Welcome (or welcome back) to Loyola for the fall 2012 semester at Loyola. One part of social, physical, and mental health is becoming active in your surroundings. New Orleans has a wonderful culture and beautiful environment. Due to the limitations in transportation, however, it is often difficult for residential students to explore all that New Orleans has to offer. For those in search of a fantastic time in the Big Easy, one of our student workers, Alon Robinson composed this list of things to do that are fun and easily accessible without a car:

1) Go on a long walk. I know. It doesn’t sound too exciting, but trust me on this one. New Orleans is such a beautiful city that anywhere you walk has great scenery. The best part about this city, however, is the small shops and restaurants on side streets and random corners that you pass by and never notice, or never get a chance to see at all. Walking around the city will introduce you to many of these unnoticed places and the hidden culture beneath the parties and parades. Also, walking is a great way to clear your head, come up with new ideas, or just get away from campus. And if you walk with people, it will often spark deeper conversations that allow you to grow closer as friends. A great place to start is to peruse your way through the rows of shops on Magazine Street.

2) Explore the French Quarter. There is so much more to the French Quarter than Bourbon Street. From the delicious food stops and small shops to the French market, you can always find something fun down there. And the wide array of street performers makes it so much more worthwhile.

3) Catch a ride on the Algiers Ferry. This ferry has been in operation since 1827. It takes you from downtown New Orleans across the Mississippi River, and over to Algiers Point on the West Bank. The feeling of standing on deck and watching downtown slowly drift away from you is truly indescribable and one you must experience for yourself. The view of the city is stunning, one you won’t get anywhere else. Once the ferry drops you off in Algiers Point, you’ll be immersed in a pleasant, residential neighborhood that survived Hurricane Katrina entirely, and has preserved much of its original 19th century village charm.

4) Take a stroll down Riverwalk. Riverwalk is a great destination because of the scenery and the shops. Located along the river, right next to the French Quarter, this place is a must see for anyone in the city of New Orleans. There are many retail stores such as Gap and Brookstone, and lots of restaurants to eat at like Café du Monde. The best part for me, however, is the view of the river and the live music you can catch at any moment.

5) Volunteer at a Hornet’s game. Throughout the school year, representatives for the New Orleans Hornet’s basketball team set up information tables in the Danna Center. Sign up for their volunteer emails and schedule a date to volunteer at one of the games. The work is very easy and a lot of fun. When I volunteered, I helped regulate the outside basketball hoops and played with kids. And there were many other stations where you could volunteer. Following the volunteering, I received a free ticket to that night’s game, and a free t-shirt.

These are just a few things to do around the city that are all accessible by foot or streetcar. Stay tuned for more health related news, Loyola events, and other New Orleans’ happenings.

Bobby Kizer

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