I had accepted the University of Nebraska's academic offer before I had even set foot on campus. Why? Don't even ask; I wouldn't have an answer.
I had never been to Lincoln before, but I had been to other college towns, so I had a good feeling that Lincoln would be just like the others. After stepping foot in Lincoln, I came to the understanding that the university wasn’t the only thing that made up the city.
With Lincoln being the capital and second-largest city in Nebraska, it already was more than a college town. Lincoln also offers more than just the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus and its events.
Since I was coming from another state, it was essential to see what I could do in a place I would be spending four years in. As students of such a large city, I feel that it is important to take advantage of what the community offers.
Due to how large Lincoln is, it also means that there are a lot of things to try that you may have never done before. Trying new things allows us to open our minds, which is excellent for students, and who doesn't want to better themselves?
Last semester, my friends and I found a jazzercise class in south Lincoln to take which was something none of us had ever done, and we met some awesome people during it. Since none of us had done something like that before, the other participants were more than willing to help with finding workout supplies throughout the class, as they had been doing the classes for years.
It is sometimes fun to mix things up and step out of your comfort zone, but it is sometimes hard to think about what new things there are. Lincoln has many things to do that can increase your sense of adventure and allow you to appreciate where you are living.
The artistic community of Lincoln is a section of the city that stands out to me. Art is important because it represents the people who make up the community and you learn more about where you are.
Lincoln has many events that are open to the public, including a storytelling festival in November, free art classes from local studios and this week, Lincoln Calling is taking place. Additionally, Duffy's Tavern has the local band Blind Searchers performing at its college night on Sept. 29, and they are offering a $5 discount on entry for college students who show their student ID.
Even on campus, the Lied Center has a full schedule of musicals, plays, performances and more. The Lied Center even offers free or half-priced tickets to UNL students. One of my favorite musicals, “Chicago,” is coming to Lincoln, and I have never seen it in person before, so I will most definitely be going to one of its showings.
To get off campus, the Lincoln Theatre Company has many shows as well. Looking into local art showings or performing arts gives local performers a platform, supports local rather than national talent and even allows you to invest in your community by attending local events.
Going to events that revolve around the community is a great way to diversify your experience by meeting new people. As we head into fall, loads of festivals and events are open. As someone who didn't grow up around agricultural work, attending farmers’ markets and fall festivities, such as pumpkin patches or apple orchards, were eye-openers to understanding the process that goes into producing homemade goods and crops. This view gave me perspective on things that I hadn't known and let me better understand my community which is vital to feeling at home in a new place.
Although it has already begun, the Haymarket farmers’ market is running for another month, and there are a lot of things to see there. The farmers market has a wide range of goods, from jewelry and woodwork to produce and more. These types of community events not only include Lincoln but also the towns around it and, in turn, add to what the city has to offer. Taking advantage of these opportunities can expose you to new experiences and allow you to get to know the community members who put them together and participate in them.
Lincoln is more than a college town because of all the things the city has to offer. UNL has a massive impact on the city itself, but there is clearly more to Lincoln than the Huskers. The important part is trying things you haven't experienced before or seeking out what Lincoln has to provide. Going to school in Lincoln doesn't mean we should only stick to what the school offers because we are Lincolnites as well as Huskers and should utilize what Lincoln has for its people.
Alexis Goeman is a sophomore journalism and ADPR major. Reach her at email@example.com.