by Sara Hodon | photography by Ken White
The atmosphere at The Spot is flexible; it can be a laid-back lounge or a more energetic club, says Ciera Eaddy ’14, The Spot night manager and psychology and women’s & gender studies double major.
That could be one reason why more and more students are discovering The Spot, Lafayette’s own nightclub, which features a wide variety of events including DJ dance parties, bands, formals, sports parties, comedy nights, and more. Attendance has reached as high as 300 thanks to a full calendar and more student organizations hosting meetings and events.
“We have two back rooms with a pool table, air hockey table, and a nice lounge area with TV, Wii, and board games where students can hang out,” says Janice Pigga, coordinator of facility management and evening events. “The front room has a huge dance floor and DJ booth where students stage dance parties, live bands, comedians, trivia and movie nights, and bingo.” Most events are nonalcoholic and open to the entire campus, although special events are occasionally hosted for students over 21.
The Spot is on Third Street across from the Williams Visual Arts Building. The College renovated the former restaurant space in 2008 and designed it especially for a student nightclub based on advice and suggestions from a student committee. It gives students a place to socialize and hold different programs, without leaving campus.
Some student groups, such as Lafayette Activities Forum, Brothers of Lafayette, and Association of Black Collegians, sponsor events regularly. WJRH, Lafayette African and Caribbean Students Association, International Students Association, Questioning Established Sexual Taboos (QuEST), Hispanic Society of Lafayette, and Delta Delta Delta are among other groups that have hosted programs. Attendance has ranged from 50 for a live music performance to nearly 300 for events such as those sponsored by ABC in the fall.
“Our goal for The Spot was to have a variety of fun events,” says Ellen Hughes ’13, a member of LAF and a biology and French double major. “We have had relaxation night, LAF underground music events, as well as comedians.” She adds, “There’s always something to do. I went to a few of the dance parties freshman year and have been to events hosted by other groups, such as BOL’s Whistles and Glowsticks. I also get to enjoy amazing shows by bands like The Lumineers for free.”
“The chance to win cool prizes has helped attract students, as well,” says Robert Young ’14, a member of ABC and a film & media studies and women’s & gender studies double major. “We had huge giveaways like 40-inch TVs, Flip cameras, iPods, and gift cards,” he says. “Everyone was welcome to party, enjoy good food, and embrace the company of others. I see The Spot as a venue to hear a good DJ, dance, and eat some free food.”
“I think people see The Spot as both a laid-back lounge area and an upbeat club. I know a lot of people like to go there to kick back and chill,” says Ciera Eaddy ’14, a member of Association of Black Collegians. “But if there is a party, people will come down to party.”
“As an entertainment place, I don’t think The Spot should be compared to typical social hangout settings like a residence hall common room,” says Connor Heinlein ’15, a member of LAF and government & law and philosophy double major. “Having The Spot is really important because it gives students options for what they want to do at night. I can’t think of another place on campus that is completely free for students that has food and an event nearly every Friday and Saturday night.”