Barnes Center expands hours of operation following successful first year
The doors opened to Clemson University students on Feb. 18, 2017. Only this time, it was newly refurbished.
Known best as the ‘Sheep Barn’ during the days it was still Clemson College, the Barnes Center was repurposed into a full-fledged, late-night social programming destination.
And since that re-opening of sorts, over 90 programs have been held inside the venue named in honor of alumnus Frank S. Barnes Jr.
“We’re just trying to be a place where students can come hang out and have fun for a couple of hours,” said Hannah Muldoon, assistant director for programs in Campus Activities & Events. “We want this to be a place for every student on this campus.”
So far, so good.
Named to the National Register of Historic Places in 1990, the Barnes Center renovation preserved some of the building’s original features, including a strip of concrete flooring and two silos, which are now used to seat bigger groups.
Muldoon said the response to the Barnes Center’s programming has been overwhelmingly positive. She reports anywhere from a 96 to 98 percent satisfaction rate and personally reads every piece of feedback received from the students who utilize the space. When the students desired a “Bob Ross” night — a night of painting named after the late television host — she obliged and scheduled one for the spring semester.
And while late-night, alcohol-free programming was the initial purpose behind the re-opening, the Barnes Center has since expanded its menu — literally.
“As we continue to grow, we decided to open the building longer so students could utilize it more,” Muldoon said. “We now offer food service from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday, in addition to new late-night hours.
“They have a lot of great food options, from wings to sushi to flatbreads and breakfast sandwiches. It’s definitely a cool place to come check out, grab some food and spend time with other students.”