St. Patrick's Day trial deemed a success for The Spoke

Reversion to bar for a day generates enhanced sales, patrons

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

This week’s St. Patrick’s Day celebrations caused The Spoke Lounge to revert back to its old ways as a fully liquor licensed lounge.

The restructuring of The Spoke’s operations involved having the entrance through the atrium of the University Community Centre serve as its one and only doorway. The glass doorway at the south entrance was fenced off to prevent Spoke security from having to monitor two entrances.

“Students enjoyed having the space and treated it with respect,” Matt Kington, VP-finance for the University Students’ Council, said.

According to Kington, a similar restructuring was proposed in the failed USC referendum recently voted on regarding renovations to the UCC. As a result of the failed referendum, the USC currently has no future plans for renovating The Spoke.

Nevertheless, he is happy with how the St. Patrick’s Day proceedings transpired.

“The Spoke did really well,” Kington said, when asked about the financial feasibility and success of The Spoke’s restructuring during Tuesday’s festivities. “It even outsold The Wave [in gross sales].”

Charlotte Hall, site manager of The Spoke and The Wave, echoed these sentiments.

“We haven’t seen sales like these since the lounge had a full liquor license and a patio,” Hall said.

“This is definitely worthwhile,” she added with regards to reverting The Spoke to the way it originally operated.

Hall also expressed delight with how smooth the day proceeded. Throughout St. Patrick’s Day, The Spoke experienced only one ejection.

While many students expressed positive feedback from their experiences at The Spoke on St. Patrick’s Day, some hold concerns over reverting the establishment into a fully liquor licensed lounge.

“I and others do a lot of [school] work here,” Katherine Bishop, a third-year science and social science student, said. Bishop argued the bar-like environment would make The Spoke less conducive to studying.

She added that a fully liquor licensed lounge would restrict the many underage students at Western from attending the numerous events held at The Spoke due to age restrictions.

Nevertheless, Hall believes Tuesday’s festivities at The Spoke illustrated that reverting back to original operations could prove successful.

“It was really great to have the students out to support us and see the how the lounge originally was.”

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