CMU students return to Mount Pleasant to ring in 2018
Although Central Michigan University classes don't start until Jan. 8, students returned to Mount Pleasant early to ring in the start of 2018.
New Year’s Eve inspired local establishments to open their doors to the CMU and Mount Pleasant community. Students, both current and newly graduated, came to commence the 2018 year.
Wayside Central, located at 2000 S Mission St. offered what advertisements described as the “Area’s Largest New Year’s Celebration.” Hours at the club, O’Kelly’s Sports Bar and Grille, The Cabin and Hunter’s Ale House extending serving hours to 4 a.m.
VIP passes provided six premium drink tickets and pizza to guests ages 21 and up.
“What makes this New Year’s Eve so special is being able to go to four bars for one price,” said freelance photographer and videographer Gio Bartlett, who worked on promoting the festivities.
Bartlett said New Year’s Eve and its appeal to the college community gives students a chance to see each other while on break and to enjoy a highly energized holiday.
“What makes coming back so special is the live performances which most clubs and bars in the mid-Michigan area do not have, especially for the price,” Bartlett said.
Performances were made by DJs titled Blackout, DJ 29, DJ Klintik and DJ Slam. Local hip hop artists included Top Notch and Trilla.
Top Notch, also known as Tim Crosby, is a Muskegon native who served as the evening’s official stage host at Wayside Central and O'Kelly's.
Crosby said one of his main goals were to make audiences feel optimistic about the new year and mentioned that every Mount Pleasant venue offers its own community and traditions.
“Each bar has its own popular night and crowd. Being able to have a diverse group of friends and make it to all the bars they love is awesome,” he said.
Crosby gave a speech and provided tag lines throughout the night and performed musical signals such as “Litty University.”
As host, Crosby said it was most important to give everyone the best New Year’s Eve experience possible.
“Every day is aa fresh start but with a new year you really feel it,” he said. “Everything you missed out on this time last year you can correct and make your year better from the start.”
In the downtown area, Encore, the Nightclub hosted their New Year’s Eve Soiree featuring special champagne toasts at midnight. The venue was opened to guests 18 and older for the occasion.
DJ Matt Besemer described the evening as one of Encore’s flagship nights.
“Students should take part in our New Year’s Eve celebration because it is an opportunity for our club to not only operate like a big city club but excel at it,” Besemer said.
Besemer said spending New Year’s Eve in Mount Pleasant has been on his mind since last year’s festivities. He said the night provides the ideal time for the club to showcase its style and provide the means for the CMU community to leave bad energy behind in the passing year.
“The new year provides my guests the opportunity to come into the event leaving the previous year’s negativity behind and look forward to the new year’s opportunities,” he said. “Inside our walls you will not find a difference between our event and a ‘big city’ event.”
Berkley senior Trevor Bewley spent his evening “bar hopping” with some CMU friends.
Bewley drove hours from the Detroit area to Mount Pleasant for what he described as "family."
“The people I have met here have given me so much and taught me things about myself I could never imagine,” Bewley said. “I want 2018 to be the best, and the only true way to accomplish that is with the best.”