As Spring Break season begins, the lingering chill of winter often pushes residents of the greater Champaign County area to search for warmer weather. However, warmer weather does not equate to enjoyment. The outrageous prices, hassle of travel, and the overall stresses that accompany a lengthy spring break trip often leave many longing for the warm embrace of our Outside of Ordinary community. Those staying in the greater Champaign County area during spring often enjoy a rich wealth of activities, attractions, and events that create lasting memories. Come take a trip with us to Spring Break: Outside of Ordinary.
Named The Greatest Midwest Food Town by Midwest Living, Champaign-Urbana, as well as all of the communities in the greater Champaign County area, never disappoint when it comes to exceptional food. During U of I session, it can be very easy for teachers, students, and residents alike to get comfortable with routine cuisine selections. With the absence of students, faculty, and teachers changing the landscape of the area, restaurants and cafes change too. Food specials, spring break menu items, and specialty desserts give your favorite restaurants an entirely new feel. If you’re a student that has relegated your eating patterns to campus, spring break is the perfect time to venture out and experience the Champaign-Urbana downtown foods. Shake up your morning coffee off campus with a quick stop to Aroma Cafe or Pekara Bakery & Bistro and experience homemade pastries made fresh daily. Liven up your lunch and beef up your burger with a trip to Farren's Pub or Destihl Brew Works. Experience exotic dishes and out of this world flavors with an upscale dinner at Nando Milano Trattoria, Miga, and Masijta Grill. If you’re a professional, teacher, or student that finds your food choices to lay outside of campustown, take advantage of the smaller crowds and send your taste buds can go on an exotic vacation all while staying within the community. Start your day with a quick coffee and a sweet treat at BrewLab Coffee or Caffe Bene Stop in at Sakanaya and enjoy exceptionally fresh sushi, ramen, and udon all in a modern space that serves as a visual feast for the artistic eye. Experience some of campus' hidden gems and enjoy a relaxing dinner at The Bread Company or Timpone's. Whether you're a lifelong resident or a student staying in our Outside of Ordinary community for the week, short foodie trips to Monticello, St. Joseph, Rantoul, and Arthur provide not only an amazing trip, but some of the area's best food. Whether you like an amazing steak (Monarch Brewing Company), down home soul food (C & C Kitchen), creative farm-to-table dishes (The Wheelhouse), or down home country favorites ( Yoder's Kitchen), you're never far from the best our great community has to offer! Take the week to enjoy all of the must stop spots and experience a new side of our community.
Arts, Culture, and the Outdoors
Whether you’re drawn to music festivals like a moth to a flame, you’re an enthusiast of everything art, or can’t get enough of nature, the culture of the greater Champaign County area provides an exotic escape for everyone. Don’t be blinded by those that leave the greater Champaign County area in search of exceptional scenery, amazing wildlife, and deep artistic roots, our community hosts all that and more! As the days get longer, and the spring foliage starts to make its return, more relaxed schedules allow for more opportunities to connect with nature. The crisp nights sky as seen uninterrupted at Homer Lake Forest Preserve, the beautiful winding trails at Meadowbrook Park and Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve, and majestic landscapes of the U of I Arboretum and the Mabery Gelvin Botanical Garden, create truly beautiful spring break destinations for even the most discerning of travelers. The breathtaking, Outside of Ordinary views, birth extraordinary art. The beauty of walking a prairie trail and experiencing the true nature of art, is mirrored in walking through one of the many local museums, experiencing local arts and culture. Whether it’s photographic prints, painting, or sculpture, the greater Champaign County area hosts a lifetime’s worth of exceptional art. Whether you have a passion for planes, trains, and automobiles (National Museum of Ship Models and Sea History, Monticello Railway Museum), love a look at the history of our many communities (Champaign County History Museum, Museum of the Grand Prairie, Olympic Tribute & Laborer's Memorial, Rantoul Historical Society), or enjoy a more tranditional museum experience, you're sure to enjoy a wealth of activities courtesy of our many wonderful museums. If you look to meld your love of nature and art, the Wandell Sculpture Garden brings together some of the area's finest works, all on beautiful walking paths. If your artistic calling rings with the music of multiple genres, then spring break here, will definitely not disappoint. Experience the sounds of live music in downtown Champaign and Urbana, belt out some of your favorites at karaoke at Memphis on Main, or enjoy connecting to the history of music in this great community, the sounds of our community ring loudly over the spring break week. And finally, for all you theater enthusiasts, there is no need to step outside of our community to find a wealth of great theater featuring amazing local and national talent as seen at The Station Theatre. Whether you want to experience a more personal original play, or see one of your Broadway favorites come to life close to home, the theater experience here is truly Outside of Ordinary.
Spring Break Spirits
Last but not least, no spring break experience is complete without a good drink to help unwind. After enjoying some of the great local food in downtown Champaign, stop in to The Blind Pig Brewery or DESTIHL Restaurant & Brew Works and top it off with a great local beer, or take a short drive out to Riggs Beer Company on the eastern edge of Urbana, offering fresh, locally-brewed beer and brewery tours Saturdays and Sundays at 3pm. If you prefer a glass of wine over a port of beer, Alto Vineyards carries some of the finest wines produced in the United States, right here in Champaign. If you enjoy something a little stronger, the greater Champaign County area is home to some of the best Whiskey Spots in the states. With selections ranging in the hundreds at 3Ravens, to a more select menu at Seven Saints, if you love all things whiskey, you can create a truly unique whiskey drinking experience here that can't be found a trip elsewhere.
An exciting spring break experience isn't far away, it's right here in the Outside of Ordinary. From the fantastic food, the amazing arts community, to the sensational spirits, the greater Champaign County area houses exceptional spring break potential. If you've grown accustomed to your regular routine not stepping out of the usual then the spring break week affords you the opportunity to try something new. Create a week of exciting memories featuring extraordinary food, drinks, and events. You, your tastebuds, your artistic eye, and your adventurous spirit have a week to make the most of our great community and take a trip Outside of Ordinary!