The ultimate guide to eating at Ohio University’s dining halls

I will level with you, dining halls just aren’t fun. After not eating dining hall food for a while they don’t seem so bad, but try eating at a dining hall every day and you will grow sick and tired of the same food every day.

Eating pizza, burgers, and more pizza gets pretty annoying, so this article will help you find variety and get to know the dining halls at Ohio University.

Boyd Dining Hall/The District on West Green:

The District on West Green at Ohio University.
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A lot has changed since my freshman year, when Boyd was the ugliest dining hall paired with the worst food within a 100-mile radius. Today, Boyd is newly renovated and offers much healthier food compared to the other dining halls. On the flip side, Boyd is not where you go for pizza or burgers.

Boyd offers a sandwich station, a grill section with fairly lean meats, a pasta section, and a salad bar. You will learn really quickly as a freshman that eating healthy is difficult, especially considering the vegetable to fried chicken ratio in the dining halls. That’s why I would take advantage of Boyd, especially if you live on West Green since it will be close to your dorm. If you are looking for a healthy option in a much more modern and clean setting, Boyd is the dining hall for you.


Nelson Dining Hall:

The biggest dining hall on campus, Nelson offers all-day breakfast, a grilled food section, pasta, thin-crust pizza, Asian food, and an ice cream bar. Nelson is my personal favorite, and probably has the widest selection of any dining hall that OU has to offer.

Nelson Court at Ohio University
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This means that you can go to Nelson a lot and, as long as you mix things up, not get too tired of the food. It should also be noted that Nelson Court is the only dining hall to offer all-day breakfast, which means waffles for dinner is now a reality for you. Also, there is a made-to-order omelette station, which is actually pretty cool relative to the somewhat bland offerings of Ohio University’s dining halls. Nelson is on the edge of South Green, and within very close walking distance to East Green as well.




Shively Dining Hall:

Shively Court is your standard college dining hall. It is okay, but nothing too special. There is a grill station, thick-crust pizza, pasta, salad bar, and a section dedicated to home-cooked style meals. Personally, I find Shively underwhelming, but you can decide for yourself which dining hall fits you best.

Shively Dining Hall at Ohio University
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Shively, like Nelson, has an ice cream/dessert section that is pretty solid. One thing that Shively does hold as a strength is that it has a sandwich bar, as well as an extended building specifically for Shively Grab ‘N Go. Shively Grab ‘N Go offers sandwiches, soups, fruits, and chips. Placed right next to Morton Hall, Shively is the dining hall on East Green. So, if you live on that side of campus you will probably be making a lot of trips to Shively.

Other resources:

I think you will find the locations and hours of each dining hall helpful, as well as the menus on any given day. Hopefully you found this article helpful, and if you visit OU or end up coming here, let me know in the comments which dining hall is your favorite and why.

Saturdays and the scrambling Shively dwellers

2015-10-23 16.48.13Six out of seven days of the week, there is a line coming out of the Shively Dining Hall, tracking almost the entirety of Morton Hill. When it closes every Saturday, however, Shively residents are left scrambling to find a place to eat. They are filled with exhaustion, hopeless looks in their eyes and hungry bellies. What are they to do for food each Saturday?

For some people, the simple solution would be to just walk down the hill and eat at Nelson. Freshman biochemistry major and Shively resident Erika Stroh said, “I usually just go to Nelson.” Traveling to Nelson is not that simple of a task for a spoiled Shively resident. As a resident of Shively Hall myself, I can personally attest for how convenient it is to live directly above a dining hall. I am definitely spoiled as are my fellow hall mates. The trek to Nelson is seemingly short and effortless, but after a long week of classes, the thought of walking back up the dreaded Morton Hill after eating a big meal is entirely unpleasant.

If a fellow friend from Shively is feeling brave enough, it is a fairly common thing to walk up to Court Street for some food options there. Freshman Shively resident Katie Grace said, “I go to Nelson and [my roommate] and I usually eat out on Saturday nights.” Similar to walking to Nelson, it’s often too much effort for an exhausted college student. So if they somehow muster up the strength and desire, a Shively kid can be found with a Chipotle bag, pizza box or a drink from wherever they journeyed. Stroh also said, “If I’m feeling risky, I go to Chipotle.”

2015-10-23 16.58.29Another less popular but very real option is forfeiting the opportunity to eat a “real” meal on that one day. I know there have been a few Saturdays in which I’ve survived solely on saltines in my dorm. In a mix of being too comfortable in their beds to get up, not giving any effort to get food and not wanting to spend money, Shively residents can be heard rustling through their refrigerators and stashes of snacks for something to hold them over until Sunday.

There is a potential happy medium to all of these options: ordering food. Delivery, in my opinion, is one of the best inventions. My fellow Shively residents and I have found ourselves wondering what on earth we would eat on some Saturdays. But then someone in the group strikes genius and poses the option of ordering something. With this option, students can order their own things separately or split the total of a pizza to reduce the amount of money spent. It is glorious.

This coming Saturday, like all other Saturdays, my fellow spoiled Shively residents and I are going to be hunting for the best dining option since our beloved Shively Dining Hall won’t be operating. If a keen eye is kept, they can succeed in their search for food.