BY ANDREW BENNEY
Conestoga College students returning for another year at the school may have noticed some slight changes around Doon campus. One of the most noticeable is the complete renovation of what used to be called The Sanctuary and its transformation into a more modern and inviting space, under the new moniker of The Venue.
Conestoga Students Inc. (CSI) operates the space which functions as a cafeteria, bar and lounge space. The restaurant is open Monday to Thursday from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. and Friday until 4 p.m. The bar is open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from noon to 6 p.m. and during special events.
In addition to the renovations, there is a new selection of drinks and all new menu.
“It’s definitely going to be different,” said Josh Deming, a third-year international business management student, adding he never really went to the Sanctuary much before, but he will be checking it out now that they are selling different beer.
January will bring more changes, with two of the largest being a William’s-style restaurant service and menu, and the extending of the bar hours to five days a week. William’s is a popular fresh café known for breakfast and their signature wraps, sandwiches and soups. As for those who cannot wait until the new year, a selection of craft beer will be on tap by Oct. 17.
According to Cameron Jones, president of CSI, this $85,000 renovation came about thanks to student input obtained by CSI and its board of directors.
“The changes to the Sanctuary were inspired directly by student feedback. Last year our board members were told that the space felt dated and uninviting so we changed things around to make it something the students wanted,” Jones said.
The Venue will be hosting a number of pub nights (events that run outside of the normal hours) in the coming months. These include renowned XXX-rated hypnotist Tony Lee on Oct. 20, as well as various Halloween events and Oktoberfest celebrations. The annual general meeting is scheduled to take place at the establishment on Nov. 7.
This may also be great news for some students in need of a part-time job for the school year, as The Venue is currently looking for new employees for the coming months and is accepting resumes for bartenders and servers interested in joining the team.
On top of that, there will no longer be a maximum drink policy in effect, but, as always, maturity and common sense should be used when in attendance.
“We (CSI) always encourage everyone to practise safe and responsible drinking regardless of if they’re in The Venue or not,” Jones said.
He added, “It’s a great space. We’re happy we could provide the students with what they wanted and we encourage everyone to come check it out.”