April 24, 1997. The Day the 'Lanche Died.
As an undergraduate student at Marquette University from 1987-1991, my not-so-unofficial motto was "Don't let school interfere with your education."
Seriously, who will wake up at age 70 and say, "Damn, I shoulda gotten out of bed for that 8am biology lab!" I'm sure this perspective on collegiate life was shared by many. It even was perfected by a few folks I know.
One reason this life view was so rewarding at MU was the Avalanche Bar. As the saying went, "Get your degree at Marquette, get your education at the 'Lanche." This bar could not be topped for any number of reasons, including:
- -Red, White and Blue beer on tap, cheap enough to buy with couch change.
- -Naked beer slides
- -Avalanche mugs -- an exclusive club
- -Two windows (kind of)
- -It was generally an upper-classmen's hangout....very few newbies
- -The 'booze to go' cooler at the front of the bar -- the ideal way to invite the thirsty locals into the collegiate scene.
The 'Lanche was demolished nine years ago today in favor campus redevelopment and some rather nice student housing. Perhaps the students in those units wake up from time to time hearing the ghosts of patrons past at the 'Lanche.....some singing 'Brown-eyed Girl', 'Born to Run' and other cliche bar tunes. I'd bet there are also a few ghostly shrieks from those who dared slide naked across the 'Lanche's battered linoleum floor (often coated with shards of broken beer bottles). And the smell -- well, there's no way the unforgettable stench of stale beer can ever be removed from that site, not after more than 60 years of serving Milwaukee's finest beverages.
My best 'Lanche memory? I enjoyed my last beer as an undergrad inside that hallowed saloon -- slamming a few before running across the street to claim my diploma in front of the Union. Thanks, Dr. Friman!
The Mathu Party Page has a bunch of good material on the 'Lanche, including poignant poetry. Check out their home page here.
Avalanche Bar, RIP. Anybody have any favorite Lanche memories?