Oftentimes, Muhlenberg can feel like a bubble and getting off campus is a great way to minimize this feeling. Exploring Allentown and the different restaurants, shops, and events in the area can be a fun activity to do with your friends on those days when there’s not much going on. Whether or not you or your friends have a car, there are definitely places in Allentown that are walking distance and inexpensive. Here are the top 5 things to do in the area:
1. One of my favorite events to go to in the Spring is the annual Allentown Cherry Blossom Festival at Cedar Creek Parkway/Cedar Beach (the park right down the street from Muhlenberg); this year it is on April 28th from 10am to 5pm. This is a great way to spend some time outside with friends for no cost!
2. Another place that is walkable from campus in the Allentown Farmers Market, which is a 5-10 minute walk. There are so many different vendors and shops to go to; my personal favorite is Heffelfinger’s Coffee, Tea & Specialty Foods. Even if you don’t want to buy anything, it is nice to just walk around the different shops and be with your friends! In the spring, going to the farmers market is a great way to get outside and go somewhere not too far away.
3. An option that is more costly and a little further away from Muhlenberg is the PPL center, which is a sports arena on Hamilton Street. I have been to a few Lehigh Valley Phantom hockey games here and every time it is really fun! If you’re not a fan of watching sports, there are also other events such as concerts and figure skating shows. This is a great activity to do when your family visits for the weekend or if you want to do something special with friends.
4. One of the main attractions in Allentown is Dorney Park. I personally love amusement parks and going on rides so this is perfect is you and your friends like those types of things. Tickets can be pricey, but you can get a student discount. I went my first semester freshman year for Fright Fest during the time of Halloween and loved it.
5. Above all, my favorite places to go to in Allentown are the restaurants, coffee shops, and ice cream places. My go to ice cream shop is The Udder Bar; they have so many unique and delicious flavors. Of course, you need to go to Cali Burrito at least once if you are living or visiting Allentown. I also love to go to Hava Java, which is a coffee shop; sometimes I do work here instead of going to the library. I highly recommend getting an iced vanilla latte if ever go here!