Potsdam Auxiliary and College Educational Services (PACES) has opened the Performing Arts Café in the brand-new Performing Arts Center on the SUNY Potsdam campus. The new center houses SUNY Potsdam's Department of Theatre and Dance and is located adjacent to The Crane School of Music.

Retiring PACES Dining Director George Arnold oversaw completion of the project, which launched in early March.

"It is really an exciting time for SUNY Potsdam, the Department of Theatre and Dance and PACES," Arnold says. "The space is beautiful, and the café seating area has clean lines and a great view of all the student activity around Crane and this side of campus. There are big windows at the café, and, come spring, a small patio outside might be the perfect place for visitors to gather and enjoy the sunshine and spring in the North Country."

The Performing Arts Café will be open weekdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. to the general public as well as the campus community. The menu features Starbucks beverages, with both hot and cold specialty drinks and coffees along with a line of signature sandwiches and paninis named after famous actors and dancers.

The Martha Graham Panini, for example, is a vegetarian sandwich made with artichokes, tomatoes, sun dried tomato pesto mayonnaise, field greens and Monterey jack cheese. Other signature sandwiches are named for Lee Strasberg, Eugene O'Neill and Sylvie Guillem. A daily soup selection and a hot entrée will be available every day, as well as sandwiches made to customers' specifications.

"PACES has always focused on the customer's need for choice," says Arnold. "We make sure that we let our customer—whether it be students, faculty, staff, campus visitors or community members—to get their food, made their way. We emphasize choice. We provide the best and freshest variety of ingredients and let the customer decide how they want it made."

Specialty desserts and a unique line of grab-and-go items will also be available in the café. The eatery's seating area accommodates about 50 people at a time, and remains open when the café is closed.

The new cafe will have a staging kitchen for finishing foods prepared in the Thatcher Hall and Bowman Hall kitchens. The smell of baking croissants, hot pasta dishes and fresh soups are sure to welcome customers to the café.