Celebrate with your anti-Dads Weekend dad

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Shivali Shukla

Shivali Shukla is being held by her father at a young age. While Shukla’s father might not enjoy participating in Dads Weekend festivities, she shows that there is more than one way to enjoy the weekend with your father.

By Shivali Shukla, Staff Writer

My dad hates driving. He also doesn’t like being in crowds, talking to strangers or waiting in long lines. He’s the kind of person who can walk into a Costco and come out in less than five minutes with a full of everything he needs. He’s a simple, efficient man who knows what he wants and doesn’t try to complicate things. I’ve never asked him to come down for Dads Weekend when I know the lines are long, the streets are busy and the stores are loud. I know if I really wanted him to, he’d make the trip down. But I also know he’d be out of his comfort zone. Here are some things to do for the dad, like mine, whose cup of tea might not include Dads Weekend festivities, but who (of course) still deserves to be appreciated.

Invite him down for a quieter weekend on campus

For the dad who particularly doesn’t enjoy the crowds and the long lines, inviting him down for a regular weekend is a great option. You can still visit the same restaurants, go to the same bars and see the same attractions. You can ride the Illini Pubcycle any weekend. The lack of an official “Dads Weekend” label doesn’t take away from the fact that you’re still celebrating and appreciating him.

Go home for the weekend.

It’s Dads Weekend, right? So for the dad who might just miss you and want to spend some quality time with you at home, perhaps surprising him with a visit and offering to do the things he loves in your hometown might make the weekend feel just as special, if not more. 

Take him around some “unpopular” attractions

Visiting a place like Curtis Orchard on Dads Weekend is probably not as popular as watching Illinois play Rutgers in the football game on Saturday morning, but it still can be memorable and even reminiscent of your childhood. Host your own barbecue at your apartment complex or outdoors rather than buying tickets to eat at the crowded ARC, or take him on a jog through your favorite parks in lieu of participating in the Sunday Dads Weekend 5K. You can go down to the Japan House and enjoy the picturesque view of the autumn leaves while catching up on some precious dad-time, or just walk along one of the quads to appreciate our campus history.

Share a drink in the comfort of your apartment

Who says you have to go wait in long lines to hit the bars with your dad? Crack open a beer or let your dad teach you how to make cocktails in the comfort of your own home. Turn on your favorite childhood movie or play the ‘80s hits your dad loves and just relish in the rare one-on-one time we college students hardly get to experience with our dads anymore.

When it comes down to it, Dads Weekend is really only about one thing: you and your dad. It doesn’t really matter how you celebrate it or if you even choose to celebrate it on this particular weekend. The point is to spend the time you both deserve together, and that can be done wherever, whenever or however you both decide. There’s no wrong way to do Dads Weekend, and no calendar of events should dictate what you choose to do together. Only you two can plan the perfect weekend, even for the anti-Dads Weekend dad.

Shivali is a junior in AHS. 

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