Mississippi College

Business is Brisk at New Mississippi College Eatery Known as 1826

August 28, 2014

Flatbread pizzas, Philly cheese steak sandwiches, giant chocolate chip cookies and chicken sliders are among the popular items attracting students to Mississippi College’s newest eatery.

Equipped with a giant overhead fan, a revamped menu, comfortable seats and an amazing Coke machine, the new restaurant and student hangout on the Clinton campus is known simply as 1826.

For Mississippi College faculty, staff, students, and alums, the year nearly two centuries ago is pretty significant in MC history. That’s when the Baptist-affiliated university was founded as Hampstead Academy. The gathering spot for lunch patrons in the Commons area also was dubbed Hampstead’s in recent years. But that’s now old news as MC begins its 189th academic year.

Noting the quesadillas topped with salsa and sour cream on the menu or just the cozy atmosphere, students are giving 1826 a big thumbs up.

President Lee Royce, Vice President for Enrollment Services Jim Turcotte, Campus Dining’s Mike Prince and student leaders teamed up for ribbon cutting ceremonies on Wednesday. Attending the August 27 event were hundreds of hungry students taking a break from the opening day of fall classes.

Improved lighting, longer hours and the more than 100 varieties of drinks dispensed by the fabulous Coke machine are other attractions boosting student crowds. Menu prices are also pretty reasonable starting with chicken sliders at $2.25 each and going to $5.40 for flatbread pizzas and salads. Homemade burgers plus fresh BLT sandwiches are other mouth-pleasing items.

“We got input from students who wanted a hangout spot that served specialty foods,” says Prince, the administrator for Campus Dining, MC’s food service provider. Hours that go later on weeknights and Sunday evenings are a hit with students, he said.

Over the years, names like Sky Ranch Grill and Hampstead’s have come and gone on the Clinton campus.

“I hope it (1826) sticks. It’s our history,” says Turcotte, an MC alumnus who serves as dean of students. “We’ve been here a long time.”

About 400 MC students were surveyed before plans moved ahead to give the eatery a makeover, a different name and a new menu, said Student Government Association President Chip Wilson.

Students and other patrons at 1826 can expect to see more changes, such as a mural on interior walls, a bigger sign out front, and a full menu as of September 2.

Photo: MC President Lee Royce joins university administrators and student leaders at Wednesday's ribbon-cutting for 1826, the new cafe and student hangout on the Clinton campus.

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