Fun and cheap winter activities at UConn


The second snowfall of the year brought only an inch of snow, which was washed away quickly with rain showers in the afternoon. Early in the morning, however, the campus was still coated with a light layer of snow, visible from the second floor of Garrigus Suites, on 12/5/2016. (Olivia Stenger/The Daily Campus)

Though Winter 2017 seems to be shaping up into more of a mudslide than a snow-filled wonderland, there are still plenty of things to do to keep you occupied in the colder months. Check out these fun activities that will keep you from getting cabin fever at the University of Connecticut.

Visit the Benton Museum

What other college can boast about having an art museum on campus? Visit the permanent exhibits for everything from sixteenth century paintings to more modern art, or the rotating exhibits hosted by the museum. Afterwards, you can grab a hot chocolate at the Beanery and enjoy having absorbed some culture.

Check out the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry

While to many puppets are somewhat creepy, the displays and exhibits at the Ballard Institute can also be intriguing. The museum also has a monthly puppet show open to the general public featuring guest artists, along with workshops on puppetry. Both are discounted for UConn students.

Sled down Horsebarn Hill

This is an activity that requires snow, which is usually in abundance up here at UConn. The hike might be long, but the ride is wild. Anything from plastic saucers, garbage lids, cardboard boxes, toboggans, inflatable tubes and even a canoe (yes, a canoe) can and have been used to make the trip down the hill. Just make sure not to crash into the fence at the bottom.

Ice Skate on Swan Lake

When temperatures permit, the lake outside the Chemistry building will freeze solid enough for a game of ice hockey, or quick joyride around the lake. Just be sure to confirm that the lake is frozen enough to bear weight– ice fishing for your friends is in no way a fun or recommended activity.

Ice Skate at the Mark Edward Freitas Ice Forum

Of course, when you get a warmer winter you don’t have to put your skates away. The UConn ice arena is accessible by bus and offers free skating on certain days for UConn students, along with skate rentals and blade sharpening. Now you can relive your winter wonderland fantasy any time of the year!

Grab a novel from Homer Babbidge

Surprisingly few students know about the basement level of Homer Babbidge Library, which often hosts art exhibits, along with a pretty solid collection of contemporary literature. While the upper levels of the library are reserved for studying and assigned books, you can take a break from your class readings and catch up on the latest James Patterson novel down there– a cozy respite from the howling wind outside.

Marlese Lessing is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at She tweets @marlese_lessing.

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