This past weekend, we sprang forward in time. Spring officially begins in five days, and yet the temperatures outside are solidly below freezing. I feel misled by the sunny, 60 degree weather we saw in February and I’m ready for light jackets and open-toe shoes. Until then, you’ll probably find me keeping warm at some of these places:

Coffee shops, obviously: If there’s one thing Detroit has an abundance of (apart from potholes on the roads) it’s coffee shops. There are cozy spots and pour overs all over the city, from Ashe downtown to Motor City Java in Brightmoor, Avalon in Midtown to Café con Leche in New Center. Each spot has a unique vibe which means I never run out of places to go to fit the mood I’m in.

Belle Isle Conservatory: Our current Challenge Partner Project with the Belle Isle Conservancy introduced me to beautiful architectural spaces on Belle Isle. The desert room in the conservatory is magic: warm, sunny, dry, and full of succulents and cacti. I just bought my state park passport so I can come here more often!

Shopping local: Some of my favorite Detroit shopping spots right now are City Bird, Detroit is the New Black, Paramita Sound, John K. King Rare & Used Books, and Savvy Chic. I’ve been stocking up on scarves, candles, Detroit tees, used books, and records to get me through the rest of the season.

Live shows in Detroit: St. Andrews Hall, El Club, and the Fillmore host bands for cheaper than I’ve seen concert tickets in any other city. It’s almost more fun when you don’t even know who/what is going to be playing, and you can count on the mass of bodies inside the venue to keep you warm.

The gym: I’ve been trying (key word: trying) to work on that #summerbod as motivation to get my body moving this winter. There are some fun fitness options in the city beyond the extensive offerings at the downtown YMCA, including yoga studios like Citizen and Bikram, Jab’s boxing gym in Eastern Market, and even community recreation centers like Adams Butzel ($10 membership for the year!!!!).

Art-ing: As discussed in a previous post, this city offers an abundance of diverse experiences in art. My favorites in the past month have been live music at DIA’s Friday Night Live, exploring events at O.N.E. Mile, and the current Women art exhibition at the Carr Center.

Not in Detroit: is there a better way to escape winter in the D than by physically leaving it? Probably not. And even when places like Windsor and Grand Rapids are just as cold as Detroit, at least there’s some new stimulation.