Hamilton, NY
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4 College Sophomore

Nightlife: Joining greek life opens you up to so many more options socially

5 College Freshman

Nightlife: I'm not into the whole Jug scene, but the frats always know how to show you a good time. It can be hard if you're an unaffiliated guy though.

4 College Freshman

Nightlife: The nightlife is pretty lively and there are shuttles that run late into the night so you don't have to walk back up the hill.

5 College Freshman

Nightlife: If you want to get into the nightlife, this is the place to do it.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Nightlife: There is something to do most nights of the week, but there aren't many options.


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 24th
    Biggest Party Schools
  • 59th
    Best Drink Prices
  • 1349th
    Tamest Party Scenes

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

David Esber
New Franklin, Ohio
Peace and Conflict Studies
Grad Year
View all previous student authors

The nightlife scene in Hamilton is alive and well, albeit a bit repetitive. What appears to be a quaint, sleepy village transforms by night into the center of Colgate social life, featuring a number of bars that are complemented by the fraternity houses and numerous on- and off-campus housing areas throwing open and closed parties on any given night. Students have been known to spend hours in the library, finishing up a paper, only to run home, down a few shots of cheap vodka or shotgun a few Keystones, and head out the door. One need not look far for a drinking buddy practically any day of the week, except for Tuesdays and Sundays which are reserved for studying.

While much of the nightlife revolves around the houses on Broad Street, almost every organization and team hosts regular “pubs,” giving members the opportunity to drink with each other and start off the night before heading downtown and inevitably capping the night off at the Jug. To be sure, there are plenty of activities going on for those hoping to avoid the drinking culture; Late Gate and Game’s Afoot host regular substance-free events, and the Colgate Activities Board (CAB) hosts regular Take Two Films; there is never pressure to take part, only plenty of company if you choose to do so.

Facts & Statistics

Primary Areas with Nightlife
Downtown Hamilton
Other Places to Check Out
  • Risky Business
  • Turning Stones Resort Casino
Local Specialties
  • Keystone Light: Cheap and effective, this brew rules the campus.
  • Mary's Special: Hit up Risky Business, known to students as "the Bacon," for a potent mix of vodka and cranberry.
  • Painkiller: Nichols & Beal serves up this tropical concoction of mixed juices and rum.
Favorite Drinking Games
  • Beirut
  • Card games
  • Flip cup
  • Power hour
  • Quarters
Useful Resources for Nightlife
Word of mouth
Closing Time
Between 2 a.m. and 2:30 a.m.
Cheapest Place to Get a Drink
Frat parties
Organization Parties
Student organizations sometimes throw parties, but not as often as Greeks or some theme houses. The best way to know about them is through campus distributions and email. LASO (Latin American Student Organization) usually sponsors a Latin Dance Party during the fall, and there's also "Broad Street Around the World," where theme houses provide students with food and drinks (alcoholic with proof of age) from different countries.

Bar ListingsWhat's This?

Old Stone Jug

The Jug is almost more Colgate than Adam and Eve, the resident swans on campus, and is incidentally the only bar that allows first-years in to take part in what is truly an institution. The Jug is equal parts dance club and end-of-the-night hookup spot; it serves drinks, too, but often at higher costs than other bars in town. A word of warning: You would be wise to purchase an inexpensive jacket for the Jug because so many go missing over the course of a given night.

30 Utica St.


Rusch's Bar and Grill

As the neighborhood sports bar, this establishment has a number of big-screen televisions tuned to ESPN at all times.

22 Lebanon St.


(315) 228-2122

Nichols & Beal Restaurant & Bar

Restaurant by day, bar by night. Over the past few years, the crowd has shifted from exclusively upperclassmen to include a wide variety of students and is often packed both on weekends and weeknights.

10 Utica St.


(315) 824-2222

The Hour Glass

"The Glass" is considered a townie and upperclassman hangout. Although it is generally quieter than the other bars, the Glass offers a nice variety of craft brews and a digital jukebox, as well as billiards and darts.

20 Lebanon St.


(315) 824-8666

La Iguana Restaurant

Serving up piping hot tortilla chips and salsa with margaritas and sangria, this night spot offers a change of pace from the standard Hamilton bar scene.

10 Broad St.


(315) 824-0022

What to Do if You're Not 21What's This?

New York Pizzeria -"Slices"

An end-of-the-night tradition, stop by "Slices" for a steaming piece of fresh, New York-style pizza.

39 Lebanon St.


(315) 824-2112

Late Gate events

This group focuses on holding weekly activities that center around sober fun.

Student Polls

What's the best way to get to the popular nightlife spots?    Based on 57 responses

  • 0% There are no good options.
  • 2% Use a designated driver.
  • 49% School-provided shuttles/buses.
  • 0% Public transportation.
  • 0% Taxis.
  • 49% Walk.

Rate the off-campus bar and club scene on the following topics    Based on 57 responses

Very poor
  • Convenience to get to
  • Cover charges
  • Distance from campus
  • Drink prices
  • Fun
  • Variety/number of options

What is the party scene like on campus?    Based on 58 responses

  • 0% Parties? What parties?
  • 2% Good parties are few and far between.
  • 10% Some decent frat/house parties, weekends only.
  • 55% Lots of options Wednesday-Saturday.
  • 33% Tons of raging parties almost any night of the week.


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