Summer fun ideas from the Student Activities Office

NBy Tony Diggs Now that the daily grind of the regular school year has come to a halt, it’s time to enjoy the finer things on campus. For instance, what better time to master the art of belly dancing or pick up a new skill such as photography? Need a cheap date? Three words: free outdoor movie! Or, spice up your lunch hour to the tune of an outdoor noon concert on Coffman Union’s south fountain terrace. These activities and much more mean there is plenty going on this summer through the Student Activities Office and the Twin Cities Student Unions.

If you want coursework without any pressures, take a noncredit course. Our Visual Arts Committee hosts mini-courses in photography, knitting, jewelry-making and Middle Eastern belly dancing. With your new-found talent you can make the holiday season easier on your checkbook by making your friends and family necklaces or knit sweaters.

Develop your appreciation for art. Head to the Larson Art Gallery and check out the upcoming summer art exhibits. From June 26 to July 25, see “Prairiescapes” by Larry Kanfer. “Prairiescapes” celebrates the subtle details of human experience and daily routines that are often overlooked. Running from July 31 to August 29 is “Works By: John Goodding (ink, watercolor), Al Linck (etched glass) and Troy Linck (bronze sculpture).”

In the mood for a movie? The Student Activities Office, along with the Office for Orientation and First-Year Programs, features a series of outdoor evening movies on the Riverbend Plaza south of Coffman. Whether you are on a date or just hanging out with friends, experiencing “Tommy Boy” under the moon and starlit sky is an occasion you won’t forget! Other movies playing this summer include “Orange County,” “Office Space,” “Zoolander,” “Austin Powers: Goldmember” and “Charlie’s Angels.”

Be serenaded this summer on your lunch break at a noon concert. Check out the summer concert series at both Coffman and the St. Paul Student Center. All concerts are sponsored by the Student Activities Office’s Minnesota Programs and Activities Council and the Summer Session Cultural Programs.

If you are looking for other entertainment options, there is good news: Striking out doesn’t have to be limited to your dating track record. In fact, it’s encouraged at Goldy’s Gameroom in Coffman and the Gopher Spot in the St. Paul Student Center. Bowl a few rounds, shoot some stick or grab a snack. Both the Gopher Spot and Goldy’s Gameroom feature bowling alleys with auto-scoring, billiards, snack bars and video arcades.

The activities office also provides many ways for students to get involved on campus this summer and year-round. With more than 500 registered student organizations, you’re bound to find something that interests you. However, on the off chance that you can’t, you’re still in luck. With just three friends and 15 bucks, you can start your own club!

The Student Activities Office is the University’s center for campus-wide programs and activities, leadership opportunities, skills development, student organization training, advising and registration. For more information on the activities office, visit For a complete list of summer events on campus, visit

The Twin Cities Student Unions offer a variety of convenient services and entertainment venues to make your campus life easier. For a full list of all the student unions’ summer offerings and hours of operation, visit

Tony Diggs is the director of the Student Activities Office.

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