Things to do if your dad is not a sports guy

By Natalie Stanowski, Contributing Writer

Not all dads are big on the sports scene, and luckily, Dads Weekend offers way more than just football and hockey games. Not a fan of watching from the bleachers? Has your dad never watched more than a few minutes of sports programs before losing interest? Here are a few ideas for keeping you and your dad busy this weekend.

Tour campus landmarks

Crossing through campus everyday might make the local landmarks seem like old news, but keep in mind your dad probably hasn’t seen most of them yet. Locations like the Alma Mater statue and Morrow Plots are not only locations with interesting histories but also great places for a family photo.

If you’re looking for a quieter place to take your dad this weekend, consider taking a drive down to Japan House or the College of ACES’ Round Barns. While the cherry trees won’t be in bloom at the Japan House until the end of next semester, the fall foliage will make for a picturesque walk as you catch up with your dad; whether it be about how classes have been going or how many Netflix shows you’ve binged this month, I’m sure your dad will be thrilled to hear all about it.

See a concert or art exhibit

Just because your dad isn’t a sports fan doesn’t mean there aren’t some campus-sponsored events for him to attend. The Krannert Center is hosting musical performances throughout the weekend and will have shows such as UI Chamber Sings and a performance by the Illinois Wind Symphony. The Illini Dads Association and No Comment A Cappella are also hosting a Dads Weekend tribute concert at the Foellinger Auditorium on Saturday. Tickets are available both at the Quad Shop and at the door.

If musical performances aren’t really your thing either, the Krannert Art Museum is holding an exhibition featuring Chicago art from the 1930s-1980s. Take a break from the bustle of the campus grounds and relax with your dad while looking at pieces crafted by Chicago artists. Best of all, it’s free.

Grab a bite to eat

After a day of attending events around campus, both of you will be itching for some good food. While you could always use your meal credits to sponsor your dad for a meal at one of the campus dining halls, Green Street has many more options if you want to take your dad somewhere nicer. Whether you’re craving sushi, Korean tacos or an old-fashioned burger, there is no end to places you can go with your dad this weekend.

If you don’t have a car on campus and your dad is driving, you can even use the opportunity to stop and get groceries on your way. Thanks for the help, Dad.

Take on an escape room together

If you’re looking for a more involved event to attend, look no further than an on-campus escape room experience. The University’s physics department is hosting LabEscape, a science-based escape room. If your dad’s memories of high school chemistry are a little hazy, don’t worry; no science knowledge is required to attend the event. If you’ve never done an escape room, use this as your chance to not only experience one for the first time, but also to take part in an experience you can bond over with your dad.

Natalie is a sophomore in LAS.

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