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AM News Brief: Virtual Sundance, Final Daily Print Editions & Pick For Head Of Utah Alcohol Control

Photo of Main Street in Park City, Utah, during Sundance Film Festival.
Kelsie Moore/RadioWest
The 2021 Sundance Film Festival will be almost entirely virtual this year. That story and more in this morning's news brief.

Friday morning, January 1, 2021


Cox Names Pick For Head Of Utah Alcohol Control

Gov.-elect Spencer Cox has named Tiffany Clason as his pick for executive director of the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. Cox said in a statement he picked Clason because of her experience in the food and beverage industry and in government. She helped launch an artisan bread line in London, as well as worked for politicians from both parties for 12 years. She previously worked for Republican Gov. Gary Herbert’s as his director of constituent services and for Democratic Utah Congressman Ben McAdams as district director. — Sonja Hutson

Final Daily Print Editions

Salt Lake City's two major newspapers printed their final daily editions Thursday. They're shifting their attention online and transitioning to weekly print editions. The Salt Lake Tribune will continue to publish breaking stories online every day, but it will only produce one print newspaper each week on Sunday. The newspaper won the Pulitzer Prize for local reporting in 2017. The Deseret News will also post news stories daily on its website and print one newspaper every weekend. It's also offering a monthly magazine, which debuts this month. Both the Salt Lake Tribune and the Deseret News have been Utah institutions and had delivered daily papers for more than a century. — Associated Press

Northern Utah

Virtual Sundance

The 2021 Sundance Film Festival will be almost entirely virtual except for a handful of theaters and pop-up locations around the country. One in-person location that was planned in Utah has been canceled because of growing COVID-19 cases. Utahns this year will have some unique opportunities though. High school teachers across the state will be able to screen a film for their students, in classrooms or remotely. Sundance is also offering free and discounted tickets for 18 to 25-year-olds, distributed through Utah colleges and community organizations. Tickets and passes for the general public go on sale next Thursday, Jan. 7. — Jon Reed

Southern Utah

Golf Breaking Records In St. George

Southern Utah is known for its rolling green golf courses and nearly year-round sunny, playable weather. For the past six months, courses in St. George are doing even better than expected. Golfers trying to get last minute tee times in St. George have had to look elsewhere since there are no slots available, according to Marc Mortensen with the city. Despite closing for three weeks at the beginning of the pandemic and losing over $450,000 in revenue, Colby Cowan, the director of golf operations, said city courses are on track for a record-breaking fiscal year. Read the full story. — Lexi Peery, St. George


Remembering May Bunjes Of Colorado

Selfless. Full of light. That’s how family and friends describe May Bunjes. The 71-year-old died of COVID-19 in November. In Colorado’s Weld County, she was a court-appointed special advocate for abused children, and she gave her time to all sorts of causes. Protecting everyone from the virus, especially the vulnerable, takes massive cooperation, but officials in Weld County have pushed back on state health orders meant to slow the spread of COVID-19. Bunjes family said that’s unacceptable, and they want people in their mom’s hometown to look after each other the way their mom looked out for her community. — Robyn Vincent, Mountain West News Bureau

Visit KUER’s memorial series for Utahns who have died due to COVID-19, and follow KUER’s coverage of the coronavirus in Utah.

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