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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    OPINION: No family here for family weekend? Don’t let that stop you from having a fun time!

    Courtesy Ariday Sued
    Columnist Ariday Sued, top right, and her family. Because they live in Philadelphia, they have not been able to make it to Family Weekend, but it doesn’t mean Family Weekend can’t be a great time.

    Family Weekend is one of those weekends  that a student never forgets. The University of Arizona in general provides the most extreme day parties, football games and activities, but nothing compares to Family Weekend. Despite not having any of my family come to Family Weekend (because Philadelphia is a long way away), I could still feed off of the energy it brought.  

    Last year, I lived in a dorm close to both Old Main and University Boulevard. From the moment I woke up that Friday of Family Weekend, I felt and knew that everyone was already celebrating. What makes Family Weekend so wild is that many of the students’ parents are alumni, so they are ready to relive their glory days. If they are not alumni, students will for sure show them how UA gets down. That is the beautiful aspect of the UA: even if you are not familiar with the school, surroundings or traditions, people are extremely willing to show you and more likely than not include you. 

              RELATED:  Campus Heath’s tips on what to do if you’re spending family weekend alone

    Initially I felt nostalgic and upset the week leading up to Family Weekend because, of course, I missed my family, especially my baby siblings. I wanted them more than ever to experience what everyone else’s family was. I wanted to show them around and how to bear down. It is absolutely normal to feel that way on a weekend that is filled with the reminder of everything you miss. 

    Good thing I was wrong! Yes, my family was not here, but Family Weekend is one that anyone at the UA can enjoy! As soon as I stepped onto University Boulevard, I saw a whole bunch of my friends and acquaintances who, as expected, asked me where my family was. I was truthful, and they ended up inviting me to join whatever they were doing for the day. I was overwhelmed by invitations to be “adopted” for the weekend and was also overwhelmed with the amount of attention and care people were willing to give me, even though I was not a true family member. This act of kindness really convinced me for the 1000th time that I made the right decision to attend the UA. Here I always feel included and wanted. I believe it’s crucial for every university to have this spirit, because it allows students to truly grow a love for their school. 

              RELATED: Enjoy campus without breaking bank

    I am aware that not everyone may find themselves in the same circumstances that allow themselves to be “adopted” for the weekend, so if you find yourself alone this Family Weekend here are some tips on how to stay busy and stay local:

    1. Hike “A” Mountain

    2. Take advantage of resources you pay for, like Campus Rec

    3. Get ahead with classes

    4. Tour the Arizona State Museum

    5. Go thrifting on Fourth Avenue

    6. Volunteer at Ben’s Bells

    7. Clean your room

    8. Rent a bike and ride to new places


    If these tips do not look appealing to you, I would really encourage you to just go out and walk around campus, hit up your friends and ask them to join their fun. It is definitely a 10/10 experience! The energy at UA is contagious, and everyone should be able to enjoy it. It is the type of energy that just makes you want to buy every piece of UA swag in the bookstore, because you truly just want everyone to know you go to the best university ever.

    If you take one thing from this, know that you are not alone. Just because your family is not at Family Weekend does not mean you cannot have fun. Take it from me! Everyone’s experience is different; discover yours in the most UA-possible way.

    Ariday Sued is a junior studying journalism and political science, who loves UA. Follow the Daily Wildcat on Twitter

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