For a lot of prospective college students, a large part of their experience at college will involve the nightlife at their specific college campus. I, for one, go to the University of Maryland and can rattle off story after story about night time adventures. The biggest question I get from high schoolers or even younger kids about the University of Maryland is, what do you do on the weekend? Kids always want to know how the “party scene” is or where the best places are to party. Yes, it’s true, the nightlife at a college or university does influence high schoolers looking to decide on where they want to attend. This is a basic rundown of the options of what to do at night, not just drinking, at the University of Maryland.
ERC- Rec Center
For most Freshman and Sophomores who live on campus, they are within a 2-minute walk from the Recreational Center, which is one of the nicest in the country. It has a two-floor weight room equipped with free weights, machines, treadmills, and anything else you would need in a workout. There is a food shop with the ever-popular smoothies, an indoor swimming pool, racquetball courts, and of course four full-court basketball courts. The rec centre closes at midnight, and I know during my freshman year, I had many a time staying there till closing.
Inside the Student Union, there is a theatre which has a lot of early screenings of new movies and different documentaries that are put on by the university. There also are sometimes performances such as comedian Lewis Black coming in 2009. These events are widely publicised around campus and cheap for college students to go to. There are also sometimes dance parties inside the student union, which once again are promoted throughout the school.
With campus on one side of Route 1 in College Park, the other side contains the fraternity/sorority houses, “on-campus” apartments, as well as small houses that college students rent out. People living in these houses sometimes have parties although Maryland is primarily considered a “bar” school because of the popularity of the bars right next to campus. Since the fraternities aren’t allowed to have parties in their huge fraternity houses, they a lot of times will have them in these smaller houses off-campus. There are also Knox Boxes just off campus that are townhouses that students live in.
The most popular destination for party-goers at Maryland is the bars. There are 5 bars within a 2-minute walk from each other, and I’ll give brief descriptions plus the popular student stereotypes of each. They are in no way meant to offend anyone, and these are just how the majority of people look at each bar. There is the “Thirsty Turtle” which is widely considered the famous venue for the underclassmen. It has a downstairs bar area with an upstairs that is just a crazy dance party. If you like to dance, I recommend it. Just next to that is “The Mark.” This bar plays mostly techno music which differs from the pop, hip/hop, club music at “Thirsty Turtle.” “The Mark” is also regarded as the bar for New York and New Jersey kids for the most part. Right around the corner from there is “Santa Fe.” This is probably the most popular bar for the fact that they have a big stage with DJ’s and musical acts. In 2009 rapper Asher Roth was there twice, Mike Posner came, rap duo Shwayze came and many more. That place is always packed and always a good time. Across the street are “Bentleys” and “Cornerstone.” These two are similar in that there is never really that much dancing going on. They are more the standard bar type with socialising going on. “Cornerstone” is considered to be where the older students go for the most part.
I hope this gives a little insight to the nightlife at the University of Maryland and as I said Maryland is considered a bar college, it’s not like a lot of state colleges or universities that are big on frat parties. This is because of the strict nature against the frats and that they aren’t allowed to have parties in their actual frat houses. I hope this helps the prospective high schoolers who are looking for a good education and a fun time!