GW officially opens fifth-floor Hippodrome

The fifth floor of the Marvin Center officially opened Wednesday with the ceremonial bowling of the first frame by Mike Petron, chairman of the Marvin Center Governing Board.

Petron’s spare was directly preceded by the first official break on a billiard table by Student and Academic Support Services Vice President Robert Chernak. Though most of the facilities had been open for students during the last month, Wednesday marked the first day in which all services, including Dine-a-Vision, a new diner, were open.

We are probably 90 percent there, but fully operational, said Scott Jones, assistant director of Staffing and Student Services, who has coordinated the renovations of the new Hippodrome. Jones said most of the headaches are over now.

In a small ceremony, Jones was awarded employee of the month honors from Mike Gargano, assistant vice president for Student Academic and Support Services, for his hard work and dedication in the renovation process.

Other members of the administration agreed with Jones.

I think this is excellent, exactly what we envisioned. (The fifth floor) is a wonderful addition for students, faculty and staff alike, Petron said.

I think it is great, said Shane Klein, special programs coordinator for the Marvin Center. It looks fabulous. However, there are still a few things that need to be finished.

Jones noted that several parts of the renovation process were not yet complete. He said the cyber caf? and the sound and lighting systems are unfinished. Jones said, overall, the remodeling was right on schedule and would be 100-percent complete by January or February.

The grand opening will be followed by a number of special events later in the week to showcase the facilities. The events will include swing dancing from 10:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Thursday night, a coffee house starting at 9 p.m. Friday night, and Karaoke night Saturday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Klein said she hoped to continue holding such events in the Hippodrome. She explained the administration is looking to cosponsor different events in the fifth floor along with a number of student groups.

Jones said he was happy with the student response to the fifth floor.

We have pretty much exceeded all our expectations, Jones said. Both the arcade and the bowling alley have never seen more business, he said.

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