Ohio University’s Dads Weekend is an annual favorite among college students. Last weekend, dads flocked to Athens, Ohio for a long weekend with their Bobcats.
Of all Ohio University’s special weekends, Dads Weekend is one of my favorites. To me, it is the perfect symbol of how Athens and I came to be.
When I was ten, my dad accepted a position at Ohio University. The weekend before we moved to Athens, we had our first big night out together – the Girl Scouts’ “daddy-daughter dance.” Many years later, my dad and I shared another big night out together…That time to celebrate Dads Weekend. My dad is not just the reason I moved to Athens, he’s also the reason I am a Bobcat today.
Although my dad and I were (and still are) extremely close and spend a lot of time with our family, Dads Weekend was a little awkward that first year. It was one of the first times we were alone together. We had none of my brothers’ sporting events to distract us, none of my mothers’ questions to entertain us and no one around to divert our attention.
Although my dad wasn’t able to attend this year. I have learned (through observation and trial and error) a few tips to help you make the most out of your next Dads Weekend.
What to do?
1. Attend an athletic event.
Dads Weekend usually falls around a sporting event. For example, Saturday marked the season opener for Ohio University Men’s Basketball. But, if there isn’t a varsity game, be sure to check out club sports, intramurals or even a pick up game at Ping. If you aren’t a big sports fan, this could be the perfect opportunity to learn a little from your old man.
2. See a show.
Every year the Performing Arts Series offers a show during Dads Weekend. Since I’ve been in college, Ohio University has hosted a comedian. Although I’ve never been to a Dads Weekend show, I have heard great reviews!
3. Take a walk.
We have a gorgeous campus here. Take your dad around. Show him where your classes are, which dining hall is your favorite and where you like to relax. Next time you are talking about college, he’ll be able to picture it.
Where to eat?
1. Jackie O’s Pub and Brewery
Stop by Jackie O’s for a craft beer. You can enjoy a relaxing drink without the hassle of the “bar scene.” Jackie O’s also has great food. I highly recommend the pizza.
2. Broney’s Bar and Grill
Broney’s is your average sports bar. They’ll be showing all the major sporting events and serving all your favorite “bar foods.” While the wings can be hit or miss, you can’t go wrong with the Southwestern rolls and the Champagne slushie
3. Casa Nueva
Is your dad feeling adventurous? Take him to Casa. Although you may have a wait for a seat during this busy weekend, you’ll have plenty to do during your wait. Casa serves great (local) food – quesadillas, burritos and salsa with a distinct “Casa” flair. Plus, Casa has a fun bar and often live entertainment.
What to say
1. Tell him about all of your favorites.
Where do you like to go out to eat? Where do you go when you need to escape? Offer up all the top secrets on your Athens favorites.
2. Introduce him to your friends and their dads.
If you’re having a hard time starting conversations, bring in reinforcements. Chances are your friends are feeling the same way, too. Plus, once your dad makes friends with theirs, you can start planning your adventures for next year.
3. Ask him what he did when he was your age.
Once you’ve told your dad all about your college experience, ask him about his! If he didn’t go to college, what did he do instead? Who were his friends? Do they keep in touch? Think of all your favorite memories, and ask him if he did anything similar.
What did you do with your dad last weekend? What would you do next year?