On any college campus, the weekend is a gift that offers students a small release from the monotony and stress of the workweek.
For many, the weekend involves studying or maybe playing video games, but most students seek the ultimate thrill that Big Rapids has to offer: getting drunk. As an incidental salute to our pal Brutus, the “On The Record” section of the Torch regularly sees students behaving like actual bulldogs. Among this army sized demographic of beer guzzling, booty shaking Skrillex enthusiasts are the special few that stumble their way down Michigan Avenue to the magnum opus of all party-related affairs: Star Shooters Restaurant and Bar.
With over 10,000 students attending class on Ferris’s main campus, one might think it odd that Shooters is the only youth-oriented, dare I say it, “night club” in town. Reviews on Yelp call Shooters “absolute trash” and “the largest meat market in Big Rapids.” Shooters does advertise eight flavors of “famous chicken wings,” but that probably isn’t the meat he was referring to. Shooters’ old website used to advise you to “treat yourself, your family, and friends,” to its amenities.” That almost sounds like a challenge. Next time my mother is in town, I’ll assure her that the Blue Cow can wait; we’re going to Shooters.
All right, mom, lets take a look inside. Depending on the night, there may be a cover charge (on this particular night, it’s $5). Upon entering, the fast-paced magic of the place overwhelms me. The lights are shining on dozens of beautiful girls expelling a primal urge to dance with the beat of the club’s quaking sound system. Then I’m rudely bumped into by an oblivious thirty-something who can’t possibly be a Ferris student, and I have to double take at what I had previously seen. Those lights illuminate wood paneling and a film of unfathomably brown grime. The room goes silent for an instant as the iPod that’s plugged in shuffles from hip-hop to country. Wait a second, why are all these people here again?
Anyways, let’s find a table, mom. This one is too dirty (not sure with what substance) and that one is occupied; don’t worry, he’s just taking a nap. A look around: sober guys sheepishly walking laps around the club, slightly less sober guys playing pool, and not even slightly sober guys and gals treating themselves to cigarettes on the front patio. What a sight to behold! Everyone is crowded around the bar in the middle of the room. There are a few ladies seated and four times that many men feverishly hovering around these girls as if buying them drinks were brokering at the New York Stock Exchange. Listen, my review can’t be complete until I use the restroom. A deep breath, and here we go…
To my surprise, no feces on the floor, but lets not get ahead of ourselves. Those craters in the earth used to be white porcelain and they’re called toilets. The keyed writing on every reachable surface does make for some nice reading, though. There’s not any toilet paper; Shooters would either like you to get creative or just abstain from wiping.
Sorry I brought you here, mom. But look, the nightly drink specials are actually quite impressive and this is probably the busiest place in town right now. Everyone is having such a good time, too. I suppose we should just leave them be. My conclusion? Star Shooter Restaurant and Bar: not a place to bring your mom.