Performing Arts Center Café Opens for Business at SUNY Potsdam


SUNY Potsdam student ChaRon Brabham grabs lunch in the new Performing Arts Café, located in the Performing Arts Center.

Potsdam Auxiliary College and Educational Services has opened the newest eatery on the SUNY Potsdam campus. The Performing Arts Café is located in the brand-new Performing Arts Center, which houses the Department of Theatre and Dance, and is located adjacent to The Crane School of Music.

Retiring PACES Dining Director George Arnold has been busy overseeing the project, as the café launched early this month.

"It is really an exciting time for SUNY Potsdam, the Department of Theatre and Dance and PACES. 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," said Arnold. "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 on weekdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The café is open to the general public, as well as the campus community. PACES currently operates several other quality restaurants on campus. The Performing Arts Café brings together the best features of these eateries. 

"Think Minerva's Café, Becky's Place and Dexter's Café coming together in a new and unique way," said Arnold.

The Performing Arts Café features Starbucks beverages, with both hot and cold specialty drinks and coffees.

There will be a line of signature sandwiches and paninis, all 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," said 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.

About PACES Dining Services:

Potsdam Auxiliary and College Educational Services Inc. (PACES) is a not-for-profit corporation operating under contract with SUNY Potsdam. PACES' mission is to offer high-quality products and services, while maximizing customer value and financial return, to the benefit of the larger SUNY Potsdam community. PACES Dining Services was rated the No. 1 dining service for comprehensive colleges in the SUNY system, in the Student Opinion Satisfaction Survey. For more information about what makes PACES No. 1, visit


Founded in 1816, and located on the outskirts of the beautiful Adirondack Park, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America's first 50 colleges. SUNY Potsdam currently enrolls approximately 4,300 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its handcrafted education, challenging liberal arts and sciences core, excellence in teacher training and leadership in the performing and visual arts. Empowered by a culture of creativity, the campus community recently launched Take the Lead: The Campaign for Potsdam, which aims to raise $27 million by the College's bicentennial in 2016.