TIGER KICKOFF: Things to do in Waco, Texas

Thursday, November 3, 2011 | 11:30 p.m. CDT

Waco is home to the Branch Davidian cult ranch, or the Mount Carmel Center. It's where religious fanatic David Koresh and 82 of his followers died during a 1993 government siege. The ranch, which burned during the siege, is open to the public.

So, there's that.

"Many people think that, unless you’re into cults, there isn’t much to do in Waco," Baylor junior Victoria Carroll said via email. 

But Carroll said there are "non-cult-related" activities to keep students and visitors entertained. She recommended checking out the "beautiful" Baylor campus. It features what the school claims is the tallest free-standing rock climbing wall in Texas, as well as a bowling alley in the Bill Daniel Student Center. 

Next to the student center is the Bill and Eva Williams bear habitat, where visitors can meet Joy and Lady, the two black bear mascots. People used to feed the bears Dr. Pepper, the Texas-based soda that has a museum in Waco, but had to stop because it was bad for their teeth.

The town offers other options. Ashley Farrell, a Missouri graduate who works for the Baylor athletic department, suggests the Cameron Park Zoo, which has more than 1,700 animals and is along the Brazos River. For barbecue, she suggested Rudy's and Vitek's.

Then there is George's Restaurant, known for its chicken fried steak and "Big O" 18-oz. draft beer. George's is one of the most popular hangouts before football games.

"George's is a must!" Farrell said via Twitter.

Wild West Waco, a night club with the slogan "2-Steppin' and Long-Neckin'," has what it claims is the biggest country dance floor in town.

Left your dancing shoes (boots) at home? Relax over a cup of coffee at Common Grounds.

"Common Grounds is, in my opinion, the best coffee shop in the area," Carroll said. "It offers many different types of specialty coffees along with a rustic ambiance."

Carroll said that if "all else fails," students resort to getting a thrill by driving through the remains of the Davidian compound.

"I probably wouldn’t recommend it, though," she said.

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Mitchell Moore November 4, 2011 | 9:09 a.m.

I believe the Texas Rangers (law enforcement...not baseball team) Museum is there.

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