By: Housing & Residence Life
While there are certainly some students who enjoy the traditional trip to some tropical destination with their friends for a “classic” spring break, there are others who wish to return home for some much-needed relaxation and many who choose to stay on campus for the week.
I know when I was an undergraduate student, a quiet “staycation” always sounded like the ideal way to recover from a stressful course load and prepare for the end of the year. As tempting as it can be for a student to enjoy their own space while roommates are away for the week and catch up on all of the latest Netflix binges, encouraging your Zag to get out and try something new or explore the surrounding area is important to ensuring they have the chance to recharge. These small adventures will create new memories and distinguish their spring break from just another long weekend that passed them by, without their taking notice.
So, what is there to do when everyone else seems to have left campus? The city of Spokane offers a full range of exciting adventures, from beautiful parks to cozy coffee shops, so there should be something new for your Zag to experience. I’ll provide some insight to a few classic favorites that you could pass along as a suggestion to keep your Zag active over the break.
A few outdoor attractions that your Zag may want to take advantage of include the Bowl and Pitcher trail, Manito Park and Riverside Park. The Bowl and Pitcher trail is about a 15-20-minute drive from campus and boasts a short hike that includes views of the Spokane river, some rocky outcroppings and other neat natural features. Manito Park, located in the South Hill neighborhood, is comprised of 90-acres of gardens, wildlife, water features and other gorgeous views. The park also has a Japanese garden, which provides its own sense of serenity within the park. Finally, Riverside Park is, perhaps, one of the most accessible outdoor adventures of which your Zag can take advantage. Riverside Park is a smooth walk along Centennial Trail, located in the heart of downtown Spokane. My favorite part of the park is walking along all the different bridges throughout the area to look at the different views of the waterfalls; each angle is a whole new glimpse of the water. If your Zag makes it that far, you could even mention a treat at Brainfreeze in Kendall Yards; an ice creamery with unique flavor combinations.
Maybe your Zag needs a bit of a boost before going out for an adventure? Or needs a new place to dive into the latest bestselling book? Spokane has a number of trendy coffee shops that are the perfect way to find a new hole in the wall in the city. Atticus Coffee & Gifts in downtown Spokane is a staple for trying something new in the area. Atticus provides the perfect cozy wood table and chair setup with some antique lighting that will be perfect for setting up shop. After they wrap up at Atticus, they could even check out Boo Radley’s next door, a shop full of hilarious novelty items. Coeur Coffeehouse, located on Monroe, has some great tables for spreading out and getting some work done. The baristas are super friendly and make great drinks. Rockwood Bakery, in the South Hill neighborhood, is noteworthy because it doesn’t have WiFi! Now, your Zag may not be thrilled with that, but it would be the perfect place to take a break from being online and really dive deep into a book with some quality coffee and baked goods.
In the hustle and bustle of the semester, it may be difficult for your Zag to get far off campus and try something new for dinner, but D.Lish, Fire, and Zona Blanca are all worth a trip over the break. For those wanting to try something unique in Spokane on a budget, D.Lish is a classic burger, fries and shake joint. You’ll definitely want to go for the combo to enjoy it all! Fire is an artisanal pizza place that is sleek and modern. Perhaps one of the more unique things about Fire is their large screen TV; you’d think they would be showing ESPN, creating a sports bar-themed atmosphere, but instead they will show movies like The Hobbit. Zona Blanca is a neat ceviche joint in Spokane, where the food is extremely fresh and made to order.
Whether or not your Zag enjoys trying new coffee shops or outdoor adventures, taking the time over Spring Break to try new things will provide the opportunity for them to re-energize in preparation for the final push to the end of the year. Talk with your Zag about what they plan on doing over spring break and encourage them to get out of their room or hall for a little bit and try something new. Inspire your student to take advantage of Gonzaga’s location in Spokane and all the city has to offer!