Life in BR

Things to do and places to explore

The first year at Ferris State often brings times of stress, adventure and new experiences on the campus grounds.

However, students can also travel off campus to experience events, activities and local hang-outs in the Big Rapids community.

“During my first year, I went to a dance thing– I forget what it was called– but that was pretty fun. It wasn’t on campus but it was actually at a hotel. They played live music and people were dancing,” Oliver Wissman, a sophomore in hospitality management with a concentration in lodging said. “I also walked around downtown a lot. Big Rapids has a movie theater and a pretty nice frozen yogurt place called Toppings.”

Toppings is a self-serve frozen yogurt shop located at 321 N Michigan Avenue in the downtown area. Students and local residents enjoy the quirky yet simple atmosphere Toppings creates, along with the variety of flavors offered.

Another popular location is the Gypsy Nickel Lounge, a restaurant located on the north end of town, right next to the Muskegon River. In addition to serving alcohol, the restaurant offers a good time and good food for college students.

“You can do karaoke at the Gypsy and it has amazing food,” Television Digital Media Production (TDMP) sophomore Izzy Ledesma said.

College bar Star Shooters is also a popular location for Ferris students to attend and it is open from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Students interested in unwinding with drinks with friends or even just dancing will enjoy this downtown attraction.

The Gate, the local bowling alley in Big Rapids, also offers students a chance to unwind. Previous events held at The Gate have included bar nights, a Halloween costume contest and college night specials that offer students certain deals such as cheaper games, rentals and drinks.

Ferris students can also visit the Big Rapids cinema, a small theater located downtown on Michigan Avenue that showcases new films.

Big Rapids also offers Ferris students the Pocket Park Benefit Concerts, an annual event put on in Big Rapids during the summer, until the end of September.

Each Friday, Pocket Park will showcase bands ranging from rock to country for free. Such bands expected to play are City Sun, an alternative rock group and White Elephant Records Presents, a rock group. The event will end September 22 and goes from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Fridays, located between The Raven and Chemical Bank on Michigan Avenue.