Traditions and plans for Pioneer Day

This coming week is July 24th, otherwise known as Pioneer Day. I grew up in a small town in southern Alberta, an area which was settled by Mormon pioneers. Growing up we would usually have some type of ward activity (often a potluck dinner and games at a park) to celebrate the occasion. My husband and I both have a lot of pioneer ancestors and it is important to us that we pass on that heritage to our children. So we traditionally do a few things each July to mark the occasion.

We always enjoy watching the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Pioneer Day Concert. The 2015 concert was called Music for a Summer Evening and featured special guest Laura Osnes. We watched the recorded concert on YouTube this past Sunday morning before church.

At least one Family Home Evening lesson in July has a pioneer theme. In 2010 we did Pioneers, Seagulls and Crickets, and Faith and in 2011 it was Faith of the Pioneers. We usually have homemade ice-cream for our treat.

For dinner on the 24th we serve Fried Bread. I know it isn’t an authentic pioneer meal, but that is our tradition! We like ours with powdered sugar or honey butter on top.

The church has produced a few Mormon Messages that are great to share at this time of year, and we also like watching Legacy.  This year we plan to watch 17 Miracles (directed by T.C. Christensen) as a Friday Family Movie Night on Pioneer Day.

Video Links

  • Faith of Our Fathers: President Uchtdorf discusses the phrase “Faith of Their Fathers” and talks about pioneers of the Church. (1:41)
  • Reviewing the Lessons of the Past: Are you preparing for your future? Journey with us as Elder Perry teaches us how to prepare.
  • Pioneers: Dallin H. Oaks, Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, pays tribute to modern-day pioneers who faithfully follow Jesus Christ. (2:27)

How do you celebrate Pioneer Day?

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