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How to Fill the Void of No Live Sports

March 30, 2020

2020; what a time to be alive. As everybody knows and is tired of talking about, life seems like it is on a temporary break, and one of the things that we miss the most is live sports. With this temporary loss, many people seem to have no idea how to fill this void. Here are a few fun options that will hopefully get you your sport fix for the day.

An easy first option is that ESPN is showing so many highlights and re-runs of classic games and matches. Now you can sit back and watch Game 7 of the ‘16 NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors and re-live the greatest comeback in NBA history. Or, for you baseball fans, you can re-live the ‘04 American League Championship Series between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. If you don’t know what happens in either of those, then my goodness you are in for a treat. For those of you that don’t want to watch the reruns, you can grab some popcorn and snacks and play an ESPN 30 for 30. They have popular documentaries about sports, the internal drama, and everything in between. What more could you want?

The next option to fill your time may not be what pops into your head when you think of sports, but it is still a valid option, nonetheless: Esports. Online gaming has done nothing but grow during this time so I would encourage you to check out some of their tournaments and give something new a try! Now is the perfect time to grab your controller and headset, throw in some Madden, and get online and play with some friends, or even go make friends online! Maybe this will inspire you to check out your schools local Esports team or even play as your favorite team in an online sports game. This is your chance to get that elusive championship that your team might be struggling to get in real life (RIP to any chance of my Oklahoma City Thunder getting a championship).

All of these are good options to watch or do indoors, but nothing comes close to actually playing a sport. So the last thing we can do to fill the void is make good use of this time and weather and get outside (taking safety into consideration)! Practice social distancing and throw a baseball or football around with your family or a small group of friends. Find a field and kick a soccer ball around. There are plenty of tennis courts in a city, so get out with a friend and learn how to play! Maybe go for a run or do some cardio exercises outside. Now is the time to get in shape for those upcoming intramurals in August. If you want that Broomball Intramural Championship shirt, you have to put in the work now!

I hope some of these options help you. If nothing else, keep in mind that sports still exist! There is a lot to look forward to and there is still quite a bit going on with trades and team drama (ex. Tom Brady to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers).Take everything day by day and before you know it, we will all be back to cheering on our favorite teams to a victory!


Written by: Josiah Frisbie

Josiah enjoys writing for the blog because he believes in the power of discussing relevant topics. He wants to be challenged in his writing and research style while still growing and striving for knowledge.

Album Review: Heartbreak Weather by Niall Horan

March 27, 2020

What is the driving factor for your music choices? Is it name recognition of the artist, quality of the sound, the lyrics, or perhaps even the beat? Does theme ever matter to you in an album, or do you judge an album song by song and forget the rest? I personally did this for a long time. I would pick and choose the songs based on what sound and beat I liked the best and basically ignored the rest of the album. However, over time I’ve realized it is extremely important to listen through the entirety of an album as it allows you to understand your favorite artists more, while also picking up on key themes throughout the discography.

An album that I would encourage you to listen through fully and analyze as well is Heartbreak Weather by Niall Horan. If you’re a die-hard One Direction fan like myself, you understand how great this album is because you probably listened to it all in one night. However, if you didn’t grow up on One Direction or never followed the careers of the previous band members, this album is for sure something you are going to want to listen to. The album consists of fourteen songs with a great mix of acoustics, pop, and a slight R&B feel. Niall has had a lot of success in his single career with hit songs such as This Town, Slow Hands, and Nice to Meet Ya. With that success, people were expecting a lot from this newly released album, and he did not disappoint. The goal of this article is to dissect the album for themes, quality sounding songs, and more. My hope is that my analysis on Heartbreak Weather will allow you to explore not only Niall’s music, but other artists you love that present themes to be dissected as well.

Through different sources, song enthusiasts have determined that the main theme of the beginning of Niall’s newest album as “falling in love as explained by the weather.” We can see with his opening song, Heartbreak Weather, that he’s talking about someone he loved, by explaining that the “clouds have lifted” when he’s with this person. Continuing on, Niall’s next song, Black and White, implies that he indeed has started to fall for this person and explains their future as being “crystal clear on a star lit night.” Essentially, he sees their future as clear weather with no interruptions.

The album transitions into a lot sadder tone, followed by a momentary relapse back to upbeat, then back to the sadder tone again. The theme is almost the stages of a messy breakup. In Dear Patience, Niall is going through a stage of denial within his relationship (we can assume with the person he was referring to in his first two songs). His lyrics are clearly presenting the idea that the person he is referring to is not reciprocating the way he feels. In Dear Patience, he is talking to himself because he has that hope of retaining his significant other. In the next couple songs, Bend the Rules and Small Talk, Niall goes through the motions of coping with the breakup. He blames her for “leaving out the truth” and then continues on by seeking out other people to fill that void of heartbreak. Nice to Meet Ya is the next song and one of Niall’s most successful songs he has every recorded with over 139 million streams on Spotify. Released in November of 2019, the sound is upbeat and hopeful. As one can assume, it is about someone that Niall has met, and right in line with the albums theme, the person that he is using to cope with over his breakup.

The rest of the album is Niall realizing that he can’t fill that void by distracting himself with other people. This is emphasized especially in Arms of a Stranger and San Francisco. Niall puts it all out there: from telling how he can’t be with anyone else to very clearly asking this person back into his life. With lines like “baby, won’t you give me back what you took apart?” and “take me back, take me back to San Francisco, I know what we had would never last, but I can’t let go of you,” he is not mincing words with his intentions with this person.

The album closes with Still, a reflective yet hopefully sounding song. With the soft acoustic undertone, Niall seeks to not be so abrupt with how he feels, but rather discloses what he had with this person in an honest and reflective way. Memories he’s had with her, along with hope for a future are repeated throughout the song. When the song ends, listeners are left wondering what happens with the couple.

Overall, Heartbreak Weather, has a great variety of themes, sounds, and lyrical quality. As you listen to the album it evident that there are three themes described within his analysis of relationships: exploring the walk throughout the relationship, how he’s “weathered the storm” when breakup happens, and the in-between stages until the next relationship. His themes are not only fantastic and relatable, but the sounds distinctly help describe the mood that he is in. The album starts super happy, hopeful, and upbeat, and when the breakup occurs, the mood of his songs take a turn to somber, slow beats, and softer lyrics. While not in a relationship he’s meeting other people and gives us more upbeat tunes with catchy lyrics and beats that will make you want to move with the music. Finally, Niall comes back to the reality that he desires no one else but the person he has been singing about this whole time, allowing the album to take a more acoustic and reflective mood.

I highly recommend listening through this album. Even if Niall’s music is typically not your style, I encourage you to look to new artists that can pique your interest. No matter what you are listening to, take the time to analyze themes, songs, lyrics and other musical elements in your favorite album. You will learn, as I have, to appreciate the work that artists put into their work and be able to connect with it on a deeper level.

Sources

https://www.stereogum.com/2075671/niall-horan-heartbreak-weather-review/franchises/the-week-in-pop/

https://meaww.com/heartbreak-weather-niall-horan-review-album-release-one-direction-pop-funk-dance-ballad-romantic


Written by: Mike Tammaro

Mike is a Junior double majoring in Finance and Economics and writes for the blog in order to expand my skills as a student. As a business major, the curriculum does not allow for a lot of creative writing, so being able to publish written work is freeing from my normal educational routine.

Do’s and Don’ts of Dieting

March 25, 2020

With summer right around the corner, it’s important we keep those eating habits healthy and well-rounded to maintain those summer bods we have worked oh so hard on, or if you’re me, not so hard on. If you’re one of the 45 million Americans who will try to diet this year, I am right there with you. A few weeks ago, I made it my goal to try and complete the Whole30 challenge. I only lasted 14 days before finally succumbing to the desire for a spicy Chick-Fil-A sandwich. Yes, it was worth it. Over the last couple years, we’ve seen the rise in many dieting trends that have received lots of attention from people of all ages, including Whole30, Keto, Paleo, Vegan, and many more. The hard thing is that the list of diets is never ending and knowing which one to choose can feel like pulling a random number out of a hat. Not to mention, a lot of these diets are potentially harmful to stay on because of the abrupt cuts required to abide by their guidelines. So, how can we ever know what is right for each of us individually? I am by no means a dietary expert, but will use this time to simply guide you towards a better of way of living through eating in the way that’s best for you.

I mentioned that I tried the Whole30 challenge and eventually failed after just 14 long days. For those who don’t know the Whole30, it is a “reset” for your body. This is an elimination diet that is scientifically backed to detox your digestive system and cut out all the unnecessary foods. During these 30 days, you are to cut out: added sugar (real or artificial), alcohol (in cooking too), grains, most legumes, dairy, carrageenan, MSG, sulfites, baked goods, junk food, and treats with “approved” ingredients. All of it seems great, right? Well, not exactly.

So, while you may be one of the few who can cut out all the bad foods you’re eating at once, it’s not easy for most people to do and is not the best for everyone. There are a few reasons why this diet can have such negative effects on the body according to health.com. The fact of the matter is that it’s just not sustainable enough. Sure, a 30-day program can be beneficial, but the diet also cuts out some healthy foods temporarily, such as whole grains, legumes, and natural sugars. Another problem is that most people go from strict dieting right back to normal food consumption. We need to find the in-between. How can we go from cutting everything out to eating normal without all the junk? A healthy diet should not be a sprint; instead, it should be a way of life that has lasting changes to your eating habits. Lastly, this diet (and many like it) could also induce food insensitivities. This means, while a certain food group like dairy may have not upset your stomach before, it’s possible that after 30 days your stomach isn’t able to handle it.

I could sit here and talk about every diet and the harmful effects it could have on your body, but who would enjoy that. I also am not trying to bash the Whole30 either. Like I said, the 30-day challenge can be a great, life-changing month for some, but it might not be the right move for everyone. But for most of us who just don’t want to stuff our faces with carbs anymore, there’s plenty of healthy and delicious steps to having a more balanced diet.

According to Active.com, a group dedicated to promote the well-being of others through exercise, dieting, and community, there are some key things to remember while trying to change our eating habits. First, it’s important to maintain a healthy balance. This means not completely cutting out dairy or protein and just making sure it’s not the cornerstone of what we eat. It is also important to avoid artificial foods like potato chips, candy, and processed foods, and start piling on some greens. It’s also good to set healthy limits on yourself. Think of it like food budgeting. Limiting yourself to about 2,000-2,400 calories a day is a healthy amount, so make sure your day is planned out accordingly. This way you can track the food you are eating through a food journal. I know that may sound ridiculous, but if you are looking for weight loss, Active reports that people who log their food lose on average twice amount the weight of those who don’t! And lastly, make sure you are eating the right amounts. You don’t want to be famished, but you also don’t want to eat so much that your unbuckling your pants while you sit down.

Dieting can be so beneficial to our bodies. It can help us lose weight, feel more energized, and even help us sleep better. It’s important that we remember how these diets can affect our bodies. While some can be good, more often than not they can have negative side effects. Again, I am no expert on the field of dieting, but I hope that my experience can serve as a good template to taking your next steps towards healthy eating.

Sources

https://www.forbes.com/sites/eustaciahuen/2019/05/09/diet-2/#7e2ba67a284f

https://www.health.com/weight-loss/whole30-side-effects

https://www.active.com/nutrition/articles/6-ways-to-develop-healthy-eating-habits

https://whole30.com/whole30-program-rules/


Written by: Andrew Reynolds

Andrew is a Senior Project Management Major, and enjoys writing for the blog because of the opportunity it gives him to grow as a writer and to challenge himself to see current topics and discussions from a view point he may not have otherwise thought about.

Consume, Create, and Cultivate: A Ten Week Series

March 23, 2020

If you read our announcement last week, you know we had to make the decision to postpone our events for the remainder of the semester in order to take measures of keeping our community safe and healthy. We’re in the midst of a difficult season as a nation, so how can we still engage with those around us, while creating safe environments for our communities? That’s what we hope to help you figure out (and figure out ourselves) along the way!

One of our biggest passions at Student Activities is creating environments for students to engage in culture. We were made to consume, cultivate, and create – so together let’s find ways to use this pause as a time of opportunity. Each year, as a team, we read an article by Trevin Wax that helps align our priorities as a staff to what God has called us to do as a department, engage the Liberty students, faculty, and staff (our culture). Trevin states, “You face a choice every day, week, month, and year. To create, to cultivate, or to consume. If Christians will regularly choose the former over the latter, we’ll stand out in a world that knows only the immediate gratification of consumption. And we’ll display for the world the joy of fulfilling humanity’s purpose of cultivation, as we reflect the image of the One who made us.” This is what we want to ignite in each of you as we embark on this journey together.

Over the course of the next ten weeks, we want to provide you opportunities to do just that from where you are – consume, create, and cultivate! Beginning today, each week day you can expect some sort of interaction from us on our blog or social media accounts (Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook). Just because we cannot host events right now, does not mean we will be absent; we’re going to be engaged more than ever. Our team will be pushing out content daily that follows a broad range of themes within the entertainment industry. You can expect posts that include tutorials for learning a new skill, suggestions of books to read or TV shows to watch, how to be active outdoors, delicious homemade recipes, dissecting new albums, and more. We have so many resources right in front of us, so we want to create a place for you to come and take part in something new or to further your passions in the things you love.

Let’s use this time to awaken our creativity for the sake of creating and find purpose within the spaces God has provided us. We’re in this together, friends, and I’m excited for what the future holds! Will you join us?


 

Written by: Steph Ward

Steph is the Director of Student Activities. She has a B.S. in Visual Communication Arts: Graphic Design and a M.S. in Management. Steph oversees the overall calendar and vision of the Student Activities Department from promotion to execution and analysis. She also leads the Student Activities staff, comprised of 20+ full time and student worker employees.

Important Announcement: Upcoming Events

March 16, 2020

Update (3/30): The Devil Wears Prada feat. My Epic has been rescheduled to October 16, 2020. All ticket holders to the April 17 show date will be emailed details regarding your current ticket.

In light of the Virginia Governors mandate for banning events over 100 guests and the university’s announcement today regarding migrating our academics online, we will take the same measures to ensure our community remains as safe and healthy as possible. With this, our events for the remainder of the semester will be postponed until further notice.

We are saddened to announce that this includes Coffeehouse, as our team has put in countless hours to make this one of the best shows to date. First, thank you to our event staff, production team, and all the acts for the hard work you put into this show. Though your recognition cannot be in front of thousands, all you’ve done has not gone unnoticed. We appreciate you so much! For those of you who have purchased tickets to Coffeehouse, you will be receiving an email regarding automatic refunds within the next 48 hours. Details for all refunds will be outlined in the email you receive. If you purchased a ticket and do not receive an email, please email tickets@liberty.edu.

We are currently working with Skillet and The Devil Wears Prada to make accommodations for both of these shows. If you prefer a refund instead of holding on to your ticket while we work through a reschedule date, please email the Ticket Office at tickets@liberty.edu. We hope to announce a new date soon. Due to the high volume of refunds, please allow 7-10 business days for those to process. If you do not receive a refund after this time, email tickets@liberty.edu.

On another note, as a department, we talk frequently about how important it is to actively engage the arts (music, film, design, etc.), as it helps us connect more deeply with those around us and cultivate a life that bears fruit for God’s kingdom for decades to come. In a season where we are encouraged to be at home and rest, we want you to take the opportunity to find ways to consume, cultivate and create culture with the entertainment realms right at your fingertips. Over the course of the next couple months, our team is going to provide ways you can easily do this – whether it’s dissecting a new album, developing a new skill or reading – we encourage you to use your time to make the choice to do something meaningful and intentional. Join us on our blog, @LibertySA on Instagram and Twitter, or Student Activities on Facebook over the next couple months to follow along.

Thank you for understanding and your patience in the matter. Thank you for an amazing year and we will be ready to come back full force for you this fall with a stellar line up of events! Please email us at studentactivities@liberty.edu if you have any questions or concerns. We love you guys and are praying for your safety and the health of our country during this time!

Thanks,
Student Activities

SA Conversations: Geoff Kershner

March 12, 2020

Recently on the podcast, we chatted with Geoff Kershner, the Executive Director of the Academy Center of the Arts. We had great conversation with him about what made him become interested in crossing over his passion for the arts and his career. He has transformed the Academy into what it is today, which is something we discuss as well. Check it out!

This podcast features Erin Diaz Cleveland (Assistant Director of Programming), and Steph Ward (Director of SA). The episode was produced and edited by Clay Copper (Event Supervisor). Our jingle was created by Judd Harris.

SA Previews: Skillet

March 12, 2020

On April 3rd, Student Activities will be hosting a concert put on by none other than the band Skillet. Founded in 1996 by the lead singer John Cooper and guitarist Ken Steorts, the band quickly created waves initially within the Christian music world. Adding a couple more band members enabled Skillet to climb onto the Billboard Top 200 in 2001 with their song Alien Youth. Up until 2009, the band still had not made its big break throughout the secular music world, until their album Awake was released. Ever since, the band has won two Dove Awards for “Rock Song of the Year“ and their songs have been featured in movies such as “Transformers: Dark of the Moon,” “Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief,” as well as the theme song of some NFL and WWE commercials. Their fame has not gone unnoticed in the secular music world, as they continue to be relevant over the years.

Hailed as a “Christian” band, Skillet has had to defend themselves in both Christian and secular circles for their faith simply based on the sound of their music. In an interview with CBN News, John Cooper made sure to emphasize that Skillet is indeed a Christian band whose sole focus is to honor Jesus. Their message within their songs are encouraging for Christians to be “bold in their faith” as well as to glorify the one Who created them. Cooper and the rest of the band are using their platform and talents to be an encouragement to Christians but also to be witnesses to those who do not believe.

Make sure to join us in welcoming Skillet feat. Ledger on April 3rd as the last event in the Vines Center! This show is on sale now – click the Tickets drop down!

Sources

https://www.learnreligions.com/skillet-biography-709852

https://www.allmusic.com/artist/skillet-mn0000749571/biography

https://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/entertainment/2016/december/skillets-john-cooper-were-a-christian-band-rock-and-roll-is-not-about-sex-and-drugs


Written by: Mike Tammaro

Mike is a Junior double majoring in Finance and Economics and writes for the blog in order to expand my skills as a student. As a business major, the curriculum does not allow for a lot of creative writing, so being able to publish written work is freeing from my normal educational routine.

Cooking With Clay: Tom Kha Gai

March 9, 2020

If you’re anything like me, soup is the last thought when it comes to answering, “what’s for dinner?” But let’s be honest, there is nothing quite like a nice bowl of hot soup when it’s cold and wet outside. Now I know, we have one foot out the door of winter, but Lynchburg has a way of playing with our heart strings when it comes to the changing of seasons. So, while part of me is still mourning the death of our snowless winter season, the other is not so sure spring is really right around the corner. What is more appropriate a meal for such a confusing time of transition than Tom Kha Gai, or coconut chicken soup? Tom Kha Gai is a traditional Thai soup that is as simple to make as it is flavorful. While a true Tom Kha Gai would have a few ingredients that I don’t have the time or resources to get my hands on, like kaffir lime leaves and galangal root, this supermarket version is no joke.

Okay, now let’s make some soup. Start by peeling your ginger – use a spoon and the rough skin should scuff right off. Crush the ginger and lemongrass to help get some more flavor out of it. Add ginger, lemongrass, and juice from one lime to your broth and let those simmer for about 10 minutes to get all that bright flavor in the broth. There might be some foam collecting on the top of your broth, if so, just scoop it out and carry on.

While the broth is simmering, cut your chicken and mushrooms. You’ll want the chicken as thin as you can cut it. I try to cut them into 2-3 inch ribbons. Make sure you’re cutting against the grain of the meat; otherwise, you’ll end up with stringy chicken in your soup. Mushrooms should be de-stemmed and cut into similar sized ribbons. Honestly, you can cut your proteins any which way you like, but this is just how you’ll find Tom Kha Gai in most restaurants, and it’s my personal preference.

Once the broth is done simmering, remove the ginger and lemongrass stocks. Add in chicken and mushrooms to the broth and let these cook at a simmer. This should take about 20 minutes to get the mushrooms to a good consistency. If you opt for a thicker cut of chicken and mushrooms, this may take longer.

After everything is cooked through, add in coconut milk, sugar, and a dash of fish sauce. If fish sauce scares you, don’t worry! I promise it’s not as overwhelming when it’s added to bigger ingredients; it’s just there to give the dish a little more depth. Return soup to desired temperature, and you’re ready to eat. Serve with cilantro, lime wedges, and hot chili oil for those of us who like to sweat when we eat.

All said and done, this soup will take about 45 minutes to prepare and is anything but boring. It’s the perfect soup for those days when the weather just can’t make up its mind because of its bright, light, and happy flavors.  This should make enough for about 5-6 healthy servings – depending on who you’re feeding – and costs just under $20.

Ingredients

Ginger – 1 1/2” piece peeled

Lemongrass – 2 stalks

Cilantro – 1/4 cup (for serving)

Hot Chili Oil – to taste (for serving)

Lime – 2 (one for serving)

Coconut Milk – 1 can (13.5 oz)

Fish Sauce – to taste

Chicken Broth – 6 cups

Chicken Thighs, boneless skinless – 2lbs

Shiitake Mushrooms – One cup, de-stemmed and sliced thinly


Written by: Clay Copper

Clay is a grad student that is still trying to figure out what he is doing with his life. Sometimes he writes about relevant topics here, but mostly he writes about what he cares about and hopes you enjoy it.

SA Previews: Coffeehouse: The Late Show

March 5, 2020

Live from Lynchburg, Virginia, it’s Coffeehouse: The Late Show! The theme in the spring semester always brings an original and exciting twist to Coffeehouse. Last year, we put on Coffeehouse: Where Dreams Come True which you, the students, really enjoyed. With each theme, we want to make sure we are offering something completely new, and we think Coffeehouse: The Late Show will give us just that.

Late-night television has been an iconic part of the American entertainment experience for the last 60 years. It was people like Ed Sullivan and Johnny Carson who helped pave the path for the lip-sync battles we enjoy, from Jimmy Fallon and the hilarious carpool karaoke sessions James Corden offers. There are other late-night shows like Saturday Night Live! which has made us fall out of our chair laughing while watching their “Celebrity Jeopardy” skit or listening to Christopher Walken demand more cowbell from a crop-top-wearing Will Ferrell. These shows have always held a special place in entertainment because of what they accomplish. Wherever we come from, we can sit down together to enjoy different skits, interviews, and other hilarious moments on these shows. One of the best parts of the talk shows are listening to the interviews with various celebrities who are invited on. These shows give us the opportunity to relate with a celebrity we may think is nothing like us. But just watch an interview with Emily Blunt talking about her children and husband, John Krasinski, and you will quickly see that these people are going through a lot of life’s issues just like anyone else. Our goal is to capture the excitement and glamour from all these different shows, whether the show be Johnny Carson, Conan, or SNL, the instant you walk through the doors.

At Student Activities, we love taking different parts of entertainment and culture and making them into a fun-filled time for students. Whether you’re familiar with late-night TV or not, we want you to come out to Coffeehouse: The Late Show on March 28 for a night filled with student performances, laughter, and much more!


 

Written by: Andrew Reynolds

Andrew is a Senior Project Management Major, and enjoys writing for the blog because of the opportunity it gives him to grow as a writer and to challenge himself to see current topics and discussions from a view point he may not have otherwise thought about.

Spring Break on a Budget

March 2, 2020

For most college students, spring break is a time to escape all the exams and responsibilities, so you can focus on getting a good tan or making memories with your best friends. There is a lot of pressure put on us to make the most of our one week off, and I am writing this to help you along with the process and to hopefully alleviate some of the stress from planning this memorable week.

Here are three spring break ideas that are built to provide the time of your life:

Idea #1: Stay Local-ish

Even though most of us would rather not stay in the good-ole LYH, there are some great things to explore and do. First, you can take advantage of the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway right down the road from Liberty. There are numerous hikes to conquer: Sharp Top, Cole Mountain, Humpback Rocks, Spy rock, McAfee Knob, Mount Pleasant, and many others. Second, for all of you who love kombucha, you can visit Blue Ridge Bucha in Waynesboro, VA. This is a necessity for those who love the taste of this unique drink because of their on-tap kombucha and kombucha tastings. Third, we have amazing neighboring cities surrounding us like Roanoke, Charlottesville, Virginia Beach, and Richmond. In each of these historic and beautiful cities, there are lots of trendy restaurants and shops to take advantage of. Fourth, if you want to go a little bit further, you can always take a day-trip to Washington D.C., Raleigh, NC, or Charlotte, NC. In Washington D.C. you can visit the numerous museums and national landmarks, while hitting the shops of Georgetown. In Raleigh or Charlotte, you can explore the many unique restaurants, thrift shops, and coffee shops. Lastly, there are roller skating rinks, bowling alleys, pottery painting shops, thrift stores, and even a trampoline park all locally that are waiting for you to enjoy. Lynchburg over spring break is what you make it, and you can definitely make it fun with all of these options.

Idea #2: Beach Bliss

Mexico, Florida, Texas, Georgia, Bahamas, and South Carolina are a few different places that are a great beach destination for college students. Some are a little cheaper or easier to get to, but they all promise a pretty beach. Florida is the ideal destination for most college students because it can be done cheaply, and it is still pretty much guaranteed to be warm and a good time. Some of the best locations to go to in Florida include Miami, West Palm Beach, Clearwater, Tampa, Orlando, Seaside, Daytona Beach, and Panama City Beach. All of these locations have beautiful beaches nearby and restaurants. Some locations, like Orlando, offer once-in-a-lifetime experiences, like Disney World or Universal Studios or Ripley’s Believe it or Not in Panama City Beach. Each city has its own quirks and fun entertainment/attractions. West Palm Beach has the island that is famous for wealth and Mar-a-lago Club. Miami is known for its Spanish culture and incredible food. Clearwater has its own marine aquarium where the dolphin from Dolphin Tale lives. Seaside is known for its white sand beaches and beautiful, relaxing water. No matter what city you choose in Florida, you know you’ll be making a good choice. There are a lot of things to do in Florida besides Disney or the Beach. Some cool things you can do in Florida include: An Everglades tour, check out the Kennedy Space Center, Miami Seaquarium, the Jacksonville Zoo, MLB spring training, museums, waterparks, and so much more (Van Hare & Syed, 2019). If you are concerned with getting a place to stay in any of these cities, you can use Airbnb or VRBO to rent a house, apartment, or condominium. Airbnb’s mission is to “Live in the world where one day you can feel like you’re home anywhere & not in a home, but truly home, where you belong” (Mission Statement Academy, 2019). This is very important to travelers as they can feel comfortable while prioritizing adventure. Airbnb and VRBO are incredible options for housing that are fun, comfortable, and reliable.

Idea #3: National Park Adventure

If you are feeling a little adventurous this spring break, you could venture out to the west coast to discover some of our country’s most beautiful national parks. Some of the states with the best national parks include California, Utah, Arizona, South Dakota, and Wyoming (Travel Channel). In California, you could visit Yosemite or Redwood National Park. While you are out there you could even visit San Francisco or Los Angeles if you feel like going a little bit further on the road. In Utah, there are so many beautiful national parks that it is difficult to decide which ones to fit in for only one week. Zion, Monument Valley, The Arches, and Bryce Canyon are just a few different places that should definitely be on the list. The number one hike at Zion is Angels Landing, which is a very intense trek that rewards you with an incredible view of the surrounding mountains and valley. In Arizona, you could visit one of our nation’s most prized national parks, the Grand Canyon. You can even choose to camp at the very bottom of the canyon for a night that you will not forget with stars that light the path in front of you. Bright Angel Campground provides the perfect experience for camping, as their website states: “Spend a night at the bottom of the Grand Canyon surrounded by 2-billion-year-old granite and Vishnu schist! Campsites either sit at the base of towering cliff walls or line the creek” (Grand Canyon Trust). In South Dakota, there is not much but the Badlands and Mount Rushmore, but I still think that it’s worth going to. Lastly, in Wyoming you can go to Yellowstone or Grand Teton. Yellowstone is the first ever national park in the world. You may be thinking to yourself that this sounds unrealistic because it is far and expensive; however, you can choose to caravan out to the west coast and camp. Not to mention, there are multiple days select national parks are free. You can bum it for the week and just eat Clif bars and granola if that is the dedication it takes to travel out to the west coast under a certain budget.

I hope these ideas help you make up your mind on how to successfully master your spring break, so you can make it your best one yet. Just remember the words of William Feather: “One way to get the most out of life is to look upon it as an adventure.”

Sources

https://mission-statement.com/airbnb/

https://www.travelchannel.com/interests/national-parks/photos/best-national-parks-of-the-west

https://www.thedailymeal.com/things-to-do-florida-that-arent-disney

https://www.grandcanyontrust.org/camp/bright-angel-campground


 

Written by: Kaitlyn Skarstein

Kaitlyn loves being able to write for the SA blog because she thinks it is important to share her voice. She loves being able to express her own opinions on important subjects that are relevant for students, faculty, and many others.