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The city of Cortland is only a 30 minute drive south from Syracuse - perfect for a day trip for shopping along Main Street, a night out in a different town, or even a high-class getaway at the Greek Peak Mountain Resort. SUNY Cortland and Tompkins-Cortland Community College make for a lively college town Syracuse students can easily take full advantage of.

Distance: 30 miles

Driving: 40 minute trip south on I-81

Population: 18,740

Schools: SUNY Cortland, TC3

Where to wake up: Blue Frog Coffeehouse

The best place to start your day in Cortland is at the Blue Frog Coffeehouse. It’s situated in the middle of Main Street so you can get fully espresso-d before exploring the shops downtown. The cafe’s usual customers are college students stopping by for to-go food, or staying to do work. At night the Blue Frog turns into a music club complete with beer and wine.

Location: 64 Main Street, Cortland, NY

Food:  Breakfast all day: sandwiches, bagels, baked goods

            Lunch and supper after 11 am: sandwiches, panini, soups

Drink: Coffee, espresso bar, beer, wine

Price: $1 - $7

What to do: Go to Greek Peak

The Greek Peak Mountain Resort is mostly known for its winter ski slopes, but last year they kicked it up a notch and opened the Hope Lake Lodge, complete with a spa, restaurant, and the Cascades Indoor Waterpark. The lodge is about eight miles from downtown Cortland. If you’re looking to stay there for more than a day, you may need to gather a crew to afford to stay in the lodge.

“Some of the rooms can fit up to 10 people,” Drew Clare, a lodge employee said. “I think the smartest way for college students to stay here would be to split the cost with a group of friends.”

Location: 2177 Clute Road, Cortland, NY

To Do: Ski, snowboard, spa, restaurant, indoor water park

Price:  Ski & Stay Package starts at $66/person/night

            Ski, Splash & Stay Package starts at $95/person/night

            Lodge Rooms (includes waterpark passes): $249 (sleep four) - $549 (sleep ten)

Where to eat: Brix Pubaria

Brix is so much a mix between fine cuisine and quality bar, it had to create its own category of business: a “pubaria,” defined as “an establishment where family and friends gather for the finest pizza and alcoholic beverages.” It’s been all the rage since it opened a few months ago. There couldn’t be a better place to experience a gourmet take on classic foods while not hitting your wallet too hard. Plus, you can always stick around for the bar scene after dinner or stumble out on to Main Street and find another one.

Location: 60 Main St. Cortland, NY (right next to Blue Frog Cafe)

Food: pizza, pasta, subs, wings, salad, soup, dessert (not your typical pizza pie)

Drink: Full bar

Price: Food: $6 - $18

           Beer: $3.50 - $5 pints; $9 - $13 pitchers

Going out?

You won’t have to venture very far to have a fun night out in this town. “The best way to have a good time at night?” Alice Kahis of the Blue Frog said, “Just walk into any bar on Main Street.” Some of the most popular ones are the Dark Horse Tavern, Hairy Tony’s (which is right next door), the Stone Lounge and the Beer Goggles bar if you’ve gone country. They’re all within a couple blocks of each other. Awesome.

Location: Main Street

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