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Spring debut on the menu for new University Club

Collaboration with colleagues will be a kick in the palate come spring 2006, when the WSU University Club opens. A relaxing lunch of pan-seared sea scallops and mixed greens tossed in sesame-hoisin vinaigrette is sure to get those collegial juices flowing.

A survey of faculty and staff last year revealed the desire for a university club, said Gene Fritz, culinary educator for the School of Hospitality Business Management.

“The club will provide a place for intellectual, educational and social collaboration,” said Mary Doyle, vice provost for administration.

It also will provide another place to eat at a time when the CUB is closing for two years of renovation, Fritz said. In addition to the first-floor university dining area, the second-floor Regency Room — gourmet dining in an upscale setting that is popular with faculty and staff — also will be shut down. It is expected that employees who frequent the Regency Room will find comparable ambiance and quality at the University Club.

Current and retired faculty and staff, and graduate students, will be eligible to join for an annual membership of $120, payable through payroll deduction.

All transactions will be by Cougar Card. A kiosk allowing members to add funds to their cards by cash, credit card and automatic transfer will be on site. Only members, not guests, will be allowed to pay.

A limited continental breakfast will be served, with full-service lunch and limited-service appetizer, beer and wine offerings in the afternoons. Fritz estimates lunch will cost an average of $8.50 and will be the most popular meal. Beverage offerings will include Pacific Northwest beer and wine.

Renovations of the space that will house the club are under way in Todd Addition 268, and there will be additional meeting space in Todd Addition 277.

“We expect a lot of units and the administration to use the meeting rooms, where they can be served a meal during a presentation or working lunch,” Fritz said.

The dining room will seat an estimated 50 patrons, and Fritz expects to accommodate about 115 diners between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. The club will be open 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday-Friday. Catering to meetings and special events also will be offered.

This operation is a unique partnership between WSU and the School of Hospitality Business Management. Students will serve in the club as part of the 1,000 hours of work experience required for graduation. Much of the operational information will be used in courses throughout the curriculum for teaching and group analysis.

More information about the WSU University Club can be found online at www.universityclub.wsu.edu. When the website is fully functioning, you will be able to join the club online and/or sign onto a listserve for e-mail updates and menu specials.

Catering and meetings can be scheduled through either dine@wsu.edu or 335-DINE.

The club is a nonprofit 501c(7) organization and is a separate entity from WSU. Governance is by a board.

Board members are Mary Doyle, vice provost for administration; Roberta Giles, library technician lead; Joan King, associate budget director-operations; Anna Maria Shannon, assistant director, Museum of Art; Barry Swanson, professor/scientist, Food Science and Human Nutrition; and Terry Umbreit, professor and director, School of Hospitality Business Management.

So get ready to mingle over mustard — grilled flank steak with tart cherry-mustard vinaigrette, that is, or maybe cedar planked salmon with huckleberry grain mustard sauce…. Bon appetit!

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