plane. Then Discovery Road Show host James Nelson drives his 1977 Mercury Cougar to the scene of a touching military ceremony as the final chapter to the program unfolds. A compelling story about saying goodbye to World War II soldiers introduces the viewer to "Doc" Hedelius. "Doc" is the person called each time another veteran dies or whenever a special military service is warranted in central Utah.