Experience BCS


Experience BCS


Bryan and College Station—also known as BCS—are part of “Aggieland” located in the heart of the Brazos Valley. Although small, these two cities have a number of exciting activities due to its central location and large population of college students. The following sites offer various places to visit in the local area, list of restaurants, local events, and more in the BCS area! 


Additional Resources in BCS 

Many organizations maintain online events calendars, and the following is only a selection of websites. These calendars are continually updated, so check frequently for the most up-to-date information.

Brazos Valley Worldfest

Takes place yearly in November, and celebrates the cultural diversity of Brazos Valley. Many international student organizations organize booths to share information about their countries. Free admission.
http://brazosvalleyworldfest.org

Bryan and College Station Public Library System

Check out books, DVDs, audio books, etc. To obtain a free card, you need photo ID and proof of current address (for example, lease or utility bill). Programs vary seasonally and include story times, reading programs/groups for children and adults, and computer classes. http://www.bcslibrary.org/

First Fridays

On the first Friday of every month, Downtown Bryan becomes filled with art, music, food, and family-friendly activities. https://www.downtownbryan.com/first-friday-activities

Friends of Chamber Music

Free chamber concerts during Fall and Spring semesters. Info on schedule and venues:  http://communitychamberconcerts.org/

Local Museums

The area has several museums, including: 
  • Brazos Valley African American Museum: Documents the history of the African American community. http://www.bvaam.org
  • Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History: Exhibits, live animals, classes and workshops, nature trail.http://www.brazosvalleymuseum.org
  • Carnegie History Center: Part of the Public Library system, the center has collections of photos and other documents illustrating the history of the area and the State of Texas. http://www.bcslibrary.org/?page_id=56
  • Children’s Museum of the Brazos Valley: Hands-on exhibits, special and summer programs. http://www.cmbv.org
  • George Bush Presidential Library and Museum: Exhibits, story-telling events for children, free movie screenings, and more.http://bushlibrary.tamu.edu

On Campus Art and Culture Tour Guide

Follow this link https://www.tamu.edu/about/arts.html for information on free on-campus art galleries and museums. (Note: Non-students pay admission to George Bush Presidential Library and Museum.) 

Seasonal Celebrations

Civic organizations, local governments, and area churches organize family-friendly celebrations throughout the year, such as Easter Egg hunts, Fourth of July celebrations, Fall Festivals, etc.
These events are open to the community, and you do not have to be a member of the organization to participate. Advertising is generally by flyer, online events calendar, or word of mouth.

FitLife

Very affordable on-campus exercise and physical fitness program directed by the Applied Exercise Science
Laboratory at Texas A&M University. Open to the public. Sign-up is on a semester-by-semester basis. Reduced fee parking passes available:http://fitlife.tamu.edu/

Movies

There are 2 commercial movie theatres in town (Cinemark Movies 18 in College Station; and Premier Cinema in  Bryan). Movie tickets are very affordable, especially for matinee shows (before 6 pm).
The George Bush Presidential Library has free screenings of movie classics during the summer months. Check http://bushlibrary.tamu.edu for schedule.
MSC Aggie Cinema movies are shown on campus and are open to students and non-students alike. Movies are shown when classes are in session. Check schedule at http://cinema.tamu.edu/

Recreation Departments of the City of Bryan and City of College Station 

Find information on swimming pools, parks, adult sports teams, youth activities, and community education online at:
City of Bryan Parks and Recreation Department: http://www.bryantx.gov/departments/?name=parks
City of College Station Parks and Recreation Department: https://www.cstx.gov/departments___city_hall/parks
In the summer, City of College Station organizes free open-air concerts in the Wolf Pen Creek area. 

Texas A&M Rec Sports

Family members can purchase a membership or buy day passes to use the Rec Center facilities. For details, call Membership Services (979-845-7826), or check http://recsports.tamu.edu/membership/
 
Rec Sports also offers Outdoor Equipment Rentals for camping and outdoor sports. Open to the public, and no membership is required.http://recsports.tamu.edu/services/

Bus Services

Aggie Spirit Buses (Texas A&M Transportation)
Check online at http://www.transport.tamu.edu/busroutesfor available routes and times.
Note: Transportation Services does not run routes as often during holidays, weekends, and break periods. Valid TAMU ID or BTD ID required to use Aggie Spirit busses (BTD ID can be purchased at BTD Main Office).

Brazos Transit District Public bus transportation network, operating Monday – Friday, 5:00 am to 7:00 pm.
Routes and schedules at http://www.btd.org/fixedroutes.htmor by calling (979)-778-0607.
Students with TAMU or Blinn ID can ride for free. 

Cab Services

Cab service in BCS and also to Houston and Dallas. Please be aware that cab rides outside of the BCS area can be very costly.

Ride Share Services

Ride share services allow you to share a ride with another person or group of people headed to the same destination. Please use caution when using these services.
  • Zimride TAMU (associated with the Texas A&M University): https://www.zimride.com/tamu
  • Ride Share Facebook page: See group for more information. You must be a member of the group in order to view locations and times of rides.

Rental Cars

Nearby Airports

 For more information on transportation by bus outside of BCS, visit the Explore Texas page

Specialty Grocery Stores

Most area grocery stores offer a wide variety of items, including international, Halal, Kosher, and organic foods.
 
BCS Food Market
2704 Texas Avenue, College Station - Intersection of Texas Avenue and Harvey Mitchell Parkway (FM 2818)
(979) 695-6888 
Wide selection of Asian food products
 
Brazos Natural Foods
4303 South Texas Ave, Bryan - Next to Luby’s restaurant
(979) 587-3511 
Vegan, gluten-free, specialty spices, organic meats, natural products
 
Brazos Valley Farmers Market
Check locations and times at http://www.brazosvalleyfarmersmarket.com/
Farm-fresh produce, breads, etc., from local producers
 
The Howdy Farm
The Howdy Farm is a sustainable farm created and powered by students and is located behind the Horticulture and Forest Science building, just a short walk from main campus.
For more information, please visit http://tamuhowdyfarm.weebly.com/.
 
Dong Yang Food Market
3409 South Texas Ave., Bryan - Between University Avenue and Villa Maria
(979) 846-3000 
Asian food products, especially for Korean cuisine
 
Farm Patch Produce Market
3519 South College Ave., Bryan - Across from Chicken Oil restaurant
(979) 822-7209 Fresh fruits/vegetables, including varieties used in Asian cuisine; ingredients for
Mediterranean cooking 


Filipiniana Asian Emporium
3737 East 29th Street, Bryan - Between Carter Creek Parkway and Briarcrest Drive
(970) 817-8174 
Asian food products, especially for Filipino cuisine
 
HEB
1900 South Texas Ave, College Station - Intersection of Texas Ave. and Holleman Drive
(979)-693-0361 
Halal chicken
 
Kroger
2412 Texas Avenue South, College Station - Intersection of Southwest Parkway and Texas Ave.
(979) 693-9974 
African and Caribbean cooking  
 
World Spice Market
1381 Old Arrington Rd, College Station, TX 77845
(979) 485-9373
Wide selection of spices, South Asian food, and ingredients for  cooking

Mini Mart

3800 South College Ave., Bryan - North of Hensel Park
(979) 260-6868) 
Wide selection of ingredients for Indian cooking
 
Readfield Meats
2701 South Texas Ave, Bryan - Between Villa Maria Road and downtown Bryan
(979) 822-1594
Halal meats, including chicken, goat, lamb, and beef (call ahead to check availability of fresh Halal meat)
 
Village Foods
1760 Briarcrest Drive, Bryan - By Bryan High School
(979-846-9600) 
Good selection of products for people with gluten intolerance and other food allergies, vegan
 
ZIP’N Shell Station and Indian Grocery
609 University Drive, College Station—Across from Mitchell Physics Building
(979) 846-6368 
Wide selection of ingredients for Indian cooking

Shopping on a Budget

Department Stores
Many department stores offer aggressive discounts before, during, and after holidays (such as Christmas or Presidents’ Day) or to sell off seasonal items and clothing. ‘Black Friday’ (the day after Thanksgiving) is known for incredible deals, but requires you to be an early riser and have tolerance for extremely competitive co-shoppers.
 
Dollar Stores
Originally selling everything for “1 $ or less”, these stores still offer very good prices on many items of daily living, including household and cleaning products, decoration materials, and shelf-stable food items.
 
99¢ Only Store
2104 S. Texas Avenue, Suite 200, Bryan  (979) 823-4919
 
Dollar General
12905 Wellborn Rd, College Station – Intersection with Rock Prairie Rd. (979) 696-9197
 
Dollar Tree
1661 S Texas Ave, College Station (979) 696-6241
 
King Dollar
2408 S Texas Ave, College Station – Southwest Kroger Shopping Center (979) 694-3860
 
Resale/Thrift Stores
Resale (thrift) stores sell items donated by community members and businesses. Items sold may include furniture, household goods, clothing, toys, etc., and are generally very cheap. The selection can vary from one day to the next. Check before you buy, since you cannot return items. Resale stores are usually operated by benevolent organizations, meaning that your purchase will help support people in need.
 
Goodwill Thrift Stores
2704 S Texas Ave, College Station, (979-764-8297) – by BCS Food Market
2600 S Texas Ave, Bryan, (979- 823-2083) – close to Harmony Science Academy
Clothing, furniture, household items, toys, etc. 
 
Habitat for Humanity ReStore 
2211 Maloney Ave., Bryan – close to Harmony Science Academy
(979-775-8122)
Furniture, household items, appliances, building materials
 
Hospice Thrift Store
2814 Cavitt Avenue, Bryan
(979-775-7227)
http://www.hospicebrazosvalley.org/support/shop.html
Furniture, household items, clothing, toys, etc.    
 
Twin City Mission Second Chance Thrift Stores
424 N. Main, Downtown Bryan
803 Wellborn Rd., College Station close to campus
3808 Old College, Bryan – close to Farm Patch
https://www.twincitymission.org/
Furniture, household items, clothing, toys, etc.

Clothing

The following stores sell mainly clothing, but you can also find an eclectic collection of household goods, luggage, decoration materials, etc., at most of these businesses. Selection varies, so check back often.
 
Burke’s Outlet
1200 Harvey Rd, College Station
(979) 764-3029
 
Plato’s Closet
1104 Harvey Rd, College Station
(979) 694-8440
Buys and sells name brand clothing and accessories for teen and women
 
Big Lots
1913 S Texas Ave, College Station – across from HEB
(979) 696-0327
 
Once Upon a Child
2220 S Texas Ave, College Station – close to Target
(979) 696-7161
http://www.onceuponachild.com/
Buys and sells name brand children’s clothing, toys, and furniture
Ross
1911 S Texas Ave, College Station– across from HEB
(979) 694-5399
 
Stein Mart
2408 S Texas Ave, College Station– Southwest Kroger Shopping Center
(979) 696-3210
 
TJ Maxx
1128 Harvey Rd, College Station
(979) 694-2008
 
The Warehouse at C.C. Creations
114 Holleman Dr, College Station           
(979) 693-9664
Texas A&M themed apparel (t-shirts, shorts, etc.)

Household Items and Furniture

Quality Used Furniture
2039 Harvey Mitchell Pkwy S, College Station
(979) 693-8669

 
Tuesday Morning
1210 Harvey Rd, College Station -
(979) 693-2613

In addition to Texas A&M University, the Bryan/College Station area also has a campus of Blinn College . Blinn College is a community college offering 2-year degrees (Associate level), as well as vocational training for mechanical and other trades.

International citizens who plan to take courses at Texas A&M University or at Blinn College must first seek admission to these schools. Please note that visa regulations currently do not allow persons in F-2 visa status to enroll or to audit higher education or vocational instruction. (For Change of Status procedures and timeline, please refer to "F1 - Status Related Details" section on the F-1 Status page.) 

Persons in F-2 visa status can, however, take classes that are considered of recreational or a-vocational (not related to a trade) nature, or sign up for basic English language classes.

There is a rich offering of such recreational classes available in the area, for example through the College Station Parks and Recreation Department (http://www.cstx.gov/), and through local museums, art galleries, and craft businesses.

For opportunities to improve English language skills, please click here

Consumer Handbook

The U.S. General Services Administration recently published the Consumer Action Handbook. The handbook contains information of topics ranging from Banking to questions on what do if you receive a Fraudulent Phone Call. Access the handbook online at https://www.gsa.gov/cdnstatic/ConsumerActionHandbook.pdf

Internet Bulletin Boards

Internet bulletin boards, such as Craigslist, are a great resource for buyers and sellers alike. However, because of the relative anonymity of the internet, fraudulent information and illegal activity is frequent. Caution is advised when using Internet Bulletin Boards.

Texas A&M Off-Campus Survival Manual

A practical guide on how to survive as an off-campus student. Access the manual online at: https://studentlife.tamu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/OCSM-for-website.pdf

 


If you see something on this page that needs to be updated, please let us know by emailing us at ISS@tamu.edu