7 things Ann Rowan wants you to know about Provo


Ann RowanAnn Rowan was in a groove in Boston, where she earned her master’s in museum education at Tufts University. She and her husband, Jamin, who was working on his English master’s and Ph.D. at Boston College, loved the city bustle and daily hustle of Boston life. So when Jamin got a job as an English teacher at BYU five years ago, they said goodbye to the life and culture they loved and moved to Provo — where they were pleasantly surprised.

“We loved seeing so many similarities between Provo and Boston,” Ann says. “We immediately felt at home.”

Since they moved close to BYU campus, Jamin still gets to enjoy a nice stroll to work; and as a family they love taking their five kids (soon to be six) to museums around town, eating at new favorite restaurants and exploring the Provo outdoors.

“We never run out of things to do,” Ann says. “We absolutely love living in Provo.”

Museum of heart


“Since I’m a museum person, I love having access to so many exhibits, lectures and family programs at the BYU Museum of Art. My favorite exhibit right now is ‘Plexus no. 29’ by Gabriel Dawe. It looks just like a rainbow at every angle and at every time of day.”

Makin’ my way downtown

Downtown Provo

“I love our little walkable downtown. It’s burgeoning and changing and always adding charming restaurants and shops. We went to almost every Rooftop Concert Series this year, too. Downtown Provo has a great city feel.”

Check the rec

Provo Rec Center

“We get a three-month family pass every summer and go swim a few times a week. We will often go an hour before dinner for a change of venue so our kids can run around and have fun before the end of the day. Our kids love the fun slides. The indoor playground is free, too. It makes for a great winter play space.”

Trail praisin’


“Our favorite hike is Buffalo Peak, up by Squaw Peak. It’s only half a mile to the top and gives an amazing view of the valley. Our little kids can do it, and there aren’t any sheer drop offs. It’s gorgeous in the fall.”

Music to our ears

Audra McDonald

“We like the BYU Bravo series, where they bring in world-class musicians and performers. We’ve seen Joshua Bell, Audra McDonald and Chris Thile all right here at BYU. It’s nice being attached to such a great university.”

The need to read

Provo Library

“The Provo Library has a mother-daughter and mother-son book club completely for free. They have a fabulous lecture series, too, and rotating art exhibits along with kid-friendly programs that relate to their show.”

Order up

Station 22

“There are so many good places to eat downtown. One of our favorites is Station 22 on Center Street. My favorite is the Memphis Chicken Salad. We also like Rice King Noodle, Slab Pizza and Green Panda.”

News Flash

In 2013 and 2014, a Gallup and Healthways survey ranked Provo as the No. 1 best city to live in the United States.


Alisha swapped plains for peaks when she moved to Utah from her Kansas hometown. After graduating from BYU and traveling around China with her husband, Shane, they put down roots in Utah Valley, where Alisha first fell in love with yoga, learned to ski and discovered fry sauce. Alisha is an associate editor, writing for Utah Valley Magazine and UtahValley360.com. Follow her on Twitter @alishagallag.

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