Even though we’ve been back for only a couple of weeks, Labor Day is coming up, which means we already have a day off. Take advantage of this long weekend and get off campus with a day trip to a local attraction. It’ll be a while before you can do it again without tons of work hanging over your head.
1. Ithaca Gorges, Ithaca, NY (1 hour, 8 minutes from campus)
If you like to hike in the Nature Preserve, a good option for a day trip is a visit to the Ithaca Gorges. Within around an hour of campus, you’ll find Robert H. Treman State Park and Buttermilk Falls State Park, both of which include spectacular waterfalls. This is the ultimate day trip for those who need a quick escape from the everyday.
2. Animal Adventure Park — 85 Martin Hill Rd., Harpursville, NY (26 minutes from campus)
To see a giraffe in upstate New York, you’ll only have to drive about 30 minutes from campus to Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville. Open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. everyday, the park features llamas, alpacas and zebras, among other animals. Tickets for adults are a reasonable $9 each, and while you do need to pay to feed the animals, the prices are reasonable and have cheap refills. Overall, it has overwhelming potential for a fun day out with friends.
3. Cutler Botanic Garden — 840 Upper Front St., Binghamton, NY (10 minutes from campus)
This beautiful garden at the Cornell Cooperative Extension is open to the public free of charge, and would be perfect to see right before fall comes and the leaves change. If you decide to take a tour, there will be a charge of $2, which goes straight to the nonprofit organization that runs this garden for environmental education. If you need a relaxing way to spend your day off, pack lunch, bring a book and wander among the trails.
4. Binghamton Mets Baseball — 211 Henry St., Binghamton, NY (10 minute drive from campus)
The Binghamton Mets, the New York Mets’ AA team, are home this weekend, playing in their last games of the season. The B-Mets play a four-game series against the Erie SeaWolves from Friday through Monday, and tickets are $5 this weekend for students. Head to a game to catch the next Jose Reyes or Mike Piazza.
5. The Cider Mill — 2 Nanticoke Ave., Endicott, NY 13760 (14 minute drive from campus)
Labor Day is the unofficial start of fall, so it marks the perfect time to make your inaugural trip to the Cider Mill in nearby Endicott. For apple cider donuts, candy apples and plenty of Instagram-able fall pictures, this is the perfect spot. The apples are grown in upstate NY, between Syracuse and Rochester, so you can be sure you’re supporting local orchards.
6. Great New York State Fair — 581 State Fair Blvd., Syracuse, NY 13209 (1 hour, 18 minutes drive from campus)
This weekend is the last for the State Fair, and there are a lot of different attractions — and something for any taste. A selection of the things to do there are: a rooster crowing contest, a pogo stick stunt team and a feature called “Extreme Log Makeover.” Even among these unique attractions, there is an assortment of fried foods, delicious chocolate milk and classic carnival rides.