What To Do During Winter Break

Staying on campus during winter break? There’s still so much you can do!

Winters at Rochester can be brutal. But that doesn’t mean your break has to be the same. If you find yourself in Rochester during a winter break, there are still lots of things that you can do!

Catch up on studying. If you study in advance for your classes next semester, your future self will surely thank you. To facilitate your studying, you can always find past semesters’ syllabi on Blackboard. From looking at the syllabi, I also recommend getting the textbooks early and seeking out the good deals before they all disappear!

Learn something new. Have you ever tried the relaxing art of origami? Have you tried to play piano? Do you want to try playing Squash? Winter break is a great time to try out different hobbies.

Explore Rochester. There are always new things to do. Visit one of the numerous different restaurants around the city. Visit the museums and discover the different landmarks dotting Rochester. For some fun and games, visit The Strong National Museum of Play (admission is $11 with student ID!), The Great Escape Room, Sky Zone Trampoline Park, or Clover Lanes Bowling Alley. To learn a little bit more about Rochester, visit the George Eastman Museum (admission is only $5!). Have you ever been to a comedy club? Go to Comedy at the Carlson! Seabreeze Amusement Park is another great attraction to visit if you love rides. For food, some hidden gems are Black & Blue Steak and Crab, Pane Vino, and Texas de Brazil (this is located right in College Town!). A little more budget friendly and delicious food sites, which I always find myself going to, are Han Noodle Bar, Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, and Young’s Korean Restaurant.

Netflix. There are always new shows to watch on Netflix. Catch up on those shows you fell behind in during finals week. Snuggle up in a blanket, grab some popcorn, and watch to your heart’s content. After a long semester, you deserve it!

Read new books. When is the last time you indulged in a classical novel? Or a mystery book? How about fantasy? During the winter break, the Carlson Library, the Art and Music Library is open every week day at 9 am to 5 pm. The Robbins Library is open from 9 am to 9 pm on Mondays to Thursdays and open at 9 am to 9 pm on Fridays. Gleason Library and Rush Rhees is open almost every day. There are endless opportunities to borrow books and read your favorite series.

Arts and crafts. Did you know, engaging in arts and crafts develops fine motor skills, boosts self-esteem, and improves memory! This winter break, make DIY crafts, paint a self-portrait, or try knitting a scarf to give as a gift.

SNOW! When life gives you snow, make a snowman! With every snowy winter season, you have to build a snowman, have a snowball fight, or make snow angels. Afterwards, warm yourself up with a nice cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows. Yum!

Learn to cook new recipes. Especially with the holidays just around the corner, it’ll be nice to learn some new recipes to prepare. Whether you’re learning to cook a whole holiday ham or Christmas sugar cookies, you’re friends (and your stomach) will be infinitely happier.

Hit the gym. Whether you’ve never been to the gym before or you go regularly, winter break is a great time to exercise! During the winter break, the athletic center is open every Monday to Friday at 6:30 am to 8 pm and every Saturday and Sunday from 12 pm to 6 pm. The gym closes between December 21 to January 1, but besides that time, the gym can be your second home for the break!

Explore campus. Although there are many new places and things to do around the city of Rochester, there is certainly something on campus that you haven’t discovered yet! Have you been up to the top of Rush Rhees? Have you found the infamous hidden swimming pool or the “creepy” elevator in the Stacks? This is also a great time to find prime study spots for when the semester restarts.


Staying on campus during your winter break can turn out to be a blast. Have a great break, and happy holidays!

About the author

Jasmine Moon

Hi, I am a member of the Class of 2021 majoring in neuroscience and minoring in social psychology! I'm from the small town of Orange, Connecticut, and I'm involved in the BCS & Neuroscience Undergraduate Council, Students Helping Honduras, and the Korean American Student Association (KASA). I hope sharing my experiences at UR can help you!

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