Five fun ideas for graduation weekend in Macon

Downtown Macon streetscape showing a banner down the side of a building that says "Welcome to Macon Where the South Rocks!"
Downtown Macon. Photo by Christopher Ian Smith

Graduation is an exciting end to your chapter at Mercer University, but don’t speed up the goodbye. Whether it’s squeezing in time with all of your friends, showing off your city to your family or visiting your favorite spot for the last four years, there is a lot you can do in a little bit of time. Outside of your graduation events on campus, here are some great ways to spend time in Macon.

Grab a meal (or two) somewhere local

Downtown Macon is home to over 50 locally owned restaurants. Is there one on your list that you haven’t made it to yet, like Dovetail or Kinjo Kitchen + Cocktails? Or is there a place you and your roommates visit every week that you’ve yet to take mom to? This is the time! Check online for reservations and hours. Since the Macon campus graduation is on a Monday, it may be better to grab your celebratory meal on the Friday or Saturday night before.

Take a hike in America’s next National Park

In case you missed it, the Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park is one step closer to being named Georgia’s first national park after a bipartisan-backed bill was introduced in Congress this month. From 9 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, the park is open and ready for you to explore its rich history. I recommend taking a hike to the Great Temple Mound to see one of the best views of Macon.

Sip on a locally brewed beer or craft cocktail

For those 21 and older, you know downtown Macon is a hub for a fun night out. In your four years at Mercer, you may have heard of a few watering holes downtown, but have you visited all of them? For a great beer, stop by Fall Line Brewing Co., and sip in their beer garden. If you’re more into a sophisticated drink, check out Longleaf Distillery, which just won gold in a national spirits competition. For some live music and cheap drinks, head over to JBA and play some pool with great tunes in the background. Grant’s Lounge is another great choice if you’re looking for amazing sounds and a heck of a night out! For those who don’t drink, don’t fret. Mocktails are all the rage in downtown Macon, and you can find them at most bars and restaurants. Some places I recommend for mocktails are Quill, Daisy Tequila Bar and The Rose Room, the newest bar on the block. And of course, if you want to take your parents somewhere extra special, take them to Monkey’s Paw Tiki Lounge. Be sure to snag a reservation first. 

Join the community in celebration

From 5-8 p.m. May 12, come hang at Bragg Jam’s Second Sunday on Coleman Hill. This is a free outdoor concert overlooking downtown Macon, and this month’s event is extra special because we are celebrating downtown Macon winning the Great American Main Street Award. This event is open to the public and sure to be a great time with music from Black Pe8rl, giveaways, face painting, balloon art and more.

Get in on the pickleball craze

Have you joined the pickleball bandwagon? You need to! It’s the fastest-growing sport in America, and Macon is home to an indoor pickleball facility with 32 courts called Rhythm and Rally Sports. Make plans to play there, and experience the fun for yourself. The facility has equipment for rent if you’re new to the game, or you can bring your own.

However you choose to spend your time in Macon before graduation, we know you’ll have fun. Be sure to follow @downtownmaconga on Instagram for extra tips and local events. 


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