Beginner’s guide to downtown nightlife

Downtown Burlington’s night scene has places to go no matter how old you are.

Voted the No. 1 best college town by “Travel and Leisure” in 2013, some may say nightlife is never dull, in Burlington. “I normally go out with my friends to fraternity parties or house parties,” first- year Brianna Kinahan said. However, with over 15 spots within walking distance, rookie bar-goers may  find themselves uninformed of the “hip” spots to venture to on their weekend evenings.

Students have spoken and here is a list of the best places to hit up on your nights out.


The Underage Partier

Zen Lounge, located on Church Street, allows 18- plus admittance Tuesday through Thursday, according to their website’s event calendar. “I like it because it’s a nicer venue to go out to than some of the other social spots,” first-year Noelle Villa said. The club opened February 2014 and has rented out the space to numerous UVM organizations, such as the UVM football team and the Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity, according to the website.

Radio Bean, located on North Winooski Avenue, also admits 18-plus clientele. Radio Bean is known for live music performances, junior Samantha Rogers said. “I went one time and Smooth Antics was playing there,” Rogers said.

Both venues require underage customers to arrive before 11 p.m.


The First Stop

To start the night, there is Three Needs, located on the corner of Pearl Street and South Winooski Avenue. It has the “best” atmosphere, good beer options, good deals, an outdoor space and billiards, senior Dan Smith said. “All it is missing is darts, live music and a blue room,” Smith said.

Ake’s Place on Church Street is another great first-round stop,  senior Phil Mouchati said. The bar has a good range of beer, outside seating, darts, foosball and pool, as well as Big Buck Hunter and a jukebox, Mouchati said.


To Dance

Red Square, located on Church Street, is a college favorite, senior Lia Vaska said. “I really like the blue room because it is the dancing room and there is a DJ,” Vaska said. Thursday night is her favorite day to go, she said, because there is no cover charge.

Club Metronome and Nectar’s, both located on Main Street, are other dance spots in town. These spots differ from Red Square because they often have live music. Metronome also hosts theme nights, such as “futuristic Fridays, ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s nights on Saturdays, reggae nights and ‘Sundae Soundclash,’” according to their website.

Rasputin’s, located on Church Street, is another spot popular with students, senior Ellery Garland said. With multiple rooms, multiple bars and multiple DJs there is never a dull moment, Garland said. “Rasputin’s? You know what they say about it don’t you,” she said. “You can’t get there before midnight.”