Last Friday, Nov. 11, marked the 114th birthday of the beloved Grove House at Pitzer College. To celebrate, the Grove House crew and Scripps Student Senate hosted a camp-themed birthday party for the Claremont College community.
The Grove House was the first student cultural center at Pitzer College, purchased for only $1 in 1976. Since its opening in 1980, the Grove House has remained an important part of student life at Pitzer College, and the birthday party celebrated this legacy.
Approaching the Grove House on Friday evening, I was greeted with music and warmth emanating from the open doors. When I stepped inside, it was like I had traveled back in time to my childhood. A variety of fun activities were offered, including tie-dying t-shirts, making buttons using magazine clippings, and creating different shapes out of ironing plastic “perler beads.” Guests could also frost and decorate cookies shaped like the Grove House.
The quaint, craftsman-style home was decorated with balloons and a “Happy Birthday” banner hanging from the ceiling. Students expressed their birthday cheer by adorning the party hats sitting by the door. Snacks, including delicious brownies, were provided by Grove House kitchen manager, Zenia Gutierrez.
The joy of the students in the room that Friday evening was palpable, as everyone decompressed after a very stressful week. As a Pomona College student who lives on South Campus, I had not had the chance to make the trek all the way to the Pitzer Grove House until its birthday. After visiting, however, I know I will be returning sometime soon for its good food and great energy.
Here’s to another 114 years!