It's that time of year again, folks. Time to raid the aisles of Target for the 79-cent notebooks, load your car with stolen food from your parents' house, move back in with the roomies and face the rat race once again.
It will be a fall semester of late nights studying, so if you want to know where to spend even later nights partying, we at OnMilwaukee have selflessly scouted the perfect locales for textbook-weary students looking to forget their troubles.
We even broke it down by major, because we know how much you college kids love to be pigeonholed.
Major: English; Irish Studies
Bar: The Black Rose Irish Pub, 2856 N. Oakland Ave.
Bleak black-painted walls distressed to perfection. Exposed brick and hardwood floors. Booths that feel like alcoves. Romantically-dimmed wall lamps. It's all so poetic and heartbreaking, isn't it? Whether you want to sit and ponder "Finnegan's Wake," debate the perpetuation of Stage Irish stereotypes beginning with MacMorris in Shakespeare's "Henry V," or just sit quietly and read some Yeats, this is the atmosphere in which to do so. And when you inevitably find that there is no end to pondering "Ulysses," no answer to the MacMoriss question, and that Yeats and Maud never get together, do the only thing you can: order a pint of Guinness, a defiantly inexpensive mound of foccacia bread ($1.95) and start outlining that term paper.
Bar: The Village Pub, 4488 N. Oakland Ave.
It's your typical Wisconsin bar. You've got your friendly waitresses, your dartboard, your wide-screens showing the Packers and Badgers, your internet jukebox and your Tuesday-night PBR special ($1). We say Communications majors will love it because most of the Communications majors we know actually want to go into sports broadcasting, but "Communications" sounds better when your mom and dad are bragging to the neighbors. And someday when you make it big on ESPN, you won't have a DUI charge haunting your past - the Village Pub has got you covered. For just $1, you can use the ingenious Intox-o-Meter to test your blood alcohol level.
Bar: Two Bucks, 2321 N. Murray Ave.
What's an accounting major not going to love about a place where fake money is actually painted on the walls and real money stays in your pocket? The name says it all: this is a haven for the frugal. If you want maximum bang for your buck, two of them will go a long way. Sage and garlic fries, deep-fried pickles, a cup of soup - any of these can be had for only $2, seven days a week. And that's a good thing, because you'll probably be tipping a few back here. For only $2 you can also get most domestic beers on tap. This place is cheap but not dive-y, and the waitresses are happy to split your bill. You cheapskate, you.
Major: Middle Eastern/North African studies; Film studies
Bar: Casablanca on Brady, 728 E. Brady St.
If you're searching for hookahs, dimmed lights and couscous, this could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. The executive chef is a Jerusalem native, so you're guaranteed authenticity here. It's known best as a restaurant but boasts a full bar, so there's no reason not to stop in with a group of friends. The exotic interior is thrilling to the senses, and the photographs of Bogie and Bergman indicating the men's and women's bathrooms are oh-so-droll. There's belly dancing every Friday night and half-priced bottles of wine on Mondays and Tuesdays.
Major: Classics; Philosophy; French; Undecided
Bar: Trocadero, 1758 N. Water St.
We say "undecided" because this is a great place for the freshmen who can't indulge in Berry Mojitos yet; Trocadero has some fantastic and charmingly-presented non-alcoholic options. We love the decadent and frothy cinnamon hot chocolate or chai latte (perfect on a blustery fall evening). And for those who are of age, there's no better atmosphere to debate the theories of dead Greeks than at Trocadero, where you can gaze peacefully at the grass plant centerpiece on your table with a Maker's Mark in your hand. And for the lovers of all things Gallic, the beautiful terrace is a little bit of Paris right here in Milwaukee.
Colleen Jurkiewicz is a Milwaukee native with a degree in English from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and she loves having a job where she learns something new about the Cream City every day. Her previous incarnations have included stints as a waitress, a barista, a writing tutor, a medical transcriptionist, a freelance journalist, and now this lovely gig at the best online magazine in Milwaukee.