As the semester comes to an end, students finally have extra time to enjoy activities other than reading textbooks and watching in-class PowerPoint presentations.
The springtime weather allows students to take advantage of the numerous outdoor activities in Manhattan, whether they require spending money or not.
Carrie Holaday, junior in biology, said she likes springtime weather because the temperatures are never too hot or too cold, and it is perfect for playing softball.
She said she thinks more recreational activities are available because of the warm weather spring brings.
“I like walking in the park, playing sand volleyball or even just reading a book on the porch,” she said.
Holaday said she normally participates these activities at City Park or Peters Recreation Complex.
“I also like to go golfing with my brother,” she said. “We usually go to Wildcat Creek or Stagg Hill. But spring is also good for fishing and camping. I personally like to go to my grandma’s pond to fish, or in the Manhattan area at the Pottawatomie County lakes.”
For those who like to fish or camp, K-State’s Recreational Services rents outdoor items, canoes, kayaks, tents and sleeping bags at different costs for any trips students might be planning.
According to the Recreational Services Web site, students also can rent volleyball sets, horseshoes and archery targets.
To enjoy life on the lake, Wildcat Marina, located on Spillway Marina Road, offers boat and Jet Ski rentals and boating and fishing supplies. Before Memorial Day, the marina is open 4 to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.
Kathy O’Malley, one of the owners of Wildcat Marina, said students can rent pontoon boats in the springtime at the marina.
She said renters pay a deposit and can rent the pontoons hourly, or for half and full days.
Pontoons that can carry eight or 11 people at a time are available to rent for $225 and $350, respectively, for a full day.
“It’s quite packed out here,” O’Malley said. “There’s a big dock where they can come lay out or just hang out. There’s food and other stuff, too.”
Wildcat Creek Golf and Fitness has many options, including golf, batting cages, miniature golf and sand volleyball.
While these activities do require spending money, the center runs specials to make them more affordable. On Mondays and Tuesdays two people can golf nine holes with a cart for $28.
Some students simply go to the parks in town to sunbathe or spend time with friends.
Kelsey Morgan, sophomore in business administration, said she likes to go to City Park with her friends. Though she said they do not sunbathe in their swimsuits, Morgan and her friends like to sit at the picnic tables and eat lunch.
“It’s nice, and it’s quiet,” she said. “We also like to go for a walk around the park.”
There are 14 parks and complexes in the area, and they each have different activities available, including sand volleyball, tennis and basketball courts, as well as shelters and grills that can be reserved for exclusive use.
Most of the parks also have walking and jogging trails.
According to the Manhattan Convention and Visitors Bureau Web site, the city has several trails, including ones at Warner and CiCo parks. The Linear Trail is a nine-mile trail that circles half of the community and is suitable for biking.