Five Tasty Ways to Chill Out Before Finals

-Tess Berger


Ah, finals season. It’s right around the corner, as are the few rare days when Mother Nature blesses Syracuse with warm weather. Great timing, ‘Cuse! Rather than locking yourself up in a cubicle in Bird’s quiet (prison cell) room for the next few weeks, get out and enjoy some frozen treats, the sun and what freedom you have left before final exams. Here are five places serving up scoops and swirls of deliciousness, guaranteed to make you forget about finals ’til the last bite.

  1. Gannon’s Isle

Okay, there was no way I could write this without mentioning Gannon’s. Going to Gannon’s is something that must be on every SU student’s bucket list, right up there with DJ’s and Pastabilities. All of their hard ice cream is homemade and can be scooped on a cone, blended into a shake or mixed with some toppings and become a flurry. If that’s not your thing, they also have soft-served. You can enjoy your sweet treat jamming to summer tunes in your car or in their colorful ice cream parlor. If you’re a Gannon’s newbie, try out their crème brûlée or Snickers cheesecake. It might take a while to pick, but you really can’t go wrong here.


  1. Vicky’s Tasty Treat

Vicky’s may just be SU’s best kept frozen secret. While the family-owned business is quite popular with local residents, few students make the short 10 minute drive for some delicious soft serve. Whether you go the creamy custard route or opt for the icier orange sherbet, you’ll be licking your lips for the rest of the day. Stop by for dessert after an all-American bite at Heid’s of Liverpool, or just take a mid-day study break with friends. Either will leave you feeling refreshed and ready to conquer the next round of studying.

(Source: Vicky’s Tasty Treat)
  1. Big Dip Ice Cream

From chocolate peanut butter twist soft serve to chocolate-covered frozen bananas, Big Dip has enough options to make your dessert dreams come true. They serve hard ice cream, soft serve, any sundae imaginable and more. Though Big Dip is about 20 minutes from campus, the treats are inexpensive and its an intimate family-owned business. If you’re allergic to gluten, they have gluten-free cones — top it with vanilla soft serve and birthday cake confetti dip. Drool.


  1. Broadway Cafe and Arctic Island

A light cafe bite and homemade hard ice cream — can you think of any better way to decompress before the finals chaos truly begins? Stop in for lunch or dinner at this cute spot just 15 minutes from main campus. Make your own pizza or sandwich, or try out one of their specialities, like the loaded veggie pizza or portobello pesto sandwich. You’ll want to save room for their ice cream, in mouthwatering flavors like Peppermint Patty and Kahlua almond chip. If you’re too full from your tasty meal, do not fret! You can bring a quart home and reward yourself with a scoop or two (or seven) after a long day of studying.

***Try the “Heat Wave,” fudgey-chocolate ice cream with cayenne pepper!

(Source: Broadway Cafe)
  1. Peter’s Polar Parlor

…Try to say that ten times fast! Peter’s is yet another ice cream joint that serves both hard and soft ice cream, as well as other novelties. It’s one of those joints that locals say has been around forever— a telltale sign it’s absolutely delicious. Try their yummy soft serve ice cream combos, like vanilla custard and pistachio, or a couple scoops of hard ice cream, such as toasted coconut and coffee deer tracks shown below.

(Source: Peter’s Polar Parlor)

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