Students look forward to escaping Illinois winters for beachy destinations

Catherine Ernst (left) vacationed with her friends in Hawaii her senior year of high school. This year, she and her friends are going to Marco Island in Florida. She said the main reason she enjoys spring breaking with her friends is because they all have similar interests.

By Jenny Horne

The white-hot sun burns brilliant rays in the sky; the heat of the grainy sand sifts between your toes as you walk carefully to the perfect clearing on the beach, where your view of the tumbling, crisp waves is just right. What could make spring break any better than this?

One thing: the presence of your best friends.

Jennifer Flannery, junior in Education, said there is no greater thing in life than tanning in warm weather, sipping on tropical drinks and swimming in the cool ocean while enjoying the company of your friends.

And that is exactly what many students plan on doing this upcoming spring break.

Catherine Ernst, junior in Engineering, said the main reason she enjoys spring-breaking with her friends is because they all have similar interests. She added that she’s going with her best friends to Marco Island, Florida, this upcoming break.

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“My three friends and I are staying at my house in Marco Island,” Ernst said. “We’re just excited to be in warm weather, free of all responsibilities.”

Laken Delahanty, junior in LAS, is one of three friends joining Ernst on spring break, and is hoping for a laid back, social vacation with her friends.

“We’re going to try to meet new people and play beach volleyball all day,” Delahanty said. “Typically, we all go to the beach during the day and at night, (and) we go out to dinner together.”

Flannery reminisced on her favorite spring break memory with her friends: a high school vacation with her best friends and her boyfriend on the beach.

She remembers her boyfriend asking her to go on a walk, and she immediately thought something was wrong. Little did she know, she was in for a surprise.

“It turns out as we were walking, we stumbled upon a bottle. He picked it up, said something was inside and handed me the bottle. I pulled out a note that read, ‘Out of all the fish in the sea, will you go to prom with me?’” Flannery said. “Completely surprised, I said yes. In tears, as always.”

Ernst recalled some of her favorite spring break memories involved hanging around the beach at night.

“I’ve never really gone night swimming in the ocean until I went on spring break in high school with all of my friends,” Ernst said. “So all around, that was a pretty cool experience.”

Ernst said most of her favorite spring break activities involved water-related activities with her friends. Whether that means lounging on a boat or fishing, she said she loves the calmness of the ocean.

“I love to fish, and I also love to drive boats, so doing that with my friends is awesome,” Ernst said.

Despite her love for all things water, Delahanty does not have a particular preference for what she and her friends do this spring break; she is just looking forward to warm weather.

“I’m just excited to be in Florida and get out of Illinois,” Ernst said.

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