Mount St. Joseph University

Beating Boredom over Break

Dateline: student newspaper

By: Katie M. Donovan

File Under: break, events, holiday

With the first semester of the 2013-2014 school year in full swing, many of you may have Thanksgiving break on your minds. This year the break runs from Nov. 27 to the 29 and the weekend immediately following these dates. 5 days of freedom; but what to do? A question posed by many, especially those still on campus or back at home around the Tri-State.

Here are some ideas of things to do over the break that come from’s calendar of events and some from my own experience.

Starting on Wednesday, Nov. 27, the Cincinnati Cyclones will be in town taking on Wheeling at US Bank Arena that night. This is definitely and enjoyable time with on your feet action, high energy, good music and great hockey Queen City style. The cheapest tickets run about $13—fairly manageable for the college student budget. Grab a friend and head on downtown for the night, and while you are out in the heart of Cincinnati, take a stroll on over to the newly constructed Banks and check out some of the bars and restaurants it has to offer.

Many places around Cincinnati don’t offer much to do in the way of exciting events on Thanksgiving Day but if you’re a runner, you can always sign up for the 104th Thanksgiving Day Race in Downtown Cincinnati, presented by Western & Southern. If that’s not your scene, here are some of my favorite things to do inside or with the family on Thanksgiving Day:

At 9 a.m., tune into NBC for the annual Macy’s Day Parade. It includes bands, performance groups, giant balloons, elaborate floats, and of course, Santa makes his appearance at the end to remind us Christmas is right around the corner.

Immediately following the parade on NBC is the airing of the Kennel Club of Philadelphia’s National Dog Show, presented by Purina. It’s another Thanksgiving favorite and it’s especially exciting if you are a dog lover like me!  Not only is it interesting to learn tidbits about your favorite dog breeds, you will also find yourself cheering for your favorite fur-ball as he or she competes in the Best in Show round. Give it a chance!

After this, be sure to join Mom in the kitchen and help with the traditional cooking. You’ll make some fantastic memories and some even more amazing food for the family.

Black Friday is Nov. 29, when many stores open their doors at the crack of dawn to greet the early bird shoppers with holiday steals and deals. I took part in the Black Friday frenzy a few years ago with my sister. We got up at 4 a.m., made a coffee run, and hit the stores. Target and Kenwood Mall were our store choices, but check the local ads for the best deals and store hours.

If you want to experience this crazy holiday rush for yourself, I recommend doing your research beforehand to see who is offering sales on your pick items. When you finally choose one or two things you have to buy, make a beeline for the store offering that particular sale only. Trust me; it’s not worth fighting the traffic and crowds of people by going to more than one store.

After this, head straight home and have a lazy day on the couch with some hot chocolate or a good movie.

Saturday, Nov. 30 is a day that many people spend beginning preparations for the Christmas season. You might turn the seasonal music, or even begin to pull out the festive decorations.

If you want to get into the holiday mood, I suggest you head out to Sharon Woods drive through Holiday in Lights display. Make some hot chocolate in a to-go mug, take some friends with you, and turn on the Christmas music. This year, the display is $13 per small car.  If you take five people and split the cost, this comes out to a little more than $2 a person. You can find more information on their website: The event opens up that evening at 6 p.m.

Oh, and on Sunday, Dec. 1, you might want to think about starting that homework you put off over break. That, and just relax a little bit before finals and the end of the semester.