Every fall, over 25,000 students arrive in Fargo-Moorhead to start a new year of college.
Whether you’re off to North Dakota State University (NDSU), Moorhead State University Moorhead (MSUM), or Concordia College, sometimes it’s nice to get off-campus and explore the city.
This guide is designed to help everyone from incoming freshmen who are new to town to seasoned students wanting the best student discounts and tips on things to do.
OFF-CAMPUS COLLEGE HANGOUTS
Each university has its own favorite off-campus student hangouts. Here’s where to find fellow scholars.
NDSU student hangouts
Coffee Shops: In the Memorial Union, students sit and grab coffee from the Union Coffee Shop to get them through long study sessions or just to meet up with friends.
You’ll also find a crowd at Bully Brew Coffee in the Bison Block on 12th Ave N and at The Bison Beanery inside the “R” Dining Center (where all coffee drinks are included in your meal price once you enter… aka FREE refills!).
If you’re headed further off campus into Downtown Fargo, you’ll find students hanging out at Twenty Below Coffee Co.
MSUM student hangouts
Bar: The unofficially official MSUM hangout is JC Chumley’s in Moorhead, which has karaoke on Fridays and usually has a local band on Saturdays.
Coffee Shops: The on-campus coffee shops are where you’ll find most MSUM students relaxing, but a fair few also hang out at Moxie Java.
Concordia student hangouts
Bar: Also in Moorhead, Concordia College students have their own turf at Mick’s Office (which serves delicious burgers).
Coffee Shops: You’ll find lots of students sitting around Moxie Java in Downtown Moorhead.
Show your college I.D. at any of these places to receive a discount.
Coffee & treats discounts
Babb’s Coffee House: 15% off
Moxie Java: Half off any espresso drink from 5 to 7 p.m. Monday – Thursday
Sandy’s Donuts: 10% off
Kroll’s Diner: Shakey Mondays two-for-one shakes
Cherry Berry: 3 oz. free yogurt on Thursdays
Applebee’s: Half-off appetizers after 9 p.m.
Buffalo Wild Wings College Night: 9 p.m. to close on Sundays, receive 50% off food with purchase of a drink
Dempsey’s: $1 taco Wednesdays (must be 21)
Boiler Room: Half-price apps 10 p.m. – midnight every day (must be 21)
Rhombus Guys: 50% off large pizza – Mondays after 8:30 p.m.
Rustica: Half-price starters and pizza 5-6 p.m. and 9-11 p.m. Tuesday – Saturday
Spicy Pie: One topping slice and soda for $5
Perkins: 10% off
Sickies Garage: 50% off on Tuesdays with purchase of beverage
Osaka Sushi: 10% off
King House Buffet: 10% off
India Palace: 10% off
Fryn’ Pan: 10% off
Drink specials & college nights
Once you’re 21, finding cheap drinks becomes a top priority.
The college hangouts mentioned earlier usually have a “Mug Night” where you bring in a reusable mug (you buy this on your first visit) and they’ll top it up with tap beer for less than $5.
The Bison Turf’s mug nights are Wednesdays and Saturdays ($3.75 for mug refills).
Herd & Horn’s mug night is Wednesday from 7 p.m. to close ($3.75 for a refill).
Chub’s Pub near NDSU fills with college students on Thursdays for their $0.50 small mugs of beer.
JC Chumley’s does mug nights on Mondays and Wednesdays with $4 Busch Light fills and $5 fills for all other domestic beers.
Mick’s Office college mug night is Thursday from 8 p.m. to close with $4 domestic mug fills and $3 Busch Light or Old Style mug fills.
Bar drink specials & happy hours
Another event we can’t not mention is ladies’ night at The Windbreak. On Thursdays, ladies drink free from 9 p.m. to midnight while guys can get $2 U-Call-Its from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m.
The Windbreak is pretty far south just off of I-29, so make sure you have a sober driver or plan to call an Uber or Lyft to get home.
For a complete list of bar specials, check out this list from Fargo Monthly.
Discounts on things to do
Sports, Active Fun, & Exercise
Fargo Force hockey games: $10 ticket college nights (check website)
Sunset Lanes: $7.25 bowling with college ID starting Thursday at 9:30 PM
The Bowler: Free bowling 9-midnight Monday-Thursday
Ecce Art Gallery: $8 student discount for yoga classes
Spirit Room: $35 unlimited discounted monthly dance/yoga classes
Skyzone Trampoline Park: $10 per hour discounted rate on Thursday’s from 8 p.m. -10 p.m. with ID
YMCA of Cass and Clay Counties: discounted youth rate of $32 a month
Skate City: 2 for 1 admission 8-10 pm on Saturdays
Entertainment & Performing Arts
Marcus Theatres: $5 movies at any Marcus Theatres in town on Tuesdays, $6 movies at any Marcus Theatres in town on Thursdays (if you show your college I.D.)
Theatre B: $10 discount on tickets with ID or $5 student tickets on Thursday
Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre: $8 student tickets on Thursday
The Cellar: $5 off any comedy show with your ID
Fargo Air Museum: $7 student tickets
Historical and Cultural Society of Cass/Clay County: $9 discounted tickets with Student ID
Rourke/Plains Art Museums: free admission with college ID
MATBus: free rides with college ID
Don’t tell your mom, but Almost Famous in West Acres Mall does buy-one-get-one piercings, and Addictions Piercings & Tattoos run specials often, just check out their Facebook page.
Downtown college bars
A classic bar crawl weaves through Downtown Fargo, and it goes a little like this:
1) Start at Sports Bar or NoBull.
2) Cross the street to the Old Broadway and Sports Zone and dance for awhile to Top 100’s.
3) Drop into Fort Noks before heading up the road to…
5) No crawl is complete without finishing off the night at The Pickled Parrot with a bottle of Boones Farm and some dancing.
Trivia nights/karaoke/open mic
You can find trivia, karaoke, or open mic nights literally every night of the week.
Check out the official Fargo-Moorhead events calendar to find all of them, but take a quick glance at top places below.
Top places to find open mic nights
Top places to find pub trivia
Top places to find karaoke
UNDER 21 HANGOUTS
Bars (yes, you read that right)
Many bars allow people under 21 to hangout until a certain time in the evening. Here’s a list from A-Z of some of the popular nightlife spots.
The Bison Turf – all ages until 8 p.m.
The Boiler Room – all ages until 10 p.m.
Brewtus Brickhouse – all ages until 9 p.m.
Frank’s Lounge – all ages until 3:30 p.m.
Herd & Horns – all ages until 12 a.m.
HoDo Lounge – all ages until 8 p.m.
JC Chumley’s Bar – all ages until 9 p.m.
Labby’s Bar & Grill – all ages until 8 p.m.
Mick’s Office – all ages until 9 p.m.
NoBull Smokehouse – all ages until 9:30 p.m.
O’Leary’s Irish Pub – all ages until 9 p.m.
Old Broadway Grill – all ages until 9 p.m.
Pounds – all ages until 6 p.m.
Rhombus Guys – all ages until 12 a.m.
Shotgun Sally’s Rock ‘N’ Roll Saloon – all ages until 9:30 p.m.
Sickies Garage – all ages until 12 a.m.
Tailgators Sports Cafe – all ages until 9 p.m.
Three Lyons Pub – all ages until 9 p.m.
Toasted Frog – all ages until 3:30 p.m.
Twist – all ages until 9 p.m.
Wurst Bier Hall – all ages until 9 p.m.
For studying or hanging out away from campus
24-hour diner options: Denny’s, Perkins, IHOP, Fryn’ Pan, and Kroll’s Diner
Insomnia Cookies: Closes at 3 a.m. every day
Ishtar Mediterranean Cuisine: Closes at midnight on Fridays and Saturdays
Spicy Pie: Closes at midnight on Fridays and Saturdays
Deek’s Pizza: Closes at 3 a.m. every day
Pizza Patrol: Closes at 4 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, 5 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays
Things to do off-campus
Check out our post on free things to do in Fargo.
Clay Your Way: Pick a ceramic piece to paint, choose your paint colors, and spend a few hours painting whatever design you want. They’ll fire it for you in the kiln for you to pick up after a few days.
Thunder Road: A great option for early fall, you can ride go-karts, mini-golf, and use the batting cages.
Disc golf: Tons of parks in Fargo and Moorhead have great disc golf courses (and most are within biking distance of the three campuses).
Skateboarding: Head downtown for the city’s best skate park.
Bowling: Check out the discounts section for places to bowl on the cheap.
Hunt for murals: Downtown Fargo is close to all three college campuses and full of fun murals for a picture-taking outing.
Rent a bike: Pick up a Great Rides bike from the NDSU campus or in Downtown Fargo and go for a ride. Here’s a station map so you can find the drop-off points.
Major events not to miss
Red River Market
Acres of Terror
Holiday Lights Parade
Unglued Craft Fest
St Patrick’s Day Parade & Pub Crawl
Fargo Film Festival
Moorhead Dairy Queen Opening Day (March 1st!)
There you have it, a guide to help you enjoy Fargo off-campus.