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Ruane's Den, a new café in Harkness House, now open

South campus just got a whole lot cooler.

With its historic residence houses lining the College's beautiful Tempel Green, the part of campus known as 'south' has always been a favorite place for students to live. With the opening of Ruane's Den this week, it is also a favorite spot to study, meet with friends or just grab a latte. A cozy, 1,500-square-foot café complete with comfy couches, wireless Internet and two large-screen televisions, Ruane's Den is located in Harkness House.

The new café, built with a generous gift from the Ruane family, occupies a space that once served as a small dining facility but had been vacant for years. "It's really important for students in south campus to have a gathering spot," said Will Hardy '14, who served on a committee that planned and oversaw the project. "It's a great place to do homework - I've already been here to work on a group project - or just to grab something late at night."

Ruane's Den is managed by Jazzman's Café and Bakery by Sodexo and is open from 2 p.m. - 12:30 a.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 2 p.m. - 2 a.m. Thursday through Saturday. The café serves coffee, tea, lattes, smoothies, hot chocolate, muffins, cookies and sandwiches. While primarily designed as a student space, the café is also open to faculty, staff and campus visitors.

At an opening reception on Monday, Connecticut College President Leo I. Higdon Jr. told students Ruane's Den is a perfect complement to other favorite hangouts on campus, including the Oasis Snack Shop in the Crozier-Williams student center and Coffee Grounds, a student-run coffee cooperative located in Katharine Blunt House. "Having these venues for programming and gathering is important for Connecticut College's social learning community, and that is a big part of what this College is all about," Higdon said.

November 17, 2011