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Every year at Juniata, my friends and I like to search town for fun activities to do near campus. Even in my senior year, we’re still finding new places to fill up our weekends.
Some of our favorite locations include a classic trip to Raystown. Sometimes we go down to the Seven Points Marina, where we have Mountain Day every year. It’s fun to enjoy our own little mountain day, but once it gets colder and the leaves start changing, it’s still fun to go hiking and take in all the sights.
You can also go up to Hawn’s overlook, which not only overlooks the dam at Raystown, but provides beautiful views at any time of the year! It’s just a short, flat trip down a trail from the parking lot, and it not hard to get to. It’s a nice place to sit back, relax, and enjoy the view.
Another place my friends and I love to go to is further down the lake, called Trough Creek State Park. This state park is beautiful, with a lot of trails and breathtaking views. My friends and I try to visit here as often as possible, and I think that’s because this place provides some of the best scenery that central Pennsylvania has to offer. There is a wide range of trails to choose from, as well as picnic tables to enjoy a nice lunch in the sun.
For people who really enjoy hiking, the Thousand Steps is another good place to visit for nature lovers. I remember being very shocked to find out that it is actually 1000 steps, but if you can make it to the top, you won’t regret it. The views are just too good.
If you’re looking to get into the Halloween season, there are other, more seasonal attractions, such as making the trip down to the Lincoln Caverns for their annual Ghosts and Goblins tour, which features a tour of the caves, which have been decorated to resemble a haunted house. It also features a ride through the surrounding woods on a wagon. It’s a great way to explore what the area has to offer while enjoying the spooky season!
Overall, there are a lot of fun outdoor activities to do in Huntingdon and the surrounding area. If you’re into hiking or nature, there are a lot of places to explore, not just the ones I named here. I haven’t even begun to name all of the outdoor attractions that are available, but I have named some of my favorites. My friends and I often find ourselves scrambling to try everything new that we’ve discovered while also making time to visit some of our favorite places.
No matter what you choose to explore, there is always an activity that allows you to enjoy the beautiful autumn days in central Pennsylvania. Make sure to take advantage of our perfect placement in the middle of the outdoors!
Let’s be honest: on Day 2 of the fall semester, you’ll wake up in your half-made bed and curse yourself for not having the forethought to bring a water bottle. As your parched throat cries out for water, you’ll suddenly realize that the only option in these COVID times is the shower. We’ve all been there! Last year, when I forgot to bring dish soap, I was in denial that the bathroom hand soap was NOT an adequate substitute for all of my cleaning needs. Not to worry, I have compiled a list of things that, over the past three years, I routinely forget to bring with me to college. Hopefully, this will help you prepare for this coming fall semester. Enjoy!
Frisbee (or other lawn gear)
Sometimes on a warm fall day, you’ll find yourself looking out at the expanses of lawn and wonder, “Wow, I wish I had something to do out there.” Every fall, the frisbee team likes to take over and in the spring there are always some freshman guys that play catch or Spike Ball on the North lawn. Do yourself a favor and find a way to enjoy these beautiful open areas: bring a book, bring a hammock, bring a chair – SOMETHING.(more…)
I never understood adulthood until I had to buy my own silverware. While I was excited to start my new independent life (and first full summer out of my parents’ house), I was nervous to take on the responsibility of taking full care of myself. I couldn’t rely on late night burritos from Baker if I was hungry or the complimentary toilet paper in the residence hall bathrooms if I decided to eat the burritos.(more…)
As I set down the book of my Juniata Experience, I reflect on the many lessons I gleaned over my four years at Juniata College. From graduating with an individualized Program of Emphasis to coming to terms with being a student-athlete throughout COVID-19, here are some lessons I’ve learned at JC.
Don’t fret about what comes next. Even during my first year, there were students who had clear plans about what they wanted to do after graduation – going to law school, medical school, teaching or more. By my junior and senior year even more of my peers had plans set in stone. I was different. Sitting at my desk for hours each week brainstorming ideas, I still didn’t feel that same drive to commit to some idea of who I want to be that I wasn’t fully on board with. It wasn’t until my last semester of college that same drive to decide finally came. It’s okay not to know what awaits you after Juniata, but once something motivating jumps out, make sure to grab on to that next adventure and hold on tight!
Motivation can come from anywhere. This lesson I learned from the journey leading up to my next adventure after college. I’ve vacationed outside the US before, but never lived elsewhere for an extended period of time. When COVID-19 crushed my opportunity to study Communications abroad in Germany in Summer 2020, I felt even more motivated to travel overseas. I briefly held out hope that a reprieve would come in the form of a trip to Brazil for my men’s volleyball team to play in a preseason tournament my final semester. Not surprisingly, even that was postponed. In the winter when I was given the chance to continue both my academic and athletic career by getting a Master’s Degree in England, I immediately jumped on the opportunity. Although the decision was my own, the opportunity given to me came thanks to the complete higher education experience that I underwent at Juniata. And, the motivation driving my leap of faith to move overseas to earn an MA was thanks to the strong encouragement to study abroad and opportunities for travel at Juniata that I was sad to have missed.
Live in the moment was the most important lesson I learned from Juniata. When people told me freshman year that four years will pass in the blink of an eye, I had no idea what they meant. It wasn’t possible then for me to see that one day soon, I would be walking across the stage to pick up my diploma, saying so long to the halls of BAC and having an especially sentimental final meal at Baker. It’s sad when the chapter titled ‘College’ in the book of our lives closes but part of living in my new present means living with our connection to Juniata.
As an alumni I expect to stay connected with both the lessons learned and people met through my alma mater. And when it’s your turn to leave the nest, I hope you don’t forget your eagle family either.
1. Tussey and Terrace (TNT)
Best dorm kitchen on campus. I say this because if I need some sort of pot or pan, the TNT kitchen will usually have it. Has an extensive spice collection on the side as well. Out of all of the freshman dorms, it’s not even a competition for who has the best kitchen (Lesher would be 2nd).(more…)