October 30, 2001

Fewer Students Going To Eat at Okenshield's

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Okenshield’s, the popular eatery in Willard Straight Hall, may face a cut in hours due to operational cost losses.

Okenshield’s has continually lost “counts,” or number of students eating at the dining hall, according to Martin Orlando, general manager of Central Campus for Cornell Dining. If necessary, Cornell Dining may compensate for the decrease in revenues by eliminating Friday night dinner, Sunday brunch and Sunday dinner at Okenshield’s, times when Orlando says there are “very, very low counts.”

Although the exact amount of money lost is very difficult to estimate, Orlando said that overall costs — including food, labor, and utilities — certainly exceed what students pay per meal.

Orlando said the North Star dining hall has had a negative effect on Okenshield’s business. He said, “A lot of counts are going that way. Students have one more option for their meals.”

In addition, students have requested that Hughes Dining be expanded. With the costs of opening North Star and the possibility of longer hours at Hughes, there may not be enough money to keep Okenshield’s current hours.

If the cuts do occur, Orlando said, Cornell Dining will probably implement some changes to make up for the lost hours.

One option is to allow students to use a regular meal, rather than a meal equivalency, in the Ivy Room when Okenshield’s is closed. The regular meal option in the Ivy Room would be a meal deal such as that offered in Hughes, not to be confused with a meal equivalency. It is not all-you-care-to-eat but typically includes a drink, an entr