Growing up in Syracuse, I've had the pleasure of learning the ins and outs of the city and the surrounding suburbs. While the campus is beautiful, if you're ever feeling like you need a change of scenery or are longing for food beyond Ernie Davis's wraps and cereal bar, some of my favorite spots for the fall semester (beyond the basics that a quick Google search of "What to do in Syracuse" can provide) are:
1. The Great New York State Fair
Located in the heart of Syracuse, the Fair attracts people from all across New York. Whether you're looking for roller coasters, a horse show, or the BEST fried dough and slushies, I promise you will find it all and whatever else you could dream of at The Fair. It runs from August 22-September 3 this year. So if you're looking for something to get your mind off the four big papers you were assigned the first week, the Fair is calling.
2. Clark Reservation State Park
Not too far from campus is the breathtaking Clark Reservation. If you're in need of some fresh air and serene views, this park's rocky cliffs, mild hiking trails, and lake/wetland scenery will surely suffice. You can fish here, too!
3. Beak and Skiff Apple Orchards
Although not open for picking quite yet, by the time you are all settled in and well into the many papers and tests, it will be prime time for apple picking. Being located in Upstate New York, SU has many apple orchards relatively close by.
However, none compare to Beak and Skiff, where the apple picking experience is partnered with a brewery, any Apple product you could think of, and sometimes even live performances. If you are looking for a little drive and to get a taste of the freshest apples Upstate New York could offer, be sure to stop by Beak and Skiff this fall.
4. Festa Italiana Syracuse
For the past four years, my parents have worked the Italian Fest downtown. Naturally, the food is AMAZING. This year it will run from September 14-16, right in front of City Hall. They have much beyond the tents of Italian delicacies, however. You can watch a meatball eating contest or play some Bocce. You for sure do not want to miss out on this opportunity to taste a different side of Syracuse.
5. The Regional Farmers Market
Open Thursday's from 7:00-2:00 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays 7:00am-2:00 p.m., the Farmers Market, located next to Destiny USA, is an amazing opportunity to see what Upstate New York has to offer. There are hundreds of stands selling the freshest and most flavorful of all fruits, vegetables, and about anything else you could imagine.
Not only is it healthy and fresh, all the products are local so you are supporting Upstate New York farmers and growers. The experience is also 100% worth it, as there is so much to do and see!
Given the opportunity, exploring the city of Syracuse outside of the walls of the campus is so important. There is so much to see and learn about the community that surrounds you as a Syracuse University student. These are just a few of the many things you could experience this upcoming semester. Do yourself a favor and be curious about the city that surrounds you!