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Iconic Utah, tell us your story! Beautiful banner image with delicate arch in souther Utah.
Inspired by Iconic America for PBS

Iconic Utah Film Contest

Iconic America (website)is an 8-episode docuseries by David Rubenstein for PBS that explores America’s 400-year history through a close examination of iconic national symbols such as the Hollywood Sign, Fenway Park, American cowboys, and the Statue of Liberty all indelible artifacts, places, or archetypes. Each episode tells the story of an American icon to reveal its origins, significance, and the arc of its resonance and meaning. 

We want to hear from Utahns about local people, places, and things that YOU think are iconic! Send us your short videos that tell YOUR story about Iconic Utah. YOUR icon could be a relative, a neighborhood landmark, or even an idea you feel tells the story of Utah through your eyes.

PBS Utah will host a film festival on August 30 in the Salt Lake City Public Library's Main Auditorium that will include a variety of short videos, each telling untold Utah stories from diverse and unique perspectives. YOUR Iconic Utah film submission could be featured in this film festival! And, you can also win prizes:).

Important Information

Submissions Open
Monday, June 26 (entry form)

Submission Deadline
Monday, August 7, 5:00PM

Film Festival
Wednesday, August 30, 6:00-8:30PM
Salt Lake City Public Library
Main Auditorium

Phoebe Davenport 

First Place

Meta Quest 2 VR Headset

Second Place

Joby Tripod

Third Place

Storyboard Notebook


Please note: Winners will be determined by a judging panel based on the following criteria: 40% Creativity of Storytelling, 40% Originality of plot and/or themes, and 20% Quality of video created.


Quickstart Guide

So... who can apply?

Students, Organizations, and Individuals!

Please note: If you are under 18 years of age you’ll need to have your parents and/or guardian submit an application in your name.


  • Preferred Format: horizontal 1920 x 1080 pixels (or you can make a Reel!)
  • Length: 3 minutes (or less!)
  • Accepted file types: .mp4 and .mov
  • All original material only (do not use copyrighted material, including music)
  • Short description of video (200 words or less)

Submission Tips

  • Shoot your video where you can get good lighting
  • Limit unnecessary background noise
  • Shoot your video horizontally (or vertically, for a Reel)


What We’re NOT Looking For

  • Logos (we don’t want to get sued!)
  • Licensed music (let’s keep things legal)
  • Still Images (only videos, please)
  • Full length features (3 minutes max)


Prompts to Help Get Your Creativity Flowing

Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines “iconic” as widely known and acknowledged especially for distinctive excellence. With this definition in mind, let’s explore some new ways of finding icons around us.

  1. Utah is known for its diversity of landscapes and people come from all over the world to see our mountains, red rocks, and dark skies. Which natural feature of Utah is most iconic to you?
  2. Diverse and quirky foods can be found throughout Utah, from Jell-O salad to funeral potatoes, what is a uniquely Utah recipe that is iconic to you?
  3. One of the last states to be admitted into the Union, Utah has a colorful history and has been called home by many different types of people throughout history. From early indigenous communities, to becoming one of the most welcoming states for refugees, what other stories that are left out of the mainstream narrative about people in Utah are important to honor when we talk about our state’s history?
  4. Childhood memories and family traditions stand out to each of us as iconic. Whether it's a road trip to visit your Grandpa's farm, the dollar theatre you went to every summer as a kid, or the local high school hang out – memories and traditions make the everyday iconic for us. What is a  memory that has made Utah iconic for you?
  5. Introduce us to your personal icons: Interview someone who is iconic to you or even create a Reel inspired video. You don’t need to be a video pro!


Example Videos

PBS Utah and KUER staff share THEIR ideas of Iconic Utah! PRO TIP: Your videos do not need to be highly produced! Have fun with this!

These are selections from the PBS series, Iconic America: Our Symbols and Stories with David Rubenstein. These are just to give you inspiration! Your iconic subject can be about anything you choose and doesn't have to be a popular icon or anything necessarily well-known.

Iconic America

The Gadsden Flag in Combat Abroad

Armed forces vets discuss embracing the Gadsden flag during combat in the Middle East.

Iconic America

Power not Afforded Equally

Hollywood has bottled a kind of intangible magic that is inaccessible to most people.

Iconic America

Why Did Cowboy Movies Leave Women Out of the Picture?

Westerns downplayed the role that women and minorities played in settling The West,

Iconic America

The Curse is Lifted

The Red Sox's World Series win in 2004 was a historic moment for the team and its fans.

Entry Form

Submissions are now closed. Thank you for your entries!

Funding is provided by The Zohar and Lisa Ben-Dov Family through the Luminescence Foundation.

Funding is provided by The Zohar and Lisa Ben-Dov Family through the Luminescence Foundation.