If you live on campus, you have more than likely been to Dalton. Freshmen might not be as aware of this as the upperclassmen are, but the dining hall has undergone some major changes. Every time I go, I feel as if I see something new, changed, or taken away. Have these changes been for the best?
One of the nice things about this renovation is the new and improved eating options. The “Dalton Dash” we hear so much about is not an urban legend, but a real consequence of the food choices we were given. Now, more options like the vegan bar and more gluten-free items are available to us. This has pleased a good majority of the campus, but others are upset.
Notice something missing from the back corner? The sandwich shop is now no more. For me, this seems like a bad move. Instead of giving the students more options, over 10 reliable sandwich choices were replaced with a juice and dairy bar.
Of course, the new look is very chic and up-to-date, but there are definitely some drawbacks. A major issue is the limited seating. Every day, there are students doing laps of the room, trying to find a table so they can finally eat their meal. By the time they sit down, the food is no longer hot. The booths have been replaced with seated tables and along the back wall near the dessert counter is a dining table with chairs as well. Around the pillars are cushioned benches with tables around them.
When I would go to Dalton, I used to feel comfortable not having to rush while eating. I could sit there talking with friends, but now I feel as if I have to leave sooner because of those roaming around the room looking for somewhere to sit. It looks nice, but it is not exactly ideal seating for a university with over nine thousand students.
I’m very indifferent about the new Dalton renovation. I love how it has been updated to fit a cleaner look, but at the same time I feel it has lost its familiar feel. I loved going to Dalton and being able to relax, but now it has such a different vibe that’s difficult to adjust to.
There is something about a dining hall that needs to be welcoming rather than sophisticated. Don’t get me wrong – the new Dalton is very nice, but there is something about the old Dalton that made me feel more at home.