Extended campus, the district surrounding Concord Academy, is full of interesting places to visit and food to try. There are numerous coffee shops, pizza places, stores, and even two supermarkets on extended campus. Of the many options available, a few stand out from the rest as must-visit locations during free blocks, on weekends, or after school.
One of the most popular places to visit is the chain coffee shop Dunkin’ Donuts. The Concord location boasts a newly renovated layout of the store, bright and airy with plenty of seating. This location is also known for serving orders significantly faster than the Starbucks just across the street, which tends to have long wait times even during off-hours. Dunkin’ also strikes a popular chord with its relatively low prices, allowing students on a budget to get prepared food and drink at a somewhat affordable price, which is especially important in the very overpriced town of Concord.
A somewhat hidden gem of downtown Concord is the store Revolution Concord. This toy and art shop does not have a street-level retail presence; instead, its bright, cheerful space is accessible by a short staircase beneath other shops. Inside, the store hosts a variety of toys, from LEGO sets to stuffed animals on one side, and different kinds of art supplies—from acrylic paints to gel pens—on the other. It is a great place to browse for a gift for a friend, family member, or even oneself.
The debate on the best pizza shop in Concord is a hot one, with options from Commella’s to Sorrento's Brick Oven Pizzeria to New London Style Pizza. Sorrento's is probably the more popular of the three, likely due to its quick service and the fact that they sell two slices of pizza as if they were one. Sorrento's is also quite convenient for train riders and can be a nice dinner alternative to the Stu-Fac for students who take the Commuter Rail home. Sorrento's menu also features classics such as mozzarella sticks and garlic bread, as well as a decent assortment of bottled sodas.
Of the two grocery stores on extended campus, both Crosby’s Marketplace and the Concord Market fill their own niches. Concord Market is a little bit like Whole Foods, with a somewhat overpriced but interesting selection of non-typical grocery store products, such as some British snacks and candies as well as a wide variety of prepared food items. On the other side of town is Crosby’s, a much more typical—though still expensive —grocery store. This is a great place to buy snacks like Flamin’ Hot Cheetos or potato chips, and they also have a small cooler of drinks like Arizona Iced Tea and Polar Seltzer.
Extended campus and all of downtown Concord have a lot to offer, and it is a wonderful privilege as a CA student to have access to this area during school. It is important to remain respectful of other patrons and also to keep in mind time management. Dunkin’ will probably be there for a very long time, but the opportunity to submit an English essay that is due in an hour is always very fleeting.