Binghamton’s arctic temperatures, constant snowfalls and icy conditions can make a small trip to the grocery store seem like a treacherous journey. Although the winter season’s frigid temperatures can be quite discouraging, don’t let these low numbers get you down.
Instead, bundle up in your warmest winter attire and head outside. This frozen tundra we commonly refer to as the Southern Tier actually offers a great deal of winter activities that are fun, inexpensive and can provide you with unforgettable memories.
Perhaps one of the most popular winter attractions among Binghamton University students is Greek Peak Mountain and Ski resort. Located in Cortland and only 37 miles from Binghamton, Greek Peak is a winding mountain that offers a great number of trails for skiers and boarders of all different levels.
Although a lift ticket and rental can seem a bit pricey, Greek Peak’s got some great deals that are worth looking into. College students receive $8 off a daily lift ticket and $4 off a night ticket with a valid student ID. Greek Peak also offers a reasonably priced package called Mountains of Fun. For $25, first-timers receive all necessary equipment, a lesson and a lift ticket for the beginner slope.
For those who aren’t thrilled at the prospect of hurtling down a winding mountain, make sure to check out Greek Peak’s tubing center — $22 grants five hours of tubing and a tow ride back up to the top each time you tube down!
Lynnley Rothenberg, a junior majoring in biology, was very content with Greek Peak’s facilities.
“I’ve skied at a lot of different places and didn’t expect a local mountain to have challenging trails. I was pleasantly surprised with Greek Peak, and definitely look forward to going back during the semester,” she said.
Located a few minutes away from BU, the Broome Community College Ice Center offers a large skating rink and the perfect activity for a brisk winter day. One of the main attractions at the BCC Ice Center is its public skating sessions.
Whether you’re a first-time skater or have been on the ice for years, skaters can peacefully glide around the rink for hours during one of their many free skate sessions. For those who are looking to advance their skills, the Ice Center offers private figure and ice skating lessons. There are also several ice hockey programs and leagues for adults and children of all different levels. The BCC Ice Center is a great place to go skating with a group of friends.
If you don’t have a car, or simply wish to enjoy all that the winter weather has to offer, then Binghamton University Outdoor Pursuits is the place to look. Binghamton Outdoor Pursuits prides itself on promoting physical activity and an understanding of nature through outdoor adventures and experiences.
Those interested in participating must register at the Outdoor Pursuits Office and submit a payment to hold a slot in a program. Although some activities such as a hike in the Nature Preserve don’t require much travel, other programs will take you to breathtaking mountains in areas outside of Binghamton.
For only $15, adventure seekers can hike or ski their way through Balsam Lake Mountain, Hunter Mountain or Greek Peak. Not only can you embrace nature while exercising, but Outdoor Pursuits can also introduce you to others who share a passion for the great outdoors.
If the idea of spending money to come into contact with snow or ice makes you shudder, have no fear. There are other ways to embrace the winter season without breaking the bank or your wrist in an ice skating mishap.
After a snowfall, relive your childhood memories by going sledding or having a snowball fight. If venturing into the snow and ice really isn’t your cup of tea, look into taking up the hobby of watching winter sports. Binghamton’s very own ice hockey team, the Binghamton Senators, regularly play home games at the Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena.
Next time you’re bored, ditch the snuggie and hot chocolate. There are plenty of fun and exciting ways to turn drab snowy days into a winter wonderland. Well, as close as Binghamton can get to one at least.