by Jodie LeMaster
South Hills Marketing Team
Originally published March 7, 2017. Updated March 12, 2019.
Staying home for Spring Break? There are plenty of things you can do to recharge your mind and body without leaving town.
No matter the weather it’s always refreshing to spend time in the great outdoors. Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) has created this online tool to help you locate the perfect spot for your outdoor adventure. Take your dog, your kids, or go for a head-clearing trip by yourself and snap some photos of nature's beauty to upload to your Spring Break Facebook album.
If the weather at home is less than perfect, spend the day reading. Head to your favorite bookstore to grab some reading material so you can curl up with something new while it's raining or snowing. Better yet, go to your local library to borrow a book so you can stay in and stay warm when it's just too cold to go outside. Get your library card at the Schlow Centre Region Library in State College, the Altoona Area Public Library in Altoona, or the Mifflin County Library in Lewistown.
Skip Starbucks and head to a locally owned coffee shop or café. You can often find less-conventional blends and flavors at smaller coffee shops, so order a Lavender Latte and enjoy a quiet moment in a new place. A lot of smaller coffee shops also serve sandwiches and baked goods, so check out the menus online and go have lunch. State College has several coffee shops, including Saints Café, Irving's, The Pump Station Café, or Rothrock Coffee, to name just a few. Residents of the Altoona area can check out Greenbean Coffee House or The Clay Cup. A short 7-mile drive south to Hollidaysburg will let you try a variety of specialty flavors at Black Dog Catering Co. II or enjoy a treat at Allegheny Creamery & Crêpes. Lewistown residents will find specialty coffee in town at East End Coffee Co. In McVeytown, about 13 miles from Lewistown, Yetter's Restaurant offers "good food, good friends, good times."
Enjoy a little local culture. State College has a lot of options if you want to enjoy a show. Get tickets for a wide range of genres at The State Theatre or check out the schedule of events at Webster's Bookstore and Café to see local musicians and hear spoken word poetry. Altoona's Mishler Theatre provides a stage for a variety of musical and theatrical performances.
Nurture your inner artist! Visit a local art supply store and pick up some colored pencils or watercolor paints. Or if you want something a little different, you can paint your own pottery in State College at 2000 Degrees Pottery, in Altoona at The Clay Cup (which also serves coffee drinks and bakery treats), and in Hollidaysburg at Playtime Pottery. The Makery in State College offers art classes, workshops, parties, and events in a "fun, festive, light-filled space" and serves coffee from Saints Café. Lewistown residents can check out the Mifflin Juniata Arts Council Facebook page to see the various art classes available in the Mifflin County region.
In State College, you can get an affordable spa treatment at Simply Health Salt Spa, where it's under $20 for a 45-minute session in one of their salt rooms. They also offer various massage treatments that incorporate Himalayan salt. Designer's Denn, also in State College, offers several traditional spa treatments. In Altoona, you can indulge in a number of beauty and relaxation treatments at The Colosseum Salon and Spa. Lewistown area residents can find serenity and spa treatments at Shade Mountain R&R.
Chances are you're not the only one who stayed home! Invite your classmates over to hang out in pajamas, make popcorn, and watch a movie. Or make an entire day of it by having a potluck movie marathon. Tell your friends to cook their favorite dish and bring their favorite movie. Find recipe ideas from AllRecipes.com's Potluck Recipes section.
Do you have a favorite old picture of yourself as a child in a crazy costume or in a funny pose or just making a funny face? Do your best to recreate everything about it including the clothes, hairstyle, location, and (as needed) props. You can use the photos together to create a funny "Then & Now" post for social media, or you can print and frame the photo for a fun Mother’s Day gift.
What's your favorite? Whether you enjoy Italian, French, Chinese, Mexican, or the cuisine from somewhere else, send an e-vite to your friends and tell them to bring sides, desserts, and drinks to go with your main dish.
You don't need to break the bank to have a great shopping trip! There is a Goodwill Thrift Store in State College, Altoona, and Lewistown. In State College, you'll also find Plato's Closet. Altoona has The Village Closet. If you're in Lewistown, check out Warehouse 13 Consignment Shop.
In the digital age, receiving a letter in the mail has become a rarity. Surprise your Grandma with a beautiful card (a handmade one would be even better) or write a letter to a friend you haven't seen in a while.
Be a tourist in your own town. Go online to look up some fun things to do in your area that you've never done before. Find the fun at VisitPennState.org, ExploreAltoona.com, and JuniataRiverValley.org. The only rule — you can't go anywhere you've been before.