10 Unique Things To Do In Winter

Snowshoeing tours

Snowshoeing is a great, low cost, physical activity that is a great way to spend time with friends or enjoy nature. Snowshoe trails can be found anywhere cross country skiing is found . My experience snowshoeing at Mt. Bachelor was simply amazing! Even though it was winter time, it was still very sunny out so I recommend bringing sunglasses and wearing lots of layers. Snowshoeing in the crisp white snow under the stars promises to be an adventure. For more information visit mtbachelor.com.

Help others in your neighborhood or community

Helping others is a satisfying way to warm up your day and escape boredom. When it snows, could you help out your neighbors by shoveling their walkways? Maybe you know an elderly person who could use some help getting their mail? Winters can be especially hard on older folks so I know they would really appreciate your kindness. Volunteering at a local shelter or library is also a great idea.

Jam  

Art by Grace Smith

Art by Grace Smith

Making jam is the perfect indoor activity for the whole family or even individually. Recipes are all over the internet and Pinterest. Strawberry, blueberry, huckleberry, and peach are all popular flavors. They make a great present or, if you have a food license, you can sell them to your neighbors. I personally love to make strawberry jam. It's simple and can be used in everything from toast to ice cream. The main ingredients for making jam include fruit, gelatin, jars, and time. When I make jam, I like to add a 6x6 inch square of fabric in between the lid and the outside lid ring. This adds a cute touch to it, especially if I plan on gifting the jam.

Create snow art

Take advantage of the beautiful snow and build snow art! Building snow art is my favorite part of winter because it’s a great activity to do either by yourself or with friends. My favorite art to create in the snow is a little makeshift hobbit house in the middle of a giant pile. Snow art can be anything from an igloo to a small scale replica of the mountains. By the time you are finished, that cup of hot cocoa will taste even better.

Go to the observatory

Art by Grace Smith

Art by Grace Smith

The Sunriver Observatory provides either day or night time viewings. At night, you can see amazing galaxies and nebulae through several different telescopes. Solar viewing is free and evening viewing costs $8 per teen or adult. I have been told by many people that the evening viewing is the best time to go because you can see much further into space and you can see more detail. At night, you can see planets, nebulae, stars, and many other things. I went to the observatory when I was little and I remember the big telescopes and machines that you could look through and see all the planets up close in vivid detail.

Enter a contest or sweepstakes

The vast realm of the internet contains many contests and sweepstakes to enter and possibly even win money from (some sweepstakes may require you to be 18 years or older). Writing or photography contests are the most abundant. Nikon, National Geographic, or popular photography.com are the best sources for photo contests. Scholastic and writer's digest are great resources for finding writing contests. Seventeen magazine, reddit, HGTV, and travel channel are just a few of the many places to find sweepstakes. Personally, I think sweepstakes are most fun because the more you enter, the higher chance you have of winning something. Photography contests can also be very enjoyable because they are a great opportunity to take photos with a mission in mind. I entered a few last year and I had a lot of fun taking interesting pictures with the help of my friends.

Get your craft on

Art by Grace Smith

Art by Grace Smith

Once again, Pinterest contains an abundance of ideas. During winter break, you might find yourself cooped up in the house for while. So, shake the winter blues and start a craft project or a small hobby. Projects can range from five minutes to five hours. When you craft, you can learn new things, or even revisit old skills. Sugar scrub, snap bags, and corn starch foundation powder are my favorite easy projects. Last summer, I took up the hobby of jewelry making. Jewelry is also a fairly easy project once you get the hang of it and there is endless pieces you can create. A trip to your local bead or craft store could provide you hours of jewelry making and crafting for you or your whole family.

Ice skating

Redmond Ice Skating Rink and Seventh Mountain Ice Skating Rink in Bend, and The Pavillon Ice Skating Rink (coming soon), are all popular choices. I have been ice skating twice in both places but I prefer the rink in Redmond. Its smaller, cheaper, and easier to access. If you have your own skates, you can skate free from 10 am to 1:30pm on weekdays and from 10am to 12:30pm on weekends. Ice skating is not only a fun activity, but also a great physical activity. It has been proven to improve both your balance and coordination.

Try a winter sled dog ride

Art by Grace Smith

Art by Grace Smith

Get a taste of the famous Alaskan Iditerod by trying Mt. Bachelor Ski resorts awesome tours with real sled dogs. You get to stay snug in the sled while the dog team and a professional musher take you on a picturesque adventure through the snowy trail. I have not been on one before but I heard great reviews from friends. The tours do cost around $80 so they can be spendy. But, you could always get your friends and their dogs together to make your own sled ride at home. All you need is a few dogs, dog treats, a sled, some leashes, a rope, and a sense of humor. Trust me, it’s hilarious.

Host a dinner party or winter sleepover

Art by Grace Smith

Art by Grace Smith


Hosting parties is not just an "adult thing". Around this time of year, school can be stressful and the slippery morning roads never help. Putting together parties or sleepovers always bring my great joy because I get to show my fancy side and spend quality time with my close friends. Together, you could conduct science experiments. Not only would this be a fun sleepover activity, but it would also please your teachers. Take some pictures and and have your friends help you type up a short essay, then talk with your science teacher. You may get extra credit or "brownie" points. At the end of the sleepover or party, you could even send your friends off with a jar of jam or a handmade craft.







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