Springtime activities Iona students can enjoy this season

Katherine Daly, Staff Writer

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Now that winter is officially behind us, you’re probably thinking about enjoying the outdoors instead of being cooped up in the dorms all day. It’s refreshing to finally be able to leave the house in a t-shirt and shorts, but sometimes it is difficult to find something to do in the area.

As a college student, you’re likely on a tight budget, but that shouldn’t slow down your fun. There are plenty of affordable activities around here in Westchester, practically in your own backyard.

1. Hudson Park and Beach

With the changes of the season, we can finally peel off our winter coats. We can watch the green grass grow and the flowers bloom into something beautiful. However, you should be more adventurous and explore Hudson Park, an area that features a sandy beach as well as amazing greenery. Admission is free for everyone and parking is only $10.

2. Leatherstocking Trail

Just a short mile-long walk from campus, the Leatherstocking Trail is a small hiking trail that leads to Mamaroneck Village. The total distance of the trail is 2.5 miles and it serves as a simple, scenic route. You can enter the trail on Pinebrook Boulevard. It is a great way to enjoy the outdoors and escape from campus without travelling too far or spending any money.

3. Thomas Paine Cottage Museum

If you’re not fond of the outdoors, maybe take a trip through history at the Thomas Paine Cottage Museum. Whether you are a history buff, love art or you’re just interested in the tavern they have there, go visit the old historical house. The admission is only $5. It’s normally open to the public Thursday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. There are plenty of events at the cottage throughout the year to keep you coming back, like their Colonial Fair, which only takes place in the spring.

4. Greenburgh Nature Center

Once we get beyond the winter season, there are a whole lot of April showers, May flowers and refreshing new beginnings for some creatures. Spring is a vastly different experience through the eyes of an animal, and you can find your wild side at Greenburgh Nature Center. The center is a non-profit nature preserve that has about 33 acres of land. With admission being $7, you’ll find that there’s a lot to do and see in the spring weather. It’s open Monday through Thursday from dawn to dusk, giving you plenty of time to explore and investigate the wildlife.

5. Playland Park

Do something unique during the nice weather, such as visiting one of the oldest amusement parks in the area. Playland Park officially opened on May 26, 1928, and was a huge hit in New York during the early to mid-20th century. Playland is a fun-filled theme park that is rich in history and has amazing rides. The Dragon Coaster is a fan favorite and has remained the park’s most popular ride throughout the years. The park is open almost all year round, with admission starting at $10.

6. Ice cream at The Blue Pig

You can never go wrong with ice cream, so go visit The Blue Pig ice cream shop in Croton-On-Hudson. The ice cream from The Blue Pig is homemade and the ingredients come from local sources, which keeps the produce fresh and tasty. It also has a unique look, and the atmosphere inside just screams “sweet.”

7. Flowers Park

Flowers Park is a 20-acre park just a mile from campus. The park hasa basketball court, playground, picnic areas and several athletic fields and complexes. The park is a great place to visit on a sunny day, and it’s especially great to visit when the Iona baseball team has a home game.

8. Glen Island Park

Glen Island Park is a beautiful 105-acre island in New Rochelle. The park isn’t too far from campus – it’s only about a 10 to 15 minute drive. It is a great place to go on a nice day, possibly for a picnic by the water.

With everyone being eager to get outside and enjoy the sunshine, Westchester is full of many affordable activities. Whatever activity you choose, have fun this spring and make the best of what your community has to offer!