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Student Senate pushes for future campus pub hangout

December 5, 2014

There is not much more that says Wisconsin like a friendly gathering of people over a nice cup of hot coffee or an ice cold beer, leading Student Senate into starting research on bringing a campus pub to UW-River Falls.

“This has been an idea that has gone through Senate for the past few years,” said Senate President Anthony Sumnicht. “We have seen other campuses with similar campus pub-type of environments. They are nothing like a bar downtown. They are for both people of age and people underage to hangout and socialize.”

A committee of five Senate members has recently been formed into researching the idea of getting a campus pub to UWRF. UW-Stevens Point is one school that the committee has looked to for ideas on how to get started.

Stevens Point has a campus pub called “The Basement Brewhaus.” The Basement Brewhaus was able to happen on a small budget after a group came up with the idea, was able to move into a location easily enough and spent a summer going through thrift sales to get furniture, lamps, board games and various other things to get started.

The history of The Basement Brewhaus on its website stated, “It was a simple concept…create an environment where the [Stevens Point] community could gather to share ideas, stories, a friendly game of billiards, a cup of coffee and maybe even a cold beer. Students and staff of the University Center gathered during the second semester of 1997 to put their ideas on paper and put the plan in motion.”

Sumnicht said recent campus events like “Pub Trivia” have shown that these events can work as social places and would not be the same as a regular downtown River Falls bar.

“It is a very social environment, not a place you go to get drunk or anything,” Sumnicht said.

UWRF senior Blake Johnson said he likes the idea of a campus pub because he thinks it would bring forth the values he was raised on.

“I like the vibe of everybody being around the same place and just the camaraderie. It is just what I have grown up on,” Johnson said.

Current Chair of the campus pub committee Riley Haynes is looking for the campus pub to provide educational opportunities outside of the classroom and provide a safe place for students to go and legally consume alcohol.

Students should not expect a pub in the near future as the committee is still in the early stages of seeing how possible the idea is.

“The sole purpose is to do research on the idea of a campus pub,” Sumnicht said. “We have to see the feasibility of the whole thing, look into if there is a facility we can move it into and see what things would have to get done in order to get a campus pub.”

While there is still a lot of work to be done, UWRF students can at least be excited about the possibility of a campus pub.

“I think the pub is a very good idea,” Johnson said. “I hope they get the right people for the job so they can collaborate and work together to be efficient and do a good job.”

If any students want to get involved and join the campus pub committee they can go to the student involvement application, which can all be found at http://uwrf.orgsync.com/org/studentsenate.