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Whether you’re looking to relax, let loose, or catch up with friends, there’s always an ideal place to hang out on Drake’s campus. The surrounding neighborhood—known as Dogtown—offers plenty of fun options, too.

Olmsted Center, Drake’s student union, is a mainstay for students who want to kick back and relax. You can exercise in our Underground Fitness facility, located on the lower level; grab a cup of fresh-brewed Starbucks coffee at our coffee shop; surf the Internet on a bank of public computers; play ping pong, darts and pool; or see a comedian or guest musician on the Pomerantz Stage.

Just outside Olmsted, Helmick Commons provides a vast green space for relaxation and open recreation. Spread a blanket on the lawn on a sunny day, play a game of Frisbee or touch football, or dip your toes in the reflecting pond as a break from classes and homework.

Over in Cowles Library, you’ll find a spot that meets your every study need—from bustling group workspaces to pin-drop quiet individual study areas. The library’s After Hours space is open late into the night/morning, and students can come and go as they please with a special security keycard.

In Dogtown you can grab a cup of coffee or tea, watch an indie or folk-rock band perform, experiment with new flavors of sushi, and much more. Extending several blocks from campus in each direction, the neighborhood has come to life in recent years with an influx of student-focused shops and restaurants. Buy fresh veggies at a farmers’ market, meet young professionals at a casual networking event, or attend a local music festival—there’s always something to do in Dogtown.

Of course, when it comes to fun and relaxation, you need not look beyond your own residence hall. Many students keep their doors open during their free time, creating endless opportunities for conversation, movie nights, and playing video games. Student-run residence hall associations also plan a variety of activities throughout the year.