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Whatever Happened to EBAs?

EBA's Closed.jpgAlthough the closure of EBAs was presented as a bolt out of the blue, Hanover oldtimers report that the restaurant has been suffering badly for several years, and the closure had been expected for a while. The reason: the College’s interminable, six-week, Thanksgiving-to-New Year’s break.

This misguided policy, enacted by the Kim/Folt administration, had as its goal to save energy costs by closing the College for an extended period, and also freeing many students from the burden of a quick holiday trip home during the fall term. However, it has caused serious collateral damage. As I wrote in a November 25, 2016 post:

Carol Folt’s endless six-week Xmas break has now begun, a destructive exercise that serves to further compress each of the College’s already-short four quarters, and supposedly reduces some heating bills, while letting more students go home for Thanksgiving. Are those our highest priorities?

While we might think of the foreign students who are marooned in Hanover for a month and a half, or have our hearts go out to Town merchants whose sales drop during the extended hiatus, the folks who really suffer from the lengthy break are the College’s students. Are nine-and-a-half-week quarters long enough for good learning? [Emphasis added]

The negative effects on students’ academic lives were apparent very early on. And the writing was on the wall for EBAs well before Domino’s opened up in Lebanon. You see, a business cannot easily survive a six-week dead period — over 10% of the year. Sales plummet, but rent and staffing costs don’t change much. Students had previously been in town during much of that period, and Dartmouth’s and visiting varsity teams used to pour into the restaurant for loud and lucrative events. No more. And there goes your annual profit.

While it’s too late now for EBAs, the College should think of changing back to a calendar that better supports student learning. Quarters that include a decent reading period before exams would be a good place to start.

Addendum: The Valley News reported extensively on EBAs sudden closure: Owner: Everything But Anchovies Was No Longer Profitable (Video with Radio Jingle) and Hanover ‘Institution’ Everything But Anchovies Abruptly Closes Its Doors After 38 Years and Readers React to Closing of Everything But Anchovies. The first story has the restaurant’s immortal jingle: 643-6135!

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