Winter activities around Orange Sud

The harsh winter season prevents students from enjoying many outdoor activities, but allows them to explore all the winter fun South Orange has to offer.

The South Orange Performing Arts Center, also known as SOPAC, offers a contemporary venue that showcases a variety of performing arts, including theatre, music and dance. SOPAC also welcomes students to watch movies in their movie theater.

Neyha Ramani, a second-year nursing student, said she loves going to SOPAC to watch recently released movies.

“The most recent movie I went to was ‘Shang-Chi’,” Ramani said. “When I was leaving the movie, a worker gave me and my boyfriend 10 free tickets to future movies.”

In addition to entertainment, Orange Sud offers students places to eat. Toro Loco is a restaurant located in the Village that serves Mexican cuisine to customers. Hannah Blend, a sophomore in special education/preschool and social behavioral science, said Toro Loco was her favorite place for a meal with loved ones.

“I take my family there when they come to visit me at school,” Blend said. “The food is great, the staff is great, and the environment is so much fun.”

For students looking for a dessert, look no further than Cait and Abby’s Bakery.

Located in the Village near the train station, the bakery serves cookies, cakes, cupcakes and more for the enjoyment of customers.

Blend said she used to always stop at the bakery when she took the train in first grade.

“I would get treats that I would bring to people I was visiting,” Blend said. “The cookies are so good there, especially the black and white cookies.”

When students feel like shopping, they can take the Shufly every Saturday to the Livingston Mall, 14 miles from the university.

Ramani said she likes going to the Livingston mall.

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“It’s a good place to hang out, eat and do some therapeutic shopping,” Ramani said. “They have a variety of stores where your time will pass quickly.”

Students looking for more adventure in their winter activities can try something unconventional: ax throwing.

Bury the hatchet is a recreation center located in Bloomfield, just over five miles from campus. People can visit this business to throw axes at a target.

Second-year sports management student Vicki Savoka said the activity is something everyone should experience at least once.

“It was fascinating,” Savoka said. “Being able to throw an ax to relieve some stress was the most fun thing I did all semester. I definitely crossed this off my to-do list.

No matter what the students are looking for, there’s something new waiting for them just around the corner from Shufly in the Village.

“I would recommend other students to visit these places as it’s a great way to immerse themselves in the environment that surrounds campus,” Blend said. “It’s also a great way to meet people.”

Serena Davis can be reached at [email protected].

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