Submitted by shorts on October 13th, 2008 at 9:39 PM

I saw a very helpful thread last week about a visit to Virginia's law school (I think), and I have the same question this week.

A friend of mine is visiting Duke's law school next month, but has no idea what to do around town or what would be good to check out. Thoughts or advice from anyone who knows the school and area?


Other Chris

October 13th, 2008 at 9:54 PM ^

Imagine the Law Quad, everywhere.  Not my cup of tea, but some people like it.  Durham is semi-sketchy.  Kind of the Ypsi to Chapel Hill's Ann Arbor (my best friend used to live there -- she's in Chapel Hill now).  However, I have had some of the best meals of my life (a long life, with fine meals all over the world) at the Magnolia Grill.  Some of it was the company, but the food and atmosphere is really great.

Raleigh and Chapel Hill are all there in the Triangle, so you could easily check out UNC and NC State, too.  It's been so long since I've been there without kids all I can think of are things like Jordan Lake or Duke Gardens or the Life Science Museum.  Too late for the Durham Bulls now....

ShockFX went to Duke and will probably have something more applicable to those unencumbered by kids. 


October 13th, 2008 at 10:17 PM ^

Okay, so maybe I'm a little biased, but on a serious note, Durham is really nothing but a poverty stricken region other than Duke. It is kind of sad to walk around the streets there (even right by the hospitals) and see the state of that city. As far as around town, there is nothing THAT near to campus, but if you venture out a little bit more down by Bulls Athletic Park you can go to some nice restaurants, including the Mellow Mushroom. Great pizza.

 I would recommend though taking a drive over to Chapel Hill or Raleigh. If he's here around any of the home games, a Southern game would be a great experience for him. It's no Big House, but there is a certain aura that is unmistakable. Chapel Hill is basically a compacted Ann Arbor. And Jordan Lake is gorgeous to see, as are the Botanical Gardens and if the weather still permits, golfing is a must in the Triad area.

 And yes, imagine a very, very large Law Quad. With assholes. And Coach K. 


October 13th, 2008 at 11:27 PM ^

This basically sums up my thoughts.  It's like a giant law quad; they are correct.  And if you don't have kids the girls in Chapel Hill are very attractive (they are attractive if you don't have kids as well, but you get the point).  Raleigh is really nice to visit with a bit of spare time.  Any female friend would appreciate the Sarah P. Duke Gardens.

 Going to school at Duke was actually really nice for graduate school, I'm not sure I'd have loved it for undergrad though.


October 14th, 2008 at 4:03 AM ^

Great info, guys. Appreciate the help.

A couple other questions: 1) You say Durham is a little sketchy, but how about the campus in general?  2) Any recommendations for extracurriculars (bars, places to meet members of the opposite sex, etc.)

Other Chris

October 14th, 2008 at 9:19 AM ^

The neighborhood my friend and her husband lived in (right across the freeway from Duke) struck me as fine and very Ann Arborish, near a Whole Foods and the terrific Magnolia Grill on 9th Street.  Also, we wandered around Brightleaf Square, which was very nice.  They moved to Chapel Hill six years ago, though, so it could have gotten sketchier since then.

chitownblue (not verified)

October 14th, 2008 at 9:18 AM ^

IMO, UNC has a much more more attractive campus, and Chapel Hill is also just much cooler than Durham.

Blue Durham

October 14th, 2008 at 10:15 AM ^

Agree with much of the above except Mellow Mushroom, not so much.  Satisfactions in Bright Leaf Square is much better (pizza, microbrew selections, and to meet Duke Students). 

Magnolia Grill is a nationally regarded restaraunt and somewhat expensive (not really a place to meet students).

Six plates is a decent place for dining and meeting people.

George's Garage on 9th street is a very good late-night bar and a great place to meet students. 

Duke gargens is beautiful place and I take my pups (two of which are pictured in my avatar) there often on the weekends.

Both Duke and UNC have excellent golf courses (I prefer Dukes to UNC's Findlay).  The Sandhills is 1 hr drive due south, where the villages of Pinehurst and Southern Pines are.  About 60 golf courses there, including Pinehust #2 (2 US Opens) and Pine Needles (3 US Women's opens).  All (except Carolina Country Club, I think) are resort course and thus are open to the public. 

There is some history here (all of the Tobacco stuff, Bennett Place where Gen. Johnston surrendered to Sherman about 3 weeks after Appomatox). 

Durham is a blue-collar town.  There are some that are nice, and some not-so-nice areas.  It is the "step-child" of the triangle. 

I have a niece that is in her 3rd year in law at Duke.  She has had only very, very positive things to say about it. 

Chapel Hill is very nice and the UNC campus is only about 10 miles from Duke.  UNC's campus is very similar in style to UM and the diag.  Franklin Street is like State Street.  Start there and wander around, you will find plenty to go and see.