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Sandy mayor set to recreate Pony Express history in modern Utah

Posted at 5:08 PM, Jun 17, 2024

SANDY, Utah — Sandy Mayor Monica Zoltanski and her horse, Lil Miss, are preparing for a role in a big ride that will take some over 1,900 miles across 8 states. It's all part of a special Pony Express reenactment that will get underway this weekend and run from St. Joseph, Missouri to Sacramento, California.

"I’m riding with a team that rides from Murray Park to Simpson Springs out in the west desert. and I’ll be riding two stretches and my stretches are 2-3 miles, but across city streets," explained the mayor.

Because of the journey, Lil Miss was fitted with special purple shoes Monday.

"She loves purple and it’s acrylic, a hard plastic," said Zoltanksi. "So it gives her a little cushion and some tread in here."

The shoes will help as the landscape the duo and others will cross is just a bit different than it was 150 years ago, with the route crossing places like State Street through Sandy.

"We’ll be carrying the mail with a mailbag right in front of city hall, and as mayor of Sandy, wow, I’m so proud to be riding," she said. "It’s important that we remember our history."

The mayor was already clad in her rid uniform Monday,

"The Pony Express vest, the red shirt and the yellow tie, and every Pony Express rider had a brown hat, so I’ll be wearing a brown hat, and every rider at the time carried a gun and a Bible and I’ve got my Pony Express-issued Bible assigned to me and stamped when I did my first ride two years ago and now I’m doing the 2024 ride," she added.

Zoltanksi said as mayor, her most important job is to connect with the community, which is what the Pony Express did in a time before the telegraph and smartphones. She's excited to commemorate such a key part in American History when the ride revolutionized the way people in the early frontier received their news and communicated with others.

"It was like going from the dial-up internet to what we have today! 5G!," the mayor exclaimed.

Now, Zoltanski will hit the trail along with a team of volunteers who took a special oath last month to help recreate the important part of American history. The mayor hopes those wanting to see new history come out Sunday to her and the others ride by.

Click here for more information on the annual tradition, including other locations where you can see the riders pass by. Below is a map of the route:

According to the National Park Service, the route will arrive at Murray Park on Sunday at 11:30 a.m., Camp Floyd State Park in Fairfield at 4 p.m., and Simpson Springs at 8:30 p.m.

Zoltanski added that she'll ride past Sandy City Hall around noon.