Five Bars in Lansing You Have To Try if You’re in College

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If you’re a student at Michigan State University, Cooley Law School, Davenport University or  Lansing Community College and you are 21 or older, here’s a list of five Lansing bars you should sample.

Rum Runners

601 E Michigan Ave

(517) 482-4949


A nice getaway from cold weather, this tropical-themed bar is located next door to Thomas M. Cooley Law School Stadium where the minor-league baseball team Lansing Lugnuts play. The bar has a dance floor/club atmosphere downstairs while upstairs features  a pair of dueling piano bars.

The bar specializes in tropical drinks like piña coladas and Long Island ice teas. Every Thursday is Open Jam, where you can become part of the Rum Runner’s entertainment. Also, Thursday is Rum Runner’s Thirsty Thursday special, offering a variety of price cuts on a multitude of drinks.

Tavern on the Square

206 S. Washington Sq.

(517) 374-5555







With a more sophisticated style than college town bars, the Tavern on the Square features pints on draft and bar grub.

Decorated with crystal chandeliers and leather barstools, the Tavern on the Square is a step up from what most college students are used to when going out, namely Rick’s American Café. Yet the tavern has been described as a sort of post-grad version of Rick’s. It still has loud music playing after lunch hours and rarely suffers from bringing in customers in the evenings.

The Black Rose

101 S. Washington Sq.

(517) 371-8700


Hankering for the sounds of Van Morrison and the Chieftains? Looking for a good place to order a pint of Guinness lager and eat shepherd’s pie? The Black Rose is a traditional Irish pub, complete with a good-looking dark interior and live music every Saturday. It is also conjoined/shares bathrooms with another bar, Edmund’s.

The menu consists of normal bar grub as well as some good, yet Americanized, Irish food. With the food, the feel and the drinks of Ireland, The Black Rose is as close as you can get to an Irish pub without being in Dublin.

The Green Door

2005 E. Michigan Ave

(517) 482-6376


Having the self-proclaimed best live music in Lansing, the Green Door is a blues bar in Lansing with live music six nights a week. Menu items range from original appetizers like their buffalo stogies, to their sandwiches, pizzas and calzones.

The Green Door is a spacious bar that has live entertainment just about every night. All of the music played is either blues or rock n’ roll. The bands are mostly  local, middle-aged blues bands that have become regulars at the bar.The Green Door is almost always packed, catering to  Lansing night-goers

The Avenue Cafe

2021 E. Michigan Ave.

(517) 853-0550


A coffee shop during the daytime, the Avenue Café is an eclectic hangout for people of all ages. During the nighttime, it becomes a large, two-level bar with occasional live music.

The drinks flow as billiards and other bar games are played by a predominantly young crowd during the night. The booths are refurbished booths from the set of Pulp Fiction.

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