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University of Missouri

Homecoming Hangouts

Famous alumni name their favorite CoMo restaurants.

For many Mizzou alumni, Columbia’s hangouts and restaurants are inextricably paired with college memories like the Columns and Francis Quadrangle. So where did notable grads spend their time as a student in CoMo? Here are four Tigers’ favorite stops when they come home.

Buzz Sutherland

Buzz Sutherland

Jeff “Buzz” Sutherland, A&S ’85

I always visit two places while I’m at Mizzou during my visits to perform at Déjà Vu or Jesse Auditorium. The first is the gorgeous lawn behind Jesse Auditorium, as it is not only the home to those stoic Columns, but it is also the place I fell in love at first sight [Sutherland met his wife, Julie, at Mizzou]. The second place is the intramural fields, as many lifelong friendships were formed there in the guise of kindness when we actually got way too serious about meaningless sports. Can’t wait for my next visit to CoMo to fill up on Shakespeare’s Pizza and grab a sniff of that great smell at G&D Steakhouse.

Candy Coburn

Candy Coburn

Candy Coburn, BA ’98

I cannot miss a trip to Murry’s when coming to CoMo. I have spent many an hour hanging with my band there. What used to be a rowdy place after Tigers football is now a new tradition with my kids (aka future Tigers). We are making sure they can appreciate the finer things in life. Can’t wait to get back! M-I-Z!

John Anderson

John Anderson

John Anderson, BJ ’87

Booche’s: Cheeseburgers? Thanks, I’ll take 17 of them. Best part of a football Saturday is getting out cash and getting a table at Booche’s. Shakespeare’s Pizza: I’m 48, and I still try and find a coupon in the Add Sheet to get a couple bucks off a pie by reciting Shakespeare or Mick Jagger. The Heidelberg: I would eat my last meal in Columbia at the ’Berg — a nod to both the pork tenderloin sandwich and the J-School. The bar is good, and the table service is excellent, but don’t ever pass up the chance to hang out on the roof with (ESPN writer) Wright Thompson, BJ ’01, and his pals.

Elaine Viets

Elaine Viets

Elaine Viets, BJ ’72

I went back to Mizzou in the mid-’80s to give the commencement address at the School of Journalism. Afterward, I shot pool and had a burger at Booche’s, then went to a party at a student apartment with orange shag carpet and a battered avocado-green fridge. The students still stocked up on toilet paper from Memorial Union. I drank Cold Duck. The next morning, I realized I’d forgotten the most important lesson from my student days: Never drink wine with a plastic cork.

When I returned last spring, I barely recognized Mizzou: The grounds looked like botanical gardens, the grungy J-School had been handsomely renovated and the students seemed smarter. Booche’s still had good grease, but Harpo’s was huge, and new restaurants served sophisticated twists on ethnic food, such as Bleu’s black tiger shrimp with chipotle gouda grits.

But the traditions survived: Students still swiped TP, parking tickets were handed out with brutal efficiency, and when the temperature plunged some 50 degrees, the cold mid-Missouri wind sliced through me, just like when I was in school.