Bethel students celebrated the grand opening of Brushaber Commons on March 22 with some foot-stomping Dance Dance Revolution, (a music video game) in the building’s club-like Underground space. Upon returning from spring break, students walked into their new “family room” and were given “passports” to have stamped at featured locales including the David E. and Mary Jo Monson Dining Center, new offices for the Bethel Student Association (BSA) and Clarion newspaper, and the relocated campus bookstore. The other dining venues, the 3900 Grill and Royal Grounds coffee shop (Not Your Daddy’s Cafeteria), also offered samples of their fares.
Hundreds of Bethel donors and friends gathered around the main atrium staircase on March 26 to take part in the building’s official dedication. In his comments, Jay Barnes pointed out the intersection of beams in the ceiling that creates a cross-shaped shadow on the floor as the sun shines through the skylight above, symbolic of the centrality of Christ at Bethel. The building’s namesake, President Emeritus George Brushaber, closed the celebration in prayer, and guests were invited to tour the 110,000-square foot facility and enjoy a “Taste of the Commons,” with free appetizers from the three dining venues.
A 2009 Time Capsule was placed inside the cornerstone of Brushaber Commons. It contained a college academic catalog, student recruitment materials, seven core values awareness bracelets and wallet cards, photo album of student activities, Sodexo menu, Sudoku book, and other objects representing the culture of 2009 both on and off campus. Inscribed on the cornerstone is 1 Corinthians 12:27, “Together you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is part of that body.”