Rich Martinez tests his skills during the annual mucking and drilling competition at City Park during last year’s Miner’s Day celebration.
Rich Martinez tests his skills during the annual mucking and drilling competition at City Park during last year's Miner's Day celebration. (Park Record file photo)
On Monday, Sept. 1, Park City will not celebrate Labor Day. It will celebrate Miner's Day and not only party like it's the end of summer, but also honor its history.

Furthermore, this year marks the town's 117th annual Miner's Day Celebration, said Paul Hewitt, Miner's Day chairman.

"The event people will see this year is the culmination of all the years that brought it together," said Hewitt during an interview with The Park Record. "We've got aspects of all those years in this celebration, so we hope people will get out and enjoy it."

That should be simple, because there will be something for everyone, he said.

The day will start with a pancake breakfast at 7:30 a.m. hosted by St. Mary's Catholic Church. The cost is $5 per person and children ages 4 and younger get to eat for free.

"After breakfast, we'll have the annual Funky 5K," Hewitt said.

The run, which starts at 8:30 a.m., is a benefit for Arts-Kids, an after-school student development program.

Participants are encouraged to wear costumes for the 3.1-mile run, Hewitt said.

Prizes will be handed out for best costumes. To register, visit funky5k.athlete360.com.

At 10:45 a.m., the focus will shift to Main Street for the annual Running of the Balls, which will feature approximately 8,000 golf balls that will be let loose down the street in a contained track.

The Park City High School track team will lead the charge, Hewitt said.


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"Prizes for the winners will include season ski passes and overnight stays at the Montage," he said. "Home Depot also donated a gas grill and there are a lot of other prizes."

A single ball costs $5 and a group of five cost $20.

"All the money raised from ball purchases will benefit the Rotary Club of Park City's grants program, which, in turn, benefits local nonprofit organizations," Hewitt explained. "Also, every penny we raise above the cost of the event goes to local nonprofit organizations.

Thousands of numbered yellow golf balls roll and bounce down Main Street during the world famous Running of the Balls. (Park Record file photo)
Thousands of numbered yellow golf balls roll and bounce down Main Street during the world famous Running of the Balls. (Park Record file photo)
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Balls can be purchased by visiting www.parkcityrotary.com or early Monday morning before 10:30 a.m.

The Miner's Day Parade will proceed down Main Street to 9th Street and down Park Avenue immediately following the Running of the Balls.

"Since this is a small-town community event, the entries for the parade will include everything from a bicycle to a car to a full-on decorated float," Hewitt explained.

At the end of the parade, everyone will gather in City Park to enjoy kids games, including sack relays, wheelbarrow and three-legged races, hosted by Tom Kelly.

"The kids have little prizes awarded to them as well," according to Hewitt. "Those prizes include ice cream cones, fire department hats and pens and pencils."

In addition to the games, the public can enjoy live music by Bonanza Town and the Changing Lanes Experience, presented by Mountain Town Music, and lunch, featuring items the cost between $4 and $6.

Hans Feugi, owner of Grub Steak restaurant, is the man who organizes and sets up all the food sales of hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza, Hewitt said.

"There will also be soft-drink and beer sales from Wasatch Brewery," he said.

The event's spotlight, as it has been throughout the years, is the mucking and drilling competition that will begin at 1:15 p.m.

Competitors from the region will demonstrate the hard work that was done daily in Park City's silver mines, Hewitt said.

"The rock they will work on will be donated by Delta Stone Products," he said. "We build an entire mine-cart track in the City Park parking lot and set up bleachers for spectators."

After the contest wraps and the prizes are handed out, the Miner's Day celebration will wind down with the Skateboard Pro Jam that was introduced last year.

"It was a nice success last year so we decided to do it again," Hewitt said.

Organizing the Miner's Day events isn't a small feat.

"We have a committee of about 10 people from the Rotary Club of Park City who organize and orchestrate the goings on of the Miner's Day Festival," Hewitt explained. "We work very closely with Park City Municipal's special events coordinators, because when you do a special event of this magnitude you have to file for a master festival license."

The committee also has to work with Utah Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control to get a single event license because of the beer sales.

"It's been a good education for me to see how special events come together and run," said Hewitt, who served as the chairman last year. "There aren't really many challenges. We just have to make sure we dot all our Is and cross all our Ts to make sure things are conducted properly.

"This is a great community event," Hewitt said. "I don't know of any other event locally that can say it's going to celebrate its 117thyear."

The 117th Miner's Day Celebration, which honors Park City's mining history, will take place on Monday, Sept. 1, at City Park and Main Street, beginning with a breakfast at 7:30 a.m.. For more information, visit www.parkcityrotaryclub.org .