Located on the first floor of Old MacEwan Hall, at the University of Calgary, the Den has been a UofC tradition since 1969. It was recently renovated, spending the 2000-2001 school year closed.

I cannot mention the Den without mentioning its floors. Before the renovations, the floors had been in place since 1978. When it was put in, everything but the dance floor was covered in expensive red pure wool weave carpet inported from England. The students were asked to be nice to the carpet. I doubt that lasted.

That carpet went through everything. There were a large number of people who probably spilled more beer on that carpet than they drank in any given night. Don't worry, they made up for it by just drinking more. Beer, Vomit, Urine, anything made it to that carpet. When you were walking around, often times your shoes would honestly stick to the floor.

Needless to say, drunken University students loved that place. The beer was cheap, the music was loud, and the women (and men) were loose.

When the place was shut down for renovations, they wanted to auction off sections of the carpet for people to keep as mementos. Those plans were scrapped when it was deemed a biohazard.

The Den has reopened as of August 2001 under the management of the Student's Union, who took it over from the University of Calgary administration, and promptly closed it for renovations. It is no longer quite as dank and dirty, and due to the fact that the other campus bar, Max Cafe and Bar, closed to move into The Den, it has no competition on campus. As a result the beer isn't quite as cheap and there even might be less loose women on thursday nights. It will now have two levels, the bottom still being The Den, and the top level named The Black Lounge after the smoking area that was closed to accomodate this expansion. Even if it is more expensive, I will still be going there for Molson products between classes.
Update: December 7th, 2001.
I really should have done this earlier in the year, but here goes.

The Den is still looking good. It has retained its cozy atmosphere, the one that made it a place that you just wanted to hang out in between classes. However there are some bad things about it.

The Den tries to be three things, a night club, a pub, and a resturant. It excels at two of those things. It has cheap booze, and is a comfortable place to go drinking with buddies. It is also rocking on Thursday - Saturday nights. Good tunes, dance floor packed. It has decent food, decent prices, and really shitty service.

The place has changed a lot. It's a lot more pubish nowadays. It's not the place that people would line up at the door at 11 AM to get in and get drunk between (before?) their classes. It's a lot cleaner. And campus security is having more problems there. Now that it's no longer disgusting, it's attracting more and more people from off campus. These people are a lot more likely to start a fight. Of the six or so incidents in the past while, only one involved ONLY students at the University.

As a result, they've had to cut back the hours of the place. Quite a shame really. I miss the old Den.

The service is not so bad for me, because I know two of the people who work there quite well. However, you should not normally expect to be able to go in there and sit down for lunch in less than 45 minutes to an hour.

This is not because the wait staff is bad. They are good at what they do, and friendly to boot. However, there just isn't enough of them. Honestly I usually don't bother trying to eat there, I would only go for drinks.

To recap: Den: fun times, cheap booze, shitty service, stupid off campus people.

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