The people and places behind Athens, Ohio's iconic brick road
Author: Emily McIntyre
Emily McIntyre is a junior Journalism major with a French minor at Ohio University; she is also working toward a duo-speciailization in English and Nutrition. Emily is Managing Editor for the campus publication Backdrop magazine and interned last summer for Cleveland Magazine.
Greek life is often associated with multiple different stereotypes, but that shouldn’t stop students from rushing a fraternity or sorority. To clear up the labels and confusion, I chatted with five fraternity members here at Ohio University about what it’s really like to rush and what guys can expect from being in Greek life.
The tangy smell of tomatoes and beef grows stronger as one descends the escalator connecting the first and second floors of Baker University Center.
Across from West 82, a line of hungry college students twists and turns around the Bobcat Student Lounge. Each of them is inching closer to the edge of Bobcat Depot where they can pick up a small Styrofoam plate to start building his or her own ultimate nachos. There is an assortment of toppings across the four tables, including cheese, meat, sour cream, salsa and guacamole.
But what’s a nacho bar without nacho-flavored chips, Doritos, Bugles and Pringles?
Every Wednesday at noon, University Program Council (UPC) puts on Flavor of the Week. Sponsored by the Senate Appropriations Committee here on campus, the event has been a tradition for four years.
“I think it’s just a good way to get students involved in doing something fun with free food,” says Hannah Hershfield, UPC Public Relations Executive.
Although flavors sometime overlap during the year—such as chocolate and chocolate-covered strawberry—the organization tries its best to not repeat any flavors within the same year. Each week, a UPC programmer and group of event planning associates (EPAs) come together to brainstorm a flavor and which foods would work well with it. But if the creativity bug isn’t biting, the whole UPC board will come together to decide.
This week’s theme came from a special cause.
“We’re doing Nacho for Bobcathon for their dance week, so they did one activity a week to spell out ‘dance,’” says Jenna Sopko, UPC University Events Executive. “Today is ‘n,’ so we did nacho for flavor of the week.”
Out of all the flavors they’ve ever done, Hershfield’s favorite is cheese and Sopko’s favorite is chocolate. One year when UPC used to hold the event in Front Room, they did Red Velvet as the week’s flavor. People were able to sample items such as hot chocolate, whoopie pies, cookies, popcorn and cake.
Some Flavor of the Week selections haven’t been as great of a hit; take jalapeño for example.
“We definitely have some flavors that have been way more successful than others, and then we look back and we’re like, ‘Why did we even pick that flavor?’” Sopko says with a laugh.
On the sidewalk outside of 8 North Court Street rests a colorful and inviting sign on an easel. It urges a hungry or thirsty passerby to stop inside Fluff Bakery to enjoy one of the daily specials that’s written in fluorescent pink and green marker. Driven by my curiosity—and guilty sweet tooth—I couldn’t help but take a peek inside during the fall of my freshman year.
I fell in love with Fluff that day. Though I’ve been there more than a dozen times, I still have a difficult time deciding what exactly I want to order. The clear display cases and shelves tempt me with assortments of cookies, cupcakes, elaborate pastries, cakes and cannolis. I want it all. After I settle on a baked good, I almost always need a cup of coffee to wash it down with. They offer a spectacular array of roasts and flavors from Silver Bridge Coffee; I personally recommend Jamaican Me Crazy, which is infused with caramel, hazelnut and Kahlua.
Fluff Bakery also serves up some tasty breakfast and lunch options. I have yet to try the Fluffhead Sandwich, but I’m a big fan of their BBQ Pork Business Biscuit. Barbecue sauce is not exactly a common condiment on the breakfast table, but this monster of a sandwich left me full until dinnertime. Bonus: the meals are made-to-order, so they’re hot every time.
This place is a favorite of mine because everything is reasonably priced and the quality is unbeatable; Fluff sources their ingredients from local suppliers such as Snowville Creamery. The seating is great too—customers can people watch at the bar stools along the window or sit down at a table toward the back of the store if they’re looking to snag a quieter study spot.
I highly recommend checking out their Instagram to catch up on daily specials and other promotions, such as Pie Day Friday (free coffee with a slice of their featured pie when it’s eaten in-store). But one tip… don’t scroll through their pictures when hunger strikes.