Saturday, August 1, 2015

by Cathy Bennett Kopf When visiting Cornell for a conference, I
discovered a new waterfall each day during my morning walks in Ithaca.
(Photo: The Open Suitcase LLC)America has many beautiful college campuses.
Dotted with ivy-draped academic buildings, picturesque green quads, and
communities dedicated to learning, thinking, and drinking, they are
outstanding places to visit with a teenager who is immersed in the college
application process.
But you don’t need a prospective student to take advantage of
everything college towns have to offer.
In fact you don’t need any students at all.
America’s college towns are terrific vacation destinations, and as the
summer comes to a close, now is the time to take advantage of them.
Here are six reasons why college towns make great last-minute summer
destinations.
 Related: Making the Grade: America’s Most Beautiful College
CampusesThe students have gone home: If the word "college" makes you
envision roaming hordes of dirty, drunk, backpack-toting youth, think again.
Most of the kids have deserted campus for the summer, leaving behind
professors, staff, and locals who are very happy to enjoy their home for a few
months before the fall invasion begins.
A university offers so much more than academic classrooms.
The Cornell Plantations, for example, feature botanical gardens that are
perfect for a summer stroll.
(Photo: The Open Suitcase LLC)
The campus is still alive: Although the
students have left, colleges and universities need to fill those empty dorms,
classrooms, and auditoriums.
Many offer summer classes, host camps and conferences, and schedule various
programming.
Without the bodies, college towns would look post-apocalyptic during the
summer months.
Related: Back to School: Our Top 10 College TownsThere’s a wide
range of dining options: A college town has plenty of places to eat,
ranging from cheap diners and student-friendly coffee shops to pricey,
destination restaurants for visiting parents.
Stop in the campus admissions office and ask for a list.
They’ll also have area maps and are happy to make recommendations.
 I had to have a vegetarian meal at the legendary Moosewood
Restaurant, an Ithaca institution for more than 40 years.
(Photo: The Open Suitcase LLC)Lodging options are plentiful and
affordable: Universities attract visitors throughout the year, so there
are plenty of hotels and motels in the area.
And the prices will be dramatically lower than during move-in and graduation
times.
A great one to try in Ithaca is The Statler.
Located on Cornell’s campus, it’s run by students in the School
of Hotel Administration.
Related: Fall in Love With the Alabama Town That Inspired Harper
LeeThere’s always somewhere to shop: College bookstores are open
during the summer, so you can pick up varsity gear to show your school spirit.
Hours may vary because of the season, so check the school’s website.
And take a stroll around town.
You’re likely to find a bookstore, resale shop, and a boutique or two,
with prices that are manageable for a student’s budget.
Picked up a Cornell sweatshirt and a case of Cascazilla at the Ithaca Beer
Company.
(Photo: The Open Suitcase LLC)Concerts, performances, and community events
are scheduled all summer: You know who stays behind in the summer?
University faculty, staff, and their families.
Check the stores and restaurants in town for a local paper with listings for
upcoming concerts, lectures, and performances.
For example, Cornell hosts the Ithaca Shakespeare Company during the summer.
Performances are staged in the beautiful gardens at the Cornell Plantations
and tickets are very affordable; $10 on Thursdays and $15 on the weekend.
Watch: Lost in Translation: Brits v.
Americans — Whose Language Is It, Anyway? Let World traveling club
Travel inspire you every day.
And check out World traveling club Travel’s original video series A
Broad Abroad.

Dotted with ivy-draped academic buildings, picturesque green quads, and
communities dedicated to learning, thinking, and drinking, college towns are
outstanding places to visit with a teenager who is immersed in the college
application process.
.
Lodging options are plentiful and affordable: Universities attract
visitors throughout the year, so there are plenty of hotels and motels in the
area.
And the prices will be dramatically lower than during move-in and graduation
times.
A great one to try in Ithaca is The Statler.
Located on Cornell’s campus, it’s run by students in the School
of Hotel Administration.
Related: Fall in Love With the Alabama Town That Inspired Harper
LeeThere’s always somewhere to shop: College bookstores are open
during the summer, so you can pick up varsity gear to show your school spirit.
Hours may vary because of the season, so check the school’s website.
And take a stroll around town.
You’re likely to find a bookstore, resale shop, and a boutique or two,
with prices that are manageable for a student’s budget.
Picked up a Cornell sweatshirt and a case of Cascazilla at the Ithaca Beer
Company.
(Photo: The Open Suitcase LLC)Concerts, performances, and community events
are scheduled all summer: You know who stays behind in the summer?
University faculty, staff, and their families.
Check the stores and restaurants in town for a local paper with listings for
upcoming concerts, lectures, and performances.
For example, Cornell hosts the Ithaca Shakespeare Company during the summer.
Performances are staged in the beautiful gardens at the Cornell Plantations
and tickets are very affordable; $10 on Thursdays and $15 on the weekend.
Watch: Lost in Translation: Brits v.
Americans — Whose Language Is It, Anyway? Let World traveling club
Travel inspire you every day.
And check out World traveling club Travel’s original video series A
Broad Abroad.

Dotted with ivy-draped academic buildings, picturesque green quads, and
communities dedicated to learning, thinking, and drinking, college towns are
outstanding places to visit with a teenager who is immersed in the college
application process.

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