Staying in vs. going out

Do you need to go out on a Friday?

Imagine this: it’s Friday evening after a long week of school and work, and you’re deciding on what you are going to do tonight. 

Now, you could go to Shooters, but that’s only fun if you are 21. You could go to one of the many frat parties, or you could just stay at home.

One of the biggest stereotypes of college is that all the students are a bunch of party animals. In fact, I came to Ferris expecting to go to hundreds of parties because I had heard that it was a big party school. 

What I found was disappointing. Even though Big Rapids has quite a selection of bars to choose from, with one of the most popular being Shooters, most of those bars were mediocre at best. This wasn’t too surprising for a small town.

Since the bars in town were a bust, that meant the next option to go out would be the frat houses. 

Now, no disrespect to any of the frat parties. Most of them are quite fun to go to, but the parties can be boring if you do not go out with your friends.

These are the options for those who are stuck in Big Rapids to cut loose after a long week of studying. 

Quite a few students on campus have cars, so those students have the option of leaving campus and going to bigger towns like Grand Rapids or Mount Pleasant. 

With the cost of gas these days, quite a few students choose to just stay near the campus.

With very few things to do in a town this small, is it so bad to stay home on a Friday night? With so few choices of what to do on the weekends here in Big Rapids, would it really be a surprise that some students choose to stay home most weekends? 

Despite the stereotype of college students always going to parties, I’ve found that there are many people who intentionally choose to stay home.

“I don’t feel like going out and talking to people,” Social work sophomore Sydney Hill said. “I have social anxiety, so I don’t like talking to people. I have a lot more fun wearing comfy P.J.s and watching movies on a Friday and Saturday night.”

This is a sentiment that I am sure a lot of people share. There are other reasons why someone might stay in on the weekends. Sometimes I enjoy going out on the weekend, especially when I have something to celebrate, but there are always a few weekends where I don’t want to go out.

One of those reasons may be that I am tired. I spend a lot of my time during the week going to class, working for the Torch, doing some of the club sports on campus and being available for my social life that I don’t usually have any me-time until Friday.

When it comes to the free time I get on Friday and Saturday, sometimes I’m just so tired that all I want to do is have a cup of tea and watch The Dark Night, or make a late-night McDonald’s run and play UFC. 

The alternative is putting on nice looking but uncomfortable clothes for what becomes at best, three hours of fun. Another reason I choose to stay in is because I don’t feel like going out alone, and this is a sentiment shared by a couple of other students.

“On a Friday night I’m usually hanging out with my friends,” music and entertainment business senior Madison Lockwood said. “That’s the main reason why I go out.”

Whatever the reason is that you go out or stay in, it doesn’t make you less of a college student. It just means that you have your own preferences on how you want to spend your free time. The beautiful thing about being a young, free college student is that you get to decide how you want to spend your time on the weekends.