Loud laughter mixed with constant chatter, the sound of music against the background of typing keyboards as the smell of fried food fills the air. This is the usual atmosphere for those who find themselves spending an evening in The Lark’s Nest.
Of course The Nest wouldn’t be complete without its main attraction, the snack shop. Usually offering a variety of treats, The Snack Shop has been around for generations but its presence at the college has not always been a guarantee.
In the beginning, The Snack Shop was owned and operated by the food service department. Open both in the morning and at night, the Shop offered cinnamon rolls for breakfast and cold drinks and milkshakes as a late night snack. Around the early 2000s, the Shop broadened their menu by adding a grill to their inventory.
In 2009, Lincoln Perk bought the snack shop and began bringing in their own products to sell during lunchtime. However, after only one year Lincoln Perk decided to give The Shop back to the college. It was during this time that the food service decided to no longer run The Snack Shop and for awhile it seemed as if the Snack shop would no longer exist.
However, Hesston’s student development decided The Snack Shop was too valuable for students to lose, and they took over ownership in 2010.
Since then students have enjoyed a variety of treats including mozzarella sticks, chicken strips and hamburgers. Freshman Emma Eitzen is a regular.
“I would say I am down in the nest pretty often,” Eitzen said. “So it’s been nice to get to use the Shop. I usually get their ice cream, which is my favorite.”
Although the Shop continues to be a great place for students to gather, it has never been a financial success for the college.
“The Lark’s Nest has never been a money maker,” said Juli Winter, Dean of Students. “Instead we see it as a service to students to provide some snacks and late night food. To keep it affordable for students we don’t typically make money off of it.”