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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 Lost Tomahawk
    Saturday, February 23
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    A tomahawk that might have belonged to one of the supreme leaders of the Ute Indians in the 1860s will be revealed in this episode of Discovery Road. "It might be one of the only artifacts that was actually possessed by Sanpitch. It can tell us how he lived, just the fact that this was an item that he had on him when he was killed, tells us about the ongoing warfare that his people were experiencing in the 1860s. Just how violent those times were," said Southern Utah University history professor Mark Miller in the Discovery Road show. The territory of Utah erupted with violence as Ute Indians and Mormon settlers clashed over the same land. It wasn’t long before the small territorial battles fueled into Utah’s Blackhawk War. In this episode viewers find out about one of the great leaders of the Ute Indians during this time of cultural conflict. Chief Sanpitch was always there to help his people and served as a principal figure as attempts were made to negotiate a peace treaty. "Who was San Pitch? He was a respected leader of the Indians who lived in the Sanpete Valley. He obviously had a lot of experience, a number of different talents. He was the guy that when the Sanpete Indians had a tough project to take on, he was the guy they wanted to lead them,” said noted Utah historian Will Bagley. In the documentary Ute Indian tribe elder Forrest S. Cuch reads words spoken by Sanpitch during treaty negotiations and offers his own voice about what was at stake during the heat of war. "Our people adapted to this land over centuries and it is a part of us. We're not willing to break away so quick, these lands are sacred to us."
  • The Lost Tomahawk
    Wednesday, February 27
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    A tomahawk that might have belonged to one of the supreme leaders of the Ute Indians in the 1860s will be revealed in this episode of Discovery Road. "It might be one of the only artifacts that was actually possessed by Sanpitch. It can tell us how he lived, just the fact that this was an item that he had on him when he was killed, tells us about the ongoing warfare that his people were experiencing in the 1860s. Just how violent those times were," said Southern Utah University history professor Mark Miller in the Discovery Road show. The territory of Utah erupted with violence as Ute Indians and Mormon settlers clashed over the same land. It wasn’t long before the small territorial battles fueled into Utah’s Blackhawk War. In this episode viewers find out about one of the great leaders of the Ute Indians during this time of cultural conflict. Chief Sanpitch was always there to help his people and served as a principal figure as attempts were made to negotiate a peace treaty. "Who was San Pitch? He was a respected leader of the Indians who lived in the Sanpete Valley. He obviously had a lot of experience, a number of different talents. He was the guy that when the Sanpete Indians had a tough project to take on, he was the guy they wanted to lead them,” said noted Utah historian Will Bagley. In the documentary Ute Indian tribe elder Forrest S. Cuch reads words spoken by Sanpitch during treaty negotiations and offers his own voice about what was at stake during the heat of war. "Our people adapted to this land over centuries and it is a part of us. We're not willing to break away so quick, these lands are sacred to us."
  • Honor, Valor & Heritage
    Saturday, March 2
    6:00 pm 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.
  • Honor, Valor & Heritage
    Wednesday, March 6
    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.
  • World War II Veterans
    Saturday, March 9
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    No description available.
  • World War II Veterans
    Wednesday, March 13
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    No description available.
  • Hyrum Bebe (The Apostle & The Outlaw)
    Saturday, March 16
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    This episode features a mysterious story about Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and a segment on Mormon church apostle Orson Hyde. Hyde was among the early Mormon polygamists who sometimes had to hide from federal agents who came to town on the local railroad to look for them. Local folklore calls the train the "Polygamist Express" because train engineers would sometimes blow a steam-whistle signal to alert the "brethren" that feds were on board and that it was time to skedaddle.
  • Hyrum Bebe (The Apostle & The Outlaw)
    Wednesday, March 20
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    This episode features a mysterious story about Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and a segment on Mormon church apostle Orson Hyde. Hyde was among the early Mormon polygamists who sometimes had to hide from federal agents who came to town on the local railroad to look for them. Local folklore calls the train the "Polygamist Express" because train engineers would sometimes blow a steam-whistle signal to alert the "brethren" that feds were on board and that it was time to skedaddle.
  • Manti
    Saturday, March 23
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode "Discovery Road" explores how the Manti temple was built and what challenges had to be overcome before the doors were opened in 1888. Stories about hardship and accomplishment are blended with heartwarming personal histories born on the Manti Temple Hill. The episode will also surprise visitors with an introduction to the Rat Fink who is known worldwide by car lovers and fans of Ed "Big Daddy" Roth. Discovery Road hosts James Nelson and Gina Persinger — along with the star of the show, "Love Me Tender," a '55 Pontiac — also find a herd of Llamas just off of U.S. 'Heritage' Highway 89 during taping.
  • Manti
    Wednesday, March 27
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode "Discovery Road" explores how the Manti temple was built and what challenges had to be overcome before the doors were opened in 1888. Stories about hardship and accomplishment are blended with heartwarming personal histories born on the Manti Temple Hill. The episode will also surprise visitors with an introduction to the Rat Fink who is known worldwide by car lovers and fans of Ed "Big Daddy" Roth. Discovery Road hosts James Nelson and Gina Persinger — along with the star of the show, "Love Me Tender," a '55 Pontiac — also find a herd of Llamas just off of U.S. 'Heritage' Highway 89 during taping.
  • Maude Adams
    Saturday, March 30
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    Once upon a time in Salt Lake City a little baby was plucked from her cradle and promptly delivered to center stage! This was the beginning of the marvelous career of Maude Adams! Early in the twentieth century she was among the best stage performers in the world. She made a million dollars a year and played on the biggest stages in New York and around the country. Her legacy, however, remains mostly unknown. Discovery Road attempts to unravel the mystery of Maude Adams. They also enjoy breakfast in a Spring City café and hear a great music story at Snow College in Ephraim, Utah.

 

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  • Saints of Gold
    Wednesday, February 20
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road takes a look back at early pioneer mining and uncovers the incredible role Mormons played in the California Gold Rush. Viewers will see a replica sawmill, original buildings and a museum along the American River where gold was discovered more than 150 years ago. Historians and scholars explain how Mormons in California brought gold dust and nuggets back to Utah and then turned it over to Brigham Young. Few people today know that California gold was melded into coins that played an important part in getting the early Utah territory economy going in the right direction. Rare and valuable Mormon gold coins are exhibited while experts tell viewers about the unique markings and inscriptions on the coinage. The Discovery Road Show host James Nelson then brings forward the gold story from Marysvale, Utah where millionaires were made overnight from the valuable discoveries there. The show takes viewers off the main highway in the middle of Nevada to visit a one-room school house and meet a unique cowboy. The modern day cowboy teaches students and tourists today how to appreciate the beauty and wide open spaces while realizing how challenging the crossing to California was long ago. The episode concludes by introducing viewers to the man who first shouted "Gold! Gold!" in California and went on to become a millionaire before dying penniless and excommunicated from the Mormon Church.
  • Saints of Gold
    Saturday, February 16
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode Discovery Road takes a look back at early pioneer mining and uncovers the incredible role Mormons played in the California Gold Rush. Viewers will see a replica sawmill, original buildings and a museum along the American River where gold was discovered more than 150 years ago. Historians and scholars explain how Mormons in California brought gold dust and nuggets back to Utah and then turned it over to Brigham Young. Few people today know that California gold was melded into coins that played an important part in getting the early Utah territory economy going in the right direction. Rare and valuable Mormon gold coins are exhibited while experts tell viewers about the unique markings and inscriptions on the coinage. The Discovery Road Show host James Nelson then brings forward the gold story from Marysvale, Utah where millionaires were made overnight from the valuable discoveries there. The show takes viewers off the main highway in the middle of Nevada to visit a one-room school house and meet a unique cowboy. The modern day cowboy teaches students and tourists today how to appreciate the beauty and wide open spaces while realizing how challenging the crossing to California was long ago. The episode concludes by introducing viewers to the man who first shouted "Gold! Gold!" in California and went on to become a millionaire before dying penniless and excommunicated from the Mormon Church.
  • A Gift for the Road
    Wednesday, February 13
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode of Discovery Road the importance of landscape and architecture is revealed through the lens of Civil War photography and a visit to the best examples of early Mormon settlements. The Discovery Road Show then brings a powerful story to viewers about endurance that played out long ago on the campus of what would become Southern Utah University. The determination of a town to educate its people and the role a work horse played is told in this fascinating segment. The program then tells the story of how the historic corridor in central Utah became a National Heritage Area and the man most responsible for making it happen. That man is the late Senator Bob Bennett. Bennett pushed forward key legislation that led to the creation of the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA). The MPNHA has worked for ten years to preserve and protect history, culture and heritage through its many programs and projects. The episode not only salutes Bennett for his work but offers insight to the late Senator’s intriguing family story of heritage.
  • A Gift for the Road
    Saturday, February 9
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    In this episode of Discovery Road the importance of landscape and architecture is revealed through the lens of Civil War photography and a visit to the best examples of early Mormon settlements. The Discovery Road Show then brings a powerful story to viewers about endurance that played out long ago on the campus of what would become Southern Utah University. The determination of a town to educate its people and the role a work horse played is told in this fascinating segment. The program then tells the story of how the historic corridor in central Utah became a National Heritage Area and the man most responsible for making it happen. That man is the late Senator Bob Bennett. Bennett pushed forward key legislation that led to the creation of the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA). The MPNHA has worked for ten years to preserve and protect history, culture and heritage through its many programs and projects. The episode not only salutes Bennett for his work but offers insight to the late Senator’s intriguing family story of heritage.
  • The Unknown
    Wednesday, February 6
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Discovery Road Show is bringing forward a unique view of 1860s era pioneers who came to Utah but did not stay with the release of "The Unknown". Around the time the U.S. Army nearly clashed with Brigham Young families started packing their bags for the west coast. The intrigue comes in figuring what prompted the families to leave the state for California. Religious beliefs, family struggles, economics or dreams for a better life in the Golden State of California are some of the reasons born out in the documentary. Following two women determined to find their unknown roots the show takes on a detective feel as they search for answers. Discovery Road also reveals an amazing rock wall in the middle of Nevada built to honor the pioneers who struggled to reach their dreams in California. The two ladies experience the old west as it is today by panning for gold, visiting museums and traveling along the historic trails. The old west stagecoach makes an appearance in this show with a little known story about a driver who fooled nearly everyone. "The Unknown" offers the audience an entertaining and bouncy ride to the past and reveals just how much history is not known about most family stories.
  • The Unknown
    Saturday, February 2
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Discovery Road Show is bringing forward a unique view of 1860s era pioneers who came to Utah but did not stay with the release of "The Unknown". Around the time the U.S. Army nearly clashed with Brigham Young families started packing their bags for the west coast. The intrigue comes in figuring what prompted the families to leave the state for California. Religious beliefs, family struggles, economics or dreams for a better life in the Golden State of California are some of the reasons born out in the documentary. Following two women determined to find their unknown roots the show takes on a detective feel as they search for answers. Discovery Road also reveals an amazing rock wall in the middle of Nevada built to honor the pioneers who struggled to reach their dreams in California. The two ladies experience the old west as it is today by panning for gold, visiting museums and traveling along the historic trails. The old west stagecoach makes an appearance in this show with a little known story about a driver who fooled nearly everyone. "The Unknown" offers the audience an entertaining and bouncy ride to the past and reveals just how much history is not known about most family stories.
  • Paradise on the Prairie
    Wednesday, January 30
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road are bringing forward several years of interviews, taping and original research to present "Paradise on the Prairie" about the ill-fated Jewish Colony in Clarion, Utah. Interviews with descendants of the Jewish Colony reveal the family story for viewers. Discovery Road also interviewed the Academy Award winning producer Gerald Molen. Molen received an Oscar as Producer for Schindler's List, the epic movie about Polish-Jews saved from the holocaust. "If we think about what they went through, it would probably be no different than the Mormons, when they went looking for a place they could have peace and thrive and prosper with their families. They tried, my hats off to them for having tried." Molen said about the people of Clarion in an interview with Discovery Road. "A key piece of this story is the coming together of two peoples— Jews and Mormons. They came together in 1911 and 1912 when Jewish farmers needed help. They were absolutely inexperienced. They were from the cities, and the Mormon farmers came out and shared their experience with the Jews. And that example of cooperation has been carried on for a hundred years since," said Dr. Robert A. Goldberg, author of "Back to the Soil: The Jewish Farmers of Clarion, Utah, and Their World," the definitive work on Clarion. Goldberg is also interviewed for the show. "Paradise" also shows a movie crew working on a film about Clarion. The writer of "Jewtah" discusses why he is telling the story of the colony that no longer exists. The experience of the back-to-the-soil colonists continues to amaze those who hear about it, including the movie world. ________________________________________
  • Paradise on the Prairie
    Saturday, January 26
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) and Discovery Road are bringing forward several years of interviews, taping and original research to present "Paradise on the Prairie" about the ill-fated Jewish Colony in Clarion, Utah. Interviews with descendants of the Jewish Colony reveal the family story for viewers. Discovery Road also interviewed the Academy Award winning producer Gerald Molen. Molen received an Oscar as Producer for Schindler's List, the epic movie about Polish-Jews saved from the holocaust. "If we think about what they went through, it would probably be no different than the Mormons, when they went looking for a place they could have peace and thrive and prosper with their families. They tried, my hats off to them for having tried." Molen said about the people of Clarion in an interview with Discovery Road. "A key piece of this story is the coming together of two peoples— Jews and Mormons. They came together in 1911 and 1912 when Jewish farmers needed help. They were absolutely inexperienced. They were from the cities, and the Mormon farmers came out and shared their experience with the Jews. And that example of cooperation has been carried on for a hundred years since," said Dr. Robert A. Goldberg, author of "Back to the Soil: The Jewish Farmers of Clarion, Utah, and Their World," the definitive work on Clarion. Goldberg is also interviewed for the show. "Paradise" also shows a movie crew working on a film about Clarion. The writer of "Jewtah" discusses why he is telling the story of the colony that no longer exists. The experience of the back-to-the-soil colonists continues to amaze those who hear about it, including the movie world. ________________________________________
  • Sheep Count
    Wednesday, January 23
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    Discovery Road provides an educational and entertaining visit to the sheep farms in central Utah. The program starts by turning the page back to the glory days of sheep in the state. A century ago one prize sheep could command thousands of dollars. It was big business touted around the world! The program introduces viewers to big sheep operations and learns how the wool is removed from the herds. There's also the amazing story of one sheep shearer who sheared more than half-a-million sheep in his lifetime. Co-host Maryda Nicole Gallo shows us how stray or orphaned lambs are cared for and follows that assignment with a look at the working dogs who keep sheep in line. Sheep herders from several foreign countries share their views of the work they do in and around sheep ranches. Co-host James Nelson found the intriguing story of one Utah woman's effort to preserve sheep wagon history. The original style sheep wagons are difficult to find these days but this woman hopes to make them popular and accessible to the general public.
  • Sheep Count
    Saturday, January 19
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    Discovery Road provides an educational and entertaining visit to the sheep farms in central Utah. The program starts by turning the page back to the glory days of sheep in the state. A century ago one prize sheep could command thousands of dollars. It was big business touted around the world! The program introduces viewers to big sheep operations and learns how the wool is removed from the herds. There's also the amazing story of one sheep shearer who sheared more than half-a-million sheep in his lifetime. Co-host Maryda Nicole Gallo shows us how stray or orphaned lambs are cared for and follows that assignment with a look at the working dogs who keep sheep in line. Sheep herders from several foreign countries share their views of the work they do in and around sheep ranches. Co-host James Nelson found the intriguing story of one Utah woman's effort to preserve sheep wagon history. The original style sheep wagons are difficult to find these days but this woman hopes to make them popular and accessible to the general public.
  • Precious Jewels In Any Language
    Wednesday, January 16
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    On the 100th anniversary of the National Parks, Discovery Road provides an international viewpoint of America's best idea. Tourists from France, Germany, Viet Nam, Australia, Canada and many other countries are interviewed while vacationing in Utah. A former volunteer in the National Park Service is featured greeting visitors in their own language and with a unique salutation. Co-host Maryda Nicole Gallo shows us how to listen for animals and sounds that make National Parks classrooms of discovery. Co-host James Nelson explores the popularity of stargazing in National Parks. No matter the language tourists can look into a night sky and find excitement in what they see. Discovery Road introduces viewers to the man responsible for looking skyward in America's National Parks.
  • Precious Jewels In Any Language
    Saturday, January 12
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    On the 100th anniversary of the National Parks, Discovery Road provides an international viewpoint of America's best idea. Tourists from France, Germany, Viet Nam, Australia, Canada and many other countries are interviewed while vacationing in Utah. A former volunteer in the National Park Service is featured greeting visitors in their own language and with a unique salutation. Co-host Maryda Nicole Gallo shows us how to listen for animals and sounds that make National Parks classrooms of discovery. Co-host James Nelson explores the popularity of stargazing in National Parks. No matter the language tourists can look into a night sky and find excitement in what they see. Discovery Road introduces viewers to the man responsible for looking skyward in America's National Parks.
  • World War II Veterans
    Wednesday, January 9
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    No description available.
  • World War II Veterans
    Saturday, January 5
    6:00 pm on UEN-TV 9.1
    No description available.
  • Road Stops & Stop Signs
    Wednesday, January 2
    12:00 am on UEN-TV 9.1
    This episode of Discovery Road pays a visit to small town America with stops in Spring City, Duck Creek Village, and Alton, Utah. A taste of pie in Duck Creek, a tour of historic homes in Spring City and a real show stopper in Alton will give viewers insight to life off the main highway. The show offers a look at the longstanding sheep industry in the Sanpete Valley through the lens of a still photographer. Beautiful photos document the wool gathering process, workers and showcase the range sheep call home. The documentary also introduces us to an artist who paints on barn wood. The unique style has been applied to an amazing World War II story with an intriguing tie to September 11. The road travels include a visit to a small town library to check out a few yarns about the historic corridor along highway 89.