Tuition (in-state)
$24,109 ($10,355)
Admission Difficulty
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4 College Junior

Nightlife: Have yet to experience it but from the stories I hear, the night life must be great

2 College Senior

Nightlife: Okay, the clubs in Kalamazoo are terrible. They play music that no one likes, and the locals are crazy and violent. Also, there aren't many to choose from.

College Junior

Nightlife: I don't go out by campus.

4 College Senior

Nightlife: There are a number of bars and micro brewery's near my college. Everything from dive bars to rooftop clubs and beer gardens. Many students prefer to drink at one of the brewery's for a few quality beers rather than have large over the top parties. Downtown always has a variety of beer festivals and bands playing so there is always something to do if you need to unwind, but not go crazy.

4 College Sophomore

Nightlife: The night life is very much alive at western michigan university


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 74th
    Biggest Party Schools
  • 77th
    Best Drink Prices
  • 1297th
    Tamest Party Scenes

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Eric DiManno
Sterling Heights
Creative Writing
Grad Year
View all previous student authors

Kalamazoo has a very active bar scene for students 21-and-up. Some of the best bars include The Grotto, Y-Bar, Shakespeare's Pub, the Kalamazoo Beer Exchange, Waldo's, University Roadhouse, Wayside West, Monaco Bay, Wild Bull, and The Union. There are often tons of students spread out all across the area looking to have a good time, and they find it, too. There are also local movie theaters and a number of restaurants that offer specials and discounts for students.

Nightlife at Western is something special. On the weekends, there are parties all across the area. Fraternity Village and other streets around the area are filled with outgoing party-goers. If you're under 21, there's still plenty to do. A lot of underage students like to hang out at Wild Bull (until 9 p.m., when underagers are no longer allowed to frequent the establishment). Plus, there are often parties on campus where under-21 students can socialize and mingle.

Facts & Statistics

Primary Areas with Nightlife
  • "Student Ghetto"
  • Downtown Kalamazoo
  • Frat Ville Apartments
  • Neighborhoods outside of campus
Other Places to Check Out
  • Big Deal's Sports Bar
  • Buffalo Wild Wings Grill & Bar
  • Gallagher's Eatery
  • Main Street Pub
  • Metro Nightclub
  • Old Burdick's Bar & Grill
  • Rugger's Up & Under
  • The Union
  • Y Bar
Local Specialties
Bell's Brewery: This is a brewery located in Kalamazoo. This beer is sold by many retailers in the area and across the country.
Favorite Drinking Games
  • Beer pong
  • Flip cup
Useful Resources for Nightlife
The Kalamazoo Gazette (
Closing Time
2 a.m.
Cheapest Place to Get a Drink
Depending on the night, there are different specials at bars all across town. Specials range from 50-cent beers to $1.25 shots and $3 you-call-its.

Club ListingsWhat's This?

Wild Bull Saloon

There's frequently live entertainment at this venue. Plus, Thursday is "College Night."

139 S. Edwards St.


(269) 978-8451

Bar ListingsWhat's This?

University Roadhouse

The Roadhouse has late-night munchie specials, like Bell's battered corn dogs for $3.

1332 W. Michigan Ave.


(269) 345-7990


This is a downtown rooftop destination that's closed during the winter. But when it's open, it's pretty sweet.

310 E. Michigan Ave.


(269) 384-6044

Wayside West

On Fridays, there are $1 pints and live music.

3406 Stadium Drive


(269) 375-1930

Waldo's Campus Tavern

"Study Hall" (e.g., happy hour) is 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. daily, with $1 PBRs and $2.50 well drinks.

1408 W. Michigan Ave.


(269) 349-8674

Kalamazoo Beer Exchange

The Beer Exchange features a variety of bottled beers from Arbor to Tri City.

211 E. Water St.


(269) 532-1188

The Grotto at Capone's

In addition to delicious pizza, the Grotto has daily specials, including $2.50 you-call-its on Saturday nights.

2636 W. Michigan Ave.


(269) 276-7000

Shakespeare's Pub

Every Monday, from 6 p.m. to close, there are $1.50 well drinks, $2.50 pints, $3 calls/top shelf, $4 specialty drinks/bombs, and $3 wings/$3 hot dogs with fries.

241 E. Kalamazoo Ave.


(269) 488-7782

Monaco Bay Piano Bar & Grill

This is a cool piano bar and grill.

300 E. Michigan Ave.


(269) 384-6044

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

Wild Bull

Under-21 students are welcome until 9 p.m.

139 S. Edwards St.


(269) 978-8451

Rave Cinemas

180 Portage St.


(269) 381-5732

Goodrich Kalamazoo 10

820 Maple Hill Drive


(269) 345-7469

Student Polls

Rate the off-campus bar and club scene on the following topics    Based on 90 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 79 responses

  • 32% Walk.
  • 5% Taxis.
  • 19% Public transportation.
  • 10% School-provided shuttles/buses.
  • 33% Use a designated driver.
  • 1% There are no good options.

What is the party scene like on campus?    Based on 85 responses

  • 11% Tons of raging parties almost any night of the week.
  • 52% Lots of options Wednesday-Saturday.
  • 25% Some decent frat/house parties, weekends only.
  • 9% Good parties are few and far between.
  • 4% Parties? What parties?

What is the biggest party event of the year?    Based on 32 responses

  • 47% St. Patrick's Day
  • 47% Western Central weekend
  • 3% Weekends after Finals and Midterms
  • 3% Homecoming

Where can you find the best parties?    Based on 23 responses

  • 56% Off Campus housing areas
  • 26% I don't like the party scene very much.
  • 11% Fratville
  • 7% Lafaette st.
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