Ah, college. Four whole years dedicated to finding ourselves and figuring out our lives while being on your own for the first time. To college kids, fun is something that is defined differently by everyone you meet. Some like to stay in and watch Netflix, others like to go out and party. I personally fall in with those like the former, and for that reason, here are ten fun things to do with your friends while in college!
1. Have a movie night
Sure, movie theaters might contribute more to the experience but if you ask me, watching a movie with friends in your dorm room or apartment, crowded by the television and surrounded by junk food sounds much cozier. Especially when the weather doesn't warrant leaving the building, movie nights can make any night in college a fun one.
Make a list of movies that you and each of your friends would like to watch! Then, cycle through them whenever you get the chance. That way, everyone can enjoy something without feeling left out while also discovering new favorite movies... or least favorite movies.
2. Go for walks on campus
I know: this one doesn't sound that fun. But trust me, when you're with the right people, a simple walk around campus can turn into an adventure full of never-ending ideas and stories to tell. Whether it's in the middle of the day or the middle of the night, grab some friends and set a course to explore the campus you call home!
If weather permits, try going for a walk at night! Campus is virtually empty and significantly quieter, so you and your friends can walk around and talk the night away without having to worry about street or foot traffic. Just make sure to be safe!
3. Head to sporting events
I myself am not the biggest sports fan, but I will admit that going to school sporting events can be pretty fun! The morale of the crowd can turn any amateur viewer into a die-hard fan, if only for a few hours, and that's okay! Don your school colors and head into the stands to cheer on your school's team, no matter the sport.
Leave whenever you feel comfortable! Sometimes, the event can serve as just one of many fun things you and your friends can do that night!
4. Play games
From Monopoly to Super Smash Bros, there are a million games to play and a million ways to play them. Whether its the middle of the week or finally the weekend, there's always a right time to play games with your friends and forget about whatever's stressing you out for a little bit (if you can afford to relax for a while). A lot of dorms have games you can rent at the front desk, and if not, there's dozens of options you can play with cards, on gaming systems, or even with nothing!
Have at least a few games to choose from if you're planning a game night! That way, when one game tends to lose its luster for the night, you've got more to back it up. My friends and I personally love to play Werewolf, Red Flags, Exploding Kittens, and Super Smash Bros!
5. Go out for food
It's all happened to us at some point or another in our college careers: the food from the dining hall makes us long for something else. Lucky for us at UIUC, Green Street is just a short ways away! Round up some friends and head on over for some lunch, dinner, or even just a snack or coffee.
It might be tempting to deliver, but those delivery fees add up quick. If you can manage it, head to your favorite restaurant in person! That way, you can sit down, relax, and enjoy both some good food and your friends' company!
6. Go ice skating
This might be one of the best discoveries I've made since starting at UIUC. The Ice Arena holds public skating a few times a week, for very cheap too! If you've got time, gather up some friends and head out for a fun ice skating day! Ice skating is how my friends and I got really close really quick, so it's guaranteed for some memories to last.
Be sure to keep an eye out for any events the arena is hosting; sometimes, you can get in for free! Also, it might be a good idea to have at least one in your band that actually knows how to skate in case someone needs assistance.
7. Head down to the Rec Room in the Union
Quite possibly my favorite place for some low-priced fun on campus, the Union's Rec Room (located on the lower level) is home to a bowling alley, pool, air hockey, and various arcade games. It's the perfect place to catch up with friends and have some good fun, and maybe let your competitive natures out.
A fun thing my friends and I like to do when we go to the Rec Room is see how many people we can fit in one picture in the photo booth! It can get cramped, but the pictures that come out are definitely worth it.
8. Go for a day trip
Whether it's a trip to a nearby attraction or even just visiting one of your friends' hometowns, going on a trip with friends can be a really fun thing! Coordinate with breaks, costs, and distance and get out there!
9. Have a potluck
This one can be easily paired with a movie night! Round up some friends, have them bring a dish - whether it's fast food or homecooked - and enjoy the night! Play some games, watch a movie, or just enjoy each other's company around some delicious food...what's better than that?
10. Take advantage of your school's events!
At least at UIUC, there seems to always be something to do for students on campus. From sporting events to discounted ice-skating days, free movies at the Union to food festivals, there is something for everyone! Keep an eye on your school's social media pages for when these fun events are, and be sure to check them out!
What will you and your friends be doing next?