See the REAL campus during Orientation

By Phil Collins

So you’ve had your first tour of campus and you think you’ve seen it all. You walked through the main Quad and heard all about the history of that mini-cornfield (it’s called the Morrow Plots, try to keep up).

You even saw the Engineering Quad, in all it’s new, shiny expensive glory. It may leave you asking, “why is my college’s library a closet in the main library, while Grainger appears to be the size of a football field?” Welcome to one of the top Universities for engineering in the country – and welcome to four years of hearing about it.

Don’t despair, there is much more to this campus and twin city area than you will see on a basic campus tour. What you’ve just seen is likely where you will spend most of your class time. Don’t be afraid to push the borders after that. Here is a quick introduction to the real campus.

Illini Grove

You will probably find this fairly soon if you live in PAR/FAR, but even if you don’t, it’s worth the trek down there on a nice day. It’s an open wooded area located at the corner of Lincoln Ave. and Pennsylvania Ave. Brick grills are available as well as a basketball court, a sand volleyball court and several tennis courts. It’s perfect for tossing a football around while smoking up some burgers.

The Canopy Club

When you’re ready to take in a good concert, the Canopy Club, 708 S. Goodwin Ave., is a fun place to start. Plus, for the younger freshman, you can get in at 18 (as opposed to 19 for Champaign clubs). This past year the venue hosted Flogging Molly, Chevelle, Saliva, The Autumn Defense and Mae, to name a few.

The Isaac Funk Family Library

If the name isn’t enough to get you there, the prospect of sitting down during finals week might. Don’t go to the Undergrad during finals week; It’s crowded and kind of depressing. The ACES (Funk) library is a little bit out of the way – on the South Quad – but it’s easy on the eyes both inside and out. Most importantly, you won’t have to steal someone’s seat while they’re getting coffee even if it is during finals.

Other suggested Orientation stops:

  • Green Street restaurants
  • Downtown Champaign and Urbana
  • Krannert Art Museum
  • University residence halls (other than Illinois Street Residence Halls)
  • CRCE (formally known as Campus Area Recreation Center East)
  • Marketview Mall
  • T.I.S. and Follet’s bookstores
  • GameDay sports apparel store
  • Local banks