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The Owl is a changin’

Closed Saturdays? Not a club? What is this?!

The Owl is set to host several upcoming concerts. / Jingyu Zhang
The Owl is set to host several upcoming concerts. / Jingyu Zhang

Students may have noticed a change in the operations of The Owl this summer. The Owl has cut back on its menu, is putting on concerts, and is closed on Saturday nights.

What gives?

URSU has partnered with local concert promoters Rawk Entertainment to bring a number of headlining acts to The Owl. This is part of a restructuring plan for URSU which is intended to reign in the student union’s operating debt.

We chatted with URSU president Devon Peters about the restructuring of URSU’s finances currently underway. Under the old arrangement URSU accumulated over $1 million in operating debt This created a situation in which the new executive must restructure URSU’s financial operations to remain viable.

In this operational revolution, Peters tells us that The Owl is being changed from its previous role as nightclub to a restaurant, a concert venue, and place for all students. Fans of Thursday night trivia can rest easy, as the midweek hit has been bumped to an 8:30 p.m. start time to accommodate students with classes or who work on Friday morning and are showing no signs of going anywhere.

Owl customers may have noticed the menu has shrunk in recent months; this was done in an effort to consolidate the menu and cut down on potential waste.

I watched Kitchen Nightmares a couple of times, and this seemed to work for the English restaurants that tried it. While the simplified menu is great, many students may wonder what happened to some of their favourite items.

Some students may miss the nightclub type vibe of The Owl of olde, but Peters and URSU are excited about the change and view concerts as a better way to grow student camaraderie and generate income for the students’ union. Halifax’s money city maniacs of the 90s, Sloan, are playing The Owl on Oct. 12, and by the time you have read this, Airbourne of Warrnambool, Australia will have played as well.

Saturday nights at The Owl have also been canceled going forward as they were deemed not profitable, leaving The Owl closed over the weekend outside of specially booked events.        Doubtless, some patrons will be offended by The Owl’s recent shift away from the club atmosphere. These people may be reassured with news that dollar draft will be making a return, but as an occasional special event rather than a weekly debauch. Also, events like Beer Fest and the recent Foam Party will also take place throughout the year.

Only time will tell whether URSU’s changes will bring about the desired results or if their attempts at reform may fall flat with students.

As a student, presuming you’re a student, how does this make you feel? Do you miss the good ol’ days of The Owl? If so, write us a letter! Be as scathing and eloquent as you can in no more than 350 words! Send all letters to carillonopededitor@gmail.com

 

About John Kapp