By Alicia Dziak

Spring break is here, which means the kids are off, the Easter Bunny is coming, and if you’re not heading south, it’s time to enjoy your Staycation right here in Ellicottville and WNY!

For those who want winter to last just a little bit longer, Holiday Valley will be open through April 8, weather permitting. For a real treat, ski and golf on the same day, as HV’s golf course is also set to open on April 8.

March 30 and 31, and April 1 are all about Easter. The Lenten season is a perfect excuse to grab a fish fry, and there are numerous options all around Ellicottville and even at Allegany State Park. Who can resist the beer battered or broiled goodness, complemented with an array of tasty sides?

On Saturday, March 31, enjoy breakfast with the Easter Bunny at Sprague’s Maple Farms in Portville. At 1 p.m. sharp, join in the Annual Easter Egg Hunt outside, where over 1,500 eggs are hidden and special prizes will be awarded. Be sure to bring the camera, as the Easter Bunny and Sprague’s life-size Moose and Bear will be there too! Sprague’s Maple Farms is located at 1048 Route 305 in Portville. Call 933-6637 to learn more.

Bring the family to the Ellicottville Village Park for the EVL Volunteer Fire Department’s annual Easter Egg Hunt! The Hunt will take place on Saturday, March 31 at 1 p.m., and everyone leaves with tons of eggs. Special prizes will be awarded to those who find the numbered eggs, and there are door prizes to win, too. In the event of rain, the egg hunt will be at the fire hall instead, which is located nearby at 2 Lyn Weishan.

April 1 is not only Easter and April Fool’s Day, but it’s also opening day of trout season in the region.

The break week is also a great time to rediscover all the area’s museums and nature preserves.

Head to the Buffalo Botanical Gardens for their Spring Flower Exhibit and baby animals. This year’s exhibit will be dripping with color! Included with the exhibit is the 4-H Farm that will host baby bunnies, chicks, pigs, ducks and so much more. For more info, visit www.buffalogardens.com.

Head to Reinstein Woods, at 93 Honorine Drive in Depew, for some spring break activities! Come for one day or all week. Programs include: April 2 – Solar Solutions; April 3 – Nature Apps; April 4 – Birding; April 5 – Geocaching Egg Hunt; April 6 – Wind Power Challenge. Registration is required by calling (716) 683-5959. For more info, visit www.reinsteinwoods.org.

The Buffalo History Museum, at One Museum Court in Buffalo, will host Break Out! all week from 1 to 3 p.m. The program will include history-related activities and is free with museum admission. For more info, visit www.buffalohistory.org.

Head to the Buffalo Science Museum to see the digiPlaySpace, an interactive playground for kids and grown-ups alike where they can explore new media technologies, learning-centric games and hands-on installations. Guests will engage with 14 different interactive digital activities created by artists around the world. From large-scale interactive installations and fast-paced multi-player video games, to immersive green-screen adventures and experimenting with robotics, digiPlaySpace offers guests of all ages exciting ways to explore our increasingly interconnected world. The Buffalo Museum of Science is only the third museum in the U.S. to host the exhibit, which runs through April 22.

On Friday, April 6, take advantage of free admission to the Albright Knox Art Gallery during their monthly First Friday. Held on the first Friday of every month—from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.—admission to part of the museum and select events are free for everyone. Admission to special exhibitions is Pay What You Wish. Make sure you bring the kids on the 11 a.m. Family Friendly Tour. On Sunday, April 8, museum admission for the entire family is just $5, and includes an array of programming for children and their families (stories, tours, projects, yoga, etc.). For more info, visit www.albrightknox.org.

If you’ve been waiting to get outside for some fresh spring air, grab your hiking boots and head to the trails at Allegany State Park, where miles of trails await. Get a glimpse of the lowered Red House Lake before the dam project is completed this spring, and a view of all the wildlife that calls the park home.

Retail therapy is a fun way to spend any free time, and Ellicottville is the perfect place to do just that. Take advantage of end of ski season sales, or stock up on decor and clothing for the upcoming warmer season.

However you choose to spend your break, be sure that making memories is a priority!