Champaign Journals

My Home (for four years, at least)

A travel journal to Champaign by Nosefish

Quote: Reflections on a university town set in the cornfields of Illinois. This journal is to let others see what my home university and community is like - particularly important to me as my travels take me further away from it. (I plan to update this journal about once a week.)

My Home (for four years, at least)

Overview

Quote:
Champaign-Urbana are the twin cities of central Illinois. Although it's difficult to characterize the feel of the cities, a city's downtown area is often telling. Champaign hosts an almost-trendy downtown area with its share of bars (including a martini bar, Boltini's, and a wine bar, Bacaro), cafes, restaurants, and vintage/secondhand/antique stores. Urbana's downtown is significantly quieter with cafes (Cinema Art, the Courier), a fantastic bakery (Mirabelle), and a very forlorn mall/community center (Lincoln Square). In the summer, Urbana hosts a Farmer's Market at Lincoln Square with lots of local goods: fresh and/or organic produce, bakery stuffs, etc. Then there's the University, which...Read More

Europa House

Hotel

Quote:
For the main house, it's 2 bedrooms for 4 people, plus a bathroom, hall closet, living room, kitchen. Sounds like a decent deal, right?

Except that the total rent for each unit (plus utilities), per month, is far in excess of what you can get in surrounding areas (Urbana -or- Champaign) for much less money. Even though its touted as a "stepping stone" for students who are not yet ready to get an apartment "on their own", it's pretty much the same thing. And it's mostly full of loud, obnoxious freshpeople who thought it would be "cool" to have an apartment.

Plus, we would get nasty e-mails from the owner of the house. Not the greatest place I've lived.

Member Rating 1 out of 5 on August 2, 2002

Europa House
802 West Oregon Street
Champaign, Illinois 61801
(217) 344-0074

Radio Maria

Restaurant

Quote:
This is probably one of my favorite restaurants to visit because: 1. you can dress up (but you don't have to!) and 2. you can get creative food there. Local artists designed the interior; it's very cool looking without being uber-trendy. The cuisine is international fusion - but don't let that pretentious classification throw you off. The food is flavorful, unique - but not necessarily "simple."

Also, they don't take reservations. On weekends, get ready to wait -- or better yet, spend some time at nearby Cafe Kopi or Esquire (a bar), and they'll call you when your table is ready.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on August 2, 2002

Radio Maria
119 N. Walnut Street
Champaign, Illinois
398-7729

Caffe Paradisco

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant | "Cafe Paradiso"

Quote:
Depending on when you go, Cafe Paradiso's atmosphere changes - but the environment stays the same. Semantics, I know, but I'll put it this way: The cafe opened in August 1998 in the hands of Melissa Fanella. She formerly operated an art gallery in Mount Prospect, so it follows that the cafe doubles as an art space. Since it is located on-campus and close to residence halls and apartments, it attracts a lot of students in the evenings. The cafe is open 24 hours/day during finals week in December and May -- it's fairly crammed at night, so stake out a spot early, and order an espresso (or three) to fortify yourself. The cafe serves often-homemade deli fare (very yummy sandwiches and soups), b...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 9, 2002

Caffe Paradisco
801 S Lincoln Avenue
Champaign, Illinois 61801
(217) 384-6066

Intramural Physical Education Building (IMPE)

Attraction | "IMPE (Intramural Physical Education building)"

Quote:
http://www.dcr.uiuc.edu/outdoor/out_sch.html

The scuba for beginners course includes information about gear and equipment, water entries, surface dives; the rental of mask, fins, and snorkel; and pool training with tanks. This class is the first phase to obtaining your diving card - so be prepared to take a master level class, as well.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on August 2, 2002

Intramural Physical Education Building (IMPE)
201 E Peabody Drive
Champaign, Illinois 61820
(217) 333-3806

That's Rentertainment!

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Quote:
That's Rentertainment! is owned by Geoffrey Merritt (who, I think, also runs some record labels), and is married to Melissa Fanella, who owns Cafe Paradiso. "That's Rentertainment" is a video rental store, not to be confused with Blockbuster or others of that ilk. They rent a pretty wide variety in both VHS and DVD formats; the store is divided into: foreign, independent, animation, anime (Japanese animation), experimental, Westerns, Hitchcock, science fiction, etc. (I spend most of my time in the foreign DVD section.) They also sell movies, paraphenalia, and a local film magazine (Microfilm). Their entryway features lots of posted notices, flyers, free 'zines, etc. They're very community-friend...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 9, 2002

That's Rentertainment!
516 E John Street
Champaign, Illinois 61820
(217) 384-0977

Quote:
IEI is located on-campus at 1205 West Nevada St. in Urbana. Started in 1967, the institute sponsors programs for international students to "improve their English language abilities for study at an American university or to further professional or personal goals."

They offer courses in: reading/writing, listening/speaking, oral communication, English grammar; English through current events, through computers and the Internet, through literature, and through business communications; as well as TOEFL (Teaching of English as a Foreign Language) Strategies, and Pronunciation Tutorials. click here for the website

Quote:
My introduction to IEI leads up to this: I am hosting a Japanese student through their summer host program. His name is Akira, and he is from Konan University in Kobe, Japan. Kobe is in central Honshu (the main island of Japan). The other students are from Dokkyo and Senshu Universities, respectively. Earlier in the summer, students from the Korean Maritime University in Pusan were here. Too bad I missed them. Korea is the next country (after England) for which I plan an extended stay. I'm very excited about the hosting opportunity, not only because it gives me a chance to learn more about Japan (I would love to travel there), but because it will allow me to reverse roles. Thi...Read More