Monthly Archives: July 2014

May Day! The Multiple-Attempt Proposal

My poor husband tried and tried to propose to me and it seemed that something went wrong or got in the way every time, but I didn’t realize that was what he was trying to do at the time.
For instance, we drove to the park one day and had a picnic and enjoyed the peace and quiet while feeding the ducks near the water – perfect setting, right?  I didn’t know he had plans to propose and as we were talking we ended up in a disagreement and upset and that ended that idea.
Another time –  On Easter I woke to find my yard covered in plastic Easter eggs, candies, and stuffed bunnies, as he had snuck over to my house before I woke up.  Inside each egg were notes expressing his love and wanting to spend his life with me. However, I was dense and didn’t get it that he was proposing and it kind of flopped.  He had hoped to put the engagement ring in one of the eggs, but that didn’t work out either.
PS 988312_597566210263292_1655252380_nThen on May Day we got ice cream cones and went for a drive.  It would have been my brothers birthday that day so we took some flowers out to the local cemetery to place on his grave.  And right there in the most romantic place in town, he told me how much he loved me, that he wanted to spend forever with me, and asked me to marry him.  That was 12 years ago and I am so glad I said “Yes”!   We then went to the graves of his parents and told them of our engagement.  We headed back to town and visited with my parents and told them.  Ron placed my Grandma Brown’s engagement ring on my finger and my dad took this picture.  When we married, he placed my Grandma Johnson’s wedding ring on my finger.   Every May Day each year we buy ice cream cones and take a drive to the cemetery.
PS 10330282_794285670591344_2576106631997529677_n

Thank you for sharing your engagement story with us Leisa and Ron! When I read your story, I couldn’t help but think, “Three times the charm!” Congratulations on 12 wonderful years of marriage! We are thrilled to share your story here.

If you are interested in having your proposal story published here on the Anniversary Inn Blog, just email a brief summary of the events and a few photos to Those who submit their stories are automatically entered into our contest to win a free night at one of the four Anniversary Inn locations (Boise, Logan, 5th South, SLC, and South Temple, SLC). We look forward to hearing from you!

An Intimate Anniversary in Salt Lake City

Many of the posts on this blog describe ways to celebrate your anniversary or plan a staycation in a grand and creative manner, taking advantages of all the local events that Utah and Idaho have to offer. Though a creatively planned anniversary is fun and exciting, sometimes the most enjoyable evening is one that involves a romantic dinner and a relaxing get-away. Fortunately for you, Salt Lake offers superb options for such a night.


One of Salt Lake City’s most valuable gems is Em’s Restaurant. Em’s Emst2is located in the heart of downtown Salt Lake on Center Street, just below the Capitol Building. It rests in a small, cozy space that is endlessly romantic: dimmed lighting, candles, beautiful art, small tables – you’ll never want to leave. And the food, oh the food! Head Chef – Emily – is brilliant. Starting out in a much smaller space serving lunch and catering on the side, she soon found more space would be necessary as the reputation of her delicious and creative cuisine grew. She relocated to Center Street where the restaurant expanded once more into the neighboring space which provided more seating for the ever growing group of patrons. Em’s cuisine is gourmet using seasonal and local produce which means the menu changes throughout the year.


Start your meal with her famous potato pancakes served with creme Emscatering3fraiche and fresh herbs. They are delicate and savory with complex flavors that pair perfectly with creamy creme fraiche. Her flatbread with seasonal toppings is also a great choice. Follow up the appetizer with a salad. Whether you prefer something light (mixed greens with balsamic vinaigrette, croutons, and shaved parmesan) or something more hearty (roasted potatoes and caramelized onions with Italian sausage on seasonal greens, tossed with a bacon, sherry vinaigrette), she has something for you.

The list of entrees is substantial, each includes a perfectly prepared Em'st1meat (lamb, short ribs, salmon, etc.) that is paired with sauces and vegetables that are prepared to accompany the meat perfectly. For vegetarians, she has an excellent potato lasagna and nightly pasta special. Let’s just say, if she’s serving her famous house-made ravioli…you can’t go wrong. What is dinner without dessert? Em’s list of desserts presents a comforting, classic selection. Sorbets, bread pudding with caramel sauce, raspberry creme brulee, homemade ice cream served with a warm chocolate chunk brownie….is your mouth watering yet? Read more reviews here where Em’s earns 4/5 stars on Yelp!

The best part about Em’s is the AMBIANCE. My husband and I have been there a number of times and every time we visit I feel the need to hold his hand across the table and lean over the table to engage in intimate conversation. It feels like a place where we can share secrets and exchange romantic glances – the perfect restaurant to host your anniversary celebration.

***Important Note: due to it’s popularity, Em’s recommends that you make reservations a few days in advance. Having been disappointed once when arriving at a full-to-capacity restaurant, I strongly encourage following this policy.
***Em’s also serves Sunday brunch and lunch throughout the week. I highly recommend both.



After a romantic evening spent on Center Street in Salt Lake, take a short drive to the Anniversary Inn on South Temple, just minutes away. There, book the Anniversary Inn Suite. This suite stands in contrast to the others in its classic interior. It is elegance at its finest. No frills, no distractions – just comfort. relax with your sweetheart in the jacuzzi tub for two before crawling into our king sized bed and watching a movie while a fire burns in the fireplace. Complimentary apple cider and cheesecake come with every suite. Indulge! There’s nothing wrong with enjoying “second dessert.” Let the morning greet you with a complimentary full breakfast.

Craving a classic, romantic, and intimate anniversary celebration. Reserve a night at Em’s and the Anniversary Inn on South Temple and you won’t be disappointed.

Hiking Around Boise – the Ideal Summer Staycation

Summer is the perfect time of year to enjoy the great outdoors. In the west, we oftentimes take for granted the accessibility we have to beautiful trails that wander along peaceful streams or climb impressive mountains. Especially in Idaho, where the summer heat is less intense than other locations, locals should take the time to experience the natural beauty their state has to offer before the winter snow sets in and masks it all in white. Instead of booking an expensive flight or traveling to a foreign destination, look around! With a little collaboration between mother nature and the Anniversary Inn in Boise, this weekend could easily turn into an affordable, enjoyable staycation.

Hulls Gulch caption
There are dozens of hiking trails that surround Boise and most all are worth the time and effort. However, if you’re looking for the most “bang for your buck,” I would choose Hull’s Gulch. Why? Well, I have three reasons.

Screen Shot 2014-07-19 at 5.09.26 PM

Reason #1: Accessibility:
The Hull’s Gulch trail is located less than 10 minutes from downtown Boise within the Hulls Gulch/Camels Back reservoir. Just take 8th street north towards the foothills until the pavement ends. Park in the first parking lot on your right. More details on location here.

Hulls Gulch hulls_gulch_natl_rec.Par.33290.Image.375.251.1 Hulls Gulch lower_hulls_gulch

Reason #2: Versatility
There are numerous ways to enjoy the gulch, which makes this area an ideal place to spend a Saturday with your sweetheart (and kids if they’re lucky enough to come along). Whatever your hiking experience or time frame, the gulch has an option for you. Take a look at this map to see the various trails to choose from within the gulch trail system. If you want to spend just an hour or two, pick a loop that is shorter or hike in until you are ready to start heading back to the parking lot. For the full experience, pack a lunch and hike the entire 7 mile loop. Stunning views of the city and beautiful nature scenes can be seen all along the trail.

Hulls Gulch 56532_HullsGulch2_356x267

Reason #3: Safety
The Hulls Gulch Nature Trail is reserved for hikers (restricted from bikers and equestrians though they may use other parts of the gulch) and the climb is gentle which means it can be enjoyed by everyone! Still, be sure to bring enough water as there is little shade along the trail. See other reviews of the hike here.

After a long hike, reward yourself with a night of relaxation at the Anniversary Inn in Boise. To continue the nature theme, book the Enchanted Forest Suite. There, you will be surrounded by painted murals depicting a forested area that you may recognize from your day spent in the Boise foothills. Make no mistake, you will find no wildlife or dirt trails here. Only a comfortable queen bed, TV, and luxurious jetted tub for two. We’ll even throw in a bottle of sparkling cider and a delicious cheesecake – no trail maps required. After a weekend like this, you may never want to leave Boise again.



People flock from all over the country and world to enjoy the American west – and it’s right outside your door. So, get your hiking shoes on! This weather won’t last forever.

Boating and Banners – a Proposal at Lake Powell

The day we got engaged is a day I will never forget! It couldn’t have been more perfect.

Here is just a little background on Weston and I. We both grew up in the same neighborhood and our parents became good friends. Every summer, our families would go spend a week in Lake Powell together. Weston is about 2 1/2 years older than me so we didn’t start dating until we were about 19 and 21 years old. We dated for about a year when we knew that we wanted to get married. Here is our proposal story…


We were in Lake Powell with our families and some really good friends. I was sitting in the houseboat when Weston came up to me and said, “I’m going to help my dad fix his marine radio. I’ll be back soon. Love you” and gave me a kiss. I thought that was a little bit odd but I loved it. He left and was gone for a long time. I ended up going on my parent’s boat to go tubing. We all piled on. It was my turn to go tubing next when I saw Weston’s boat pulling up to ours. He dropped off my sister and his brother on our boat and said “Do you want to come with me Maddie?” I was thinking, “Well I was about to go tubing!” :) Ryan, Weston’s best friend said, “Ya Maddie, go with him!” So I did. My dad said, “Is anybody else going with Weston?” Weston said “Just Maddie!”

So I got on his boat and he seemed so excited! He had been telling me for a couple days that we should go on our own little boat ride. Once we were in the boat he said, “I’ve got something to show you! My dad said I could take the boat so I decided to show you these ruins we found while we were fixing our marine radio.” He was all smiles! I sat on his lap on the boat ride over. He then told me that we need to pick up his sister because she was hiking around there. I said, “You just left her there?” Haha

While I sat on his lap he told me that he had the biggest crush on me in Lake Powell last year. After that he told me he needed me to go sit on the front of the boat to look for rocks in the water so we wouldn’t hit them with the boat. So I did. I didn’t like being without him but I wanted to help out. He started honking his horn that didn’t work. Thats when I started catching on. We drove the boat through this beautiful canyon in face canyon. We came around the corner and I saw a huge banner that said Maddie, will you marry me? My hands came up over my mouth. I was so surprised and speechless! I remember saying “Weston” over and over again. I got a little emotional. I went back to try and give Weston a hug but he had to dock the boat. Once he situated the boat, he told me that I was the only person he wanted to be with and a few other things. Then he got down on one knee and said, “Will you marry me?”

2011 family pictures 209

And I said yes! He put the ring on my finger and it is gorgeous!! I absolutely love it! I felt so blessed! Then he pulled out a letter he had written for me and read it out loud. It was the most beautiful letter that anybody had ever written for me. We turned around and his sister was hiding behind a rock taking pictures for us. They turned out so great! We picked his sister up and headed out of the canyon. We drove up to my boat and I saw all of my family and friends. I was so overwhelmed and so grateful that I started crying. Afterwards, we all went back, looked at the sign, and took some more pictures. It was such a perfect proposal for us and I couldn’t be more grateful for it!

IMG_8591 2

Thank you for sharing your engagement story with us Maddie and Weston! What a romantic setting for a proposal. I’m sure you will never go down to Lake Powell again without thinking of this special day. We are thrilled to share your story here.

If you are interested in having your proposal story published here on the Anniversary Inn Blog, just email a brief summary of the events and a few photos to Those who submit their stories are automatically entered into our contest to win a free night at one of the four Anniversary Inn locations (Boise, Logan, 5th South, SLC, and South Temple, SLC). We look forward to hearing from you!


Celebrate Your Anniversary…and Utah’s

July brings with it numerous celebrations, including Utah’s Pioneer Day, the 24th of July. On this day, we commemorate the birth of this beautiful state and honor those who founded it. Due to the occasion, “This Is The Place” State Park hosts numerous activities for all to enjoy. Whether you celebrate your anniversary in July or are just looking for a staycation, the State Park and Anniversary Inn have you covered.


Though “This Is The Place” State Park is usually a family destination, that doesn’t mean couples can’t join in on the fun. Typically, anniversaries consist of a romantic dinner and maybe a movie. Mix things up and take your sweetie to the Park to discover what it has to offer.



True to its heritage as an old pioneer town, the Park features original 19th century buildings and homes that have been relocated for preservation purposes. Barns, cabins, stores, half-way houses – it’s all there, rich in history, to explore and enjoy. The park also hosts numerous celebrations throughout the year, especially in July. On July 4th, the Park will celebrate “Liberty Days” and on July 24th, they will celebrate “Pioneer Days.” Both celebrations feature summer food, races, pony rides, reenactments, craft projects, and games. Does riding a pony or participating in a three-legged race seem childish? So what! Join the fun for a memorable anniversary.


Celebrating your anniversary would not be complete without a romantic place to stay. Following the theme of Utah heritage, book a night at the Anniversary Inn on 5th South in Salt Lake City and reserve the Wild West Suite. Cuddle next to your honey and enjoy watching a movie in the back of an old covered wagon (don’t worry, the bed is modern). Relax even further by “walking into town” through the saloon-style porch and doors to find a luxurious jetted tub. With decor true to its name, this suite will take you back in time without leaving the comfort of the present-day luxuries.

So grab your sweetheart and make this year’s anniversary one to remember. Make the most of Utah’s July festivities and let Anniversary Inn do the rest.


Find “This Is The Place” State Park calendar of events here.

More Utah July events:
Days of ‘47 Parade (July 24)
Pioneer Day (July 24)
July 24th Sunrise Service (July 24)
Deseret News Marathon, Half-Marathon, 10K, and 5K (July 24)
Days of ‘47 Rodeo (July 22-25)