Thrill-seeking students revive adventure club

The daredevils and adrenaline-driven students at Northern Kentucky University can explore their adventurous sides in one of the university’s newest clubs—Adventure Addicts.

Adventure Addicts is about getting out and being active, all while building long-lasting friendships, said Marissa Smith, the club’s president.

“You’re not just, like, going to a coffee shop and sipping tea or something,” Smith said.

The club plans to go rock climbing, whitewater rafting in Gatlinburg or West Virginia, hiking and camping at Red River Gorge or Big Bone Lick, attending Cincinnati Reds major league baseball games and just being active.

To join, the club asks for a $50 fee that would cover local events; but for bigger trips, there are some extra fees.

Before semester’s end, the club is planning an overnight climbing adventure for its members at Climb Time of Blue Ash, a rock climbing gym in Cincinnati.

Smith said Adventure Addicts will rent out Climb Time for a night and learn the basics of climbing. To stay overnight, it runs about $15 to $20 per person.

Smith said she decided to start the club after NKU’s previous adventure club had failed from lack of communication and meetings.

As a member of the old club, Smith said she learned how important it is to have such an active group on campus, but it needed to be done the right way. By planning more meetings, events and trips, and being more involved in general, Smith sees success for the club in the future.

With help from fellow Adventure Addicts and club officers, Matt Gardner and Jameson Ballou, Smith said she should have no problem. Gardner and Ballou said they are excited to get people involved on campus.

Smith, Gardner and Ballou all credited their love of adventure to simply growing up that way, Gardner specifically. Ballou said after he went bungee jumping, he knew he was addicted. And Smith said she loves all types of activities and she cannot choose just one as her favorite, but rock climbing and skiing are high on her list.

With Adventure Addicts, Smith said she hopes to get people involved in something new because there is nothing offered at NKU for adventure.

“NKU is a commuter-based campus, so it can be hard to get to know people,” Smith said. “But this club is an opportunity for students to get out and into activities that build long-lasting friendships.”

For more information on Adventure Addicts, contact Marissa Smith at or Matt Gardner at Adventure Addicts are also on OrgSync; go to to join.

Story by Claire Higgins