On Thursdays Keene State College students said they are in fact “thirsty,” and many students noted they go to bars like Cobblestone Ale House to quench this thirst.
Without the worry of Friday classes many students say they enjoy being able to start their long weekends on Thursday night.
As for the 21-year-old crowd, primarily KSC juniors and seniors, bars like Cobblestone Ale House and Lab’n Lager are the places to be with cheap drink specials. College students say they seek out the drink deals that these establishments offer in their efforts to spend as little as possible. Not to mention most of Keene’s nightlife is located on Main Street, just a short walking distance from campus.
However, students noted that recently lines to get into these bars have been getting longer and starting earlier. KSC seniors Linnea Henry and Jessica Allen and junior Nicole Guerra said that although they do go to Lab’n Lager, they more frequently go to Cobblestone Ale House on Thursday nights.
Henry commented, “I think that it’s fun when all the seniors go to Cobble [stone Ale House], we always have a great time together. Thursday is the typical bar night and with the dollar drink deals, how can you resist?”
Many students agree the second semester of each year the bars become more popular and busy since more and more students are turning the legal drinking age. Students say they see going to the Keene bars on a Thursday night as a “right of passage” once a student turns 21. Students noted that, as of late, many of the popular Keene bars have been so packed that there is often a line outside the door before 7 p.m. Students say they have been heading to the bar around or before dinner time to ensure that they will get in. The cold weather has also been a determining factor when considering what time to go out on Thursday. Many go earlier to avoid standing in the cold, according to students. Allen also commented on how recently the bars have been more crowded.
“Going out to the bar is overwhelming at times, the crowd and not having a place to sit is kind of a drag. Also, nobody wants to wait outside in twenty-degree weather,” Allen said. From a junior’s perspective, Guerra said, “I do enjoy the bar scene. I don’t love it though. It’s annoying when it gets wicked crowded and you can’t even move. Also, it’s not convenient for me to have to be there so early.”
Nathan Campbell, a Plymouth State University graduate and Cobblestone Ale House bartender commented, “The Thursday night crowd at Cobblestone [Ale House] is unlike any other. It’s made up of dedicated patrons that possess a strong love and respect for the bar.”
Campbell added, “They’re so dedicated. In fact, they show up hours before our famous one dollar well [drink] special begins just so they can have a spot in the bar and not have to face the line that is known to stretch around the corner and down Davis Street.”
However, he said since people rush to beat the line it sometimes results in friends turning against each other. “I have literally seen friends try to outrun each other just to get a spot inside,” Campbell said.
He added, “The early crowd has also created this type of exclusive feeling if you are able to get into Cobblestone on a Thursday.”
Overall, though, he said Thursday nights usually bring friends together instead of pull them apart.
He also added this early rush has influenced the amount of business these bars do as well. Campbell, who has worked at Cobblestone for two years, said, “The early crowd definitely boosts business. With the patrons coming in so early, most decide to have dinner here which is great for our food sales.” The general location of the bar in a college town works to the business’ advantage, Campbell said.
Campbell stated, “Bars in Keene, including Cobblestone [Ale House], are very unique because we have tho opportunity to be able to mold certain aspects around the college calendar.”
He continued, “For example, we have a mug club that allows for KSC students to purchase a mug they can drink out of for the whole school year and at the end of the year they are able to take it home with them, so they are able to bring a piece of Cobblestone home with them. I get multiple Snapchats on a weekly basis of past graduates and them enjoying a nice cold beverage in their Cobble Mugs, and it always makes me smile,” he said.
He said they also hold events around the college calendar and due to the location benefit when there is a snow day.
Campbell said the best part about Thursday nights is the personality of the crowd. He mentioned that students are all excited to be at Cobblestone Ale House and they love that they have the opportunity to share the experience with all of their friends. Overall, most students said they want to enjoy a night out with their friends and make memories while they still can, whether it is in the bar or not.
Victoria Richards can be contacted at email@example.com