Café Q to be open later starting Friday

By on November 4, 2009

In response to student concerns about overcrowding in Quinnipiac’s dining facilities, Chartwells has expanded the hours of the Cafe Q. It will now remain open until 7 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and 9 p.m. the rest of the week. Café Q used to close at 6 and 8 p.m., respectively. Hours for the specific food stations will remain the same, with the exception of Coyote Jack’s Grill and Sandwich Central, which will stay open an additional half hour on Monday-Thursday. They will now close at 8:30 p.m.

The creators of the Facebook event, “Entire Campus dinner at the RAT,” which highlights student dissatisfaction with the current dining situation, think that more still needs to be done.

“We feel good that we think a lot of people from Quinnipiac came out and voiced an opinion and Quinnipiac kind of was receptive toward it at least,” said sophomore Michael Scaduto, an administrator of the event. “However, as a whole, the adjustments they made don’t seem to address a lot of people’s concerns about the hours, especially Sundays, when the cafeteria still closes kind of early.”

This is not the first time that Chartwells has attempted to extend the hours of the Café. Several years ago, the hours were extended at both the Café Q and the Bobcat Den, but according to Associate Director of Dining Services Leean Spalding, not enough students came during the extended hours to warrant the additional expense.

The changes, effective Nov. 6, are temporary for the fall semester. According to an e-mail sent by Chartwells to all students Monday morning, the changes will become permanent if enough students dine during the extended hours.

“If we can at least break even, then we’ll continue it,” Spalding said.

Scaduto said that while the Café needs to be open later, it’s the hours of the stations that matter, not the Café itself.

“They could start closing stations at like 6:15 and keep the actual building open until 7, but that doesn’t really help anyone eating dinner,” he said.

In response to the changes, the creators of the Facebook event have decided to move the eat-in to Café Q. It will now take place at 6:30 this Sunday evening.

Spalding said the ongoing construction on campus was the root cause of the congestion at the Bobcat Den, but Chartwells would do what they could to alleviate the crowding.

“I don’t know if it’s going to help, but we’ll try to open this up and try to relieve some of the traffic at the Bobcat [Den] in the evening,” she said.

Junior Jack Lamson, an employee of the Bobcat Den, believes much of the crowding problem is due to its convenient location.

“The ‘Rat’ services on average many, many more people than the Café does per hour,” Lamson said. “Most people who live in Mountainview, who live in Perloth and Troup, and those places that are right next door, they’d rather go to the ‘Rat’ … than walk all the way to the Café.”

Lamson said that to reduce congestion, the Bobcat Den may ultimately need to be expanded, although he admitted that its location makes that difficult. He was also pleased with the fact that the administration responded to student concerns.

“It doesn’t have to be SGA that gets results for us,” Lamson said. “An average student can do it, and whatever means they take, it can get results from the administration.”

Scaduto was also glad to get a response, but was still wary.

“It’s a step in the right direction, but it’s far from winning the whole battle,” he said.

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