Winding Down with Art and Culture
Cedar City is well known for its award-winning Shakespeare festival, but it has grown to become a destination for art enthusiasts of all kinds amid an increasingly urban atmosphere. The next stop on your adventure is a walking tour of downtown galleries. After leaving The French Spot, head west on Center Street and stop at Artisans Gallery. There, you can view and purchase fine art and crafts made by local artists, such as by Southern Utah University art history professor and artist Andrew Marvick. Then jaunt just around the corner to Art Works Gallery to see and buy even more incredible art sourced locally and from neighboring regions. On a recent visit, the highlight was Utah artist Jack Seibold’s unique metal sculpture pieces.
Next, walk west on Center Street toward the Southern Utah University campus and you’ll see the stunning Southern Utah Museum of Art building. This architectural wonder was completed in 2016 and has been featured in magazines due to the unique structure reminiscent of a slot canyon. Step inside for a free wander around the galleries and gift shop. You can view various exhibits from regional artists, as well as catch a showing of students’ work from SUU.
For an extra stop on the tour, head over to Frontier Homestead State Park’s Gallery, where you can find art exhibits of regional importance, such as works created by the infamous regional block-print artist Everett Ruess. This artist wandered through Utah, Arizona, and California capturing the beauty of the southwest alongside peers and other famous artists, such as Ansel Adams. He disappeared at the age of 20 in the 1930s somewhere near Escalante, Utah.
Once dinner time rolls around, make sure to stop at Centro Woodfired Pizzeria on Center Street. Enjoy their fresh salads and fire-roasted pizzas that include eclectic toppings and sophisticated flavors, in a hip location that has a distinctly urban vibe.
After dinner, walk across the street to the impressive-looking Iron Gate (IG) Winery and Tasting Room to sample wines made right in Cedar City. Take a tour of the boutique winery and try their award-winning Riesling or the Tempest Red Blend named for the city’s Shakespeare Festival. You can also start at the winery and have Centro bring a pizza right over to you. Don’t miss the winery’s jazz nights every Saturday, their high end craft cocktails, and one-of-a-kind pop up events (see their Facebook page for more details).
Utah Shakespeare Festival
During the summer, be sure to end the evening with a delightful play at the Tony-award winning Utah Shakespeare Festival a couple blocks away from downtown. This festival has put Cedar City on the map, bringing in theater lovers from all over the world. Don’t miss the free Greenshow on the lawn outside the theater before the show. Enjoy a world-renowned Shakespeare play or entertaining musical in the newly built outdoor theater fashioned to look like the Globe Theater in England. If you’re a theater aficionado, it doesn’t get much better than that! Plan to attend the festival during the months of June through October.
At the end of your evening, you’ll be plenty tired, well fed and ready to hit the pillow. Consider one of the quaint bed and breakfasts in the community, such as the Big Yellow Inn located right next to the Southern Utah University campus and nearby Shakespearean Festival, and within walking distance of downtown. If you decide to stay longer, or need inspiration for your next visit, plan on other Cedar City adventures including hiking, biking or rock climbing.
Other places in town to check out: