In 1966, the evening meal at Curtis Dining Hall looked like this: men with … hair- denison.edu. cuts. Men with white shirts, ties and jackets, cloth napkins on their laps, and no elbows touching the white tablecloths. White-jacketed waiters passed plates with balanced portions of chicken, potatoes, and peas to each neatly set place. It looks like a world with fewer choices, and perhaps with less stress. Women ate in Huffman, except for those who were signed in as Curtis guests, and freshmen men ate at a separate table. “Ballad of the Green Berets” was the #1 single that year.
This version of Curtis was built in 1940, and it didn’t change until the glass-walled perpendicular overhanging “Jetsons” addition was opened in 1968. It was still called the “men’s quad,” and waiters still carried meals to the tables on Sundays and weeknights, but cafeteria-style service gradually became the norm. “Hey Jude” was the #1 single in 1968, and the world was changing fast, even in Granville.
Curtis Dining Hall is currently closed for its first major renovation since “Hey Jude,” set to open this fall with completely new systems and a very different approach to serving food. The new design is all about individual stations, with prep and cooking done in the open. The showpiece of the renovation is a stone fireplace and seating area.