Student Voice


May 21, 2024



Spring break on tight budget can still be very fun, entertaining

March 10, 2010

Spring Break is finally here, and I, like most of you, am very excited this wonderful time off in the semester. Unlike many people, I won’t be traveling to a coastal city, or even leaving the state of Wisconsin. 

I will be spending my budget spring break in my home town of Merrill, and I couldn’t be happier.  Let me tell you, friends, about the happenings of this home town of mine, and how I will be having an incredibly satisfying Spring Break on a tight budget.

At 22, this will be my first Spring Break home being “of age,” and that means plenty of boozing. Now, I’m not one to be flashy about my consumption, but this next week will call for some drinking with good friends.

Merrill is filled with townie bars, but yet they retain some class. You have your regulars, and luckily, generous bartenders.

It’s a pretty sweet deal when you pay 10 dollars for a whole evening of endless Spotted Cow and pool. Not to mention, it’s rather nice when you have a few friends that are technically at “hustler” status in pool; LMFAO wrote that song just for us.

Merrill, especially amongst my group of friends, is a solid place for some competitive moderate stakes poker.

Obviously, we can’t be shelling out 30 dollars for a single buy in, but there are often times when you can pitch in 10 dollars and have a chance at taking home 70 or 80 bucks. Not bad at all. This has been the case ever since sophomore year in high school when we, like many people all across the nation, first saw poker broadcasted on ESPN.

Occasionally we’ll go and try our luck at a casino, but most of us prefer a social game.

Everyone brings their own six packs, cash, and stories.  Merrill being a quiet town, this is definitely at the top of the list of activities in an evening for us. Hell, some of us consider ourselves to be solid enough players that we want to try our luck living in Vegas or Reno for a couple months. I’m sure when I’m living in my box someday on the street I’ll look back and say “That was a good idea.” 

If you have ever seen the movie “Dazed and Confused,” you will understand and perhaps appreciate these next things I will tell you.

In the movie, the guys live in a town where there isn’t a whole lot going on, so they come up with their own unique ideas for an interesting night.  Sometimes, all there is to do is drive around, over and over again. We’ve driven around our town so much on certain nights that I could probably get to River Falls and back home to Merrill (somewhere around 300 miles).

We never did anything too stupid or dangerous, although when we would be in that territory, we always came out of it with good stories.  If you’re greatly intrigued (because I’m sure you’re at the edge of your seat), I will gladly tell you a “pizza chucking” or “snow-time” story.
What would a break be without grilling out?

Ok, to many of you, I guess it’s not commonplace, but where I come from, everyone brings something, whether it’s chicken, burgers, and even shrimp.  I’m lucky enough to live out on the Wisconsin River, so that when we do grill out, we can have ups to 10,15, or even 20 people all mingling, hanging out, and enjoying themselves.

Booze, gambling, cruising, and grilling out. These are the things that I greatly look forward to on my tight budget spring break. I wish you all a safe break, wherever you will be spending it, and don’t forget that you don’t have to spend a ton of money to have a memorable break.