Alyssa Wend ’24
It’s your second week of college; you’ve finished class for the day and suddenly realize you have a suspicious amount of free time. The only catch is … you don’t have a car. You’ve gotten to somewhat know Scripps’ campus in your first week, but have you gone off-campus yet? This list of the top 10 things to do off-campus is ordered from the closest to the furthest from the Scripps campus, so you can decide how far you want to venture. Whether you go by yourself or with new friends, this list is a great way to begin exploring the other 5Cs, Claremont, and a bit of Los Angeles.
1. The Makerspace
While the Makerspace seems intimidating with its extensive equipment and tools, it’s a great place to learn how to use different machines and start fun projects. It’s located at Harvey Mudd College, on the first floor of the Scott A. McGregor Computer Science Center. An easy way to begin using the space is to print out posters to decorate your dorm with. As you get comfortable, you can try using one of the many machines available, including 3D printers and laser cutters. Depending on the machine, you may need to get certified to use it, but it’s a simple process. Check out their website for more information. You can also crochet, make jewelry, and more. Check out @hmcmakerspace for interesting projects students have completed!
2. James Turrell Skyspace
Whether it’s the middle of the day or at sunset, the Skyspace at Pomona is a beautiful spot to sit, read, or people-watch. Located at Pomona College between Edmunds Hall and Lincoln Hall, this courtyard features a calming fountain in the center and much-needed shade during Claremont’s scorching 100-degree days. Make sure to visit the Skyspace at sunrise and sunset, when there’s a beautiful light show.
3. The Hive
Another creative space off-campus is the Hive, which is located at 130 E 7th Street, Claremont, CA 91711. The Hive is a shared space between the 5Cs with interesting rooms and tools available. Some of these include the sewing shed and the soundbox. For the full list, visit their website. Their main space, the Commons, can be used to study, have small informal meetings, or just hang out. My favorite thing to do at the Hive is make buttons since they’re super easy to make and a fun random gift for friends! Take a look at their Instagram @hive_5c for what students are up to at the Hive and their upcoming events.
4. Pomona College Organic Farm
Pomona College’s Organic Farm is a 1.2-acre working farm in the southeast corner of the Pomona College campus at 130 Amherst Ave., Claremont, CA 91711. They have chickens, native plants, fruit trees, crops, and a greenhouse. It’s a great place to walk around, and they have fun events like Farm Fest, where they have live music, food, games, and more! If you’re interested in getting involved, you can volunteer and help with weeding, turning compost piles, seeding and transplanting crops, and harvesting produce. For more information on volunteering, email their Farm Manager (email@example.com).
5. The Benton Museum of Art at Pomona College
You must visit the Benton Museum of Art at some point in your time at Scripps. Many students eventually pop in due to its proximity to Claremont Village, but it’s worth allotting some time to stop by. The address is 120 W. Bonita Ave., Claremont, CA 91711. Whether you’re typically interested in art or not, the Benton Museum is a teaching museum that aims to span learning across disciplines, including the visual arts, performing arts, humanities, and natural and social sciences. Admission to exhibitions and events is free and open to the public! This is a great way to get out of the sun when it’s too hot, and since it’s a relatively small museum, going through it all isn’t too overwhelming.
6. Vintage Shopping in Claremont Village
On the weekends, chances are you’ll find some Scrippsies thrifting or vintage shopping to add to their amazing wardrobes. The most convenient place to start is in Claremont Village! It’s about a 10 to 15-minute walk from Scripps, and it’s a popular location when students have free time. Two well-liked places to go are Vintage Odyssey and DeeLux. Vintage Odyssey (201 W Bonita Ave., Claremont, CA 91711) is a small shop that has interesting pieces, jewelry, and antiques. DeeLux (224 N Yale Ave., Claremont, CA 91711) is a buy-sell-trade store with rows of clothes — you’re almost guaranteed to find something you like!
Some Crust Bakery (119 N Yale Ave., Claremont, CA 91711) is a fan favorite that people line up at on the weekends to get hand-made baked goods, cakes, pies, bread, sandwiches, coffee, and more! This bakery is split into two parts, one sweet and one savory. It’s a perfect option to feed whatever mood you’re in. For even more options, Claremont has an amazing French bakery: Crème Bakery (116 Harvard Ave N, Claremont, CA 91711)! With their variety of bread, croissants, scones, muffins, cookies, and more, you’ll be full and happy by the end and glad you walked to the Village.
8. Watch a movie at Laemmle
Going to the movie theater is always an easy solo or friend date. If you go to Laemmle, you can also support a local business! Located at 450 W 2nd St, Claremont, CA 91711, Laemmle is a cute movie theater situated right next to great places to eat. When you show your student ID at the box office/concession stand, you can receive their student discount and get tickets for $13. It’s always fun to buy yourself a mini pie at I Like Pie afterward to treat yourself.
9. Claremont Botanic Garden
Interested in California’s native and diverse plants? Then the Claremont Botanic Garden is for you! On a nice day, this is a beautiful place to walk around and enjoy native plants and flowers. It’s located at 1500 N College Ave., Claremont, CA 91711 and is a 15 minute walk from campus. Use your student discount and get $6 tickets when you show your Scripps ID at the door.
10. Take the train to Little Tokyo
When you don’t have a car but want to get to Los Angeles, the train is a convenient solution. Just walk to the train station at the edge of Claremont Village and take the Metrolink San Bernardino Line 325 toward L.A. Union Station. With the student discount, the roundtrip train ticket is $10.50. From Union Station, it’s a ten-minute walk to Little Tokyo (335 E 2nd St, Los Angeles, CA 90012). This is an easy way to get out of Claremont without having to sit in L.A. traffic. Little Tokyo is a great place for Japanese food, shopping, and just walking around with friends. A popular activity is getting mochi from Fugetsu-Do, a family-owned shop that has been in operation since 1903.
Image Source: Ellen Hu ’24