This is the last issue of The Bulletin for this semester. As we wind down the year and prepare for finals all eyes are on summer vacation.
Summer means a break from school and enjoying the great weather outdoors. For Emporians it also means a mass exodus of students as they return home for two months. Unlike other college towns such as Lawrence and Manhattan Emporia does not seem to retain its student population during the summer months.
This could be for a couple of reasons. Students wish to return to their homes to be with their family and friends. Others return home to resume a job left on hold or because their city has more job opportunities than Emporia.
But the majority of students seem to leave Emporia for the summer simply because they feel there isn’t enough to do within the city. Emporia has long tried to fight its reputation of being a slow town without much to entertain its college-aged crowd.
It’s true that if you compare Emporia to bigger cities like Wichita or Kansas City it appears that Emporia is lacking in entertainment or jobs. But if you were to take the time to really look Emporia over you might realize there is plenty going on to keep someone occupied and entertained during the summer.
First to be mentioned should be the music scene. Emporia’s live music scene has begun to rebuild itself after a three year lull and the summertime is always a high point for good shows. Beer:30 will be opening its scenic beer garden area which is perfect for live music.
Live in the Lot will also be starting up come summertime. Live in the Lot is the yearly music event held in the Farmer’s Market parking lot that showcases good live bands for the whole family to enjoy. There will be concerts held there throughout the summer.
In terms of other entertainment the historic Granada Theater will continue to show films throughout the summer on Wednesday and Thursday nights. Tickets are cheap and the movies are fun for dates or just a night out with friends.
If you are looking for something to do outdoors go explore one of Emporia’s 18 parks spread throughout the city. Or check out the zoo (the largest free zoo in the country) and see what the animals are up to during the heat of the summer.
As always the ESU theatre department will be putting on a wide array of plays from comedies to musicals to dramas. You can check them out throughout the summer for a very reasonable cost.
And of course all the great local restaurants you know and love in Emporia will be there day in and day out to serve up delicious foods. You’ll even be able to visit some of the restaurants that might be hard to get to during the school year because of their limited hours (Amanda’s Bakery, for example).
The more students we can get to stay in Emporia during the summer the better the end result will be for all of us. If you stay in Emporia and spend your money at locally owned businesses they can use their profits to reinvest in their business and in the Emporia community. This will only help the economy grow and expand. The more it expands the better the shopping and dining experience will be for everyone.
But in order to get there they need your business and your support as a customer.
Everyone knows that Emporia has a reputation for being a little slow. But if you do your part to become engaged in the local community and economy you can help make that reputation a distant memory and we can all enjoy the benefits of a thriving booming Emporia.