People in Utah find fun outside even when the temperatures are below freezing, but for students coming from a warmer winter climate it can be a little harder than a walk on the beach.
While the last semester didn’t have nearly as much of Utah’s regular snow, temperatures quickly dropped to well below freezing. Students started putting more blankets on their beds, turning up their heaters and waking up a little earlier to scrape off their cars from last night’s frost. With several reasons to stay inside and bundle up next to a heater, students find out Utah winters can be as fun as their summers.
Andy Parry, from North Carolina and a 2010 BYU graduate, said he loves the winters in Provo because this is where he learned how to snowboard.
“I bought a season pass this year,” Parry said. “There is still plenty of snow in the mountains.”
While attending BYU, Parry took Student Activities 161 and 162 which are beginning and intermediate skiing classes. Parry said the benefit of being able to take a class about skiing from BYU is it costs much less. Students can buy season passes for cheaper prices because of the deals all the ski resorts give to all college students. Utah has 14 different ski resorts with eight of them being in an hour radius of Provo.
If skiing is a bit too intense of an activity, many students find hot chocolate and a stroll through Temple Square exciting in a different way. Josh Whitmore, a senior from Raleigh, N.C., said he loves going to Temple Square to see the lights and then going to Hatch Family Chocolates to get some hot chocolate.
“Their hot chocolate is the best,” Whitmore said. “It is like a drinking a candy bar.”
Located about five minutes away from Temple Square, Hatch family Chocolates is becoming a common stop for people visiting Temple Square. Whitmore said the chocolate is not a powder but actual chocolate that is melted down and then added to the milk. It comes out extremely hot, but makes it nice and warm for hands that have just got out of the cold, he said.
If students don’t want to go skiing or travel to Salt Lake, David Luck, a senior from Denver, suggests a hybrid activity he and his friends have made a yearly tradition: The Christmas Tree Bonfire.
“This is one of my favorite traditions at BYU,” Luck said. “This and bed sledding, but that is another story.”
Luck and his friends came up with the idea when they got some broken furniture. Someone suggested that they burn it and then put the remains in a trash can. Luck and his friends decided to take it out to Utah Lake and have a bonfire.
“We had so much fun that wanted to have a bonfire every year,” Luck said. “Then we realized that there were all these Christmas trees that have been left by the side of the road after Christmas.”
Luck and his friends have organized trailer loads of Christmas trees to be picked up for residents who no longer want their trees. They take the trees out to the lake and figure out fun ways to start the fire.
“We have done a flaming arrow, fire breathing and even a ball of flame from a potato gun,” Luck said. “The potato gun didn’t work out so well, but it is always fun.”
Over the next couple of years Luck has organized the annual Christmas Tree Bonfire, where large amounts of friends all come together to drink hot chocolate, and sing by the bonfire.