We recently realized that we’ve never blogged about the Temple Square Visitor Centers. That’s plural, if you’re not aware, because there is a north visitor’s center which features church history, Book of Mormon teachings, and Bible teachings, and a smaller south visitor’s center which focuses primarily on the family.
The north visitor’s center has 3 levels. The main floor features scenes from the Bible. There is a large model of the city of Jerusalem that highlights important scenes from the life of Jesus. Huge LDS murals depicting major events in his life including his birth and the Triumphal Entry hang along the wall. There are also missionaries giving tours at the main desk.
Upstairs, you’ll find the famous Christus statue. Our boys spent several quiet moments in this room relaxing and enjoying the couches (and hopefully the statue). Be sure to walk around this floor as there are also huge pictures from the Bible.
In the basement of the north visitor’s center, you’ll find several displays. There is a section focusing on the LDS church’s humanitarian efforts. There is a large section about prophets, Joseph Smith the Mormon prophet, and the Book of Mormon. There are interactive displays with answers to questions and stories from the Book of Mormon, too. Dad’s favorite display on Temple Square is the Book of Mormon translations found here. He likes to read the names of the languages and find the languages he doesn’t recognize. Later, he looks them up to see where they are spoken. (Mam this time, which is a Mayan language spoken in parts of Mexico).
The south visitor’s center contains mostly information on the family. There are interactive displays about Family History, but we didn’t spend much time with them. Don’t miss the model of the Temple, which has one side cut away so you can see the interior room of the Temple. It is really fascinating. There is also a section that focuses on the building of the Salt Lake temple from Brigham Young choosing the temple site to choosing the granite stone in Little Cottonwood Canyon to the tools used to build the temple.
While you are at Temple Square, make sure to spend a few minutes in the Tabernacle. The pipe organ is amazing, and though the building is retired from most uses, it is usually open and you can walk in. The Assembly Hall, located on the southwest corner of Temple Square is generally open as well. We’ve been in just to look around, and sometimes we’ve even seen a concert or recital in one or both of these buildings.