Published August 31, 2023 | By Lynn Blamires, feature writer for My Local Utah
This annual celebration was first held in 1929 as an opportunity for residents and former residents to renew old friendships and make new ones. Originally known as the Onion Harvest and Homecoming, the event honored Payson’s status as an agricultural district and outstanding producer of onions. The celebration was later renamed Payson City Golden Onion Days, and that is the name that remains to this day. The theme of this year’s event is “Anything is Possible.”
The Adventure Scavenger Hunt Open Until August 28, 2023
Those interested in participating in this Golden Onion Days event have until August 28 to compete in this fun hunt. To participate, download the Eventzee App. You will need to sign in and enter the code “Adventure.” For those intrepid adventurers who amass over 2000 points, a chance to partake in a drawing for other fantastic prizes awaits.
Throughout the Scavenger Hunt, participants will accumulate points by completing various tasks and challenges. The individual with the highest number of points will be awarded the grand prize.
To showcase the spirit of adventure, participants are encouraged to create and submit their most captivating “adventure video” that highlights the magic of Payson and its surroundings. A special prize awaits the creator of the most awe-inspiring video.
The Payson Community Theater presents Annie Get Your Gun – Aug. 24-28, 31-Sept. 2
Curtains go up at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available online.
Golden Onion Days Treasure Hunt – August 31
Prospector Moe has hidden a silver ingot worth $1,000. The first one to find it can claim it. You will be presented with a set of clues or puzzles to solve. The final clue will lead you to the treasure. A treasure hunt is a great way to explore the town. The advantage will be to those who know Payson.
Participants must register online before starting the hunt. The first clue will be given Thursday morning at PaysonTreasureHunt.com. A QR code is given in the Golden Onion Days booklet that provides rules and registration.
Mountain View Hospital Labor Day Kick-off Concert – August 31
Mountain View Hospital in conjunction with Payson City is presenting a concert featuring Rodney Atkins at the Peteetneet Outdoor Amphitheater. The concert is free to the public and begins at 6:00 p.m.
Baby Contest – winners will be announced on September 1
This year marks the 33rd annual Payson Golden Onion Days Baby Contest. Bring your beautiful children and have a photo taken. Ages 0-42 months may enter. All participants will receive an 8” x 10” image.
Pre-registration is required. Contact Memory Lane Photography at (801) 465-4674 for details and registration. Photos will be taken through August 25 at Memory Lane Photography (6 N. Main Street). The cost is $15.
The Hypno Hick – September 1
This fun, family-friendly, stage hypnosis show by Shaun Dee, the Hypno Hick is one of the most entertaining shows around. The show is free and starts at 6:15 p.m. at the Memorial Park Bandstand.
Fireworks – September 1
Watch the skies for an amazing firework display with an absolute over-the-top finish that will knock your socks off and leave the kids raving about it until next year. This year’s show will be broadcast live on KUAA Radio 99.9 FM. I have never watched fireworks on the radio. This should be interesting.
Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast – September 2
Start your day with a full stomach and a prayer in your heart. This free breakfast is sponsored by the Interfaith Council and all denominations are welcome. It starts at 8:00 a.m. in the Memorial Park.
Entertainment in the Park – September 2
The entertainment features Jerry Hardman, playing a mix of classic country, ‘50s, ‘60s, rock and roll, and dance music. The second group is Totem providing a hard rock sound that sets them apart. The last group is The Everett Lincoln Band celebrating 50 years of covering album-oriented classic rock.
Also on tap is a Children’s Talent Show (ages 12 and under), a Teen and Up Talent Show (ages 13 and up), and a Spotlight Vocal Studio. The shows will be in Memorial Park from 10:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
City of Fun Carnival, Boutique, and Food in the Park – September 1 – 4
This four-day event features food and fun in Payson City’s beautiful Memorial Park. Boutique and food vendors line the walkways for your enjoyment. The City of Fun Carnival provides rides and thrills for all ages. It is recommended that you have dinner after your ride on the tilt-a-whirl.
Friday, September 1…………………………….Family Night
One ticket per ride (Friday only): ……. 4:00 – 11:00 PM
Saturday, September 2…………………. 12:00 – 11:00 PM
Sunday, September 3…………………….. 4:00 – 10:00 PM
Monday, September 4 ……………….10:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Night Golf Tournament – September 2
A shotgun start at the Gladston Golf Course will begin at nightfall for nine holes of golf with a cart. The fee is $40 and includes a glow-in-the-dark golf ball, accessories, and tee prizes. This tournament is limited to the first 60 registrants.
Payson Firefighters Open House – September 2
The mission of the Payson Fire Department is to protect the citizens of Payson from all emergencies both natural and man-made through dedicated, highly skilled, and motivated firefighters. The Open House will be from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon at the fire station.
Little Rascal’s Grand Prix Down Hill – September 2
This event offers a chance for you to build your own downhill racer and compete with others. Pre-registration is required, and the race will be held at 100 S. 500 E. Information is online at: derby.leany.com.
Skate and Scoot Showdown – September 2
The competition will be at 11:00 a.m. at 98 E. 600 S. Skate divisions will be 10-15 and 16 and older. The scooter division will be 10 and older.
Western Dancing – September 2
Experience the biggest dance variety on the social dance scene. In addition to Country Swing and Country Two Step you will see the waltz, cha cha, west coast swing, two-step, and line dancing all under one beautiful nighttime sky. Mark Robbins from the Western Dance Club of Utah, Inc. will be hosting this fun Western Evening. Dancing starts at 8:00 p.m. at the Memorial Park Pickleball/Basketball Court and is free to the public.
Joe Coffee & Espresso Bar Open Mic – September 3
Perform in front of a live audience at Joe Coffee & Espresso Bar. You are invited to perform your original music. Guitar players, keyboardists, folk singers, rockers, and musicians of all styles and skill levels can showcase their talent from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Payson Community Band – September 3
The Payson Community Band continues a 121-year tradition of summer band concerts in the park. Enjoy this free concert at 8:00 p.m. at Memorial Park.
Fireside with T.C. Christiansen – September 3
Join us for an inspirational fireside with T.C. Christensen. As Director / Director of Photography, T.C. has been behind the camera directing many popular pioneer films. This event starts at 6:00 p.m. at the LDS Stake Center, 600 East across from Peteetneet Museum.
The Great Peteetneet Duck Race
The Peteetneet Museum is having a fundraiser. Come into the Peteetneet Museum and adopt your duck for $5. Prizes will be given to the first 3 ducks that cross the finish line.
Entertainment in the Park – September 4
Full Program Schedule At-a-Glance:
12:30 – 1:30 PM Payson Community Band Concert
Mayor announces winner for the BIGGEST ONION
1:30 – 2:00 PM Miss Payson and Attendants
2:30 – 3:30 PM ROCK ‘N’ ROLL TIME – Band: Johnny Utah
3:30 – 4:30 PM Payson High Choir
Johnny Utah is an instrumental surf band based out of Salt Lake City. They’re revivalists of the instrumental surf era that was incredibly popular in the ‘50s and ‘60s.
The Tri-Chevys are a Utah Valley-based trio. They play the great old rock-n-roll of the ‘50s and early ‘60s, such as Buddy Holly, Elvis, Carl Perkins, The Beatles, etc. They’re excited to provide you with an evening of nostalgic fun, family-friendly entertainment.
Golden Onion Days Car Show – September 4
On Labor Day from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., a car show will be open to the public. This show will be held at Park View Elementary.
Grand Parade – September 4
Join Payson at the much-awaited Grand Parade of Golden Onion Days, where the city comes alive with vibrant colors, exuberant music, and an atmosphere filled with adventure. Enjoy the creativity and craftsmanship showcased in the floats that grace the Grand Parade. Each float will demonstrate this year’s theme – “Anything is Possible.” The Grand Parade is an opportunity for the entire community to come together to celebrate.
I do not see how you could pack more events into a five-day celebration. There is also a 5K and 10K run, but I was too tired to mention it. There are a lot of exciting events happening at Golden Onion Days in Payson. You can find more information by typing Payson Golden Onion Days into your browser.