Law SchoolSpecial Sections

A guide to east campus neighborhood culture



Becoming a law student — or any postgraduate student for that matter — is undoubtedly a paradoxical milestone in a student’s academic career. Fresh from the revelries and relative bliss of undergraduate life, postgraduates seem to instill a self-imposed maturity almost overnight. Gone are the days of skipping assigned readings and cutting that last lecture on Friday to skip town.

What was a “work a little, play a lot” attitude has turned into “work a lot, work some more and even work while you play.” School now takes absolute priority, as what will be learned in the next few years will define the success the student and their aspired career forever. It’s time to grow up — for real this time.@@for [email protected]@

The law school attitude reverberates through the surrounding community of the east campus neighborhood. Due to a high concentration of undergraduate students living, working, and studying in the West University neighborhood, the east side of campus manages to conjure up its own identity and maintain a family-oriented atmosphere. Rowdy campus bars are replaced with quieter and slightly more mature atmospheres such as Agate Alley Bistro and McMenamin’s Café — two staples and hot spots in the neighborhood.

Manager Tony [email protected]@[email protected]@ has been with Agate Alley since the bistro opened in 2008 and says the family-friendly atmosphere of the East 19th Avenue and Agate Street intersection has created a unique vibe — where establishments are restaurants by day and bars by night.

“Our food menu keeps locals coming back while nightly drink specials regularly attract a younger crowd.” Schmidt said.

Deals such as “Taco Tuesday” are a popular hit with all demographics — seven dollars provides two tacos and an ice-cold Pacifico. Any law student looking to relapse into undergraduate shenanigans or for a general good time can visit Agate Alley on Thursday nights for “drink wheel night,” where a wheel is spun every half hour to determine a three-dollar drink for that interval of time.

For happy hour specials, look no further than McMenamin’s East 19th Café. With a wide selection of beers on tap and manageable happy hour prices, McMenamin’s provides the perfect location for grabbing a beer and doing some reading. Manager Melissa [email protected]@[email protected]@ noted that the café is a popular study spot with the law students.

“Students will come in and work, then take a break and play pool or darts and just hang out.” Leach said.

Ask any local about McMenamin’s, and the instant response will entail a tidbit about the fantastic food. A wide selection of savory burgers and appetizers retain the bar atmosphere while defining the café as a restaurant with more to offer than just a college bar.

The 19th and Agate intersection has no shortage of alcohol-serving venues, but the family-friendly atmosphere of the neighborhood is aided by establishments like Prince Puckler’s, the ever-popular ice creamery. Anita Schendel,@@[email protected]@ who runs the business with her husband, says the law school neighborhood is a definite transition area.

“We are away from where most students live, but because we are still right near campus, the area has the college feel to it. We see families and also groups of law students coming in after a long day of school.” Schendel said.

Prince Puckler’s has proven to be a great spot to unwind or refresh, and many students are seen on the outside patio devouring cones with flavors, like Mexican Mocha, while reading or writing.

Undoubtedly, the West University neighborhood is fantastic and defines student life at the University of Oregon. However, east campus and the law school neighborhood seem to define student culture and embody much of the Eugene spirit in a small area. Extremely friendly, decently quiet and, most importantly, affordable, the 19th and Agate intersection provides students in the area with ample study space and downright fun environments — a perfect mix for serious yet youthful law students.


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