It’s hard not to fall in love with Park Avenue. Park Avenue is a quaint, walkable street nestled amongst a residential neighborhood. This is a great destination any time of the year but especially in the fall. The crisp air and vivid foliage can provide an invigorating excursion on a Saturday or any other time.

The area offers a diverse range of businesses. Many of these shops and restaurants provide extra incentive to UR students by offering discounts through the Rochester Every Day (RED) Program. Also, Park Avenue is easy for any student to get to. Hop on the Red Line just outside the IT Center if you don’t have a car and get off at Park and Culver or Park and Barrington.

There are a variety of restaurants and cafs located on Park Avenue. A few examples: Jines Restaurant is an upscale diner with an extensive menu that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Abbotts is a necessary stop if you want a sweet treat or dessert after a meal on the avenue. They boast over 30 flavors, and they even choose a select few of these, like Mudslide, Heavenly Snickers and Pistachio Pineapple to churn out freshly every day. Camille’s is a bright and cheery caf serving wraps, salads, pizza, paninis, sandwiches and smoothies.

CiBon is a European-style bistro where you can get anything ranging from an espresso straight from Italy to a full meal prepared with fresh ingredients. Esan Thai operates out of a cute little storefront and provides its diners with a variety of Thai dishes to choose from.

The Magpie is considered by many to be the Tap ‘ Mallet of Park Avenue. It’s not your typical pub; they have an international flare with great food, drink and atmosphere. Magnolia’s offers a varied menu of soups, salads, sandwiches, pizza and desserts. You can play board games while you are dining or even sit outside like many of the other eateries on Park Avenue. And don’t forget about RED you can get 10 percent off your meal at Magnolia’s.

Finally, there is Spin Caff, a local Rochester coffee roaster. It’s a premier location for coffee, espresso, cappuccino, Chai, teas, sandwiches, soups, pastries and delectable desserts. All of their beans are Fair Trade. They even have free wireless Internet, so it’s a great place to study or do some work.

There are several specialty shops and boutiques scattered throughout Park Avenue. A Step Apart is more than just shoes; it’s high-end fashion. They carry shoe and apparel brands for both men and women like Diesel, FCUK, Camper, Dr. Martens, Kenneth Cole and many more.

Dado Boutique is a clothing store for women. Looking in the window, you can see beautiful and unique handbags, belts, blouses, dresses, shoes and much more. The owners of the boutique are outgoing, approachable and knowledgeable about trends and fashion. Lakeshore Record Exchange is your source for the latest indie, alternative and out-of-the-ordinary music. There are listening stations all over the store where you can sample many CDs.

Parkleigh is one of the signature shops on Park Avenue for gifts. They have a cosmetic store, a coffee supply shop, a candy counter, a china shop and Vera Bradley merchandise. Stever’s Candies will satisfy your sweet tooth. As a small candy manufacturer they produce confections daily like pecans croquettes, hazelnut truffles and chocolate-covered fruits to name a few. At Bisque and Brush Pottery, you can paint your own pottery. A trip here could make a fun and interesting date.

With Park Avenue being in close proximity to the Neighborhood of the Arts there are a few galleries worth checking out. Gallery r is a student-managed art gallery supported by Rochester Institute of Technology. It is an educational laboratory site and visual arts venue for students of RIT’s College of Imaging Arts and Sciences. Admission for the gallery is only $2.

The other gallery located directly on Park Avenue is The Jembetat Gallery, specializing in African tribal art, artifacts and jewelry. It displays works from several countries and tribes.
Shopping and dining on Park Avenue offers a unique experience that differs from anything available on campus or elsewhere in Rochester. There is bound to be something for everyone to enjoy on Park Avenue.

Levy is a member of the class of 2008.

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