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Thursday, April 18, 2024

The Avenue Roundtable: What to do the first week back

Celebrate the start of Summer B with our recommendations for week one

If your summer classes already have you stressed out, take a look at The Avenue’s list of fun things to do this week. Whether you want something lively or relaxed, we’ve got you covered.

Drawing Out Summer

Aubrey Bocalan

Are you looking for something creative and laid back? Figure on Diversity, a local art organization dedicated to promoting diversity, is hosting a figure drawing workshop called Drawing Out Summer. 

Participants can learn how to draw nude models live. All experience levels are welcome, even beginners. 

Francis Espiritu, a 21-year-old UF digital arts and sciences senior, participated in the first Drawing Out Summer session, and it was his first time attending an event by Figure on Diversity.

“Despite it being my first time, I felt very comfortable,” he said. “The vibe and the environment is very welcoming.” 

He understands it can be intimidating being surrounded by artists who may be more skilled or experienced, especially in a place where you may be drawing a nude model. But Drawing Out Summer was a very mature environment, he said.

“Even if you're not an artist, there's a value in it and there's appeal in it because everyone is so nice,” he said. 

This workshop series meets every first and third Monday of the month until September. The sessions are from 6 to 9 p.m. 

On the first Monday, they meet at 109 SE 4th Ave. at House Of Waking Life. On third Mondays, they meet at Curia on the Drag at 2029 NW 6th St.

There is a sliding scale admissions price, and participants can pay what they feel comfortable with.

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The Swamp’s Hot Dog Eating Contest

Leia Ulrich

What better way to celebrate the Fourth of July than helping reach America’s annual gluttonous consumption of 20 billion hotdogs?

If you’re a frankfurter fanatic, this is your time to shine. 

Pass by The Swamp Restaurant, located at 1104 SW 2nd Ave., at 4 p.m. for the chance to win a $250 first place prize. Whoever eats the most hot dogs in less than 10 minutes wins, with second and third place prizes following. 

Students can’t wait to watch their friends participate in this hysterical tradition. 

Emily Klingenberg, a 21-year-old UF public relations senior can’t wait for the event, she said. 

“I haven’t been to Swamp since the spring so I’m excited to stop by and visit,” Klingenberg said. 

She and many other students are just returning for Ssummer B and are looking forward to local events throughout the summer. 

There will be drink specials running all day, so be sure to cool off with a Red, White and Boom Martini. 

Outreach Thrift Store 

Valentina Sarmiento

A new wardrobe for the hottest semester doesn’t have to be expensive. New and returning students do their back-to-school shopping in a sustainable style at the Outreach Thrift Store located at 2430 NW 6th St.

Outreach Thrift Store poses an enticing solution for returning summer students’ back-to-school shopping needs. 

At one of Gainesville’s longest standing thrift stores, students can shop for affordable and sustainable alternatives to clothing and other fun, kitschy knick-knacks to stock up their dorms.

Leah Janigian, a 22-year-old Santa Fe College art senior, frequents Outreach and is constantly on the hunt for additions to her dorm and wardrobe. 

“Outreach is stocked with so much great stuff,” Janigian said. “It’s unique from the other thrifts because it’s cheaper and great quality.”

As the youngest of five siblings, Janigian is no stranger to second-hand attire. Thrifting is one of her favorite past times, she said. 

“You should see my apartment,” she adds. “I’ve brought so much from Outreach home.”

Clothing items range within a couple of dollars of each other, the most expensive merchandise capping at under $10 on average. 

Longtime customers and local thrift hounds alike patron Outreach for their modest prices and attentive staff. 

Aubrey Bocalan, Leia Ulrich and Valentina Sarmiento contributed to this roundtable. They can be contacted at, and  

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