The college workload overwhelms many of us, but thankfully, events like Gonzaga Coffeehouse serve as brief respites for GU students.
GU Coffeehouse is an event held every Wednesday from 8 to 9 p.m., designed to give students a space to chill in the middle of the week. It’s located inside the John J. Hemmingson Center, in the Hemm Den.
People can listen to live music, study in a calmer environment, socialize with friends and enjoy free coffee and food provided by staff. The room is also dimly lit to provide a chill ambience.
“I think one of the perks of having it in the middle of the week is that it’s a little bit of a rest for students." said Keely Peddycord, Gonzaga Student Body Association's Director of Campus Events. "We get so busy and so overwhelmed, and oftentimes Wednesdays are when tests are coming up later that week and we have so much to do and so much has happened. It’s an hour in the middle of your week where you can sit down, listen to some really cool music, see your friends, socialize a little bit, and it just gives students a place to pause for a second and rest.”
There are a variety of performances that occur at GU Coffeehouse. Local artists come in once in awhile. Student performers are also encouraged to participate. From slam poetry to singer-songwriter material to live instruments, GU Coffeehouse encourages a variety of performances.
“They’ll have people come perform for coffeehouse every Wednesday, but they reserve one Wednesday a month for Open Mic, and they divide that hour into 20-minute sections where any student can come and opt to do the open mic,” said performer Grace Cooper.
With the pandemic, GSBA has modified the event in order to accommodate COVID-19 guidelines.
There is a benefit to the event being over Zoom. Students unable to attend in person due to being off-campus or scheduling can still tune in on Zoom.
Performances are all required to be over zoom. This was an executive decision made by GSBA.
“It’s a bit awkward to not hear or see people’s reactions at the end of a song or engage with the audience in that way,” said Cooper, “but that still didn’t change the way I felt when I performed. I knew that people were listening. I knew that people were present and I was just really grateful to be a part of coffeehouse,” said Cooper.
“I liked the calming music after a day of doing school. It was really nice music to wind down to,” said freshman Madeline Archibald who watched it online.
GU students still have the option to participate in the event live.
“We technically still do have a projector screen that we put up in Hemm Den, and they’ll play the performance from there,” said Peddycord. “If students want to still have that in-person decision that is up to them and their personal choice of comfortability and risk. They’re still allowing for social distancing down there.”
Students interested in winding down and finding respite in the middle of a stressful week should consider attending a Coffeehouse event for a chill time.