Pageants: Dramatized moments of gospel history fascinate thousands at outdoor stages

For hundreds of thousands of people each year, summer means more than just vacations and outings; they gain a greater understanding and appreciation for the gospel as they attend one or more Church pageants.

Colorful, spectacular and moving, the pageants deal with various aspects of the scriptures, Church history and doctrine, and the LDS heritage. They are generally staged near Church temples or historic sites.The pageant season reaches its apex in July with an annual pageant at Hill Cumorah near Palmyra, N.Y.; a yearly pageant at Manti, Utah; and a pageant at Oakland, Calif., presented every three years.

Earlier in the year, pageants are staged near temples in Auckland, New Zealand, and Mesa, Ariz., and at the Independence, Mo., Visitors Center.

Pageants yet to be presented this year are at Castle Valley, Utah, Aug. 2-5; Nauvoo, Ill., Aug. 8-12; Clarkston, Utah, Aug. 18-19 and 22-26; and Calgary, Alberta, Dec. 19-23.