They’ve left their care packages. Thayer Street has quieted down. We’ve survived yet another Family Weekend at Brown. As a freshman, I came into this weekend with so many open-ended questions, including: how do I prepare for this? What if they embarrass me? What do I do with them? Now that all is said and done, I must admit that the last few days were, well, pretty awesome. My fridges are stocked, my tummy is full,
and my pockets aren’t empty. Getting babied by my mom was kind of nice after a month and a half of pretending to be an adult.
- Your cleaning attempts will be in vain. The first thing I heard when my parents entered my room was “I see you bothered to clean.” Wow, thanks. I guess hours of cleaning isn’t enough to
fool you impress you, Mom. (It was probably still a good idea to hide the booze, though.)
- Bring your orphaned friends along. If your family was able to make it up, you should feel very lucky; some of your friends aren’t seeing their families until Thanksgiving… or even Christmas! So, invite them to dinner, lunch, etc. They’ll appreciate being around your family, even if they are embarrassing. Besides, it’ll be easier to avoid the “have you skipped any classes” question if there’s someone else to divert the parentals’ attention. Continue Reading
Quick! Today may be your last chance of the semester to check out the outdoor Hope Street farmer’s market — a huge collection of local meat, seafood, produce and various other vendors such as Seven Stars Bakery. The market runs every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the grassy area between Rochambeau and Blackstone Boulevard, until it moves to its indoor location in Pawtucket for the cold winter months.
With or without parents here this weekend, the Hope Street market is a great place to visit and is easily accessible via the 42 RIPTA bus. It’s more than a larger version of the Wriston farmer’s market Wednesdays — the market is filled with Providence locals, cute children, and animals that remind us that people outside of the age of 18-23 exist (a phenomenon known as the “College Hill Bubble”).
In case you aren’t convinced that this market is our jam, we have a few thousand words to share…
Family Weekend is great for a lot of reasons—we get to have chauffeurs while we run errands, play tour guide, rant to someone new about the eyesore that is the SciLi (and, oh yeah, hug our darlingest parents). But perhaps what’s most exciting is the fact that we get a whole weekend of subsidized non-Ratty meals and adventures off the Hill. That can also be scary: When you’re eating Ratty brunch and spicy withs, it can be hard to know where to begin when it’s time to play host. (Shameless self-promotion: The Family Weekend issue of Post-, our sister publication under BDH, has a full spread of restaurant coverage.) Here, though, we’ll focus on some of the fancy-schmancy restaurants that this reviewer likes to frequent for dinner with her own magnanimous parents. Treat yo’self… Or, let your parents treat you. We love ya, Mom and Dad!
The Dorrance: Full disclosure: I’m sad that my parents aren’t coming to Family Weekend, not because I miss them (pish-posh) but because I wish I could drag them here. Bon Appétit is also a fan: It named The Dorrance one of the 50 best new restaurants in America. Chef Ben Sukle previously worked under Chef Jennings at La Laiterie and then did a casual stage at the #1 restaurant in the world. Now he’s set up shop in the first floor of the downtown Union Trust Building, whose 20-foot (rough estimate… it might be 50) floor-to-ceiling windows, ornate ceiling detail, and mezzanine (THEY HAVE A MEZZANINE, just like the SciLi!!!!!!) set the tone for the food. The food! It’s avant-garde and sometimes downright strange (see also, roasted tri-tip with chanterelle mushrooms and strawberries), but it works. So while the restaurant is prohibitively expensive and swanky for us denizens of the Hill, I have a hunch it’d be perfect for an outing with our doting parents.
New Rivers: This self-proclaimed American bistro takes its ingredients seriously: farmers regularly drop by the kitchen with their wares, and Chef Beau Vestal moonlights as a forager to scout out mushrooms. As a result, the food is constantly changing—like, from week to week, perhaps even day to day—to reflect whatever winds up in the kitchen. Still, there’s a reliable sensibility in the menu that means the food can be counted on to strike a balance between comforting/un-frilly and inspired/novel/very-very-special. Lately the menu is featuring a lot of marvelously autumnal hen of the woods mushrooms, so much squash (pumpkin! acorn! delicata! butternut!), and the last of summer’s tomatoes and corn. Go when you’re hungry; you’ll want to order everything. And they also serve lunch!
More restaurants after the jump… Continue Reading
It’s pretty safe to say that visits from your parents are (usually) nothing short of awesome. They’re a welcome break from school-related tedium, you can enjoy the company of loved ones, and, if you’re like me, you also receive an enormous delivery of snacks. And yet there’s one consequence of parental visits I invariably dread: the morning before.
There will undoubtedly be at least a few times in your college career when you wake up at noon on a Saturday, completely hungover and utterly panicking because your parents are scheduled to arrive in half an hour and your room is still littered with beer cans, empty handles, and God-knows-what from the previous evening. You’re even worse, your head pounding and your once-white garments soiled with the stains of debauchery. There’s no hope… or is there?
Whether your parents love seeing how talented the rest of your classmates are (and making you feel guilty about it) or your family isn’t coming and you need something to do, there’s probably some performance going on this weekend that will suit your entertainment needs.
Attitude Dance Company’s annual charity showcase
Family Weekend Dance Concert
Ashamu Dance Studio
Brown University Chorus Concert
Family Weekend Dance Concert
Ashamu Dance Studio
Brown University Chorus Concert
It happens. After a period of comfort, you just stop trying. Maybe you whip out the sweatpants more than you should, or your “places” – the restaurants, the relaxation spots, and the shops –feel a bit dried up. That doesn’t mean you should throw the baby out with the bathwater – all you need to make Parents Weekend fresh again is a little spice.
Every year it becomes the same routine. You scream halfheartedly chant “Ra Ra Bruno,” shepherding your parents around in all of their Brown-swag glory. You get some good meals (I am definitely not suggesting you give this up), and you desperately clean your room in attempt to rid it of the greasy smell of last week’s Spicy With, the accompanying ketchup-smeared takeout box and the shirt whose fibers reek of various smokes. Never fear, for we have suggestions to send you back to freshman fall, without the awkwardness, vomit, or mornings-after. Continue Reading
Family Weekend is upon us. You should have noticed by now that campus is crawling with middle-aged moms and dads who are here to see you and get a sense of your life at Brown. In order for your parents to do so effectively, they will be infiltrating our social and academic spheres of choice to try to live and understand the Brown Experience. Be advised that parents are everywhere, and that it can be quite entertaining to observe these creatures in their unfamiliar habitat.
The Top Three Places for Parent Sightings:
1) The Ratty: Upon entry, parents are greeted by the wonderful, angelic BDS hostess with the mostest, Gail. They are hooked on Gail’s unmistakable charm and are reeled in by the long chain of “I”s in the “Hiiiiiiiiiiii” they receive at the door. They proceed to walk around aimlessly as they try to understand the hustle and bustle; the Cajun Chicken Pasta and the epic combination of cereal, ice cream and peanut butter that constitute the Ratty Experience. For maximum entertainment, be sure to observe the confusion and fascination that comes over parents as they observe our fellow students with four plates of food and three glasses of different drinks all balanced on the Ratty’s ugly, yet intriguing trays. It was LMFAO who said “everyday I’m Rattying”, right? Continue Reading
Family Weekend banter, translated:
“Mm, your father and I are trying to find hotels for May … any suggestions?”
You are graduating in May! Did you forget this? We did not.
“So, have you started thinking about, you know, next year…?”
OHMYGOD. Our darling little child is graduating with zero marketable skills! What has s/he been doing all this time?
“You know, honey, I think your mother has finally gotten over the whole empty nest thing.”
Please, oh please, oh please do not move back home. We have turned your bedroom into a love nest. Continue Reading
We all know and love the best weekend of the year: Family Weekend. Upperclassmen look fondly back on the time when their parents would visit for a couple of days to replenish snacks, buy new clothes for the upcoming bitter months and look for excuses to pawn useless dorm necessities off on us.
Often, parents will try and utilize this opportunity to relive their college years while simultaneously bonding with their now-adult children. Read: they want to eat in the dining hall. And to that, we must be strong! Be principled! Stand up for yourself and for all that tastes good in the world! Demand food off-campus before it’s too late and you start to notice leftovers being served in the Ratty three days in a row. Providence was named the third best city for foodies in America [via], and now is the time to take advantage ofeducate your parents on some of the wonderful food offered here. Let them drive you wherever your their heart desires and bask in the glory of the foodie-heaven that is Providence. Even if fancy food isn’t your style, at least use this weekend as an opportunity to get off Thayer Street. I know we thought that Paragon would never get old, but alas…
- Al Forno Restaurant, www.alforno.com, 577 South Main Street, Providence, (401) 273-9760
Made famous by their amazing appetizer pizza, this classy (and relatively pricey) Italian restaurant is first-rate. Just a hop, skip and jump away from Whisky Republic, this restaurant truly offers some of the best Italian food that can be found on this side of the Atlantic. Open Tuesday through Sunday, Al Forno does NOT take reservations, is fairly small and fills up FAST: plan accordingly. Continue Reading
Different name, same great time-wasting abilities.
Ever been annoyed by the bizarre things your parents think are text message appropriate? Or their complete inability to handle the technology? We bring you When Parents Text, so you can laugh at someone else’s parents instead.