Two shots of the ‘Boro’ chased with some music
Last weekend, Sidelines set out to create a guide to the bar scene in our little college town. Jarrod Boone, contributing writer, reports.
They are simple. They’re your typical college bar. There’s a young crowd (frat boys and sorority girls), cheap drinks, usually a fight or two and tons of half-lit kids running around (be prepared for amateur hour). As for the music scene, you can usually expect to find a DJ blaring Top 40 music or what the kids are calling “dubstep” until 2:30 a.m. Expect to
repeat yourself a lot if you intend on having any conversation while you are there. Most of them are 18 and up, and they don’t allow you to smoke inside. Therefore, these are pretty easy to spot from the piles of people hanging around outside. More likely than not, there will be a line out the door, and a few cops hanging around to keep the place under control. Depending on the day, you might be lucky enough to catch a band playing cover songs for an hour or two. Most of the b
ands are decent, so check them out if you do run across one. Oh yeah, if you are looking for a cheap pregame spot, these bars usually have some kind of free beer or specials until 11 p.m. or midnight. So, if this sounds like the makings of perfect night for you, grab your shoulder pads, helmet and hearing aids and these picks!
Check out: Whiskey Dix, Riverstone, Gilligan’s or Social
As for “The Dives,” they are just what you would expect. They are small, dingy and you should probably leave your white gloves at home if you are headed to one of these bars. We all know this type of bar, but you can show up by yourself or with 15 friends and no one will care either way. I think it goes without saying that you probably want to stay away from the food around here (unless you’ve had one too many, then who cares, right?). Aside from that, these bars aren’t all that bad. Most of them mix a heavy drink, offer a cheap beer, have a couple pool tables or dart boards and are a good spot to hide away from the chaos of the “Club Bangers.” There’s plenty of good times flowing around these spots, so don’t be shy. For music, well… there is a jukebox at most, and some have karaoke throughout the week (which can be fun or annoying, depending on the BAC of the one singing). These places have a pretty diverse age range, but are still predominately a college crowd. Warning: The crowds vary drastically between the bars mentioned below, and you’ll see what I mean if you check them out, but they’re dive bars regardless. The Boro (beer only) which has live bands, but I haven’t seen any lately. They have always done well at bringing in some decent talent in the past though. (Read their sign, it will tell you.)
Check out: Marc’s Campus Pub (The Pub) or Gentlemen Jim’s (Clean Jim’s or Dirty Jim’s), The Boro
The “Game Days” are where it’s at if you’re a sports fan. Take a seat, order an import and watch your favorite teams battle it out on the 100 flat screens on every wall. These work well as weekend lunch spots, and most of them have awesome food at a decent price. These bars also serve as ideal pregame hubs if you want to grab a bite and a beer before you head out to find trouble, or cause it, whatever you prefer. It’s
hard to go wrong with these, and don’t be surprised if you get caught up in the atmosphere and burn a
couple hours enjoying yourself. The crowds range from young to old and anyone who is anyone can hang around and have a good time. Keep your eyes out for live music because you can stumble across some talented bands every now and then.
Check out: The Boulevard, Sam’s Sports Bar, Duggers, or Buffalo Wild Wings.
The “Chill Spots” are where you go if you just want to kick back for the night and see how tough your liver really is. These are bars you hit with some friends to drink away the night and, on most occasions, take in some live jams (also a good “after-dinner” bar to take a date, FYI). You’ll find anything from singer-songwriters picking on an acoustic, to full bands turning it up to 11 and leaving their hearts on stage. You’ll know one of these bars when you find it. There is an easy-going atmosphere in the air and no one will really bother you here. A couple of them have an upstairs and downstairs, so make sure you check out both levels before you settle into a corner for the night. But remember, stairs can be tricky obstacles while intoxicated. So, buy a communal pack of smokes, or a hookah if available, call up a couple friends, forget to charge your phone and go kick it for a night at one of these bars and benefit from the time you will have. If you get the chance, drift into a couple of these bars to see what I mean.
Check out: Aura Lounge, Wall Street, 3 Brothers or Liquid Smoke.