What are you doing this weekend? Going to see a movie at the $1.50 theatre at Blue-ridge? Going out to the same club, with the same group of people, on the same night you went out last weekend? Grabbing your Go Pass and taking the bus out to Crabtree Valley Mall for some free samples in the food court? Does this sound like your typical weekend? There is nothing wrong with the movies, mall, and the club, but many often find that these infamous three are the only options available to them on the weekends. Being born in Raleigh, I know all about the monotonous choices of activities that some people might experience, especially students that are from large booming cities like New York, Washington DC, or Denver, Colorado to name a few. But Raleigh does not have to be that way. For the most part you have to live here while you are in school, so why not make the most of it! Below, I have listed some alternative options that you might want to consider to spice up your weekend. Most of the activities are group friendly, so invite your friends for a really extraordinary evening! Some of these activities might require some transportation other than the ones offered at NCSU.

1)            AFM (Bowling)

1827 Capital Blvd.
Raleigh, NC 27604

(919) 832-3747

Price: Generally $7-$12 a person

Even If you absolutely suck at bowling (like me) and have to use the gutter free rails (like me) you can still have a good time especially with a large group of friends. The AFM lanes charge an average admission of $ 5.50 a person per game and $4.25 for bowling shoes. For the more economic friends nights they have specials on Tuesday and Sunday nights starting at 9pm which include paying a $5 cover charge and receiving everything else (shoes/per game) only a $1 each. Their hours generally range from 12pm-2am on the weekends but can vary on the weekdays. They also offer a variety of American classics in the eatery including hot-dogs, pizza, and hamburgers for reasonable prices.

2)            Marrakesh café lounge

2500 Hillsborough St.
Raleigh, NC 27607

(919) 341-1167

Price: $ 8 usually covers 2 people for 30 min of flavored tobacco

Marrakesh is a hookah bar located on Hillsborough Street. across the street from DH Hill Library. Similar to a coffee shop setting, the Marrakesh café offers a serene and calming environment to unwind after a long week of studies. For all of you that do not know, a hookah is a device that is used to inhale flavored tobacco through filtered water. This environment is not for everyone, because it includes smoke from tobacco, which has been known to have some negative side effects. Hookah has also been proven to be a safer alternative in some studies to the smoke produced in cigarettes. They café also serves an assortment of delicious pastries, hot teas, and coffees.

3)            Pullen Park

Why not have a picnic with that special someone or race you friends…or the ducks in motor boats in Pullen Lake. Pullen Park offers a lot of recreational and CHEAP ways to have a relaxing weekend. It’s also located right on campus, so no public transportation is needed to indulge in this activity. Campus too noisy? Pullen makes a calming place to unwind and study for that upcoming test on Monday. Also Theatre in the Park is also located in Pullen Park for all of you that enjoy the intricacies of a good drama.

4)            Adventure Landing

3311 Capital Blvd., Raleigh, NC 27604


Price: Generally $10-$15

Get in touch with the kid in you. Just because you are in college doesn’t mean you’re too cool for laser tag right, right? Adventure landing houses a variety of activities in just one location including laser tag, put-put, arcade games, and race car racing. You might remember doing these activities as a kid, but you’d be surprised at the amount of excitement generated from these elementary activities when you get a bunch of friends involved. They are generally open from 10am-12am on the weekends, offering a special on Saturdays including 30 tokens, unlimited laser-tag, and mini-golf for only $9 till noon. So get there early.

5)            Outdoor adventures

Carmichael Recreational center

2611 Cates Avenue

Price: generally $35-$105

If you really want to do something really out of the ordinary one weekend why not go on an adventure? The Carmichael recreational center is offering trips in the fall and the spring semesters to various locations on the eastern coast including Virginia, Washington D.C, New York, and even here in the Carolinas. Backpacking across Virginia, white-water rafting , and sea kayaking in Staten island are some bold choices for the adventures but there are also more mellow trips such as ones offered in November where one has the opportunity to spend a day in Washington D.C enjoying the many historical sites. For the most part these are weekend long trips, often departing Friday morning and returning Sunday. The Majority of the costs are covered by NCSU which include food, equipment, and transportation. There is a fee for each trip that can range from $35-$105 depending on the trip and location which can be a little pricey for some, but out of the ordinary none the less. If this is something that might interest you here is the website http://www.ncsu.edu/campus_rec/ to check out the different outdoor adventures and directions on how to register.

Stephanie Spivey