Bobs, Dana, or Foss: students discuss their dining hall of choice

Of all the qualities Colby students share (i.e., a strong desire to learn, a dedication to the community, a genuine hatred for that college in Brunswick, etc.) quite possibly the most universal is also the most innate and animalistic: hunger. Whether a student is on a strict post-freshman 15 diet, or lives every moment planning the next meal, every human being has an inherent need for food. As a result, each requires a constant provider of this necessity. Disregarding the presence of a few non-meal plan options such as the Spa and Mary Low Coffee House, there are three main dining halls at Colby that “consistently provide” food for students throughout the year: Dana, Foss, and Bobs. Each with different daily menus and located at various spots on campus, these dining halls have their own individual personalities and attract specific crowds of students, respectively.

Dana, the largest dining hall, is located centrally—just beyond the health center. Being that it is on the first floor of a densely populated dorm, Dana is generally a hot spot for students living upstairs. “I eat in Dana because I live there,” Helen Sears ’20 said, “it is just the closest”. Dana dwellers, however, are not the only students blessed with proximity to the dining hall; Mary Low, Hillside, and Foss residents also choose to head there for meals. “I usually like to eat in Dana,” Kallie Hutchinson ’19, a Mary Low Resident, said, “I live on that side of campus so it is just the easiest for me”.

Besides the convenience of the location, Dana also draws students due to its unique atmosphere. “I generally try to go to Dana as much as I can because I like the music they play,” Eli French ’20 said. Others similarly enjoy its large structure. “As a member of the field hockey team, I usually eat team dinner with them in Dana,” Hutchinson said, “There are so many girls and Dana is really the only place we can all fit together at one table.”

Of course, a dining hall would be nothing but an empty (albeit well laid out) room without its food. Thus, it should come as no surprise that Dana’s cuisine is another one of its main attractions. “I like Dana sauce” Sears said, describing the Thousand Island-esque dressing available only in the Dana dining hall. “They stopped making it for a few days a couple of weeks ago and no matter how hard I tried, I simply could not replicate it. I guess I will just have to continue going to Dana for my fix!”

Just down the hill from Dana is Foss; an alternative to the other two dining halls. One of its many points of appeal is its location. “Since I live in Mary Low, Foss is very close which is great for me,” Hutchinson said. “I also like to study in Foss, so it’s easy to just stay after lunch or dinner and take out my textbooks.” Foss’s food is also generally healthier than that of the other two dining halls. “I think it’s especially cool how Foss caters to people who choose to be a vegan or vegetarian-just giving them that option is really awesome.”

The atmosphere of Foss, however, seems to make up even more of its allure, drawing students from all across campus no matter their proximity. “I try to go to Foss for every meal that I can,” Julia Warnock ’19, a West resident, said, “I just love the environment in there.” And what makes up such an attractive environment? According to Warnock, it is a combination of things. “When I walk into the dining hall, I just feel very at-home. Especially when I have had a stressful day, I know that all I have to do is walk into Foss, and I will leave with a smile on my face,” she said. “Also, all the same people go there, so I recognize all the faces that walk through. This gives me a very reassured feeling, which is refreshing amidst the everyday stresses of college life.”

On the eastern side of campus is Bob’s, a dining hall with similar amenities to Dana but with a smaller, more intimate feel. Again, however, one of its more common allures among students is its location. Situated at the base of frat row, Bob’s draws students from GoHo all the way to West. “I usually go to Bob’s for breakfast, since it’s closest to my dorm and to my first class,” French, a West Resident, said, “It is just convenient in that way.”  On the other hand, its location can also be an issue for students regularly on the other side of campus, closer to Foss and Dana. “Bob’s is actually my favorite dining hall, but I unfortunately cannot go there a lot since it is so far away,” Hutchinson said, “I’m never over on that side of campus long enough to go there for a meal. It is usually just quicker and easier to eat at Foss or Dana.”

Although there are obvious differences in terms of atmosphere, food, and people at Colby’s three dining halls, there seems to be one characteristic that determines a student’s “regular” dining hall of choice: location. “All and all, it really just depends on where I am on campus,” French said. food

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