Bethlehem, PA
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College Freshman

Nightlife: I am not a partied. Nightlife is what u make it. I hang out with friends, go to dance club and pretty much chill after a hard day of classes

5 College Sophomore

Nightlife: Lehigh has the best parties.

4 College Freshman

Nightlife: There are many frat parties, basically every night. Not so sure about the bar/club scene. Taxis are pretty easy to catch though late at night, especially from the casino

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Nightlife: You always have the option of going out any day of the week which is great when you need to blow off some steam from class

4 College Freshman

Nightlife: Bars aren't really relevant, only when they are rented out which then everything is free so it's awesome!


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 47th
    Best Drink Prices
  • 79th
    Biggest Party Schools
  • 1294th
    Tamest Party Scenes

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Charlie Gimber
Sudbury, MA
English and Journalism
View all previous student authors

Fraternities dominate the social scene from freshman through junior year, as many students will probably spend more hours playing Beirut than in class or the library. A big reason for the tremendous popularity of the Hill is because local bars card very hard—it’s not unusual to hear of a Lehigh student who got arrested over the weekend trying to use a fake ID at Leon’s. As such, incoming freshman better get used to lots of Beirut.

Of course, some people complain that playing Beirut every night gets tedious, which is true for just about anything, but  students who are over 21 mix things up by going to the local bars. There are three main drinking establishments that students tend to choose: Tally Ho, McGrady’s, and Leon’s. Leon’s has always been a mainstay. Its prime location to off-campus housing and cheap prices make it a must-visit every weekend night. There are two other seldom-visited dive bars in the area: the Happy Tap and the Funhouse. The Funhouse was actually featured in Stuff’s 20 biggest dive bars in America and occasionally features live music, so it can be a refreshing alternative. On any given weekend night, there is also a fair number of free off-campus parties on Hillside Avenue, but they are usually exclusive to either seniors or members of whichever fraternity or sorority that is scheduled to party there. It’s much more inviting and safer for freshmen to wander the Hill in search of nightlife rather than off campus.

Facts & Statistics

Primary Areas with Nightlife
  • 3rd Street
  • 4th Street
  • 5th Street
Student Favorites
  • Leon's
  • McGrady's
  • The Tally Ho
Other Places to Check Out
Lehigh Pub
Favorite Drinking Games
  • "Baseball"
  • Beirut
  • Card games
  • Flip cup
  • Power Hour
  • Quarters
Useful Resources for Nightlife
Closing Time
2 a.m.
Cheapest Place to Get a Drink
The three main bars are all priced about the same.
Organization Parties
The only organizational parties to speak of are the events orchestrated by the senior class leaders. There is a Senior Night party every other week, which usually entails a $5 cover. The money goes toward Senior Week at the beach in May, right before graduation.

Bar ListingsWhat's This?

Looper's Grille & Bar

Looper's is one of Lehigh's underrated hotspots. The food is tremendous, and the bar focuses on martinis. It features more than 30 different kinds of martinis, all of which are specially made. It's a hit among off-campus dwellers, and whenever anyone is in the mood for a martini or two.

313 E 3rd St.


(610) 882-2424


Leon's has been a staple of Lehigh seniors for as long as it's been in existence. There's nothing overwhelmingly appealing about the bar, other than the fact that it's the most convenient for the majority of people living off campus. Inside, it's fairly standard. It has a pool table and the all-important MegaTouch Force machine, which includes the incredibly addicting Photo Hunt game, although Leon's charges an obscenely overpriced $1 per play. Leon's also has an outside area in the back with tables that is opened in warm weather. No one's really sure why there's a giant sandbox out on the back, but it's there, and manages to add to the appeal of the bar. The bar's most popular nights are Thursdays.

432 E. 5th St.


(610) 868-6822

Tally Ho Tavern

The Ho is the oldest bar in Bethlehem's south side. There are plenty of booths, as well as an excellent outdoor seating area, although it's primarily used during the day for eating. The Ho also has a separate room for live musical acts and another separate game room with pool tables and arcade games, as well as a Photo Hunt machine. The Ho has seen its popularity decline somewhat, especially with the opening of McGrady's, but the bar's popular enough and has been such a mainstay that it won't be going anywhere for a long time.

205 W. 4th St.

South Side Bethlehem

(610) 865-2591

Starter's Pub

Starter's is an excellent sports bar and restaurant but is most often frequented at dinnertime and Sunday afternoons for football. It's a fun bar but not the kind of place one hangs out at to get absolutely smashed.

3731 Route 378


(610) 997-5454

J.P. McGrady's

McGrady's has 40 beers on tap and has $3 pitchers of Miller Light on select nights. They also have trivia on Wednesday nights. The walls are covered with old-fashioned beer signs, and it has a very all-American appeal to it. McGrady's has about a million times more seating than Leon's and also features two Photo Hunt machines. One aspect of the bar that's incredibly annoying is the layout; the actual bar itself juts out so much so that getting into the back seating area on a crowded night is nearly-impossible.

117 E. 3rd St.

South Side Bethlehem

(610) 868-8925

The Element

The Element, located just off Lehigh's campus, features a laid-back, "basement-bar" feel. Flat-screen televisions adorn the walls, which is cool, but to be honest, the bar hasn't really caught on.

336 Adams St.


(610) 867-1741

Copperhead Grille

The Copperhead is probably the closest thing Bethlehem has to a club. The bar has karaoke Tuesdays, a DJ on Wednesdays and Fridays and a band on Saturdays. It's also the biggest bar in the area and has become very popular with Lehigh seniors as a venue for bi-monthly "Senior Nights." Copperhead's main drawback is that it's a trek from campus.

5737 Route 378


(610) 282-4600

Happy Tap Bar

If possible, the Happy Tap may be even more of a dive than the Funhouse, although it does have a fair amount of character, as most dive bars do. The Tap is probably the least popular of all the bars among Lehigh students, but it's incredibly cheap, and like the Funhouse, a good alternative to the normal scene.

601 E. 4th St.

South Side Bethlehem

(610) 865-2790

The Funhouse

The Funhouse appeared in Stuff Magazine's 20 biggest dive bars in the country. Upon entering the bar, it will become blatantly apparent why it was honored with such a distinction. The drink selection is considerably limited, the bar is small and dingy, and about the only saving grace is that they have an area sectioned off for musical acts to perform. The Funhouse can be an alternative to the typical Leon's/McGrady's bar scene, but it must be taken in small doses.

5 E. 4th St.

South Side Bethlehem

(610) 868-5311

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

Attend fraternity parties or drink in your dorm room.

Student Polls

Rate the off-campus bar and club scene on the following topics    Based on 26 responses

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

What's the best way to get to the popular nightlife spots?    Based on 25 responses

  • 8% There are no good options.
  • 12% Use a designated driver.
  • 4% School-provided shuttles/buses.
  • 0% Public transportation.
  • 0% Taxis.
  • 76% Walk.

What is the party scene like on campus?    Based on 26 responses

  • 0% Parties? What parties?
  • 0% Good parties are few and far between.
  • 12% Some decent frat/house parties, weekends only.
  • 27% Lots of options Wednesday-Saturday.
  • 62% Tons of raging parties almost any night of the week.
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