A queue of students 100-strong snaked around the entrance to the Curb Cafe at Monday’s grand opening of the new-and-improved Chick-fil-A.
Freshman Jack Johnson was the first student to walk through the doors. He arrived more than an hour before the restaurant opened with chicken on his mind.
“My goal was to be the first person in line,” Johnson said. He was one of dozens waiting to secure first dibs on chicken nuggets, sandwiches, shakes and waffle fries.
And students were overjoyed to have one of their favorite on-campus spaces up and running again after months of renovation.
“I’ve missed the Curb Chick-fil-A, and I’m excited for what it’s going to look like in there,” said sophomore Mary Clark Webb.
Other students were just relieved the fan-favorite food is available on campus again.
“I’m literally speechless,” said junior Holli Teige while enjoying her chicken sandwich and sweet tea.
But the new restaurant will be dishing up more than food in the weeks to come.
In addition to the expanded menu, the restaurant features a larger seating area and a stage — in the spirit of the old Curb Cafe — where students can book live performance slots Monday through Friday.
“I’m excited to see live music and hang out with friends,” said junior Tyler Bock.
The old Chick-fil-A express was one of the most popular dining options on campus, despite its limited menu and constant overcrowding during lunch hours.
But even though the new restaurant is larger and faster, students can still expect to see long lines for a few days.
“It takes about a week and then it will calm down,” said Kyle Grover, district manager of Sodexo at Belmont, while observing the long line.
Although other dining options on campus offer similar menu items, students agree there is just something special about Chick-fil-A.
Freshman Ben Varney put it best: “the nugs there can’t compare.”
PHOTO: First-in-line Jack Johnson hung out with the Chick-fil-A cow at the new location. Photo courtesy of Brady Prewitt.
This article was written by Ellie Lewis, Olivia Patterson and Paul Rackley.