I grew up spending a lot of time on a lake, so Northwestern’s immediate proximity to Lake Michigan was a huge sell for me. Swimming on the beaches is nice when I can, but even taking a walk just to feel the breeze is very refreshing. The sound of wind on the waves is also very relaxing. I remember sitting on the rocks my freshman year during band camp with some other newcomers and just enjoying a chance to lie back and be peaceful. There was something special in that moment. For the last two summers, as the sun is going down, I’ve taken my trombone down to the rocks to play towards the lake. I’m sure my roommates appreciate not having to hear me practice.

Seeing the sunrise on the Lakefill is a bucket list item for many students, and I got to have that last spring with the theatre troupe I produce. We stayed up after our spring feature show, and ended up going out to see the sun peek over the horizon. It was a fascinating moment of adrenaline, exhaustion, and yet, somehow, peace. The year was nearly over, and it had been crazy, but rewarding.

I’ve always found the Lakefill at night or early morning to be one of the most soothing places on the Northwestern campus. Now, I know most people think that’s crazy, because it’s so gorgeous during the day that it seems silly to go any other time, but if you take a stroll down there, you might be able to see what I see in it.

–Jim Alrutz

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