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University of Central Missouri
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Contact:Courtney Niemuth |   Watch Video
WARRENSBURG, MO (Jan. 24, 2012) –Readings, vocal and guitar performances resonated throughout the Elliott Union Atrium Wednesday morning as the University of Central Missouri community came together to celebrate the grand opening of Café Rouge, the new coffeehouse setting in the union.
“What a great enhancement to an already important space,” UCM President Charles Ambrose said in his opening remarks. “When visitors are here, when we are thinking about places to come together, and certainly when we think about what the mission of the institution is, and that is the intensity of learning every day, but the opportunity to extend our purposes in life, this gives that kind of relationship-building a place.”
Café Rouge, which means Red Café in French, features a fireplace with shelves, a small stage and new furniture, including couches and chairs, bistro-style tables and a laptop bar. With seating for about 30 people, it will be a venue for open mic nights, discussion groups and other student events throughout the year.
Ambrose read an excerpt from Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken” and closed by saying that he looks forward to seeing the café space become even more vibrant in the days and months ahead.Shari Bax, vice provost of Student Experience and Engagement, shared a poem that noted the values and beliefs she hopes her students learn. “Believe” by Chelsea Varvaro closed with the lines, “Believe in time. Believe in forever. Believe in you. Believe that as long as you believe in yourself – anything is possible.”
The grand opening also included a reading by Wendy Geiger, associate professor of communication, and performances by UCM students Peter Rodenberg, Janay Wilson and Ben Wemhoener. Prior to the grand opening, the first student-led open mic night was held in the space Monday evening, Jan. 23, and attracted more than 100 students.
Groups wanting to use the space for public events can reserve it through the Office of Meeting and Conference Services.
The addition of Café Rouge complements Jazzman’s extended hours. Café Rouge will serve Jazzman’s coffees, which are Fair Trade Certified from sustainable sources, from 7:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday though Thursday and 7:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday.
Elliott Union is open to students and the public seven days a week. The services available in the building include U.S. Bank, the UCM ID Card Office, the Union Bowling Center, a DVD rental kiosk, the University Store, numerous retail food vendors, the Office of Accessibility and the Office of Student Activities.