“Wow” exclaimed alumni on Facebook when a photo of the new Roger’s Pub & Grille was posted this winter, announcing the pub’s reopening. “Can hardly wait to visit.” This latest rendition of the storied pub, sporting a design voted on by the Babson community, is by far the most stylish. But its aim remains the same: to provide a place for folks to hang out and have a good time.
From its humble beginnings in 1974 as the Beaver Brau in the basement of Coleman Hall to its more recent incarnation as Roger’s Pub in Park Manor Central, the campus bar has been a place where undergraduates often go after classes. That’s not to say others wouldn’t join them. But, for the most part, undergraduates dominated the scene.
In its new home alongside Trim Dining Hall, the pub has become a place where even more of the Babson community gathers. “In the later hours, we certainly get lots of undergraduates. But now we often see graduate students dropping in before and after class, and a lot of the staff and faculty come for lunch or dinner,” says Dan Garden, general manager for Trim Dining Hall, which includes the pub. “President Kerry Healey even hosted an event for the trustees.”
With three big TVs, the pub already has attracted sports fans. “We live-streamed a couple of Babson games, including hockey and basketball,” says Garden. And giving a nod to the past, the pub is home to the pool table from the old Roger’s Pub. The new venue also has a large adjacent room, the “Grille,” that opens after Trim Dining Hall closes. The space includes a stage, where bands have played, and a drop-down screen for broadcasts and events, such as movie nights.
“We’ve only been open since mid-January, so we’re still experimenting,” says Garden. He is listening to suggestions from visitors, implementing them when possible. “Someone asked why we don’t have a daily special, so we added one.”
In time, the pub might host more live music, trivia nights, karaoke. Garden even plans to add a Babson-branded beer. “We have the freedom to try new things,” he says. “It’s been fun.”—Donna Coco