For the first time in Ohio University history, there’s a ceremony for fall graduates. No more having to choose between walking with friends in the spring or forgoing the event altogether. To commemorate this monumental first, we’ve gathered a list of final memories to make. These are unique Athenian experiences that you should take part in before you start your final drive home from the town that defined your last four (or five) years here.
- Toast friendship. Commemorate the friendships you’ve built by enjoying an evening of wine and laughter with pals overlooking Pleasant Hill Vineyards or the local vines at Shade Winery.
- Take a guided tour of The Ridges. The Ridges started its life as the Athens Lunatic Asylum and its site was chosen because of its scenic beauty. A guided tour from a former hospital employee and Athens County Historical Society volunteer will give you a new appreciation for this favorite place in Athens.
- Sip handmade margaritas at Casa Nueva on Open Mike Night. Order a freshly-squeezed margarita while listening to the next round of up-and-coming performers. The drink specials alone are reason enough to make it to Casa. Add in lively music and you’ve got a delicious recipe for a great night out.
- Bike the Hockhocking Adena Bikeway. With 19 miles of smoothly-paved trail to choose from, finding your favorite part may be tricky when so many breathtaking clearings curve alongside the Hocking River. Don’t leave Athens without immersing yourself in the geographic wonders that define this region!
- Visit Tony’s. Years from now, you’ll thank yourself for grabbing a seat toward the back of Tony’s on Wednesday during their famous Jazz Nights. Arrive thirsty because it won’t take long to find yourself mesmerized by the smooth melodies of classical jazz. You’ll order drinks all night to keep yourself from squealing with delight.
- Eat dinner at Miller’s Chicken. The best eatery in Athens if you’re on the prowl for delicious fried fowl.
- Snap a picture of Uptown Athens. You may think you know the details of Court Street like the back of your hand, but there will come a time when you’ll need to jog your memory.
- Purchase OU/Athens swag. You’re about to be an alum and that’s something to be proud of. Let everyone know how much you love being a Bobcat with some alumni gear from one of the area book stores. Or perhaps you spent a lot of time on Court Street. In that case, the iconic “Pubs of Athens” poster might be for you.
- Find your favorite Athens hot dog. You might be questioned on your time here in Athens if you’ve never indulged at Larry’s Dawg House on Weiny Wednesdays. Dollar dogs and coneys slathered with their famous homemade chili (known as “sauce” to veteran Dawg House customers) are comparable only to the equally popular and (equally) delicious O’Betty’s.
- Soak up a quiet evening at Stroud’s Run. Spend some time on Dow Lake’s pebble-littered beach, gazing across Strouds during a sunset. If you’re inclined to being more active, hike the wooded trails that spider their way through Strouds Run State Park and nearby Sells Park.
- Walk through Ohio University’s College Green with your significant other. Whether you choose to add hand-holding or hugs to the equation is up to you, but there’s no doubting the memory will last a lifetime.
- Catch a flick at the Athena Cinema. One of the oldest remaining cinemas in Ohio, this century-old theater serves up art house movies in true Athens style: with a bucket of locally-sourced Shagbark popcorn.
Leaving this town can be bittersweet, but the wealth of knowledge and memories you’ve collected during your time here will usually see you through. Of course when you really miss the brick-lined streets of Athens the only solution is a visit back hOUme. And when that time comes, we’ll be glad to welcome you back.