by Raschelle Goodman

It’s time for a summer adventure. In no time, school will be out and the kids will be inside looking for fun. Downtown Salt Lake City has adventures waiting for you and the entire family. In the middle of the downtown city, only two blocks west of Temple Square, the unique open-aired Gateway Mall has attractions that your family will love this summer.

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Discovery Gateway

On your way through the outdoor mall, stop by Discovery Gateway! This hot spot is your child’s center for fun and learning. Exhibits give children the opportunity to explore the world around them as well as areas of interest, including story telling, news casting, science, art, engineering, flying and more.

This summer, May 17 September 7, Discovery Gateway will have a special visitor: Bob the Builder. Bob and his Can-Do Crew are bringing Sunflower Valley to Salt Lake City with this 2,500-square-foot exhibit. Bob the Builder and his Project: Build It inspires teamwork and brings environmentally-friendly building them to life for children and families.

The Discovery Gateway is kicking off the summer with a party extravaganza. Mark your calendars for Saturday, June 21 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The Bumble Bee Bash Children’s Festival is a day-long event kicking off summer and celebrating children, with bounce houses, face painting, balloon artists, youth musicians and dancers, magic and puppet shows, science demonstrations, free art projects and food trucks. Tickets are available in advance online at discoverygateway.org, or on the day of the event at the museum.

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Clark Planetarium at the Salt Lake City Gateway Mall

Clark Planetarium

The next stop you want to make at the Gateway Mall is the Clark Planetarium, a stimulating adventure for all ages. Clark Planetarium creates enlightening experiences to inspire visitors to learn about science and the grandeur of the universe. The planetarium offers free admission to 10,000 feet of exhibit space. Daily shows in the Hansen Dome and ATK IMAX Theatres range between $7 and $9.

The Clark Planetarium will be opening “Supervolcanoes” in the Hansen Dome Theatre on May 23, 2014. The show looks at the nature of volcanoes, not only on Earth, but arou

nd the solar system. It is narrated by celebrated actor Benedict Cumberbatch.

On July 18, the planetarium will open “Hidden Universe 3D” in the ATK IMAX Theatre. With the full power of IMAX 3D cinematography, the deepest reaches of our universe are brought to life with unprecedented clarity through real images captured by the world’s most powerful telescopes—seen on-screen and in 3D for the first time. It is narrated by Golden Globe winner Miranda Richardson.

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The Olympic Legacy Fountain at the Salt Lake City Gateway Mall (photo courtesy of The Jerde Partnership (www.jerde.com)

Olympic Legacy Fountain

On your trip to Salt Lake City, make sure you pack towels. At the end of your fun day at the Gateway Mall, cool off at the Olympic Snowflake Fountain—an exciting way to conclude the day. Benches surround this beautiful, open area where water spouts up from the ground in sync to music playing in the streets. Simply sit back and enjoy its beauty, or follow your kids into the middle of the fun while you chase the water and the water chases you in return. For extra magic, stay until the sun goes down and the fountain lights up, an enjoyable conclusion for a day at the Gateway Mall for every age.

This summer when the family is restless and out of ideas for fun, travel south for a fun family day in Salt Lake City’s Gateway Mall. The clean, open-aired atmosphere with tree-lined streets will provide a positive experience for everyone in your family. Explore Discovery Gateway, Clark Planetarium and the Olympic Snowflake Fountain. There is no better mix of fun and learning in the area.