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10 Things to Do When You're Stuck in Durham Over Spring Break

It’s time to face the facts, ‘Cats: Not everyone goes to Cancun for spring break. Some of us road trip to Montreal; some of us work; some of us go back to our parents’ place, binge-watch “House” on Netflix and knit 14 hats (and by “some of us” I mean me, last year). Some of us even stay right here in Durham, and spending the week in an empty town while all our friends are Instragramming fruity umbrella drinks by the pool can seem like a major bummer. Not to fear,though, friends. While Durham may not have pool-side cocktails, there’s still plenty you can do to stay busy and have fun when you’re stuck in Durham for spring break.

1-Sample some local brews.

If you’re over 21, take advantage of our local breweries. The Portsmouth Brewery, Redhook and Smuttynose are among local brewers who offer facilities tours and samples.

2-Explore College Woods

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately.”

– Henry David Thoreau

Durham is home to a network of beautiful walking trails and woods to explore. Personally, I think a day spent in nature is never wasted. Take your daily run to a new venue, or just wander around and take in the beauty.

3-Hit the beach

Anyone born and raised in New England knows that the ocean is not meant to be warm. Even on our hottest days, the waters off of the New England coast are generally frigid. Take advantage of the empty beaches to take a long walk, collect shells or snap some beach instas of your own.

4-Snag some fresh goods

Allie’s pick:

Stock up on local goods and fill your pantry for the week at the Seacoast Eat Local Winter Farmers’ Market at Exeter High School, March 11, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.. You’ll find local produce, dairy, breads, candies and more.

5-Mini road trip

Maybe you don’t have the time or the funds for a cross-country trek, but there are plenty of adventures to be had within a few hours drive of Durham. Check out a near-by city like Portland, ME or Newburyport, MA, or head to northern NH to take in the charm of North Conway and enjoy the scenery along the way.

6-Get crafty

Check the Main Street Makery’s website for upcoming workshops or their weekly $5 craft. Word on the street is you could be making yourself a personalized apron during the week of spring break…

7-Rock out

Spend a day learning the ropes, or honing your climbing skill, at Indoor Ascent in Dover. The gym offers intro lessons and special day-pass rates for students.

8-If you have any spare time…

Two words: Dover Bowl. Nothing brings back middle school nostalgia like a night of black-light bowling. Not only does Dover Bowl have some awesome deals, they also offer laser tag and $2 beer. Need I say more?

9-Perfect a recipe

Everyone should have a few staples in their cooking repertoire to whip out and impress house guests, new friends and your aunts at the holidays. Now is the perfect time to work on yours. Need inspiration, check out for recipes from TNH Test Kitchen!

10-Check out Adam’s Point

Elizabeth’s pick:

If you’re looking for a nearby, easy way to experience Durham’s nature in all its glory, take a quick trip down Durham Point Road to Adam’s Point Wildlife Refuge. Adam’s Point is a great place for a mellow hike or bike ride, and offers stunning waterfront views of Great Bay only roughly 10 minutes from the heart of campus. Bring a friend or go on your own; it won’t be hard to find your way back.

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