KAYSVILLE and BOUNTIFUL — Fourth graders in several Davis County schools got to pan for gold, shoot arrows with bows, make ropes, and catch fish with their bare hands, as a culmination of their year studying Utah history.
After a morning full of activities at Kaysville Elementary, Luke Peterson, a student, said the life of a mountain man sounded fun – especially the part with bows and arrows.
His friend, Ben Arrington, disagreed, saying he prefers living today because there are televisions, couches and beds.
Liese Checketts, who has organized the Kaysville event for years, said the activity is a way for the kids to “take what they’ve learned and see it in action.”
At Oak Hills Elementary in Bountiful, students look forward to the rendezvous all year, according to organizers.
One student told a volunteer that the year-end event was better than Christmas.
Kirk Davis taught students about black powder guns in Bountiful, and Tracy Argyle demonstrated cannons of all sizes in Kaysville.
Without hospitals and due to disease and accidents, only 80 percent of mountain men survived beyond two years in the West, said Davis.
Parents were equally fascinated by what they learned from volunteers.
“I think it’s fabulous,” said Adrie Peterson, who recently returned to Utah after years away with her family. “I just love Davis County schools and what they do.”