Back to school, back to the grind. That does not necessarily mean all work and no play. Enjoying some entertainment can be one of the best ways to unwind, have fun and escape the stresses of college life.
Fortunately, West Chester University students looking for a little entertainment on the nights and weekends, never have to look very far.
Yes, Philadelphia and King of Prussia are right around the corner, but it’s not always necessary travel to those places and pay $10 for a movie or $30 for a concert or show just to have a good time.
The WCU campus and West Chester borough offer a lot of exciting forms of entertainment at costs that are affordable for college students.
So, what is going on this weekend at WCU? And the weekend after that? And the weekend after that one? This is a preview of just some of the entertainment coming to the campus and the borough this semester.
The Student Activities Council (SAC) is one of the largest programming organizations on- campus. SAC’s mission is to provide students with a wide variety of events and programs throughout the academic year.
The organization hopes that each WCU student finds at least one event that he or she likes and wants to attend. SAC is known for bringing popular new artists to campus through their Emerging Artist Concert Series.
Other popular SAC events include Bingo Bonanza, an evening of bingo with thousands of dollars in prizes, and Java Jam, an open mic night that will be held in November.
Entertainment is not just limited to the evenings.
Lunchtime events are also held occasionally throughout the semester and usually consist of novelty items.
Two upcoming events that SAC expects to be major successes are already coming up in the next few weeks.
Bo Burnham, a teenage comedian made famous by YouTube, will be performing on Sept. 18 in the Asplundh Concert Hall.
SAC is also organizing its first “So You Think You Can Dance?” competition, inspired by the television show.
The student voted the best dancer of the evening will win $300 in cash.
SAC is also responsible for bringing movies into the Sykes theatre. Movies that have left the theaters but have not yet been released on DVD are screen in the Sykes Theater.
“Star Trek” and “Land of the Lost” are the first two movies of the fall semester.
Show times are Thursday through Sunday at 8 p.m. and Thursday through Saturday at midnight.
This year, SAC is adding a second movies series with educational films that it plans to show once each month.
SAC is not the only programming body on campus.
Sykes After Dark, a program sponsored by Sykes Student Union and the Sykes Union Advisory Board, brings entertainment into the student union building on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.
All Sykes After Dark programs are free with a student Ram-E-cardcard.
According to its mission statement, Sykes After Dark “hopes to enhance the quality of student life on campus during peak social interaction times.” Events combine fun, creativity and safety.
Along with accompanying SAC with “So You Think You Can Dance?,” Sykes After Dark is also co-sponsoring a Latino Heritage Month Concert on Sept. 18 at 7 p.m. and BSU Xpressions on Sept. 26 at 8 p.m.
Xpressions is an open mic event coordinated by the Black Student Union where students can sign up to perform their talents, which usually includes poetry, music and spoke word. Singers and poets are also brought in as featured guests.
Refreshments are also offered at this event.
Sykes After Dark enjoys collaborating with student groups and finds student input, planning, and participation essential to its success.
“I think one of the biggest advantages to having entertainment on campus is that students can take a break and have a great time without ever leaving the campus.It allows students to complete that college experience they want to have. When I graduate, I will have seen countless concerts, great comedians, hypnotists, magicians.” said SAC president, Caroline McRobbie.
For students that decide to venture off-campus, the Borough of West Chester holds a number of events, one being Swingin’ Summer Thursdays, an event complete with food, traveling magicians and live Irish bands, which actually concludes this Thursday.
Another borough event to look for during the month of Sept. is the 30th Annual Chester Country Restaurant Festival being held on Sept. 20.
Fifty of the areas best restaurants will be lining the streets of downtown West Chester selling their food.
Live bands and dances performances will also be included as part of the festival.
Whether students are looking for something to do on or off-campus, there is a wide variety of entertainment each weekend at costs that they can afford. Students need to keep their ears open and their eyes pealed for all of the future entertainment opportunities being offered.
More information, including a full calendar of events and information about applying for grant funding is available at www.wcupa.edu/_services/stu.syk/afterdark/.
Anna Moronski is a fourth-year student majoring in Communications and minoring in Journalism. She can be reached at AM626969@wcupa.edu.