Join a club

For more information and a complete list of CU student groups, visit colorado.edu/studentaffairs/sofo and click on the SOFO Club Guide.

Campus can be overwhelming for new students. With more than 30,000 students pursuing more than 200 majors, the possibilities are daunting. It can be hard to tailor your years here to fit your expectations -- but not impossible.

More than 800 student organizations exist at CU-Boulder. And they're well provided for, too. The university doles out nearly $2 million to these groups annually. Your niche is out there, and finding it can mean the difference between enjoying the college experience or simply surviving it.

To help, we've made a list of ten out-of-the-way clubs. So don't be shy. Take the leap and get involved. It might just be the best decision you make here.

Sword Skirmish Club

Want a rest from responsibility? This group is guaranteed to give you an afternoon as carefree as childhood.

Students are invited to relieve their stress by becoming 10-year-olds for an afternoon. Toy weapons are not permitted on campus though, so twice a month, this group turns Boulder's parks into battlefields. For $8, participants get their choice of sophisticated foam weapon--from warhammers to spears to katanas--and hours of fun. Think you're too mature for kid's games? Come finals, you may very well change your mind.

Info: swordskirmish.com

Contact: swordskirmish@gmail.com

Capoiera Angola Club

This graceful martial art is a fusion of music and combat. Steeped in history, it was founded by slaves in Brazil as a defense against their oppressors. Fighters dueled to music in order to mask the deadly art from their captors. Eventually, the slavers discovered the power of Capoiera, and it was outlawed under penalty of death for more than 400 years. Persecution, however, only solidified the art in vibrant culture, and it flourishes to this day.

CU students have the unique opprotunity to learn this ancient and deadly dance from Larry Stephenson, a pupil and representative of reknowned capoierista Mestre Joao Grande. All sutdents are welcome regardless of ability.

Info: colorado.edu/StudentGroups/CapoeiraAngola

Contact: larryboulder@hotmail.com

The Backcountry Club

You're missing out if you don't ride down a Colorado peak waist-deep in powder.

It's not easy to ride outside of the ski areas, however. You need the training, the gear, and the access to be able to ski or board safely in the backcountry. Luckily, there's a club for that. The Backcountry Club will give you access and connect you with other powderheads. The latter is the most important, because if you're unfortunate enough to get caugh below an avalance, your life may depend on your buddy.

Info: backcountryclub.org

Contact: backctry@colorado.edu

Left Right TIM Improv Comedy

Can you make your peers laugh with you, not at you? Then this is your calling.

The group holds auditions each semester. The only requistite is humor. Aside from that, any Buff can join. The group performs both short and long skits in true improv fashion. Members practice daily, so the audience is sure to enjoy gut-busting hilarity. So if you're the type to recieve tomatoes rather than cheers from the crowd, show up and get a laugh from CU's official comedy troupe.

Info: leftrighttim.com

Contact: improv@colorado.edu

Big Freakin' Deal Film Fest

The film industry can be one of the most difficult to break into. This group is dedicated to making the process easier.

Students created this club to give budding filmmakers the opprotunity to show their work to professionals and enthusiasts from Colorado and receive constructive critism. Each year, they put on a Hollywood-sytle red carpet film festival. Sumbissions range from documentaries to experimental films. Good films receive prizes from local industry representatives and bad films, well, they get an award too: The Best Bad Movie Award.

Info: bfdfilmfest.com

Contact: bfdcolorado@gmail.com

Zymurgy Club

Don't let the name scare you. Zymology is the study of fermentation. That's right, the science of brewing.

Members of this club gather each month to swap recipies and tips about home brewing. Other activities include trips to local breweries and guest speakers. It's a great way to get a headstart if you're planning on making zymology into a career. A leg up is important in Colorado, where competition is steep among brewers. We have the largest concentration of microbreweries in the country, with more than 100 across the state. Welcome to Beer Heaven.

Contact: ian.p.campbell@colorado.edu

Sports Car Club

If your favorite sound is a revving engine, this is the club for you.

Motorheads unite in this club to talk about, show off, and race their cars. But you don't need a Ferrari to join. In fact, the most common car among members is (no surprise) the Subaru WRX. The others span the field from the Honda Accord to the BMW M3. No matter if they'd rather race on pavement or gravel, drag race or drift, all members of this club have one this in common: their love of burning rubber.

Info: cusportcar.com

Contact: cuscc1@gmail.com

Slow Food CU

This club may have the answer to that scourge of dorm residents, The Freshman 15.

Slow Food is an international movement to provide an alternative to fast food franchises. The Boulder chapter cooks their own meals and tours local eateries and farms. When it's time to ditch the dining halls and eat out, they offer a healthier option. Plus, by supporting local and sustainable food, you're helping others in addition to your body.

Info: slowfoodcu.wordpress.com

Contact: slowfoodcu@gmail.com

Anime Anonymous

Despite the pun in this group's name, Anime Anonymous is not a rehabilitation group. It's exactly the opposite.

Members of this club gather weekly to view Japanese animation, or anime, in TV shows or full-length movies. These are not gatherings of off-and-on anime enthusiasts, but hardcore fans. Though most of the anime in their extensive library has English subtitles, a lot does not. Because of this, the group is more than a film club. It's also a language club, where both Japanese and English speakers have the opprotunity to learn the other language.

Info: colorado.edu/StudentGroups/AnimeAnonymous

Contact: anime-anonymous@colorado.edu

Rumi Club

College is the time to break out of your comfort zone. This club will help you get out and mingle with students from around the world.

The Rumi Club embraces the teaching of Mawlana Jalaluddin Rumi, an 11th century spiritual and literary figure. Their purpose is to foster understanding between people of different cultures by uniting them under common values. If you the college experience to broaden your horizons, then this is the club for you.

Info: rumiclub.org

Contact: info@rumiclub.org