Break means refreshment

To catch up on assignments, relax or get away from campus, students look towards planning their spring break location.

In a 2012 study by Tricia Tang of the University of Central Florida, students responded that their top five most important concerns when choosing a spring break destination were health at the destination, the right price, safety, ability to find adventure and cleanliness.

Florida remains one of America’s most popular locations. According to Visit Florida, the state saw about 126 million visitors in 2018 with about a 6% year-over-year growth. In 2012, Louisiana comprised 2.8% of the over 77 million domestic visitors.

College students can find beaches and other tourists in Miami, Key Largo, Panama City Beach, Jacksonville, Fort Lauderdale, Daytona Beach and Pensacola Beach.

David Correira, a freshman business administration major, discussed the ideal spring break destination. 

“You got to have a beach,” said Correira. “There’s got to be a beach in there. There’s no nice beaches around here so probably Florida. I usually go to Destin or Orange Beach.”

Closer to Louisiana are Orange Beach, West Beach and Fort Morgan in Alabama, which saves the drive to the sunshine state.

In Texas, South Padre Island offers 34 miles of beach. Meanwhile, Lake Havasu, Arizona includes 400 miles of coastline and 60 miles of navigable waterways with no speed or size restrictions for boats.

About 170 miles from the university is North Beach in Lake Charles. Roughly 10 miles closer to the university is Cypremort Point State Park on Vermilion Bay. Less than 50 miles away, students can also head to the Fontainebleau State Park. Grand Isle, the only inhabited barrier island in Louisiana, waits about 130 miles from Hammond.

Though Samuel Dupre, a senior informational technology major, thinks he will be too busy with class assignments, he would ideally like to find free time and go to a beach like Pensacola Beach. 

“That’s where I would want to be,” stated Dupre. “I want to be, probably not surfing, but playing in the water. That’s what I would like.”

For Betty Huffman, a senior English major, spring break means refreshment. She finds a beautiful outdoors environment to be an ideal destination as an escape from the library and other buildings on campus.

Aside from the beach, students can also go camping. The activity is offered at campgrounds like South Toledo Bend State Park and Palmetto Island State Park.

State parks can also be found in Louisiana from Chicot State Park in Evangeline Parish to Lake Bruin State Park, which is almost 170 miles from the university. Less than an hour from the university, the Tickfaw State Park is open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and on Friday and Saturday, hours extend to 10 p.m.

According to Correira, spring break activities depend on who he is with.

“If you’re with your family, you got to spend good quality time with them,” explained Correira. “If you’re with your friends, you got to spend quality time with them.”

John Travis, a freshman business administration major, looks forward to relaxation and getting away from school and work for spring break.

“It’s just gotta be a nice environment for a lot of people, for college students especially to be together,” shared Travis. “The beach would be great because everybody can go there, hang out and have fun. I think that’s a great place. Also, places that have great weather and beaches – normally, they have pretty great weather during spring break.”

Spring break is scheduled for April 19-26, and students can enjoy the break through traveling in the southern U.S.