As many of us will be going back home or away for a job this summer, we may not miss having class every day, but there are still aspects of Winona that will be missed greatly.

For me, my friends will be what I miss the most this summer. The friendships I have formed this year have truly made my freshman year better than I ever could have imagined. My friends here at Winona State inspire me daily to be a better person and encourage me in my faith journey. The memories we have made this year will be ones I never forget, and I can not wait to make more next fall.

Friends eating at Winona Family Restaurant.

In addition, I have been so blessed to have such an amazing roommate this year. This summer I am really going to miss the little notes we leave each other everyday, sharing a bag of popcorn in the middle of the night, and our long rants about how much we hate Peeps.

Along with friendships, I am going to really miss my campus ministry, Chi Alpha. Chi Alpha has provided a sense of community for me this semester and a place for me to call home. The leaders of Chi Alpha truly have a heart for the people on this campus, and have inspired me to continually show love to those around me.

One way that I have gotten to know people better this year was by sitting down for a nice cup of coffee with them. For those that know me, I am a coffee fanatic and I love hearing other people’s stories. That being said, I am really going to miss all of the coffee shops in Winona this summer. Although my bank account might appreciate the break, I am going to miss walking across the street multiple times a week for a refreshing cup of Joe at Mugby Junction.

Not only does Winona have a fantastic collection of coffee shops, but also restaurants – at least in my opinion. Many people say that Winona does not have many choices when it comes to eating out, but coming from a small town with only McDonalds and Subway as options, Winona has a fantastic selection.

I would have to say the restaurant I am going to miss the most this summer is Winona Family Restaurant. I go there every Thursday night, and let me tell you, nothing beats a late night cup of coffee and a nice cranberry lemon muffin.

Although that seems like something you could order anywhere, the rest of their menu is absolutely amazing. I love going to Winona Family Restaurant because it feels like I am sitting down at my mom’s kitchen table for a nice home-cooked meal whenever I go there.

Overall, I am going to miss the beautiful city of Winona this summer. Growing up in a flat, farming community does not compare to the recreational activities Winona has to offer. It has been so fun to spend this school year hiking the bluffs, biking around the lakes, and canoeing down the river.

Nothing beats the beauty and awe of looking out over this wonderful city from the top of Garvin Heights.

You will be missed, Winona.