Campus Currents

New Ways to Kick Back

Students jump, jive and wail at a Greek-sponsored dance marathon at the MUB in April, benefitting a disabled children's fund.

Guided by the light of an almost-full moon, a group of UNH students, bundled in multiple layers of fleece and wool, amble down Mt. Washington's Auto Road on a chilly February night. As they descend the mountain, the students share stories and secrets, and envision the warm spaghetti dinner that awaits them at the bottom.

"On these trips, you really get to know people," says Mike Colclough '00, a New Hampshire Outing Club member.

The trip is an example, says Ryan Hutchins-Cabibi '00, of what he and fellow outdoor enthusiasts do on a typical weekend to unwind.

Welcome to UNH and alternative weekend nightlife. These days, students are pleasantly surprised at the opportunities.

Kate Johns '01, who tried winter camping with the Outing Club, says, "It's great to get off campus for a while, get away from the dorms and the frat scene."

For the non-outdoorsy types, there are alternatives for coffee-connoisseurs, film junkies and comedy-show devotees, offered by the student-led Campus Activity Board. Or trips to New York City or a Red Sox game, sponsored by the Social Programming Committee.

On a Friday night in March, hard-hitting music shakes the MUB's Entertainment Center. It's been transformed for the evening into "The Grind," a coffeehouse, and students put down their coffee mugs to hit the dance floor.

Upstairs, a crowd forms outside the MUB movie theater as students wait for "A Civil Action" to begin.

These diverse weekend activities share a common theme: offering students an opportunity to kick back with their friends in a social setting without the presence of alcohol.

George Bullukian '99, CAB's programming chair, and Jennifer Woodside, MUB assistant director, created Weekend Programming last year after students said they wanted more weekend variety.

Carrie Boeing '99, likes the change. "It gives people a chance to get out on campus and hang out with friends. I wish I had more time to take advantage."

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