Finally, summer 2018 is here! Those of you born in the summer of 1997, this is an important year for you. The year of the 9 + 10 joke. The big twenty fun. The beginning of the legal years. The start of bar visits and bar hopping. The months, weeks and days leading up to becoming 21 feel like they drag on forever. But as this exciting time approaches, there are a few things to keep in mind.

1. Always Have A Ride Home

Going out to bars, clubs or restaurants is what turning 21 is all about. Sharing a few drinks with friends and family in busy environments can be fun, but dangerous at the same time. Once having consumed a few alcoholic beverages, thoughts kind of blur and your ability to comprehend situations is not up to par. One of the most important things to remember when "going out" is to always know for sure the way you return home. Whether someone is a designated driver (DD), someone comes to pick you up, or even sees that you are taken home in an Uber, it is important to get home safe.

2. Knowing Your Drinking Limits

Before turning 21, you have most likely consumed some type of alcohol while at college, at a party, or in the confines of your own home. If you have made the mistake to drink too much... you know what happens. If you think getting sick and feeling hungover is fun and no big deal, that is a whole other concern. Overall, know your drinking limits to help yourself stay safe and to prevent sickness.

3. Go Out With Familiar Faces

When going out for the first time, it is crucial to be surrounded by people you are either comfortable or familiar with. It is not a good idea to go out drinking for the first time with people you barely know or just met off of Tinder and Omegle. Drinking can often get out of hand, so it's good to be surrounded with reliable people.

4. Most Importantly... Have Fun!

Turning 21 is all about experiencing new things and learning what life has to offer. Go ahead and have a few drinks. Definitely go out to that local bar or that club your friends rave about all the time. Drink in your room with friends and family. But it is important to keep in mind the consequences if it goes too far.