Happy, Healthy New Year 2017!

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Another New Year is upon us and searching for the best and most popular has led me to discover something new.  Instead of finding the same old resolutions, made year after year, moving up or down the list but pretty much staying the same, I found that people seem to all together be giving up on New Year's Resolutions...

So, does that mean we are all off the hook?  No further pressure, no guilt trip when we have failed in February and no need to self improve?  Well let's not get too hasty, despite the negatives of New Year's Resolutions and people in general being overloaded with responsibilities and distractions, there is still some good to wanting to improve yourself.  And that might just be the key - Improve yourself, not get down on yourself.  So pick one, stick to it and try your best! 

Here are my suggestions for a great resolution and how they can be accomplished if you live or visit Cattaraugus County, the Enchanted Mountains of Western NY:

1. Make a commitment to someone other than yourself.  Instead of focusing on improving yourself, focus on improving your family life, the relationship with your mom, or becoming more involved in your Community.  Take your mom on a peaceful ride through Amish Country on the Western side of our County.  Spend the day driving around, discovering the simpler life and reconnecting with each other.  The 2017 Activities Guide has all the suggestions for family activities including indoor ones such as bowling, video arcades, and movie theaters or outdoor ones like hiking, kayaking, or horseback riding.  Call 1-800-331-0543 for a FREE Guide or request one here

Getting involved in your community can be a great way to build the neighborhood you live in, get to know the persons living around you and to build your self esteem.  Visit www.CattCo.org for ideas on volunteer opportunites, contact the local Historical Society or join a local theatre company like Olean Community Theatre, Olean Theatre Workshop or the Cattaraugus County Living Arts Association.  

2. Get More Sleep.  Never underestimate the power of a good night's sleep.  That's my motto!  It can make any mountainous challenge seem like baby steps and if you live in one of the rural areas of our County, you know what I mean.  Freedom from noise around you, and even sleeping out under the stars.  If you live in a city, you can visit one of our great campgrounds that let you enjoy the peace, see the stars and spend time unplugged and in nature!  

3. Learn Something New or Go Back to School.  We have two colleges in the County.  The Cattaraugus Campus of Jamestown Community College and St. Bonaventure UniversityJCC is lcoated in Olean, right in the heart of the new walkable downtown.  It offers a state of the art nursing lab, college center, Cutco Theater, and a dedicated business facility providing personal attention in small classes.  St. Bonaventure University is located in Allegany, just outside of Olean.  It is a private college with history and culture that promotes Catholic-Franciscan Education.  This tight-knit community and recently ranked in the Top 300 Best College values on Kiplinger's Personal Finance's List.  Also, U.S. News & World Report ranked St. Bonaventure No. 6 in its 2017 list of best values in the North.  Already received your degree but still yearning for some more learning?  JCC offers continuing education classes that relate to personal interest topics and learning skills necessary in the workforce.  St. Bonaventure also offers classes with different interests including cooking. 

The Cattaraugus County Arts Council offers art classes in various mediums for kids and adults.  Whether you always wanted to work with ceramics, take up charcoal drawing or want to encourage your kids to be more creative, this is the place to go in the County.  

Learn about a culture different than your but perhaps of the neighbors around you at the Seneca-Iroquois National Museum.  They have permanent and changing exhibits that highlight the Seneca Nation's culture and history.  They also offer classes in traditional skills of the Seneca people like corn husk dolls, basket weaving and more! 

4. Travel.  Trips can be ultra expensive nowadays.  The Enchanted Mountains have a wide variety of accommodations to please the most discriminating tastes as well as a diversity of restaurants and plenty of attractions to round out your stay, all at affordable prices.   Within driving distance from like Buffalo, Niagara Falls, Erie, and Jamestown, take a daycation away from the boredom of everyday life!  You are sure to save enough money to come back again and again!

5. Be healthier, whatever that means to you.  Ways to achieve a healthier lifestyle can be doing more activities, whether they are indoor or outdoor.  We have downhill skiing at Holiday Valley Resort and Holimont or try cross-country skiing or snow-shoeing.  Allegany State Park has the Art Roscoe Trail System for Cross-Country skiing and is the largest in Western New York.  The Summit Warming Hut right next to the trail system has ones you can rent.  If you already have your own skis or snowshoes, get them out of the closet, strap them on and head over to The Pat McGee Trial, a 12 mile multi-use trail that connects Salamanca and Cattaraugus or to the Allegheny River Valley Trail, which travels around Allegany and Olean.  Pfeiffer Nature Center is another hotspot for XC skiing or snowshoeing as well, or just for taking a walk in nature!  Join them on January 14th for their "Exploring Winter" snowshoeing event.    

If you prefer the indoors, take up bowling at Good Times of Olean or any of our other bowling alleys, try roller skating at Skateland in Franklinville or better yet join the Enchanted Mountain Roller Derby team for the ultimate challenge! 

So whether you wish to make an official resolution this year or just keep some of these ideas in the back of your head remember, New Year's Eve is a time to reflect and a time to celebrate and enjoy every day we get, even if there is a foot of snow coming down a day!


About Jacquie

"Live in the Sunshine. Swim the Sea. Drink the Wild Air."  - Emerson