The Late-Night Transit service, nicknamed “the drunk
bus” due to the typical state of its riders, is a pivotal part of the Stevens
“There are always good people on the bus, and it’s
usually a lot of fun,” said Josh Sawlsville, a senior at the University of
Wisconsin-Stevens Point. “You meet new people all the time, and it definitely
Excluding Wausau, Stevens Point is currently the only
city in Central Wisconsin to have its own public transportation system. The
Late-Night Service operates Thursday through Saturday from 10:15 p.m. to 3:15
Although this service is financed through UWSP student
fees, anyone is allowed to use the route at any time, free of charge.
Alex Stauber, a junior at UWSP, also enjoys riding the
drunk bus. Aside from an enjoyable ride, Stauber views the late-night service
as a welcome alternative to drunk driving.
“It gives you a free ride to get downtown, and you can
go have a good time. We don’t really have to worry about getting home then
because the bus drops us off right at our place,” Stauber said.
As fun as the drunk bus may be for its riders, it can
be a strain on the drivers.
“The hours are harder, and they need to have some
special customer service skills, to be sure. Patience is very important,” said
Late Night Transit supervisor Bryan Sebree. “Because of the nighttime
conditions, there are a lot of bicycles that tend to shoot out in front and
skateboarders. They really have to pay a lot of attention while keeping order
on the bus.”
A newly hired driver goes through approximately two
weeks of training where they learn all the city bus routes, including campus
According to Jeremy Kowalski, a Stevens Point Transit
employee who was recently appointed to operate the late shift, captaining the
drunk bus is bearable.
“It’s something different, and it helps out the people
so you don’t have to drive drunk,” Kowalski said.
Yet, like any other service which caters mainly to
individuals who have been consuming alcohol, the drunk bus can become
“Me and my friends almost beat up a bunch of Chicago
Bears fans one time,” Sawlsville said. “They got kicked off the bus and a bunch
of cops came, so that was fun.”
Jason Halambeck, who is also a senior at UWSP, shared a
“I remember there was a fight on here one time that got
so intense that blood splattered on my pants, so that wasn’t good,” Halambeck
Since altercations such as these are minimal, Halambeck
continues to ride the drunk bus.
“It’s safer than driving, and it’s a lot of fun,”
For more information on the Late Night Transit service,
visit http:// www.stevenspoint.com/transit.